Curriculum & Instruction

This department is responsible for the development and maintenance of all educational programming and curriculum throughout the Ladue Schools.  Other responsibilities include:

  • Research and implementation of new programming
  • Professional development and educational alignment tools
  • Intervention programs
  • Gifted programming, assessments, curriculum and acceleration programs

In addition, the district’s Student Services Department supports and plays a vital role in ensuring the needs of students are met and the district remains in compliance with the many county, state and federal guidelines and laws that govern us.  For more specific information about these services and contact information for this department, visit the Student Services section of this website.

CAPS: Center for Advanced Professional Studies

In the 2019-20 school year, Ladue Horton Watkins High School (LHWHS) will begin participating in CAPS: The Center for Advanced Professional Studies. This innovative program is nationally recognized and already in place in nearly 50 high schools across the country. Learn more about the goals of the CAPS program, how it works and how students, parents and educators work together to determine if this program is a good fit.

Gifted Program Information

All Ladue Schools’ Gifted Programs recognizes that gifted students have individual learning and social/emotional needs that differ significantly from their peers that require specialized, targeted intervention. The gifted program provides a flexible, innovative, and rigorous learning environment with instruction that differs in pace, depth, and elaboration of study to facilitate each student toward becoming a lifelong learner and a responsible global citizen. 

All Ladue Schools’ Gifted Programs will have students develop habits of mind to question, design, and reflect upon problems and their solutions, and apply self-advocacy skills to resolve asynchronous development and their relationships.

Gifted Definition

Section 162.675. RSMo defines gifted children as “those children who exhibit precocious development of mental capacity and learning potential as determined by competent professional evaluation to the extent that continued educational growth and stimulation could best be served by an academic environment beyond that offered through a standard grade level curriculum.” 

Elementary Math Acceleration Information 

Math acceleration allows students to advance one grade level ahead in the subject of mathematics. It is the practice of Ladue Schools for the majority of programming modifications to be implemented through differentiation and/or enrichment. However, grade-level acceleration in mathematics is advisable for students whose exceptional achievements are so pronounced, they benefit from instruction at a significantly higher level than what is provided to their age mates. Most importantly, the primary focus must be in the best interest of the learner: emotionally, socially, and academically.

Recommendation for student acceleration must be submitted for review February 1 – March 13 (teacher or parents may submit a request). In addition, students must demonstrate exceptional performance in mathematics, as well as score within the top 5% in both fall and spring math benchmark assessments. All testing is completed in the Spring to identify placement for the following school year. Contact the gifted specialist in your building to learn more about the process.

General Information (Fern Wagstaff)

Virtual Learning Opportunities (MOCAP)

The Missouri Course Access Program (MOCAP) offers students equal access to a wide range of high quality courses and interactive online learning that is neither time nor place dependent. Because virtual instruction can be an effective education option for some students, there may be courses available either through a district-provided virtual option or through MOCAP. Please contact your school counselor for more information about virtual learning opportunities.

Learn More about MOCAP
Virtual Course Request Form

Contact Information

Dr. Amy Zielinski
Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum & Instruction

Dr. Kevin McColgan
STEM Coordinator

Laila Crabtree
ELA and Social Studies Curriculum Coordinator

Brooke Bilby
Gifted Coordinator

Fern Wagstaff
Administrative Assistant

Kelli Gallemore
Administrative Assistant