Thinking Through Formal Identification for Gifted and Talented Education Services

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What do we need to understand?. Kentucky Administrative Regulation 704 KAR 3:285. Programs for the Gifted and Talented.Fourteen (14) Gifted and Talented Assurance statements sent annually to each districtIdentification process required for each of the five categories of giftedness and talent reco

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Thinking Through Formal Identification for Gifted and Talented Education Services

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1. Thinking Through Formal Identification for Gifted and Talented Education Services Kentucky Department of Education Gifted and Talented Education Services Greg Finkbonner, KDE [email protected] Ed Amend, Psy.D. [email protected] Introduce Ed Amend, Licensed Psychologist Introduce myself -background -gifted consultant after Carla -branch manager -program director -story about testing highly capable in Washington -elementary principal -elementary teacher Ask for: -raise of hands for teachers -coordinators -administrators -higher education educators -parents -counselors/psycologists Introduce Ed Amend, Licensed Psychologist Introduce myself -background -gifted consultant after Carla -branch manager -program director -story about testing highly capable in Washington -elementary principal -elementary teacher Ask for: -raise of hands for teachers -coordinators -administrators -higher education educators -parents -counselors/psycologists

2. What do we need to understand? Kentucky Administrative Regulation 704 KAR 3:285. Programs for the Gifted and Talented. Fourteen (14) Gifted and Talented Assurance statements sent annually to each district Identification process required for each of the five categories of giftedness and talent recognized in regulation 14 assurances that the superintendent has signed off on has in place at the school districts. (handouts are available and if more needed, send me an email) Gifted and talented youth need differentiated educational services, in order to develop their academic, artistic or social skills. The problem is that we don’t always know that a student is gifted. Special efforts are needed to identify gifted and talented youth, to diagnose their talents and aptitudes, and to arrange optimal instruction for them. 14 assurances that the superintendent has signed off on has in place at the school districts. (handouts are available and if more needed, send me an email) Gifted and talented youth need differentiated educational services, in order to develop their academic, artistic or social skills. The problem is that we don’t always know that a student is gifted. Special efforts are needed to identify gifted and talented youth, to diagnose their talents and aptitudes, and to arrange optimal instruction for them.

3. At the Local School District Level A local school district SHALL have in operation and available for public inspection local board approved policies and procedures which address each requirement in the administrative regulation (704 KAR 3:285. Programs for the Gifted and Talented.) and are consistent with KRS 157.200, 157.224, 157.230, and 703 KAR 4:040. 157.200 defines exceptional children and youth and it includes Gifted and Talented students that perform at an exceptionally high level in any of the 5 areas. And includes specially designed instruction. 157.224 includes the coordination, direction and monitoring of programs for exceptional children and the submission of annual reports (STI) 157.230 includes establishing and maintaining programs for exceptional children157.200 defines exceptional children and youth and it includes Gifted and Talented students that perform at an exceptionally high level in any of the 5 areas. And includes specially designed instruction. 157.224 includes the coordination, direction and monitoring of programs for exceptional children and the submission of annual reports (STI) 157.230 includes establishing and maintaining programs for exceptional children

4. At the Local School District Level A district shall adopt policies and procedures which shall provide for identification and diagnosis of strengths, gifted behaviors and talents through: Formal identification and continuous diagnosis of a student in grades four (4) through twelve (12); and Provision of multiple service delivery options in primary through grade twelve (12). Identification should begin with including as many candidates as possible and as much information as possible. A special emphasis should be on students in special groups,( such as, minority, low socio economic, underachievers, disabled) Then should use a committee to help determine whether a child should be in the program or not and be able to justify it. It is suggested to use: Multiple criteria Training of staff on the identification procedures Using reliable and valid screening tests and rating scalesIdentification should begin with including as many candidates as possible and as much information as possible. A special emphasis should be on students in special groups,( such as, minority, low socio economic, underachievers, disabled) Then should use a committee to help determine whether a child should be in the program or not and be able to justify it. It is suggested to use: Multiple criteria Training of staff on the identification procedures Using reliable and valid screening tests and rating scales

5. At the Local School District Level The identification procedure shall include a combination of informal measures, formal measures, and objective-based eligibility criteria. Determination of appropriateness of level and type of services to a student shall be subject to continuous assessment. David Lohman writes in his article on the role of nonverbal abiltiy tests in identifying gifted students, that when estimating a student’s potential, schools should now blindly apply a uniform cutoff score. It is better to focus on knowing where the students stand in relation to peers their age or grade, as well as those with similar backgrounds. Two questions to ask: Who is most likely to attain academic excellence if given special assistance? Who is most likely to need the extra assistance that schools can provide? Lohman also warns that even though achievement should be given priority over reasoning abilities, it is generally wisier to test all student on both. Now realizing that this is not always possible, student personality and affective characteristics also need to be taken into consideration. David Lohman writes in his article on the role of nonverbal abiltiy tests in identifying gifted students, that when estimating a student’s potential, schools should now blindly apply a uniform cutoff score. It is better to focus on knowing where the students stand in relation to peers their age or grade, as well as those with similar backgrounds. Two questions to ask: Who is most likely to attain academic excellence if given special assistance? Who is most likely to need the extra assistance that schools can provide? Lohman also warns that even though achievement should be given priority over reasoning abilities, it is generally wisier to test all student on both. Now realizing that this is not always possible, student personality and affective characteristics also need to be taken into consideration.

