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Dimensions Academy High School

 

 
Dimensions Academy High School (DAHS) is Bloomington Public Schools' innovative approach to gifted education at the high school level.  Students can apply for the STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) and /or the Humanities (English and social studies) strand.

Dimensions Academy STEM

DAHS STEM is a partnership between Bloomington Public Schools and Normandale Community College to provide an early college experience designed to meet the unique educational needs of gifted students in grades 9-10 who have exceptional academic skills.
 
DAHS STEM was established in 2013 to provide highly rigorous college-level curriculum to profoundly gifted students who are ready and eager to do college work, prior to their eligibility to complete post-secondary enrollment options (PSEO) in grades 11-12. Highly motivated and ambitious students will find the program challenging and stimulating.

This innovative program allows students to attend two course hours per day at the Normandale Community College campus. (The DA High School students are NOT mixed with regular Normandale College students in these math & science courses.) After the two course periods, the students are transported back to Jefferson or Kennedy High Schools to complete the remaining four periods of the school day. As a cohort, students work with college professors in STEM instruction and laboratory work to prepare them for advanced standing in post-secondary institutions and beyond. 

Dimensions Academy Humanities

DAHS Humanities offers an accelerated path for student using Advanced Placement (AP) and dual-enrollment courses.  This pathway allows students to take a highly rigorous college-level curriculum that is taught at a college-level pace.  Students work in a cohort class and take compacted AP social studies and English classes while also enrolled in college writing classes.  The courses are taught by Bloomington teachers who have specialized training in AP curriculum and differentiation for gifted learners and have been credentialed by the College Board or a local college.  

This innovative program allows students to attend a 1 1/2 hour block period at Kennedy or Jefferson High School as a cohort.  After the block period the students are transported back to their home high school.  

Eligibility Requirements

Any qualified incoming 9th grade student - even those who have never participated in the Dimensions Academy program prior to 9th grade - are welcome to apply to the Dimensions Academy High School program. Qualifications are based on Bloomington Public Schools' assessment measures or other professional assessments that deem this program to be educationally beneficial for highly and profoundly gifted high school students. Students who meet or come close to the listed qualifications are encouraged to apply. Open enrollment is available to students who do not live within the city of Bloomington.

*Note: Geometry is NOT a prerequisite for the first math course; however, it is highly recommended that students complete geometry prior to the end of their 9th grade year.  Geometry is not a part of the DA HS math curriculum. Therefore, students will need to take geometry before 9th grade or take two math courses in their 9th grade year.

Qualifications*

  • Minimum of 2 consecutive years of middle school achievement data (e.g. MAP) =>95% (national) on reading and math
    -OR-
  • IQ Measure =>95% (administered by an approved licensed psychologist/psychiatrist)
PLUS*

Additional qualification criteria*:

The student must possess and have demonstrated:

  • Advanced levels of thinking skills
  • High degree of independence in learning and production
  • Extraordinary degree of intellectual curiosity
  • Ability to manage advanced work at an accelerated pace
  • Strong social and emotional fortitude
  • Scholarly behavior and disposition

Transportation

All transportation to and from the campuses of DAHS (NCC, JHS and KHS) will be provided. Students will enter and exit the Normandale Community College through a separate doorway and will be escorted to classes by a Bloomington Public School staff member. 

Course credits

After two years in DAHS STEM, students will have completed 35 semester credits which will be weighted on their high school transcript. 

After two years in DAHS Humanities, students will have earned 10 college credits and have taken 3-4 AP exams.  Students will have the potential to start their junior year as an AP Scholar.  
All DAHS Humanities classes will be weighted on their hgih school transcript. 

After tenth grade, students are eligible to enroll in Post-Secondary Enrollment Options (PSEO) for 11th and 12th grade or to continue on in Jefferson or Kennedy's AP program.  

Informational materials on DA High School: 

Contact

Erin Boltik
Director of Gifted Education
eboltik@isd271.org

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