Supporting and sustaining gifted education we are all advocates!Presentation Transcript
Supporting and Sustaining Gifted Education: We are all Advocates! Jeff Danielian Gifted Resource Specialistjdanielian@nagc.orgConfratute 2009
Who am I?
NAGC’s Gifted Resource Specialist Jeff Danielianjdanielian@nagc.org
Who are you?
The Ones Most Actively Involved in Some Area of Gifted Education
“Who are we?” We are Teachers We are Parents We are Students We are Researchers Keep in mind that these may change!
“A community is like a ship; everyone ought to be prepared to take the helm.” -Henrik Ibsen “A ship in port is safe, but that's not what ships are built for.” -Grace Hopper “It is not the ship so much as the skillful sailing that assures the prosperous voyage.”-George William Curtis “I am not afraid of storms for I am learning how to sail my ship.” -Louisa May Alcott
The News on a National Level D-300 reviews its options for gifted programBeef up the gifted program or get rid of it – that’s the task facing Dave Alessio and the District 300 Education Committee that he recently took over.Northwest HeraldJuly 4, 2009 Shortchanging High AchieversSummer programs for gifted students are on the chopping block.Washington PostJuly 3, 2009 Parents concerned about cuts in Green's gifted programThe June Green Board of Education meeting was dominated by questions and concerns regarding recent cuts in the gifted program.The SuburbaniteJune 21, 2009District 80 to continue TAG programDistrict 80 will continue and expand its successful Talented and Gifted program next year despite unsure funding, said members of the District 80 Board of Education at a meeting last weekRegister-NewsJune 15, 2009
What Advocacy Means to Me In order to strengthen public awareness, build alliances with other organizations, and offer the most recent “best practice” publications There needs to be a relationship between:
new and emerging research
dissemination of resources
an audience with a common need
and a strong agenda for a strategy
Establish a Plan Present the Issues Present the Goals that you wish to accomplish. Inform on Progress as often as possible. Offer Resources that you and others have. Explain Needs as often as possible. Meet with your Elected Officials. Write Letters to the Editor.
What Should We Do? Seek out Professional Development Become familiar with Characteristics of Gifted Students Explore Curricular Opportunities and the great variety which exists. Know what your state does/does not do Become a Member of State and National Associations. Advocate
Don't wait for an emergency to begin building support for gifted programs and services Five Points to Ponder
1. Examine your program Become aware of what the district currently offers for gifted students and how learners access these programs and services. Focus on the benefits to students and ensure school leaders understand the value of gifted programming in your community. Familiarize yourself with the NAGC Pre-K-Grade 12 Gifted Program Standards.
Putting the Standards to Use They can serve as: Benchmarks for measuring the effectiveness of gifted programming. Criteria for program evaluation and assessment. Guidelines for program design and development. Recommendations of the minimal requirements necessary for high-quality educational programming designed to meet the needs of gifted students. Tools for advocates of gifted education who are working on increasing the public's awareness of the needs of gifted and talented students in today's schools.
2. Establish a rationale Make your rationale for supporting programs and services as clear and informative as possible while also keeping the needs of gifted children front and center your resource collection for developing a rationale should be twofold: 1. resources about policies and practices (i.e., state and local mandates, district policies and practices, etc. as well as 2. the NAGC Program Standards and Position Statements)
NAGC Position Statements
ADDRESSING AFFECTIVE NEEDS OF GIFTED CHILDREN
COLLABORATION BETWEEN GIFTED AND GENERAL EDUCATION PROGRAMS
COMPETENCIES NEEDED BY TEACHERS OF GIFTED AND TALENTED STUDENTS
COOPERATIVE LEARNING FOR GIFTED STUDENTS
DIFFERENTIATION OF CURRICULUM AND INSTRUCTION
FINE ARTS EDUCATION
APPROPRIATE EDUCATION FOR GIFTED GLBT STUDENTS
STANDARDS FOR GRADUATE PROGRAMS IN GIFTED EDUCATION
STUDENTS WITH CONCOMITANT GIFTS AND LEARNING DISABILITIES
NAGC-NMSA JOINT POSITION STATEMENT
MANDATED EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES FOR GIFTED AND TALENTED STUDENTS
PRESERVICE TEACHER EDUCATION PROGRAMS
USING TESTS TO IDENTIFY GIFTED STUDENTS
“Once others have an understanding that gifted students need something different, then you can demonstrate how specific programs for which you are advocating relate back to the standards and policies AND meet the unique needs of gifted students in your school and community.”
