This information was produced by the staff of the Belin-Blank International Center for Gifted Education and Talent Development (B-BC) at the University of Iowa (belinblank.org). The resources and information listed here are for informational purposes; there is no direct or implied endorsement by the B-BC. Services provided by the B-BC include programs for academically talented K-12 and college students, professional development for teachers, the Assessment and Counseling Clinic, the Acceleration Institute (accelerationinstitute.org), and graduate programs and research in gifted education.

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State Policies in Alaska  

Alaska does not have a state policy on acceleration. Local education agencies (LEAs) determine whether and to what extent acceleration is permitted.

Grade-based Acceleration

Early entrance to kindergarten

Alaska does not have a state policy on early entrance to kindergarten. LEA determine whether and to what extent it is permitted.

The official minimum age for entrance to kindergarten is five years of age on or before September 1. Alaska Statutes define 'school age' as "six years of age on or before September 1 following the beginning of the school year, and under the age of 20 and has not completed the 12th grade" (AS 14.03.070)

Alaska Statute 14.03.080 allows three exceptions to school age restrictions: 1) "a child under school age (italics ours) may be admitted to a public school in the school district of which the child is a resident at the discretion of the governing body of the school district if the child meets minimum standards prescribed by the board evidencing that the child has the mental, physical, and emotional capacity to perform satisfactorily for the educational program being offered. A district's educational program must prescribe that under school age students advance through the curriculum or grade level by the following school year; 2) A child who is five years of age on or before September 1 following the beginning of the school year, and who is under school age, may enter a public school kindergarten; 3) A child under school age shall be admitted to school in the district of which the child is a resident if immediately before the child became a resident of the district, the child was legally enrolled in the public schools of another district or state.

Early entrance to 1st gradeAlaska does not have a state policy on early entrance to first grade. See the school age requirements under the 'early entrance to kindergarten' category on this page for further discussion.
Whole-grade accelerationIf you know where to find this information, please e-mail us.
Early high school graduationState policy does not permit an alternate high school diploma or certificate for GT students. Alaska students were formerly required to pass the High School Graduation Qualifying Examination (HSGQE) to earn a diploma, but this was repealed in January 2014.
Early entrance to collegeNo state policy; see Early Honors at Alaska Pacific University.

Content-based Acceleration

Dual or concurrent enrollment in community college, college, or university

No state policy, up to LEA to determine if dual enrollment is allowed, and if so, LEAs also determine the earliest grade/age allowed, if high school credit is awarded, and who pays tuition.

Several state universities allow for dual enrollment, including University of Alaska Fairbanks, University of Alaska Southeast, and Alaska Pacific University.

Middle school students permitted dual or concurrent enrollment in high school

No state policy; up to LEA to determine -- however, state policy specifically permits students to receive high school graduation credit for dual enrollment while in middle school.
Advanced Placement®No state policy, but the state offers an AP Fee Reduction Program that is designed to increase access to Advanced Placement exams for students with low family income.
Talent SearchThere is no in-state Talent Search for Alaska, but gifted students in AK can participate in regional and national talent searches, including those offered by the University of Iowa Belin-Blank Center and the Johns Hopkins University Center for Talented Youth.
Credit by examination/proficiency-based promotion

No state policy; up to LEA to determine -- LEAs also determine methods of demonstrating proficiency and advancement options after proficiency. There is no state policy regarding the award of graduation credit for proficiency; that is up to LEA to determine.
Other forms of content-based acceleration

Typically left to LEAs to determine. If you know of state-level code, please e-mail us.

Additional Information

Alaska Special Education Website
Alaska: Education and Early Development

The information presented on this page was compiled from a variety of resources, including the State of the States in Gifted Education 2012-2013 (a report by the Council of State Directors of Programs for the Gifted and the National Association for Gifted Children), Websites, professional literature, and personal communication. The Acceleration Institute has not verified the accuracy of this information and does not warrant its accuracy or fitness of use for any purpose. Users should verify information prior to taking any action. Furthermore, the appearance of selected programs and/or resources does not imply an endorsement or affiliation. Programs and resources are highlighted for informational purposes only.