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Saskatoon Public Schools
Inspiring Learning
Frequently Asked Questions
​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Click on the links below for frequently asked que​​stions about SAGE Gifted Education.

​​What is giftedness?

In simple terms, giftedness refers to displaying exceptional ability or uncommon promise. Giftedness is not fixed, nor is a student gifted in all areas. Many gifted students have areas of great strength and other areas that are average or require extra support.


How will my child be identified as gifted?

In Grade 4 and Grade 8, a combination of standardized test scores, teacher observation and student writing are used to identify students who might benefit from SAGE programming. Students may be invited to the elementary or secondary SAGE program or be offered other supports. If your child is offered a SAGE program spot and declines, other opportunities like differentiation or mentorship may be available to provide additional support in the home or school.

Some students may also be considered twice exceptional, which means having two special needs. For example, in the case of giftedness, a student might be both gifted and have a learning disability. Students who are twice exceptional may require more than SAGE to support their success, but they are welcome to participate in programming for the gifted. 


What services and programs are available for gifted learners?

The following services and programs are available for gifted learners:

  • Support in your current classroom: Through differentiation, your child's teacher may offer alternative activities, inquiry projects or a combination of working more deeply and/or quickly in certain subjects.

  • Working with experts: Your child may have the opportunity to work with a mentor in elementary school or participate in an academic work placement in secondary school.

  • Extended placement in a classroom for the gifted: Your child may be offered a place in the SAGE​ program.

Why do we offer special programs for gifted learners?

Like other learners with special needs, gifted learners need methods of instruction and environments that ensure they are appropriately challenged. When they do not have these challenges and supports, gifted learners may experience disengagement, isolation or lack of appropriate academic growth.

Bright children are often successful in a regular classroom: top achievers in their class, leaders among their peers, etc. A regular classroom environment typically meets the needs of bright learners. Gifted learners are often not successful in a regular classroom and may need an alternative learning environment to address their specific learning and socio-emotional needs. Read more about the characteristics of gifted students

Bright Child​
​Gifted Child
​Knows the answers​Asks the questions
​Interested​Extremely curious
​Pays attention​Gets involved physically and mentally
​Works hard​Plays around, still gets good test scores
​Answers questions​Questions the answers
​Enjoys same-age peers​Prefers adults or older children
​Good at memorization​Good at guessing
​Learns easily​Bored; already knows the answers
​Listens well​Shows strong feelings and opinions
​Self-satisfied​Self-satisfied; highly critical of self (perfectionist)
 Characteristics of Bright vs Gifted Students from Janice Szabos

Note: The above is not a list of absolutes. A gifted student may demonstrate some of the traits of a bright student and a bright student may have some of the traits of a gifted student. Students may demonstrate gifted characteristics in certain disciplines and not in others. The purpose of the list is to ​provide a general sense of observable characteristics a teacher or parent might see that can be associated with giftedness.​