3. Brush up on your communication skills Your job is to get the message out!
Reasons for Public Relations in Gifted Education: to promote a better understanding of the nature and needs of gifted children and youth to gain positive support for appropriate programs to keep all constituent groups informed on key issues to build a knowledge base for advocacy
Importance of Media Coverage Local, state, and national magazines provide useful opportunities for public relations “If specialists in gifted education were to write just one article for the general press each year, the quantity of accurate information available to the general reading public would increase dramatically.”
State Level Strategies Networking with other state organizations provides many opportunities to break down barriers between special interest groups and to build the groundwork for mutual trust and support
4. Build a Bridge for Administrators School administrators are deeply concerned about ensuring educational excellence for all of their students. Many are unaware of the unique needs of advanced learners. Recognize that at every level their entire day is packed with a wide range of educational and managerial crises.
5. Network, Network, Network Become an active participant in local school groups like the PTO or booster club, Offer to provide a speaker for local service organizations about your gifted program and its ties to the community, Volunteer to serve on school committees involved with strategic planning, accountability, or program evaluation and planning, Form your own local support organization that works to inform your community and district about the needs of high-ability students, Get to know the education reporters for your local media outlets-they may be interested in covering gifted programs in local schools or highlighting student achievements, or Join a gifted organization (like NAGC) that advocates for a challenging and appropriate education for gifted learners.
NAGC’s Advocacy Toolkit This toolkit is designed for state and local advocates in gifted education. You can find tools on general advocacy, basic facts about gifted education in the U.S., working with the media, advocating with your elected representatives, starting your own local group, and other strategies to advance the needs of gifted and talented learners.
NAGC’S Advocacy Toolkit Know Your Information - Check this out for fast facts about gifted and talented and why we need to advocate for students and programs! Know Your Audience - Look here for information about who works on what issues and how to contact them. Effective Advocacy - Read expert advice on effective communication and maximizing your impact. Support Groups - Advocating as part of a group gives you strength. Here are some suggestions on forming and finding support groups. Local Advocacy - Some of the most important decisions happen in your own community or school district, click here to learn more. State Advocacy - Advocating in your state? Check here for suggestions on how your state group can assess the legislative landscape. Federal Advocacy - Find out how to best communicate your message to Congress. Legislative Update - Read about current issues in Congress.
Support Your Arguments with Evidence.
An investment in gifted education benefits general education. “Why have Gifted and Talented Education?”
Support for your Arguments
What the Research Says: Gifted Education Works Gifted Education Strategies Work Acceleration Works Grouping Works Curriculum Compacting Works Advanced Placement Works Pull-Out Programs and Specialized Classes Work Teacher Training Makes a Difference
A Few Reminders Anticipate issues, situations, and questions before they arise. Have resources available. Provide the best places to access resources. Organize and prepare newsletters, conferences, special events, etc. Take advantage of what NAGC has to offer. Explore what other state associations are doing/providing.
The NAGC Website Your Second Home
Information and Resources The Big Picture If you're looking for answers to questions like "What is gifted?" and "Why do we need gifted education?" -- this is the place to start. Glossary of Terms Every area of knowledge has its own unusual set of terms and phrases. Our glossary is designed to help you translate and build a stronger understanding of the frequently used vocabulary in gifted education. A History of Gifted Education Check out this timeline which traces the significant events and innovations in the field from the 19th century to today. NAGC Pre-K--Grade 12 Gifted Program Standards Written and endorsed by experts, these invaluable resources are designed to help you identify the characteristics of exemplary gifted programming and create educational environments that maximize a child's potential. NCATE Gifted Education Graduate Program Standards NAGC, in conjunction with the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC), has revised the standards used to accredit college and university teacher preparation programs in gifted education. NAGC Position Statements Are you looking for an authoritative recommendation on topics concerning gifted children? NAGC position statements provide a reasoned, researched, and endorsed viewpoint from a nationally recognized organization.
Resources for Teachers Resources for Advocacy Resources for Higher Education Resources for Parents
If it is in the News… Strongly consider writing a letter to the editor Respond to your local issues. Use the knowledge base and tools you have acquired. Access NAGC’s support page for ideas and suggestions.
Advocacy & Legislation
Letters to the Editor Personalized letters have the best chance of being published have the greatest impact The Message more meaningful to the reader when he can see how you, your district, and/or your state is affected by the issue include state or local statistics to reinforce your point talk about your own experiences mention an ongoing discussion in your state that is relevant NAGC provides a template, or sample letter to the editor. We urge you to modify the sample to make it your own.
NAGC’s Messages Gifted and Talented Students Have Special Learning Needs Giftedness is Present in All Socio-economic Groups Global Competitiveness Depends on Our Most Advanced Students
1. Gifted and Talented Students Have Special Learning Needs We must make a commitment to address the unique needs of our high-ability learners. Every student deserves the opportunity to make continuous progress in the classroom. Far too many schools continue to ignore the special learning needs of high-ability learners.
