DeSoto ISD Opens Talented And Gifted Academy at Ruby Young in 2024-25

DEC local policy

The DeSoto Independent School District plans to introduce a Talented and Gifted Academy at Ruby Young starting in the 2024-2025 academic year.

Ruby Young will take applications for incoming Kindergarten through sixth-grade students. Residents within the district will be given priority in the application process. Students that apply MUST meet eligibility, however, all current 2023-24 students have the option to remain for the 2024-25 school year.

A maximum of 44 seats are available for scholars in first through fourth grade per grade level availability.

The Ruby Young Talented and Gifted Academy will serve students in kindergarten through 8th grade, focusing on fostering growth and critical thinking through individualized, impactful experiences and immersive learning experiences. These experiences are slated to include capstone projects, project-based learning experiences, learning beyond the classroom, and in-depth exploration of concepts and curriculum.

As presented to the Board, the program will focus on TAG-centered education and advanced academics to prepare scholars for optimal personal and educational outcomes by:

  • guiding and developing scholars’ internal and external emotional intelligence;
  • allowing scholars to explore their interests and the relationships of those interests to society;
  • supporting scholars’ development of learning outputs that reflect those explorations;
  • creating platforms for scholars’ presentations of learning and discovery designed to challenge conventions; and deepening scholars’ sense of belongingness and community to support pride in academic achievement in a more rigorous environment.
    CogAT Testing Registration

Before applying, please note that you will need the following:

Currently enrolled DeSoto ISD students need their student TSDS Unique ID number.

All students applying need:

  • CogAT Assessment Result or Register for CogAT Testing Date
  • Copies of your Fall 2023 and Spring 2024 report cards
  • MAP Scores
  • STAAR Scores
  • Disciplinary report
  • Attendance record
  • Recommendation Letter – Teacher
  • Talented and Gifted Documentation (if applicable)
  • Testing Dates April 27th, May 4th, or May 18th
  • Ruby Young TAG Academy
  • 8:30 am – 12:00 noon
  • Testing fee in-district students -FREE
  • Testing fee out-of-district – $25
  • If you do not have a CogAT Score you must register to test

To support this level of rigor and instruction, scholars will learn from teachers who have completed Gifted and Talented-training requirements and received immersive training in project-based learning.

If you need assistance or more information, contact Ruby Young Principal Monica Smith at or DeSoto ISD Director of Advanced Academics Robin Johnson Ford at

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