NYC Gifted and Talented Program and Testing

Non-profit HOPEorgNYC helps prepare kids for gifted and talented test

The non-profit HOPEorgNYC helps prepare kids for the gifted and talented test in New York City.  Jill Goldstein, founder of @HOPEorgNYC, founded the non-profit in 2015 due to the lack of participation of students in lower-income areas of NYC who take the NYC gifted and talented test for children entering kindergarten through 3rd grade. The mission of this group is to lessen the divide within the gifted and talented program in New York City.  HOPE meets with students every Saturday morning from September through January to help them prepare for the upcoming NNAT and OLSAT tests.

Over the years, it has been evident that the NYC gifted and talented program skews to more Caucasian and Asian students vs. African American and Latino students. The population of gifted and talented students based upon race is disproportionate to the racial population of the city. According to the NY Times, this racial segregation within the schools begins as early as pre-K and then really manifests itself going into kindergarten with the gifted and talented program.

HOPE plans to even out the playing field within district 10 in the Bronx where the program meets at the local library every Saturday to help local students prepare for the test. Their goal is two fold: help the kids succeed on the the G&T test and to do well in school.

Here are students who have benefited from the wonderful work HOPE is doing in the Bronx. The kids thank for giving them test prep materials and for sponsoring the HOPE team.


Testing Mom hosting free seminars
January 5, 2016, 3:56 pm
Filed under: NYC Gifted and Talented Program, OLSAT Test | Tags:

Testing Mom hosting free seminars for NYC parents to review the NYC Gifted and Talented Admissions and Testing this week! These seminars are free but you need to register to attend (links below).

Here’s what you’ll learn at the seminar:

  • The various tests given to children for gifted and talented programs in New York City
  • Learn about the NNAT-2 test and OLSAT test that’s used for admissions into the New York City G&T programs
  • Prepare your child for testing without “prepping”
  • Shy child? Find out how to help a shy child overcome testing anxiety.
  • Easy and fun things you can do at home to help your child prepare for testing
  • Live questions and answers from the audience.

You can register here:


Will NYC Gifted and Talented Test go to 50 50 split?
September 28, 2013, 8:47 pm
Filed under: nnat test, OLSAT Test | Tags: ,

Well, rumors are flying around about possible changes to the OLSAT and NNAT-2 test coming up this January and Feburary. Will the NYC gifted and talented test go to 50 50 split? (instead of the 65 35 split like last year). Well, according to a recent article from WNYC about the screw-ups on the scoring of the regents test this quote is nicely tucked at the bottom of the article:

Department of Education spokeswoman Erin Hughes told WNYC that the change was made because the city would be able to get more data on how its students performed.

“Last year, the D.O.E. did not have data on the performance of New York City students” on the Naglieri test, she said.  “For this reason, the D.O.E. used data from the national samples for these tests in the 2012-13 scoring methodology.”

This year, Hughes explained, the city is returning to its old methodology, the Normal Curve Equivalency, and will weight each exam equally.

I suppose we’ll find out when the gifted and talented handbooks are published in the next couple of weeks but after last year’s screw-ups who knows what the Dept. of Ed. will do this year!

NYC Department of Ed Announces Dates for Gifted and Talented Testing

Mark your calendars everyone. The NYC Department of Ed announces dates for the gifted and talented testing for 2012-2013!  The NYC G&T handbooks still haven’t been released but here’s the timeline:

  • November 9, 2012: Deadline to submit Request for Gifted and Talented Testing forms. Stay tuned for the link to register your talented tot online!
  • October 15 – November 9, 2012:  Community Information Sessions Dates, times, and locations. The exact locations have yet to be announced but historically these take place in all 5 boroughs over the 3 week period.
  • January 7 – February 8, 2013:  Current K-2 Public School Students, G&T assessments administered at school sites
  • January 5, 6, 12, 13, 19, 20, 26, 27;  February 2 & 3, 2013: Current department Pre-K Students and Non-Public School Students, gifted and talented tests administered at school sites
  • April 2013 – Gifted and Talented Score reports and applications with available G&T programs communicated to eligible students
  • April 19, 2013 – G&T school applications due
  • Week of May 20, 2013 – Gifted and Talented Placement offers communicated to families
  • Week of June 3, 2013 – Deadline for families to accept or decline placement offers for their gifted and talented school for city-wide or district-wide schools.

99th Percentile Gifted and Talented Scores Sky Rocket

Can scoring in the 99th percentile on the OLSAT test no longer guarantee your child a spot in the NYC G&T program? In this last round of NYC gifted and talented testing, 11 percent of OLSAT test-takers scored in the Top 1 percent; meaning 1,603 children scored in the 99th percentile out of the 14,239 test-takers. DNA info reports this is a nearly 50 percent increase in the number of eligible kindergarteners over last year. The number of children scoring in the Top 1% has steadily been rising over the years, but with 11% of children tested in the Top 1%, this year is a new high.

For a child to be eligible for any of the five NYC G&T programs, they must score in the 97th to 99th percentile on the OLSAT and BSRA test combined. Although, nexts year the Naglieri (NNAT) will take the place of the Bracken (BSRA test). In those five NYC G&T programs, there are fewer than 400 seats available for the incoming kindergarten class. Testing into the G&T program is available for Kindergarten to 3rd grade, but the number of children accepted into the program decreases with every grade increase. So testing your child later than Kindergarten is an automatic disadvantage in the system.

