Gifted and Talented in Marion County School District
WHAT DEFINES GIFTED/TALENTED STUDENTS?
The following description of the identification process reflects the South Carolina definition of gifted and talented and is in keeping with the National Excellence Report (1995) which states:
“Children and youth with outstanding talent perform or show the potential for performing at remarkably high levels of accomplishment when compared with others of their age, experience, or environment. [They] exhibit high performance capability in intellectual, creative and/or artistic areas, possess an unusual leadership capacity, or excel in specific academic fields. They require services or activities not ordinarily provided by the schools. Outstanding talents are present in children and youth from all cultural groups, across all economic strata, and in all areas of human endeavor.”
Gifted and talented students are those who are identified in grades one through twelve as demonstrating high performance ability or potential in academic and/or artistic areas and therefore require educational programming beyond that normally provided by the general school programming in order to achieve their potential. Gifted and Talented abilities include:
Academic and Intellectual Ability: Students who have the academicand/or intellectual potential to function at a high level in one or more academic areas.
Visual and Performing Arts: Students who have the artistic potential to function at a high performance level in one or more of the fine arts (dance, music, theatre, and visual arts)
HOW AND WHY ARE GIFTED AND TALENTED STUDENT’S IDENTIFIED?
The purposes of the identification process are (1) to find students who display characteristics of the gifted and talented (i.e., ability or potential for high performance in academic areas); (2) to assess the aptitudes, attributes, and behaviors of each student; (3) to evaluate each student for the purpose of placement; and (4) to provide appropriate academic programs and experiences to meet their needs.
Parents, with students who have demonstrated ability or potential for academic excellence, may refer their child(ren) for screening by completing a referral form (linked below) that is available at local school offices or by clicking the link below. Administrators and teachers may also refer students. Referral forms are due annually on dates listed in the GT brochure (linked below).
Screening will begin in the fall and continue throughout the school year. Students who participate in screening and are eligible for gifted and talented services will be placed the following school year.
Dimension A – Aptitude State Screening/Assessment
Students must obtain a composite score or a subtest score at or above the 93rd national age percentile on a nationally normed aptitude test (Cognitive Abilities Test - CogAT). Students who receive a composite score of 96% or higher are immediately identified as Gifted without having to qualify under Dimension B. A composite score of 96% or higher is acceptable as the sole criterion for identification as Gifted/Talented. This assessment is administered in late October or early November to all 2nd grade students in the District. Scores may be considered for GT Identification if they are no more than two years old.
Dimension B – Achievement
Students must score at or above the 94th national percentile on a nationally normed achievement test (Iowa Tests of Basic Skills - ITBS or Measures of Academic Progress - MAP) in reading comprehension and/or mathematical concepts and problem solving
or achieve a qualifying score on English/Language Arts and/or Math on the Palmetto Assessment of State Standards (PASS) administered in May. The ITBS will be administered in late October to early November, and the initial assessment of MAP of the current school year will be used. The most recent ITBS and PASS scores are used.
Dimension C - Academic Performance
Students in grades 2 or 4 meeting the criteria in Dimension A or B but not both take Performance Tasks. Students in grades 3 or 5 meeting the criteria in Dimension A or B but not both take Performance Tasks if they did not take them in grades 2 or 4 respectively. Students may take the Performance Tasks once at the Primary Level and once at the Intermediate Level. The performance standard for the Primary Level is sixteen on either the verbal or nonverbal assessments for placement in grade 3 and eighteen on either the verbal or nonverbal assessments for placement in grade 4. The performance standard for the Intermediate Level is sixteen on the verbal or twenty-two on the nonverbal for placement in grade 5 and eighteen on the verbal or twenty-five on the nonverbal for placement in grade 6. The Performance Tasks are administered in February to early March. For placement in grades 6 and above, an end of year grade point average of 3.75 or higher on a 4.0 scale in Math, Language Arts, Science, and Social Studies.
*No private testing will be accepted for eligibility, but the results may be considered for referral purposes.
Parents are notified by letter when a student qualifies for gifted services.
All parents and students in grades 2-7 annually receive a GT informational brochure in August or September. See link below for the brochure.