Washington's Schooling System

Over 1,000,000 students are enrolled in elementary and secondary schools in Washington in 2018. In 2009, some 59,562 teachers employed by Washington's school system, around 1 teacher for every 20 students, compared to the national average of 1:16. The state boasts some 322 school districts. On average, Washington spent $9,672 per pupil in 2013, which ranked it 29th highest in the nation. The state's graduation rate was 76.4 percent in 2013.

Washington's Running Start program enables students to attend classes in higher education institutions while enrolled in high school, earning both school and college credit. 

The state has four science and math based high schools, and several public high schools focused on the arts.

Washington Highly Capable Programs

Washington's Highly Capable Programs (HCPs) caters to young students identified as especially academically gifted. Programs offer an enriched and advanced curriculum designed to challenge the state's top students.

Programs are under the control of local school districts, and are held either as self-contained classrooms in specialized centres for highly capable students, or as an enriched curriculum of classes within the student's local school.

If you are a parent interested in Highly Capable programs in Washington, start by finding out more about your district's HCP criteria and testing. 

Admission to Washington Highly Capable Programs

Screening methods for Highly Capable programs may vary across different school districts. Admission to HC programs will typically be based on several elements: teacher and parent recommendations, cognitive assessments and achievement testing. Screening is open to all students enrolled in a given district.

Check with your local district for dates of testing and detailed selection procedures. 

Cognitive Assessment Tests in Washington

Most school districts in Washington rely on the Cognitive Abilities Test 7 (CogAT 7) to screen students of all ages for Highly Capable programs. The CogAT is a learning ability test that measures students problem solving and reasoning skills.

The test includes three main segments. A verbal battery, which includes analogies, verbal classification and sentence completion problems; a nonverbal battery which includes matrices, paper folding and figure classification, and a quantitative battery which includes number analogies, puzzles and number series.

Applying to Washington's Top Schools

Some of the Washington's top-ranked public schools allow applications to magnet programs from across districts. To apply, check with schools for admission procedures and deadlines. 

Top Washington Magnets:

  • Tesla STEM High School
  • International School
  • International Community School
  • Raisbeck Aviation High School
  • Vancouver School of Arts & Academics

Prepare for and Pass Washington's Schooling Tests

To help your child get ready for Washington schools entrance exams, progress tests, and highly capable testing, get access to our test prep material now. You can look through our site to find prep packages for your child's grade level, school, test, or district.

We also offer prep packages for a large variety of exams and placement tests, used in many different states. Use our search tool by entering the name of your test to find out more now.

CogAT, OLSAT, NNAT, NWEA MAP, ITBS, Iowa Assessments and any other brands are trademarks and property of companies other than TestPrep-Online. The trademark holder is not affiliated with TestPrep-Online or this website.

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