School for Advanced Study (SAS)
Serrania Avenue Elementary is one of a select group of schools in the Los Angeles Unified School District that has been designated as a “School for Advanced Studies”. The “SAS” Program was originally created in a response to the great demand for Magnet Schools with gifted programs. The purpose of SAS is to provide high level academic programs to serve the educational needs of highly able learners within their local school community, thereby removing the need for these children to travel to school outside their neighborhood.
All teachers in the LAUSD who work with identified gifted students receive additional training in gifted education and differentiated instruction. SAS classes emphasize problem solving activities that use a variety of resources. Teachers differentiate the curriculum to meet the unique learning needs of the students. Although the curriculum is the same as in non-SAS classes, the subjects are taught in greater breadth, depth and complexity. Critical and creative thinking, investigation, flexible groupings are emphasized through the use of a variety of formats and resources.
At Serrania, the K through 2 SAS classrooms are used for screening and students are placed in these SAS classrooms by teacher recommendation. Children coming out of the 2nd grade are identified by way of the Otis-Lennon School Ability Test. Clusters of identified gifted students are placed with teachers trained in gifted education within a heterogeneous classroom.
GATE stands for Gifted and Talented Education. This program addresses the special needs of the identified gifted students. The state has recommendations, standards and funding for these programs and at Serrania, the GATE funding supports our SAS program. Each school with a GATE and/or SAS program has a site coordinator and a parent rep.