Challenges and Concerns for the Nation Left unchallenged, gifted students can find themselves unprepared for the rigor and academic independence of college. Many gifted elementary school students already know between 40 and 50 percent of the material to be covered in their current grade prior to the start of the school year.
Sixty-one percent of classroom teachers have not received training in meeting the needs of advanced students.
The majority of gifted students spend 80% of their time in the regular education classroom.
Only 4 states require annual staff development hours in gifted education for regular classroom teachers.
NAGC’s Goals All Teachers receive pre-service coursework in gifted and talented. All School Personnel, including counselors, psychologists, and administrators receive annual training in the needs of G/T learners. All Districts adequately fund and support a range of services for G/T students Pre K – 12. All States have policies and funding that support G/T Learners as well as personnel that can advise districts and families on available policies and resources.
Training teachers to work with gifted learners benefits all students. The Classroom Dynamic Changes!
The Outcome of Gifted Education Services
Teachers who have received training in gifted education are more likely to foster higher-level thinking, allow for greater student expression, consider individual student strengths and weaknesses, and provide a variety of learning experiences to challenge students.
Talented students from accelerated classes outperform students of the same age and IQ who are not accelerated by almost one full year on achievement tests. Students from enriched classes outperform initially equivalent students from conventional classes by 4 to 5 months.
Gifted programs allow our brightest students to achieve their true potential. Every child has the opportunity to achieve!
2. Giftedness is Present in All Socio-economic Groups Our nation often fails to identify and serve the gifted students who are the most disadvantaged. As a result, the achievement gap between the highest-performing students from disadvantaged backgrounds and their more affluent peers grows at a faster rate than it does for students at the opposite end of the achievement spectrum.
Challenges and Concerns for the Nation When they enter school, gifted children are equally represented across all demographic and geographic groups. But as they advance in school, nearly half (44 percent) oflower-income gifted students drop further and further behind.
High-achieving, lower-income students drop out of school twice as often as high-achieving students from higher income families. Low-income students are more dependent on our schools to meet their educational needs than more affluent students. YET Many districts do not fund gifted programming and services.
NAGC’s Goals Create a national talent search and service mechanism for low-income children. Provide gifted services at preschool and primary levels. Provide personalized transition services at middle school and beyond. Disseminate materials relating to alternative forms of identification.
Investing in gifted education allows us to identify our nation's brightest minority students. Gifted Education has presented the most comprehensive plans for the identification of minority students.
The Outcome of Alternative Identification In the nine years after implementing a multiple criteria model for identifying gifted learners, Georgia saw a 206% increase in the number of African-American children and a 570% increase in the number of Hispanic children participating in gifted education programs statewide.
Javits Grants Finding Success Scientists-in-Schools (Texas) Project Breakthrough (South Carolina) Project M3 (Connecticut, Kentucky) CHAMPS (Mississippi) Project La Jornada (New Mexico) Project SAIL (Oklahoma)
3. Global Competitiveness Depends on our Most Advanced Students. Our nation's ability to compete tomorrow is dependent upon the brightest students sitting in our classrooms today. The United States will only remain the world's economic leader if we equip our high-ability students with the tools necessary to innovate, compete, and lead in the 21st century.
Challenges and Concerns for the Nation The United States' highest performing students (those in the 95th percentile) ranked 23rd in mathematics on the 2003 Program for International Student Assessment (PISA), and 13th in science on the 2006 PISA. A majority (64%) of Americans and 84% of college faculty believe that our gifted students are not being sufficiently prepared to compete against the best-educated scientists and engineers in the world. Only 15 states have public, statewide math-science high schools for advanced learners.
NAGC’s Goals Increase numbers of statewide Math and Science high schools. Increased awareness of materials on how to increase mentorships, internships, and partnerships with higher ed communities. Support early admission to college / dual enrollment
Gifted programs encourage students to enter the STEM fields that are vital to our nation'scompetitiveness. The time is now to make a greater investment and in our nation's brightest children.Our nation's future depends on it.
The Outcome of Advanced Math and Science Programs 52 % of the 2005 participants in Project SIS, a Javits grant supported high school program, identified science as a career of focus; over 50 percent of the students went on to pursue advanced degrees in Science or Mathematics.
It is our responsibility To Advocate To Teach To Learn To share ideas with all colleagues To attend professional development To seek out each and every opportunity To be vigilant in our endeavors. To try
Gifted and Talented Education Something That Connects Us All
"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed people can change the world; indeed it is the only thing that ever has.” -Margaret Mead
While we may sail different ships…….. ……..We are on the same sea.
Lets Look at some of my favorite resource websites and navigate around a little (Tricks of the Trade….Tricks of the Trade NAGC DavidsonHoagiesSENGCECGoogle Alerts