Gifted and Talented
A gifted/talented student is a child or youth who performs at or shows the potential for performing at a remarkably high level of accomplishment when compared to others of the same age, experience, or environment and who:
- exhibits high performance, capability in an intellectual, creative, or artistic area;
- possesses and unusual capacity for leadership; or
- excels in a specific academic field
Gifted Education in Texas
In 1977, the Texas Legislature passed its first legislation concerning the education of gifted/talented (G/T) students. In 1979, state funds for providing services to G/T children were made available, but providing such services was optional for school districts. In 1987, the Texas Legislature mandated that all school districts must identify and serve G/T students at all grade levels. In 1990, the Texas State Plan for the Education of Gifted/Talented Students (State Plan) was adopted by the Texas State Board of Education (SBOE) that included a commitment to high-level learning opportunities for G/T learners.
State Goal for Services for Gifted/Talented Students
Students who participate in services designed for gifted/talented students will demonstrate skills in self-directed learning, thinking, research, and communication as evidenced by the development of innovative products and performances that reflect individuality and creativity and are advanced in relation to students of similar age, experience, or environment. High school graduates who have participated in services for gifted/talented students will have produced products and performances of professional quality as part of their program services.
Students may be nominated/referred for the gifted and talented program at any time by teachers, counselors, parents, or other interested persons.
Screening and Identification Process: The District shall provide assessment opportunities to complete the screening and identification process for nominated/referred students at least once per school year.
The District shall obtain written parental consent before any special testing or individual assessment is conducted as part of the screening and identification process. All student information collected during the screening and identification process shall be an educational record, subject to the protections set out in policies at FL.
The Board-approved program for the gifted and talented shall establish criteria to identify gifted and talented students. The criteria shall be specific to the state definition of gifted and talented and shall ensure the fair assessment of students with special needs, such as the culturally different, the economically disadvantaged, and students with disabilities.
Data collected through both objective and subjective assessments shall be measured against the criteria approved by the Board to determine individual eligibility for the program. Assessment tools may include, but are not limited to, the following: achievement tests, intelligence tests, creativity tests, behavioral checklists completed by teachers and parents, student/parent conferences, and available student work products.
A selection committee shall evaluate each nominated/referred student according to the established criteria and shall identify those students for whom placement in the gifted and talented program isthe most appropriate educational setting. The committee shall be composed of at least three professional educators who have received training in the nature and needs of gifted students, as required by law, and shall be established at each campus.
The District shall provide written notification to parents of students who qualify for services through the District’s gifted and talented program. Participation in any program or services provided for gifted students shall be voluntary, and the District shall obtain written permission from the parents before placing a student in a gifted program.
The District shall not perform routine reassessments.
Transfer StudentsWhen a student identified as gifted by a previous school district enrolls in the District, the District shall place the student in the District’s program for gifted and talented students for the remainder of the current school year. The District shall assess the student during the next annual screening period using the District’s established identification criteria, and the selection committee shall determine if continued placement in the District’s program for gifted and talented students is appropriate.
FurloughsThe District may place on a furlough any student who is unable to maintain satisfactory performance or whose educational needs are not being met within the structure of the gifted and talented program. A furlough may be initiated by the District, the parent, or the student. In accordance with administrative regulations, a furlough shall be granted for specified reasons and for a specified period of time. At the end of a furlough, the student may reenter the gifted program, be placed on another furlough, or be exited from the program.
Exit ProvisionsThe District shall monitor student performance in the program. If at any time the selection committee determines it is in the best interest of the student and his or her educational needs, the committee may exit a student from the program. If a student or parent requests removal from the program, the selection committee shall meet with the parent and student before honoring the request.
AppealsA parent or student may appeal any final decision of the selection committee regarding selection for or exit from the gifted program. Appeals shall be made first to the selection committee. Any subsequent appeals shall be made in accordance with FNG(LOCAL) beginning at Level Two.
Program EvaluationThe District shall annually evaluate the effectiveness of the District’s gifted program, and the results of the evaluation shall be used to modify and update the District and campus improvement plans. The District shall include parents in the evaluation process and shall share the information with Board members, administrators, teachers, counselors, students in the gifted and talented program, and the community.
Community AwarenessThe District shall ensure that information about the District’s gifted and talented program is available to parents and community members and that they have an opportunity tdevelop an understanding of and support for the program.