The mission of the Beaufort County
School District gifted education program is to maximize the potential of
gifted and talented students by providing learning opportunities and
experiences that match the unique characteristics and needs of these
- Gifted and talented students have a
right to an appropriate education, one grounded in the recognition of
individual differences and unique learning needs.
- Gifted and talented students need a curriculum responsive to their individual learning rates, styles, and complexity.
- The gifted and talented learn best in
an instructional environment that encourages and nurtures inquiry,
flexibility, critical and creative thinking.
- Curriculum for gifted and talented
learners must be founded on South Carolina academic standards and must
allow for both acceleration and enrichment.
HOW DOES A STUDENT QUALIFY FOR GIFTED/TALENTED PROGRAMS?
Gifted and talented students may be
found within any racial, ethnic, or socio-economic group; within any
nationality; within both genders; and within populations with
disabilities. Identification is a multi-step process, which consists of
referral, screening, and assessment of eligibility by a district
evaluation and placement team. The state of South Carolina has
established three dimensions
(Dimension A, Dimension B and Dimension C) of giftedness as criteria
for placement in the academically gifted program. In order to qualify
for placement in gifted/talented programs, a student must meet the
eligibility criteria in two of the following three dimensions. The only
exception is those students meeting certain scores under Dimension A
which can then be used as the sole criterion for placement.
Click for the Gifted and Talented Identification Process Flow Chart
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)
WHAT ARE THE CHARACTERISTICS OF A GIFTED AND TALENTED STUDENT?
- ¨ Learns easily and rapidly
- ¨ Thinks clearly, recognizes implied relationships, comprehends meanings
- ¨ Reads on the average of two years above grade level
- ¨ Retains what she/he has heard or read without appearing to need much rote or drill
- ¨ Possesses a large vocabulary
- ¨ Exhibits independence, individualism, and self-sufficiency
- ¨ Demonstrates a curious and investigative nature
- ¨ Asks penetrating, searching questions
- ¨ Focuses intently on areas of interest
- ¨ Produces original products or ideas
- ¨ Prefers complex ideas
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.
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
*No private testing will be accepted for eligibility, but the results may be considered for referral purposes.
WHEN WILL PARENTS BE NOTIFIED?
Parent notification letters will be
mailed for students who are eligible or ineligible upon completion of
the screening process by the Evaluation and Placement Committee. Parent
notification will begin in February after CogAT, and MAP screening and
will continue through June. Performance Tasks and PASS results will be
reviewed as soon as received.
DO I NEED TO NOMINATE MY CHILD FOR GIFTED/TALENTED EVALUATION?
Nominations are not necessary for
rising 3rd graders since every student is tested and screened in 2nd
grade. Parents of rising 4th through 8th grade students who have
demonstrated ability or potential for high performance in academic areas
may refer their child for screening by completing a referral form
available in the school office.
HOW ARE THE NEEDS OF THE GIFTED/TALENTED STUDENTS MET IN BEAUFORT COUNTY SCHOOLS?
Programming for Beaufort County’s
gifted and talented includes a variety of options, including
acceleration, enrichment, in-depth work in selected areas of study, and
opportunities for community-based and “beyond the classroom” learning
through mentorships and summer and weekend programs. Teachers who work
with these learners are carefully selected and trained in gifted
education used in the curriculum and provide specific, constructive
feedback about growth and areas for further development.
Curriculum for gifted and talented
learners is designed to be rigorous due to its level of depth and
complexity Instructional services are delivered in an environment that
honors diversity in thinking, fosters inquiry, and engenders positive
attitudes toward learning. Assessment strategies for gifted and talented
students match the instructional approaches
In addition to differentiated
programming, curriculum, and assessment, gifted and talented students
have access to guidance and counseling services responsive to their
unique needs. These services should address issues especially pertinent
to gifted populations such as coping with being different,
perfectionism, underachievement, and dealing with uneven abilities.
Special Classes – Language Arts and/or Math
In grades 3-7, the special classes
deliver services to identified students through rigorous and accelerated
Language Arts and/or Math classes. In addition, opportunities are
available to students in grades 6-8 for Advanced classes in
Mathematics,Science and Social Studies classes.
In grades 8-12, students are served through Honors , Advanced Placement and/or International Baccalaureate classes.