District 90 Early Entrance Information

Process for Early Entrance to Kindergarten, Early Entrance to First Grade, Subject Acceleration, and Whole Grade Acceleration


The mission of District 90 is “To inspire a love of learning and ensure educational excellence for every child.” District 90 strives to support the learning trajectories of all its students through rigorous instruction and appropriate academic challenge. For some students who are in need of a higher level of instruction, providing access to a curriculum and a learning environment aligned to a grade level typically associated with older students is appropriate. This document provides definitions of acceleration, describes acceleration criteria for early entrance to kindergarten or first grade, the process through which District 90 makes acceleration decisions, and how parents can determine if their child is eligible to be considered for early entrance to kindergarten or first grade, subject acceleration, or whole-grade acceleration. This procedure shall be applied equitably and systematically to all students who are referred for acceleration regardless of race, ethnicity, gender, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, gifted and talented status, twice-exceptionality, English language proficiency, or socio-economic background. Students who meet the locally determined criteria for participation are eligible to apply.

According to the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE), “Public Act 100-0421, The Accelerated Placement Act expands services to ALL students, not only those identified as gifted and talented by local policy, who demonstrate high ability and may benefit from accelerated placement. This Act requires the development of a local policy to identify such students through a fair and equitable decision-making and multiple measure assessment process.”

Acceleration requires a high degree of academic readiness. Measurements on standardized tests, classroom-based assessments, and teacher observation can provide evidence that a student has mastered the Illinois Learning Standard benchmarks for their currently expected/assigned grade level. This evidence is required in order to determine if the student is ready for faster-paced or more challenging curricula. Student motivation and social-emotional maturity are also considered important factors in the decision-making process.

Click on this link for Early Entrance Definitions

Early Entrance to Kindergarten and First Grade Referral Process

If your child meets the criteria for consideration, please download and complete the application through the link below. Please submit the form by March 31 (of the current year) to: River Forest Public Schools, District 90 Attn: Dr. Alison Hawley, Director of Curriculum and Instruction 7776 Lake Street, River Forest, IL 60305 or send a digital copy to [email protected]. Applications received after the March 31 deadline (of the current year) will not be accepted. Individual consideration will be given to applicants that move to River Forest after March 31. No students will be considered for early entrance after June 30.

Applicants interested in Early Entrance to Kindergarten or First Grade must first affirm their River Forest residency with the District Office and pre-register prior to having the application processed. Please contact the District 90 Registrar, [email protected] or (708) 771-8282, to make an appointment. District 90 will accept outside evaluations that have been conducted within the previous 12 months by a reputable, licensed psychologist. Completed evaluations must be comprehensive and reflect the testing that would have otherwise been conducted by District 90.

Early Entry to Kindergarten and First Grade Request Form

Whole Grade and Subject Acceleration Application Process

This process may be initiated at the request of the school or parent. Parents initiating this process should contact the school principal.

Evaluation Process

The evaluation team shall consist of the following individuals: building principal, school psychologist, instructional specialist(s), current classroom teacher(s), and parent(s) or caregiver(s).

  • The deadline to submit a request for possible acceleration is March 31.
  • Assessments will be administered no earlier than April 15.
  • Parents or caregivers will be notified by the school principal no later than June 30.
  • Students will only be considered for early entrance or acceleration once.
  • The district decision is considered final.

View the District Placement Measures used by District 90

Accelerated Placement Notification

Parents will be notified of placement decision through written communication no later than June 30. Should your child meet the criteria for whole-grade or subject acceleration, a team consisting of the principal, instructional specialists, and classroom teacher will convene to develop a transition plan. The team will meet with parents or caregivers to review the plan and ensure that the child is supported while adjusting to the higher academic standards and social-emotional expectations in the new educational environment.

The accelerated placement evaluation process is designed to review the most pertinent and relevant data to determine best-fit placements for students. In some instances, grade level acceleration may not be the best fit for a student even though it is indicated by the objective data considered during the evaluation process. Monitoring the student during the transition to ensure the acceleration decision is aligned with the child’s best interest is essential. Parents or caregivers may request a return to the child’s prior age-appropriate placement within the first semester/trimester the change in placement is made.

This site provides information using PDF, visit this link to download the Adobe Acrobat Reader DC software.

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