Gifted Education News Roundup
Gifted Education News Roundup
PUBLISHED: Wednesday, September 19, 2018 by Andilynn Feddeler

With the beginning of a new school year come new conversations concerning gifted education. Here’s a roundup of recent news in gifted ed:

  • In an attempt to diversify and combat underrepresentation in its gifted education services, Montgomery County, MD, has rethought how it assesses and admits students to its advanced programs. Parent and teacher recommendations now take a smaller role in the process, and officials now consider every student for admission to specialized magnet elementary schools, rather than just the ones who had heard about the option and applied. These initiatives have met backlash, but are ultimately paving the way for better representation and access to advanced academic opportunities.

  • On a similar note, the Leon County Schools district in Tallahassee, FL, is planning on expanding its gifted services, thanks to a Title IV grant that will provide $625,000 to hire more teachers and screen more students. The grant is in the process of being approved by the Department of Education, but will be a huge step forward for gifted services in the district.

  • The new edition of the Screening Assessment for Gifted and Elementary Middle School Students, SAGES-3, is out. The SAGES-3 helps administrators identify gifted students regardless of gender, race, or ethnicity. The SAGES-3 measures both aptitude and achievement through a series of subtests that examine students’ verbal and nonverbal reasoning skills, as well as abilities in math, science, language arts, and social studies.

  • Prufrock Press released the Universal Talented and Gifted Screener (UTAGS), which offers schools a time-saving screener for identifying gifted and advanced learners, as well as twice-exceptional students. It is an unbiased, nationally-normed assessment that screens for cognition, creativity, leadership, literacy, math, and science.

  • The Chicago Board of Education is requesting a one-year extension to better prepare accommodations for gifted students in compliance with the Illinois Accelerated Placement Act. The law was passed to encourage districts to improve their gifted programs and services, due to the lack of opportunities for low-income and minority students living in the state.
  • An Indiana school board has upheld its decision to eliminate a gifted education coordinator who did not have proper certification, ending the program itself and angering many parents and teachers. The coordinator claims he was not given enough notice or information about what would happen to him, and that the district was unwilling to work out solutions with him. Students who depended on him will now be shifted to other teachers.