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Welcome to QUEST. West Hartford Public Schools program for Gifted and Talented is one of the oldest established programs in the state of Connecticut, dating as far back as 1976 with clustering through the Challenge Program. In 1994 a schoolwide gifted program was implemented to meet the needs of gifted and talented students in grades four through eight. The program began as a collaborative effort with UCONN's National Research Center on Gifted and Talented and the Teaching the Talent Program.

Our program’s mission is committed to diversity and inclusion to ensure all students have an opportunity to develop their unique gifts and talents. Students in grades 4-8 are offered three programmatic pathways for identification under comprehensive gifted and talented programs. QUEST, Math QUEST (accelerated) and Art QUEST provide student-centered, individualized pathways to honor the identified student's social, emotional, and unusually advanced academic development. Students explore and participate in talent development, creativity, and problem-solving skills in gifted education classes. Students advance skills required to succeed in the 21st century. 

These essential skills include:

  • Critical Thinking
  • Creative Thinking
  • Collaborating
  • Communicating
  • Social Skills
  • Flexibility
  • Initiative
  • Leadership
  • Information, Media and Technology Literacy
  • Productivity and Task Commitment

The learning environment is deliberately designed to facilitate the research and development of college ready skills, critical thinking, and self-selected investigations into real-world practical and authentic problems. QUEST is a safe space for the creative, analytical, and divergent thinker to work and engage in collaboration and or independently of like-minded peers. Additionally, QUEST offers opportunities for participation in field experiences co-aligned with grade level themes based on the principles and practices of Renzulli's Schoolwide Enrichment, The Enrichment Triad Model, and Susan Baum's Talent Development. Professional practices are purposed and designed for personalization of student learning.

Again, welcome to QUEST and thank you for visiting our webpage!

Together we make a difference!
Dr. M. Thompson
Director, Gifted and Talented

The United Nations of QUEST
May 2024

Upcoming events:

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Program Overview

The Mission and Goals of the QUEST Program

Program Themes

Linking and Learning

Nomination & Identification Process

Unwrapping gifts and talents


A balanced approach


A program to extend artistic knowledge and skills

Gifted and Talented Links

There's so much more to explore!

Quest Department

Dr. Mary Thompson

Director of Gifted and Talented

Ed Center: 860-561-6608

Anne Marie Andrews

Secretary - Quest

Ed Center: 860-561-6608

Teresa Coursey

Quest Teacher at Norfeldt and Wolcott

Norfeldt: 860-233-4421 Ext. 3257

Wolcott: 860-561-2300

Lindsay Goltzman

Quest Teacher at Braeburn & Whiting Lane

Braeburn: 860-561-2730 Ext. 2702

Whiting Lane: 860-233-8541

Michele Hadlock

Quest Teacher at Charter Oak International Academy & Morley

Charter Oak: 860-233-8506

Morley: 860-233-8535

Katherine Hardesty

Quest Teacher at Smith STEM & Aiken

Smith STEM: 860-236-3315 Ext. 3331

Aiken: 860-233-6994

Robb Kass

Quest Teacher at Whiting Lane and King Philip

Whiting Lane: 860-233-8541

King Philip: 860-233-8230

Carrie LaSpada

Quest Teacher at Duffy and Webster Hill

Duffy: 860-521-0110

Webster Hill: 860-521-0320

David Lee

Quest Teacher at Braeburn and Sedgwick

Braeburn: 860-561-2200

Sedgwick: 860-570-6500 Ext. 2443

Julie O'Reilly

Quest Teacher at King Philip

King Philip: 860-233-8230


Elyse Post-Perez

Quest Teacher at Bugbee

Bugbee: 860-929-5500 Ext. 2836

Christy Rybczyk

Quest Teacher at Bristow & Aiken

Bristow: 860-231-2100

Aiken: 860-233-6994

The Quest Office
50 South Main Street, Room 327
West Hartford, CT 06107
Phone: 860-561-6608
Fax: 860-561-6913