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Seattle School District May Designate More High Schools For The Highly Capable Program

Joe Wolf
West Seattle High School is one of the schools that could be designated as a pathway for the highly capable program.

Seattle Public Schools is in the midst of figuring out how to relieve overcrowding in Garfield High School’s highly capable program. That’s where kids who test into the district’s gifted program are assigned unless they opt for a different school.

The school district has been working on different options for high school boundaries that will go into effect for the school year that starts in fall of 2019, when Lincoln High School will open in the Wallingford neighborhood. Along with that, district officials have been weighing options for designating more high schools as pathways for the highly capable program. 

"Garfield is way over its physical capacity, so as you continue to add students in advanced learning, the number of students who are at Garfield becomes – I mean, it already can’t handle the number of students there and that number continues to grow," said Flip Herndon, associate superintendent of operations and facilities.

One possible option would designate Ballard, Roosevelt, Garfield and West Seattle High Schools as pathways for the highly capable program. Herndon said the district ultimately would like each high school to be able to offer enough advanced classes so kids in the highly capable program could attend their neighborhood school. 

In July 2017, Ashley Gross became KNKX's youth and education reporter after years of covering the business and labor beat. She joined the station in May 2012 and previously worked five years at WBEZ in Chicago, where she reported on business and the economy. Her work telling the human side of the mortgage crisis garnered awards from the Illinois Associated Press and the Chicago Headline Club. She's also reported for the Alaska Public Radio Network in Anchorage and for Bloomberg News in San Francisco.