6. At the Local School District Level There shall be a system for diagnostic screening and identification of strengths, gifted behaviors and talents which provide equal access for racial and ethnic minority children, disadvantaged children, and children with disabilities. James Borland of Columbia University talks about identification practices that address the issue of equal access. He writes about Project Synergy, which was work done through a Javits grant, where they where looking to find a more effective process for identifying economically disadvantaged students. They include: observations, a focus on best performance instead of averages of scores and ratings, curriculum based assessment and authentic assessment, portfolio assessment, open ended teacher referrals, human judgment, extending the identification process. (refer to the exemption rule)James Borland of Columbia University talks about identification practices that address the issue of equal access. He writes about Project Synergy, which was work done through a Javits grant, where they where looking to find a more effective process for identifying economically disadvantaged students. They include: observations, a focus on best performance instead of averages of scores and ratings, curriculum based assessment and authentic assessment, portfolio assessment, open ended teacher referrals, human judgment, extending the identification process. (refer to the exemption rule)

7. Can we answer in the affirmative? In Gifted education no one model is perfect… Joseph Renzulli, University of Connecticut, 2005 discusses a system for identifying students based on equity, excellence and economy. He writes that we need to be more flexible in identifying and serving students with great potential. In order to find students of diversity or poverty we need to approach identification with an open mind, a sense of fairness and a willingness to comprimise. He stresses that there is no perfect identification system. That most important decision to make is regarding practical procedures for identification is the conception of giftedness adopted by the school or system. In Gifted education no one model is perfect… Joseph Renzulli, University of Connecticut, 2005 discusses a system for identifying students based on equity, excellence and economy. He writes that we need to be more flexible in identifying and serving students with great potential. In order to find students of diversity or poverty we need to approach identification with an open mind, a sense of fairness and a willingness to comprimise. He stresses that there is no perfect identification system. That most important decision to make is regarding practical procedures for identification is the conception of giftedness adopted by the school or system.

8. More questions for effective planning What procedures are in place for the formal identification of 4-12 students in each of the five categories? How many 4-12 students are in our district? What support systems are in place from district and building leaders? How can classroom teachers be involved in the formal identification process? How can other staff be involved in the formal identification process? How can parents be involved in the formal identification process? How much time do we need? How much training do we need? How much money is available for formal identification in each of the five categories? Create a model procedure. Divide into five groups for each of the five categories.Create a model procedure. Divide into five groups for each of the five categories.

9. Parents and Grades 4-12 List the obligation we have to parents of formally identified students. Then share the slide.List the obligation we have to parents of formally identified students. Then share the slide.

10. General Intellectual Aptitude General Intellectual Ability Formal testing data (test of intellectual ability) specific to General Intellectual Ability (Required) High performance on additional individual test of mental ability General Intellectual Ability Observation of applied advanced reasoning ability Checklist inventories of behaviors specific to underachieving learners, disadvantaged learners, or limited English proficient learners

11. Specific Academic Aptitude Specific Academic Aptitude Formal testing data (achievement test scores) for four (4) areas of Specific Academic Aptitude (Required) High performance on an additional individual or group test of academic achievement Student awards or critiques of performance or products Specific Academic Aptitude Off-level testing Portfolio of high academic performance Student progress data Checklist inventories of behaviors specific to underachieving learners, disadvantaged learners, or limited English proficient learners

12. Creative or Divergent Thinking Creative or Divergent Thinking Formal assessment measures of a student's capacity for originality of thought, fluency, elaboration, and flexibility of thought Informal assessment measures of a student's capacity for originality of thought, fluency, elaboration, and flexibility of thought Creative or Divergent Thinking Creative writing samples High scores on tests of creative ability Behavioral checklists specific to creative or divergent thinking Anecdotal observations of original ideas, products, or problem-solving Other:

13. Psychosocial (Intra/Interpersonal)or Leadership Skills Psychosocial or Leadership Skills Documentation of student willingness to assume leadership roles in class Documentation of student willingness to assume leadership roles in a student organization Documentation of student willingness to assume leadership roles in the community Psychosocial or Leadership Skills Sociograms (Questionnaires designed to assess leadership characteristics) Peer recommendations Behavioral checklists specific to leadership behavior Portfolio entries which display leadership skills Offices held by student in extracurricular activities and class government Other:

14. Visual or Performing Arts Visual or Performing Arts Auditions Letters of recommendation Products Portfolio assessment by specialists or professional artists Visual or Performing Arts Awards or critiques of performance Portfolio of visual or performing arts ability Questionnaires Other:

15. Knowledge about the demographic make-up of our district Knowledge about the gaps in achievement in our district Knowledge about the abilities, interests, and needs of our formally identified students in order to ensure continuous progress What shapes the key that opens the door to providing services for our 4-12 students identified in one or more of the five categories of giftedness? Answer the three questions as a table group. Share three strengths and share the three greatest points of need.Answer the three questions as a table group. Share three strengths and share the three greatest points of need.

16. Delivering Services to Formally Identified Students

17. Various acceleration options (e.g., early exit from primary, grade skipping, content and curriculum in one (1) or more subjects from a higher grade level); Advanced placement and honors courses; Collaborative teaching and consultation services; Special counseling services; Differentiated study experiences for individuals and cluster groups in the regular classroom;  Distance learning; Independent study; Multiple Service Delivery Options No Single Service Option Existing Alone Districtwide At A Grade Level

18. Multiple Service Delivery Options No Single Service Option Existing Alone Districtwide At A Grade Level Enrichment services during the school day (not extracurricular); Independent study; Mentorships; Resource services delivered in a pull-out classroom or other appropriate instructional setting; Seminars; Travel study options; or Special schools or self-contained classrooms, grades four (4) through twelve (12) only.

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