Gifted and High Achievers

Elementary School Testing Dates Grades
Sept. 9-11, 16, 18, & 21, 2015 Iowa Tests of Basic Skills (ITBS) 1, 3, and 5
Sept. 22-25, 2015 ITBS Make-up Days 1, 3, and 5
Oct. 5 – 7, 2015 Cognitive Abilities Test (CogAT) 1, 3, and 5
Oct. 8, 2015 CogAT Make-up Day 1, 3, and 5

The Georgia Board of Education defines a gifted student as “a student who demonstrates a high degree of intellectual, creative, and/or artistic ability(ies), possesses exceptional leadership skills, or excels in specific academic fields and who needs special instruction and/or special ancillary services to achieve at levels commensurate with his or her abilities.”
The procedures for identifying and placing students in the gifted program are governed by the Georgia Department of Education. DeKalb County Schools offers the Discovery Program in elementary schools and the Impact Program in the middle and high schools.
The Gifted Program is part of the Department of Curriculum and Instruction and is funded by the state. The procedures for identifying and placing students in the Gifted Program are governed by the Georgia Department of Education as indicated by the SBOE Rule 160-4-2-38. Gifted Instruction shall focus on developing cognitive, learning, research and reference, and metacognitive skills.
Elementary, Middle and High School Programs
Discovery Program Elementary students participate in the gifted program for a minimum of 225 minutes per week and are supported by a certified teacher of the gifted.
Impact Program
Middle and senior high school gifted students are taught at least one period per day in a content-based program by a certified teacher of the gifted. In high schools, gifted students may also participate in advanced placement (AP), directed-study courses.
Gifted Program Criteria
To be eligible for gifted services, students must qualify in three of the following four areas:

Mental Ability Achievement Creativity Motivation
96th percentile (or higher) by age on a composite or full scale score or appropriate component score of a standardized test of mental ability (CogAT) 90th percentile on total reading, total math or total battery score of a standardized achievement test (ITBS) 90th percentile (or higher) on the total battery of a standardized test of creativity
90th percentile (or higher) on a standardized creativity characteristics rating scale
Grades K-12
90th percentile (or higher) on a standardized characteristics rating scale (motivational)
Grades 9-12
Grade point average of at least 3.5 on a 4.0 scale, using an average of core grades over the previous two school years in English, math, science, social studies, and foreign language if applicable.

Models for Gifted Programs
The State of GA requires schools to service gifted students using one of the following classroom models:
Resource Model (K-12)
1. Students are “pulled out” for a minimum of 225 minutes per week.
2. Teachers are gifted certified.
3. The teacher/student ratio is 1:23 for elementary and 1:27 for middle and high school.
4. Lessons are interdisciplinary, enrichment and extension activities.
Cluster Grouping (K-12)
1. Twelve or fewer gifted students may be served in a regular classroom setting.
2. Gifted endorsed teacher.
3. Differentiated curriculum in content, process, product and/or assessments.
Advanced Content (K-12)
1. Minimum of one core content class.
2. Gifted endorsed teacher.
3. 1:25 teacher/student ratio.
4. Accelerated curriculum emphasizing process skills, problem-solving activities, research projects and other higher order thinking skills.
5. Advanced Placement (AP) classes is included as long as the teacher is AP certified and has completed ten clock hours of the Nature and Needs of Gifted.
6. Some IB and Advanced courses may be used to provide gifted services.
Identification and Placement of Students in the Program for Gifted
All Students Currently Enrolled in Grades 1-8
Students in grades one, three, five, and seven are automatically referred through a systemwide assessment process. These grade levels are considered the primary testing years for gifted. This process usually begins with a mental ability assessment (CogAT) and an achievement test (ITBS) during the fall semester. A creativity and motivation assessment is provided during the first week in November.
New Students
New students to the DeKalb County School District in grades two, four, six, and eight can be referred by parents, teachers, and administrators for an eligibility review conducted by the home school’s Eligibility Team. Standardized test scores that are within a two year period may be used as a referral for further evaluation.
All Students Currently Enrolled in Grades 9-12
Teachers, parents, the student, or others may refer a student for consideration for gifted services by completing the High School Referral forms.
Kindergarten and Students New to the DeKalb County School District
Students may be recommended for consideration by teachers, and /or parents. After a Kindergarten student is referred, the Kindergarten Portfolio Checklist must be completed. The local school Eligibility Team (ET) reviews the Portfolio information, and based, on existing evidence, determines which students shall be referred for further testing.
Transferring within the DCSD
If a student in a gifted program is transferring within the DCSD, her or she will automatically become part of the receiving schools gifted program. Transferring Within the State of Georgia A student already participating in a gifted program in another Georgia school system will be eligible to participate in the DeKalb County School District’s Program for the Gifted upon receipt of eligible scores from the sending school and their review by the ET.
Gifted Students from Out-of-State Programs
Gifted students who enroll from an out –of-state program must meet Georgia requirements in order to be placed in the DCSD’s Program for gifted. All scores must be current within two years and additional assessment may be necessary. Continuation Policy All identified gifted students are given a Continuation Policy form that must be reviewed and signed by the parent and the student. Students must maintain a minimum 80% or higher in the gifted and regular classes.
Probation Policy
If students receiving Gifted Program services fail to maintain a minimum 80% or higher in the gifted class and regular classes, the student will be placed on probation for a period of one semester.

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