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Ignite - Frequently Asked Questions
What is the Ignite Program?
Ignite is an program for students with high intellectual potential (SHIP). Glenunga is a DECS Special Interest School for gifted students and currently receives funding to provide programs for Ignite students.
Do other schools offer this program?
The Heights, Aberfoyle Park High School and Glenunga are the only schools that offer this program. Other schools do offer SHIP Programs, but as they are not funded by DECS they are unable to resource their programs to the same extent that we do.
How does the Program work?
There a number of possible courses that gifted students can take in the Ignite Program. Students who wish to vertically accelerate can select a compacted course which enable students to complete years 8 to 10 in two years, thus moving into year 11 in their third year in the school. Students can then choose to complete years 11 and 12 in two or three years.
It is also possible for vertically accelerated students to study some university subjects while still at school. Students who do not wish to radically vertically accelerate can select a program which emphasises extension and enrichment, combined with subject acceleration rather than grade skipping in all subjects. Students who choose this course complete years 8 to 10 in the normal three years, although they can accelerate in subjects where they are particularly strong.
How are students selected for the Ignite Program?
Students are primarily selected on the basis of their performance in an ACER designed assessment, which occurs in February each year. This assessment is open to all year 6 and 7 students, regardless of age. Country students can sit for the assessment at their primary school if the school accepts responsibility for supervision.
Students who score highly in the assessment are invited to attend an interview. The purpose of the interview is to ensure that the program offered at Glenunga will benefit the student and the he/she will succeed in a gifted program.
Glenunga selects up to 90 students in this way. These students are guaranteed direct entry into the School, regardless of whether they live in or out of zone.
Is it possible to enter a Ignite class without sitting for the assessment?
It is possible by satisfying entry criteria to be selected for a Ignite class. Evidence that the student is gifted must be provided by parents or caregivers such as; performance in an IQ test or participation in a SHIP program at primary school. However, students who enter the program this way (and do not live in the zone) are not guaranteed direct entry into the school by DECS. These students must apply for Glenunga through an out of zone application and once they have been accepted by DECS as a Glenunga student, they they can apply to enter the Ignite Program.
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