Further exasperating the size problem are the siblings within the system, with a spot reserved for the sibling of a child already in the G&T program, provided that sibling has eligible scores. An article at Inside Schools provided the sibling break down in the 5 different NYC gifted and talented rograms. At STEM in Queens, 4 seats are reserved for siblings and 12 seats are set-aside for siblings at Brooklyn School of Inquiry. NEST+M already has 15 out of the 100 seats saved, and for The Anderson School, 16 seats out of the 50 are destined for qualified siblings. That is 12% of the incoming spots for the NYC G&T program taken, in addition to more children qualifying for those spots. The shortage of spots in the NYC gifted program affected school visits as well, with The Anderson School only opening tours for parents of children who scored in the 99th percentile. Even with this limiting of spots, the school could not accommodate all the parents that wanted to visit.

Despite an outcry from the parents of gifted children to expand the G&T program in New York City, the Department of Education has no current plan for expansion. However, the DOE will replace the Bracken School Readiness Assessment with the more challenging Naglieri Nonverbal Ability Test. This new exam places the stress on cognitive ability with identifying patterns and sequences, instead of simply identifying shapes and colors. The DOE will change how they weigh the tests as well, with the OLSAT 8 currently being weighed at 75% with Bracken at 25%. The test is changing, the weighing of the tests is changing, and the number of children testing into eligibility is increasing, decreasing the spots available. So what is a parent to do?

Practice and Prepare for the test to ensure your child is in the Top 1%, so they can even have a chance at getting into the right G&T School for them. To get 100 free practice questions for the G&T exam, to start preparing your child now, go to

If you’d like additional prep questions or added to my newsletter fill out the form below.

NYC Gifted and Talented Handbooks Now Available Online – Info. Sessions Start Next Week!

The NYC department of education just posted the G&T handbooks for the 2011 – 2012 school year. It looks like the OLSAT test and Bracken will still be used (at least for this year) as the tests for entranced into the New York City gifted and talented program for kindergarten, first grade, second grade and third grade. Depending on the age of your child, the Otis-Lennon portion will be the OLSAT Level A (pre-K and Kindergarten), OLSAT Level B (1st grade) or OLSAT Level C (2nd grade). Make sure you go to to get 50 free sample practice questions for the test.

You can also get all the juice from the DOE web site for handbooks which are pretty much the same as previous years but good to review for a refresher if you have it read it in a awhile.

If you’re totally new to this process for gifted and talented program in NYC, then you might find the parents information sessions somewhat useful. Keep in mind, these sessions historically have covered the same exact material in the handbooks from the Dept. of Ed. web site.

Here are some important dates you’ll need to know along with dates/times of information sessions starting next week:

  • September 26, 2011     Families begin submitting the Request for Testing (RFT) Forms
  • October 28, 2011      Deadline to submit Request for Testing (RFT) Forms
  • October 2011     Gifted and Talented Parent Information Sessions – see flyer for dates and locations
  • January 3 – February 10, 2012 – Current K-2 Public School Students, OLSAT/BSRA testing at school sites
  • January 7, 8, 14, 15, 21, 22, 28 & 29, 2012; February 4 & 5, 2012
  • Current DOE Pre-K Students and Non-Public School Students OLSAT/BSRA testing at selected sites
  • Mid-April 2012         Score reports and applications with available G&T sites communicated to eligible students
  • April 20, 2012     Applications due
  • Week of May 21, 2012     Placement offers communicated to families
  • Week of June 4, 2012     Deadline for families to accept/decline placement offer

 Parents Information Sessions Starting Next Week

  • Manhattan, October 5, 2011, 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m., Brandeis High School, 145 West 84th Street
  • Bronx, October 12, 2011, 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m., Theodore Roosevelt Educational Campus, 500 East Fordham Road
  • Staten Island, October 6, 2011, 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m., New Dorp High School, 465 New Dorp Lane
  • Brooklyn, October 18, 2011, 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m., MS 113 Ronald Edmonds Learning Center, 300 Adelphi Street
  • Queens, October 11, 2011, 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m., Long Island City High School, 14-30 Broadway
  • Bronx, October 19, 2011, 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m., P.S. 121 Throop, 2750 Throop Avenue

If you have questions, please email me at to get free sample OLSAT questions or to get my G&T newsletter list. Thanks – Michael

16 More Free OLSAT Sample Test Questions for NYC Gifted and Talented

Sign-up for my free gifted and talented newsletter or if you’d like free OLSAT sample questions  email me at .  I also cross-post on It’s a great site that contains information about the entire NYC school system. Thanks! Michael

I found 16 more free OLSAT sample questions so you can do OLSAT practice test with your child. These questions will help parents who need OLSAT sample test prep material for pre-k, kindergarten, first grade and second grade . This covers children born in 2002, 2003, 2004 and 2005 – and these OLSAT sample practice tests with 16 questions are now available.  

  • Let me know if you’d like the link to the 16 or 6 OLSAT sample questions all for free. Email me at

Here are some other items from which your gifted and talented child.
Mighty Mind Games

MightyMind Regular Edition

Magnetic MightyMind

Mighty Mind Aquarium Adventure

Mighty Mind Little Planner MightyMind Game Ages 3-6 (1-4 children)

Brain Quest Games and Workbooks
Brain Quest Workbook: Kindergarten

Brain Quest Preschool

Brain Quest Kindergarten


Math Blaster
Math Blaster: Master the Basics

Sign-up for my FREE gifted and talented newsletter. Email me at to get receive it. Thanks! Michael