GATOR:  Gifted and Talented of Richton            Gifted Studies for Grades 2 – 6

Gifted Contact/Administrator: Dr. Felicia McCardle,,    601-788-5908

Gifted Instructor: Megan Walley,,   Richton Elementary

Mission Statement of Gifted Programming:

The mission of the Richton School District program for intellectually gifted is to provide a qualitatively, differentiated curriculum through in-depth enrichment and extension of core curriculum in order to develop and maintain our students’ commitment to the love of learning as a life-long process.  In addition, the intellectually gifted mission is to create a learning environment that fosters and encourages thinking, creativity, metacognition, healthy enriching relationships and appropriate expectations and understanding of self.

Gifted District Policy and Goals:

To provide a qualitatively, differentiated curriculum through in-depth enrichment and extension of core curriculum in order to develop and maintain our students’ commitment to the love of learning as a life-long process;    and,  to help students understand themselves, develop social interest and a feeling of belonging in order to assist them in reaching their intellectual potential.  *Instructional Management Plan is available upon request and follows the MDE Outcomes.

The State of Mississippi defines Intellectually Gifted Children and Gifted Education Programs as follows:

    —Intellectually Gifted Children shall mean those children and youth who are found to have an exceptionally high degree of intelligence as documented through the identification process.

   —Gifted Education Programs (GEP) shall mean programs of instruction for intellectually gifted children within Grades 2 through 12, programs of instruction for academically gifted children within Grades 9 through 12, and programs of instruction for creatively and/or artistically gifted children within Grades 2 through 12 in public elementary and secondary schools of this state.  Such programs shall be designed to meet the individual needs of gifted children and shall be in addition to and different from the regular program of instruction provided by the district.

The purpose of this programming is to identify those students who demonstrate unusually high achievement and/or potential for unusually high achievement.  Because of their unusual capabilities, they require uniquely qualitatively differentiated educational programs not usually available in the regular classroom.  These uniquely different programs are required to enable the gifted students to realize their potential contributions to self and society.  Programming is offered through a pull-out resource program.  Mississippi regulations require that intellectually gifted students be provided services by a properly endorsed teacher in a resource room for a minimum of five hours per week.  The Richton School District provides programming for students who meet the criteria for intellectually gifted in second through sixth grade.

Gifted Identification and Referral Process:

The identification process consists of a combination of subjective and objective measures to determine eligibility for the gifted program and includes an equitable opportunity for the inclusions of students who are culturally diverse, underachieving, disabled under IDEA guidelines, physically handicapped, or ADD/ADHD.  Throughout the identification process, district personnel are careful to select measures that target the student’s strengths.  All data collected as part of the identification process are protected by the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).  Access to this information is restricted to those personnel working directly with the identification process, or have a documented need to access.  Parents have the right to view their children’s records at any time.

A student may be referred by a parent, teacher, counselor, administrator, peer, self, or anyone else having reason to believe that the student might be intellectually gifted.  All students comprise the initial screening pool of potential recipients for gifted education services.  The referral form is completed by the person initiating the referral process. Parent must give permission and be informed of FERPA.  Once a referral form has been initiated, signed and dated, only the LSC, Local Survey Committee, or parent can stop the identification process.

A student shall satisfy a minimum of two of the following criteria at this level before moving forward in the identification process:        *Cognitive Ability-Local minimal acceptance criteria of 90th percentile through a group measure of cognitive ability and/or individual cognitive ability assessment, if warranted;  *Published Characteristics Checklist-Local minimal acceptance criteria of 90th percentile on a Gifted Rating Scale which assesses intellect, creativity, and leadership(90th percentile in any one of the three areas);   *Achievement Test scores at 90th percentile, if warranted;  and,  * Existing measure of individual intelligence that has been administered within the past twelve months.

Once data is collected, the LSC committee will determine if the student shall move to the assessment phase with the examiner administering an individual intelligence test.  A student must score at or above the 90th percentile composite/full scale.  The LSC then reviews all data and makes a determination/ruling as to whether or not the student is eligible for the Intellectually Gifted Program.

Parents who are not in agreement with the LSC decision may present their concerns, orally or in writing, and request a hearing  to the principal or gifted administrator.  The Gifted Contact/Administrator person will schedule a meeting with the parent to review and render a decision based on the data.

Program Proposal/Instruments used during the identification process:                                                                                                –*Group intelligence test–NNAT3, Raven’s, 90th percentile                                                                                                                                  *Characteristics of giftedness checklist–SIGS, 90th percentile                                                                                                                            *Measure of creativity and leadership–SIGS, 90th percentile                                                                                                                               *Individual test of intelligence–WJIII, Rias-2, KABC2, WRIT, 91st percentile

Mass Screening:

The mass screening process requires all Mississippi districts to screen all students in at least one grade level each year.  District shall use a normed group measure of intelligence in the Mass Screening Referral Process.  The current process uses the NNAT 3 by Pearson computerized screener administered to all first grade students.  This process assists in identifying students in underrepresented populations.  Students who obtain a full-scale score at or above the 90th percentile on the normed group measure shall move forward in the referral process.

Positive Characteristics of Giftedness:

Independent,   Keen sense of humor,    Willing to take risks,   Enjoys learning,   A good tester,   1-2 repetitions for mastery learning,   Prefers adult like conversations,   Thrives on complexity,   Creativity,   Advanced knowledge and vocabulary for age,   Attention to details,   High self-concept

Negative Characteristics of Giftedness:

Rebellious/non-conforming,   Stubborn,   Forgetful,   Careless,   Disorganized,   Bossy/likes to be in charge of people or things,   Low/no interest to details,   Limited vocabulary,   Wild, silly ideas or thoughts,   May have difficulty relating to others,   Low self-concept

Program Evaluation:

Each year, the Richton School District evaluates the Gifted Program effectiveness.  This is completed through the Comprehensive Needs Assessment which solicits input from all stakeholders including parents, students, teachers, and the community.  (See Comprehensive Needs Assessment for additional information.)

Resources Available at the Mississippi Department of Education:

MAGC—Mississippi Association for Gifted Children: 

MAGC is a non-profit organization that advocates for gifted children and gifted programming in the state of Mississippi.  This organization is a public advocate as well as provides resources for parents, teachers, and the general stakeholders in communities.  The website has multiple resources and links with ideas and strategies for gifted children.

NAGC—National Association for Gifted Children:

NAGC is the nation’s leading organization focused on the needs of gifted and talented children. Dedicated to uplifting and empowering those who support children with advanced abilities, NAGC provides energizing professional learning, impactful research, and inspiring advocacy to ensure all children have equitable opportunities and support to develop their gifts and talents.  The website has multiple resources and links to assist teachers and parents as well as how to start a parent advocacy group.