Special Programs:  Gifted and Talented

GT/AP Coordinator- Wendy Kittler

The England School District serves Gifted and Talented students in grades K – 12.  K – 2 students are served on a regular basis by the Gifted/Talented teacher.  The Elementary Program options include:

  1. K – 2 enrichment

  2. 3 – 6 pull-out of 150 minutes per week

The High School Program options include:  Pre-AP, secondary content, advanced placement and honors classes.

The program for these students offers a differentiated curriculum which provides enrichment in the areas of:  creativity, research skills, critical thinking skills, problem solving leadership and personal growth skills.

England Elementary school follows the updated 2009 Program Approval Standards; available on the school’s website.

Contact Wendy Kittler, GT/AP Coordinator, for a complete copy of the Gifted and Talented Education Policy, which includes information on: Community Involvement, Staff Development, Personnel, GT Coordinator Job Description, Identification, Exit Procedures, Program Options, Overview of Services, Curriculum, Evaluation, and Acceleration Guidelines.

Acceleration Policy

When deemed in the best interest of the student, a student may be advanced by the grade level, a class, or number of classes due to high potential or ability. This procedure is called acceleration, and is developed individually for each student who is to be examined by this process.

  1. Definition of High Potential Ability: included in this definition are children with demonstrated high achievement, and those who have the potential for any given ability. These are two different sets of characteristics, as a high-potential child will not necessarily resemble a high-performing child. High ability or potential may exist in a single area or in any combination of areas as follows:

  1. High Academic Potential- a student who shows early and rapid development of interest and ability in one or more specific areas of language arts, science, social studies, or math. Either class achievement or ability testing may be used to show high aptitude in a particular area or field.

  2. High Artistic Potential- a student exhibits unusual capacities for sensory perception and communication. Areas include visual spatial or performing arts, music, or drama.

  3. High Creative Potential- a student who demonstrates unique skill at using divergent or unconventional thinking to arrive at creative and unusual solutions to problems. The highly creative student may or may not be highly artistic. Creative thinking is the specific ability to be examined, not creative product.

  4. High Intellectual Potential- a student who shows early and/or rapid development of language ability; large vocabulary; strong powers of reasoning, analysis, or synthesis, large vocabulary; problem solving. Intellectually gifted students often have a high I.Q., demonstrate high achievement, and are capable of being very good at most anything he chooses to do. However, even the highly intellectual student may be an underachiever or have behavior issues due to intellectual boredom. Care must be taken to not exclude a gifted child whose talents are obscured by underachievement

  5. High Leadership Potential- a student who has an unusual ability to relate to and motivate other people, either positively or negatively.

  1. Referral: A student may be referred for possible acceleration by a parent, teacher, administrator, a counselor, or the student him/herself. Upon verbal request, the recommending party will be given a copy of this acceleration policy. A written request should then be submitted along with a rationale for the referral. This written request must be made to the Gifted and Talented Coordinator. A decision shall be reached within 30 days from the day the written request is received.

  2. Acceleration Committee: The Gifted and Talented Coordinator shall be responsible for convening the committee. The request for acceleration shall be referred to an acceleration committee consisting of the following members:

    1. One teacher from the grade level or curriculum area in which acceleration is requested.

    2. One of the student’s present teachers.

    3. One principal or assistant principal from the appropriate level.

    4. One counselor from the appropriate level.

    5. Gifted/Talented Coordinator.

    6. Other school staff as deemed necessary, depending on the particular situation.

The committee will consist of at least 5 members, convened and chaired by the GT Coordinator.

  1. Procedure

    1. Upon referral, parental permission will be obtained and all available information will be collected by the G/T Coordinator and Guidance Counselor. Efforts will be made to obtain further information in areas where data is incomplete. With parental permission the student being considered may be given individual intelligence, achievement, or other tests; however, this testing is not required for acceleration to occur. Data may include teacher and parent checklists or rating scales on the characteristics of giftedness. The IOWA acceleration scale is recommended. All data will be presented to the committee.

    2. The Counselor School Psychologist, and G/T Coordinator or Facilitator with acceleration expertise may consult with the student.

    3. Parents, student, and present and prospective teachers shall indicate in writing whether they are in favor of, neutral toward, or against acceleration and be required to give the rationale for their opinion. Prospective teachers will be provided with background information from the GT Coordinator in order to aid them in forming an educated opinion.

    4. The committee shall meet jointly to discuss placement options. The student, parents, present teachers, and prospective teachers will be notified in writing of the date, time, and place of this meeting, but are not required to attend. The Student and Parents are invited to the meeting, but are not present as the committee deliberates and decides. The GT Coordinator chairs the committee of 5 professional educators consisting of administrators, counselors, and/or teachers.

    5. A decision may be made at this meeting or within one week, with the committee deciding by consensus, meeting again to make a decision if necessary. The decision and rationale for the decision, written by the GT Coordinator, shall be given in writing to the administration office, the parents, and affected parties. Records of the decision and data used to determine it will be filed in the student’s file. Parents will be encouraged to meet with the GT Coordinator if they disagree with the decision, and informed of their right to appeal the decision if they disagree.

  2. Factors to be considered:

    1. Test scores on test of intelligence and/or achievement when appropriate.

    2. Performance in the area for which acceleration is being considered. Possible extenuating circumstances should be considered.

    3. Student’s social maturity and responsibility.

    4. The amount of support by the acceleration Committee Members. Parents must approve of the acceleration. If there is strong teacher opposition, every effort must be made to find a cooperating teacher if the majority agrees to acceleration. The student should not be placed with a strongly opposed teacher.

  3. High School courses taken in the acceleration program will be given full credit and applied toward graduation requirements, GPA, and any honors. Acceleration will not ‘punish’ any student by prohibiting graduation ceremonies or other associated honors. Any student meeting graduation requirements may walk with the other “regular” graduates. Care will be taken to ensure proper steps are followed to get approval for obtaining high school credit for courses taken before ninth grade.

  4. Progress Review: If acceleration is attempted, a review of progress should be monitored. The involved teacher and/or Gifted and Talented Coordinator have the primary responsibility of monitoring the accelerated student’s progress. Monitoring shall be conducted at least once annually, but it is recommended that an IEP be created for the accelerated student and reviewed twice a year. If possible, the same acceleration committee members should be involved. If there is ever a consideration of a change to a student’s placement, the committee will review all data and make a decision, and multiple data, including at least two objective, two subjective, and a creativity assessment are utilized in making the decision. No one factor will cause a student to be included or excluded. Parental Permission must be obtained before a student begins placement in the GT programming options.