GATE- Gifted and Talented Education

Gate Assessment Dates


CogAT Test Dates     February 2020






Tuesday, Feb. 4

Alisal Elementary

Friday, Feb. 21

Mohr Elementary

Thursday, Feb. 6

Donlon Elementary

Tuesday, Feb. 25

Valley View Elementary

Friday, Feb. 7

Fairlands Elementary

Wednesday, Feb. 26

Pleasanton Middle School

Wednesday, Feb. 12

Hart Middle School

Thursday, Feb. 27

Vintage Hills Elementary

Thursday, Feb. 13

Lydiksen Elementary

Friday, Feb. 28

Walnut Grove Elementary

Wednesday, Feb. 19

Harvest Park Middle School


Thursday, Feb. 20

Hearst  Elementary





NOMINATIONS DUE BY December 23, 2019


Schools in Pleasanton are preparing for the annual Gifted and Talented Education (GATE) testing period. 


Each year all Pleasanton Unified School District (PUSD) third-grade students and nominated 4th-7th-grade students will have the opportunity to participate in the assessment used for identifying Gifted and Talented Education (GATE) students. Testing of all third-grade students ensures that all students have equitable access to the GATE identification process at a minimum of one time during their education within PUSD.  In addition, identification enables teacher knowledge of a student’s aptitude for instructional differentiation within the classroom. 


Parents may nominate their child by submitting a completed Parent Nomination and Permission form to your child’s school or to the Curriculum Department.  


  • For more information about GATE screening and the testing dates please click here.


  • For the Parent Nomination and Permission please click here** Please note, students are not eligible to be nominated if they took the CogAT test last year.  


  • Blanket CogAT testing for all third-grade students in the district will be administered in February.  Parents/guardians may choose to have their child Opt-Out of the CogAT by completing the Opt-Out form by December 23, 2019.
GATE - Parent Folder (Spanish)


The District's programs and activities shall provide equal access to and shall not unlawfully discriminate based on actual race, color, ancestry, national origin, ethnic group identification, religion, marital or parental status, physical or mental disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity or expression, or genetic information; the perception of one or more of such characteristics; or association with a person or group with one or more of these actual or perceived characteristics and against students who are members of special populations.  Special populations include, but are not limited to, students with disabilities; students from economically disadvantaged families, including foster youth; students preparing for nontraditional fields; single parents and single pregnant females; displaced homemakers; and students with limited English proficiency.  (20 USC 2302, 2354, 2373)

(cf. 0410 - Nondiscrimination in District Programs and Activities)

(cf. 1312.3 - Uniform Complaint Procedures)

GATE Program Description

The district philosophy and plan is to make program services an integral part of the school day, every day. The district believes that all students must be provided a challenging curriculum that is aligned with state standards and frameworks and allows students to meet and exceed the state academic content standards.

The district’s program design centers around the principles of differentiated instruction and our imperative to meet the intellectual, academic, social and emotional needs of all our students. Teachers strive for depth, complexity, novelty and acceleration in all of their daily instruction. Teachers ensure that students are able to understand, apply and extend beyond the standard(s), and they use the instructional strategies needed to meet the individual needs of each student.
The ongoing focus at the district level will be to support our teacher as they provide instruction through differentiated strategies designed to enhance the educational program for GATE students.
Click on the link below for the California Association of the Gifted website:
Click on the link below for the California Department of Education website:
Frequently Asked Questions
  1. How are students identified for GATE?
    Pleasanton Unified School District (PUSD) uses the Cognitive Abilities Test (CogAT) to identify students eligible for the Gifted and Talented Education (GATE) Program. This test consists of three batteries which measure verbal, quantitative and nonverbal abilities. There are three short tests within each battery.
  1. Which grade levels are given the CogAT?
    3rd - 7th-grade students are administered the CogAT in their classrooms during the end of the second trimester of each school year unless an opt-out form has been received.
  1. Can students retake the CogAT?
    Only students in grades 5, 6, and 7 who have previously taken the CogAT, and did not pass, have the option to register and retest. The retest opportunity is given once a year in the spring of the following school year. All students must be registered with a parent “permission to test” form in order to retest. The date and time of the test will be posted on the GATE Testing web page approximately a month prior to testing.
  1. What CogAT scores qualify students for GATE?
    In order to be identified as GATE, a student's composite national age percentile rank (APR) must be 98% or above AND 99% in one of the following sections: Verbal (words), Quantitative (math), or Nonverbal (patterns and puzzles).
  1. How are students new to PUSD identified for the GATE program at our district?
    Previously identified gifted students who enter PUSD are considered for GATE identification as determined by the PUSD GATE identification criteria. The parents will need to submit documentation to the school office during enrollment which shows the students’ prior GATE program qualification, along with assessment results that were used for the qualification. Students in grades 3-5 who have not taken a test for GATE qualification prior to their arrival in PUSD must register to take the test in the spring. The specific date and time of the test for each site is posted on the GATE testing web page in January of the each school year.
  1. Do we share information about the CogAT levels? Does the district recommend any materials for preparation to parents?
    To maintain test security, we do not provide information about the specific levels of the CogAT that students will be taking. Our district does not recommend any materials for CogAT preparation to parents. Students are encouraged to take the CogAT with minimal test preparation so that we get an accurate measure of the students' reasoning abilities.  
  1. How soon after the CogAT testing date do parents receive the results? How do they receive results?
    It typically takes about 8-10 weeks from the first week of CogAT administration for parents to receive results.
  1. When is the testing window this school year?
    The "Testing Window" for grades 3-7 is February 3-28, 2020.

GATE Mission/Vision Statement

The Pleasanton Unified School District has a responsibility to foster in all students critical-thinking, leadership, and academic skills that are necessary for succeeding in a global society. Fulfilling this mission requires that the district’s schools nurture students’ inherent and developed talents and abilities while also meeting their social and emotional needs. A strong gifted program has a positive impact on the learning process for all students. Therefore, it is incumbent upon the district to provide gifted students with individual learning opportunities, resources, and experiences which promote these talents and which provide the potential for self-fulfillment, creativity, and responsible participation in our society.