About Us » GATE and SAS




LAUSD Gifted/Talented Website

Gifted/Talented Programs create high end learning opportunities which allow students to flourish in stimulating academic and social environments. In designing challenging educational opportunities, we strive to raise the floor, remove the walls and eliminate the ceiling on learning.

The philosophy of Gifted/Talented Programs is integrally connected to the District mission statement. The District's instructional programs for gifted and talented students are based on the principles that all students are to receive an education appropriate to their individual capabilities, interests, and needs, and that students have learning opportunities that help develop their abilities to the highest level. Because gifted and talented students generally demonstrate high performance or capacity for high performance beyond age/grade expectations, they are atypical learners who require specialized learning experiences beyond the regular curriculum.


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 Calahan Elementary School, the GATE funding supports our School for Advanced Studies (SAS) program. Each school with a GATE and/or SAS program has a site coordinator. 


How Calahan Elementary Diferentiates Instruction:

  • Implementation of Depth and Complexity Icons 
  • Accelerated or advanced content
  • More complex understandings of generalizations, principles, theories, and the structure of the content area
  • Abstract concepts and thought processes or skills
  • Level and type of resources used to obtain information, acquire skills, and develop products
  • Appropriation of longer/shorter time span for learning
  • Generating new information and/or products
  • Transfer of learning to new/different disciplines, situations
  • Development of personal growth and sophistication in attitudes, appreciations, feelings, intuition
  • Independence of thought and study


Calahan Elementary School 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' (SAS). The SAS program was originally created in 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 a 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 Calahan Elementary, the K through 2 classrooms are used for screening. Children coming out of the 2nd grade are identified by way of testing and scores. The SAS program officially begins in 3rd grade. Clusters of identified gifted students are placed with teachers trained in gifted education within a heterogeneous classroom. Every school with a GATE and/or SAS program benefits from a site coordinator. At Calahan, our wonderful second grade teacher, Miss LaMasa, leads both our GATE and SAS programs. If you have any questions, please email Miss LaMasa at [email protected]