Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Duval Expected To Expand Gifted Classes In All Middle Schools

Cyd Hoskinson

Every Duval middle school might have gifted instruction offered this school year.

Last year, out of 24 middle schools, six offered some level of gifted services and five magnets offered a full curriculum of gifted classes.

Superintendent Nikolai Vitti said even though some schools have few students with a “gifted” title, the School Board is requesting other students be put in the class to fill it up to at least 23 students. Last year Lakewood Middle School had five students with a gifted designation and Matthew Gilbert had one.

“Whether a school has five gifted students identified or 15 students identified in the sixth-grade class, we will create a self-contained gifted approach at every middle school throughout the district,” Vitti said.

The Board hasrejected proposals to have kids bussed or assigned to different schools for gifted education.

Instead, middle school principals will identify at least one teacher to take over gifted classes. The district will offer them two years of online training. Teachers will be able to lead classes while earning a gifted designation.

Vitti said the gifted group of students will take most of their core classes together.

The school district will also address the issue of too few students being identified as gifted by testing all second-graders this year. The district has also begun using state guidelines called “Plan B” that allow students on the free and reduced lunch program to qualify as gifted with a slightly lower score on the test.

The board will still have to officially approve the gifted plan at next month’s meeting. 

Lindsey Kilbride can be reached at, 904-358-6359 or on Twitter at @lindskilbride.

Lindsey Kilbride was WJCT's special projects producer until Aug. 28, 2020. She reported, hosted and produced podcasts like Odd Ball, for which she was honored with a statewide award from the Associated Press, as well as What It's Like. She also produced VOIDCAST, hosted by Void magazine's Matt Shaw, and the ADAPT podcast, hosted by WJCT's Brendan Rivers.