The Colorado Exceptional Children’s Act (ECEA) and Harrison School District Two School Board Policy allows highly gifted students, who do not meet the age requirement for enrollment into kindergarten or first grade, to apply for Early Access into school.
- Colorado House Bill 1021 stipulates that districts may count in their enrollment and receive State Educational Funds for highly advanced gifted students who meet the established criteria
- The district must abide by the rules promulgated by the State Board of Education
- The district may charge a reasonable fee for the Early Access process
- District responsibilities:
1. Provide early access information to parents
2. Educate teaching staff and community about Early Access
3. Ensure that Early Access aligns to K-12 identification process
Early Access is defined as a highly gifted four-year-old child entering kindergarten, or a five-year-old entering first grade. A highly gifted child is defined as a gifted child whose body of evidence demonstrates a profile of exceptional ability or potential compared to same-age children. A child may be identified as gifted, but still not qualify for Early Access. To meet the needs of highly advanced development, early access to educational services may be considered as a special provision. Early entrance into school is regarded as a form of acceleration. The decision to accelerate a child can have a profound effect on the child's academic and social performance for the remainder of his/her school career. Therefore, Harrison School District Two adheres to a thorough set of research-based procedures to determine if a child is eligible for Early Access.