All staff members are encouraged to consider and to refer students for Gifted & Talented services, throughout the school year, for one or more of the five talent areas. The Iowa Test of Basic Skills is administered in October to all students in grades 3 – 8. The G/T (gifted and talented) facilitator will examine these scores to screen for students with intellectual and academic ability. An overall LPR score of 95% and higher on the ITBS, or WISC-R, is an indicator. The G/T facilitator will then assess the candidates, using a combination of formal and informal tests and checklists.
The preferred instrument for measuring IQ is the WISC-III. A percentile rank of 95 and higher is an indicator. Other assessment tools will be used as necessary such as the WJ (Woodcock Johnson) version. Since the ITBS is not given below 3 rd grade, and the local state tests are subject to change, the G/T facilitator may administer the Weschler Individual Achievement Test to K-2 grade students who are referred that may require such assessment. An overall percentile rank of 95 or higher is an indicator. The reading, mathematics, and whole language subtest will be administered.
The Torrence Test of Creativity may be used to assess students in this particular area. Checklists and other forms are listed on the G/T Program Qualification Matrix… The following are general guidelines for referral and identification of a gifted and talented student: The parent must approve. The current teacher (s) must approve. The child must be willing to be challenged. For elementary students, the student’s current classroom teacher must state that his / her educational needs cannot be adequately served in the regular classroom.
Standardized tests have historically been used as measures of how students compare with each other or how much of a particular curriculum they have learned. Increasingly, standardized tests are being used to make major decisions about students, such as grade promotion or high school graduation, and schools. More and more often, they also are intended to shape the curriculum and instruction. ...
Upon completion of the pertinent forms and scores, the G/T facilitator will telephone the parents to arrange a conference. All of the characteristics and needs of a child will be reviewed and considered by a team consisting of at least the G/T facilitator, the current classroom teacher, and one parent. Other persons may be included on the team or consulted, such as a second parent, the district’s psychologist, previous classroom teachers, administrators and area experts. A student who does not qualify may be referred and tested again in approximately one year. I know the above was given as an answer to chapter 3 of the focus questions. But now I will give a few insights into the program as a whole.
The testing for the most part was fair and done on an individual consideration of all children. But I know of a few exceptions to the rule. Yes parents can request their child to be considered, but over and over it seemed like the same families had children receiving services. I guess I don’t believe all children from the same family would be gifted and talented. It also seemed like a social event.
If your family had money then you were chosen over those from a lower income. They took some very expensive trips, especially for elementary children. Before I left the school system, they took around fifty students and parents to the space camp in Huntsville, Alabama. It was for over a week and parents and students worked at raising the money to attend, taking away from the fund raising programs for library books, class supplies and playground equip. that were also going on at the time. At the time I felt they (fourth thru sixth graders were to young and second it was a lot of money spent to learn about the space program.
When you are a child, who takes care of you? Now, the cost of living is so high that many people under age twenty-five are moving back in with their parents. Young people are getting married later now than they used to. The average age for a woman to get married is about twenty-four, and for a man twenty-six. Newly married couples often postpone having children while they are establishing careers. ...
I’m sure they will not forget the experience, but I felt they came back feeling like the chosen few and making the less fortunate feel unequal. As teachers will do in the teachers lounge, statements were made such as: this took them away from their other school activities, teachers had to schedule around them and holding up grades so homework was made up after they returned made some of the veteran teachers very pleased. It reminded me of classification of people but at a very young age. If you are smart and rich, you shall recieve better treatment then those who are less fortunate. Your not as smart, or your not as talented or just not able walk the walk or talk the talk, so you can’t be included in our mini society. I really don’t see all gifted and talented programs as such.
I know there are some very good programs and special students need to have their minds challenged. Teachers of special classes whether for children of special needs or ones for the gifted and talented, all need to remember that no matter what level of learning they are teaching, they need to see the picture of all children in the school setting and make them feel positive about themselves.