Steelton-Highspire  Gifted Child Find Documents

       Steelton-Highspire  School District Child Find Notice 
    Characteristics of Gifted Children, Screening and Evaluation Guidelines:

    In compliance with Chapter 16, (Pa. Code 16.21 (b)), the Steelton-Highspire  School District is responsible for locating, identifying, and educating school-aged students requiring specially-designed  programs or services:

    Each district shall conduct public awareness activities to inform the public of gifted

    education services and programs and the manner by which to request these services

    and programs. These awareness activities shall be designed to reach parents of students

    enrolled in the public schools and the parents of school age children not enrolled in the

    public schools. Awareness activities shall be conducted annually and include providing

    information in local newspapers, other media, student handbooks and on the school

    district web site. (22 Pa. Code §16.21(b))


    Characteristics of Gifted Children

    I.  An exceptional ability to acquire and retain knowledge

    ·         Observes and remembers details beyond what is expected

    ·         Absorbs details quickly and recalls them at much later dates

    ·         Grasps concepts easily with limited repetitions

    ·         Already may know much of the content

    ·         Excellent short and long term memory

    ·         May not appear to be engaged but has the answers


    II. An exceptional ability to apply higher level thinking skills

    ·         Displays advanced reasoning in ethical development

    ·         Can review, synthesize and quickly articulate essential ideas/concepts

    ·         Asks “what if” questions and likes questions with multiple answers

    ·         Bored with drill and practice

    ·         Makes insightful cause-effect connections

    ·         Excels in making predictions, understands consequences

    ·         Jumps to intuitive answers, often without multiple steps or official procedure


    III. An exceptional ability to create new knowledge

    ·         Produces many original and elaborate new ideas

    ·         Non-conformist; sees unusual and multiple ways of doing things

    ·         Enjoys self-expression, unusual twists in learning, is inventive and different


    IV. Exceptional Personal/Interpersonal Skills

    ·         Often self-directed; takes little direction to stay on task

    ·         Diverse interests which cover many topics

    ·         Critical perfectionist

    ·         Immense intensity to tasks of interest

    ·         Leadership and organizational ability, may seem bossy

    ·         Keen and well-developed sense of humor

    ·         Immense emotional response, may be overly dramatic and compulsive

    ·         Low threshold for responsiveness; easily excited or irritated


    Universal Screening Procedures

    Chapter 16 requires that "Each school district shall adopt and use a system to locate

    and identify all students within that district who are thought to be gifted and in need of

    specially designed instruction.” (22 Pa. Code §16.21(a))


    “Each school district shall determine the student’s needs through a screening and

    evaluation process which meets the requirements of this chapter.”

    (22 Pa. Code §16.21(c))


    Steelton-Highspire  engages in a number of formal processes by which to universally identify potential candidates for gifted education services.  We annually test all  students and move-in students from  on the MAPS, CDT, and/or SRI assessments to determine which students may require further screening.  Additionally, our schools engage in ongoing data-analysis which further identifies students in potential need for specially-designed instruction.


    Definition of Giftedness and Referral Process

    Mentally gifted is defined as outstanding intellectual and creative ability the

    development of which requires specially designed programs or support services, or

    both, not ordinarily provided in the regular education program. (22 Pa. Code §16.1)


    Chapter 16 requires that school districts use “multiple criteria” in the screening of students for eligibility in gifted programs.  Students will enter our Special Interest Program because they meet the selection criteria and also show a need for specially designed instruction as required by Chapter 16 regulations.  Students can be screened at any grade for the program and may be referred for a Gifted Multi-Disciplinary Evaluation (GMDE) through any of the following avenues:

    Teacher Referral:  A student’s teacher and school counselor have received training related to the characteristics of gifted students.  If the teacher feels that a student may be in need of specially designed instruction, they will make the referral.

    Parent Referral:  A parent can, at any time, make a request that their child be screened for the Special Interest Program.  Parents may contact any school official regarding their interest in comprehensive screening.  When a verbal request for a GMDE is made to the school must provide the parents a copy of the Permission to Evaluate form within 10 calendar days of the oral request.

    Student Referral:  A student may ask, at any time, to be screened for the program.  Pursuant to appropriate parental consent the district will initiate screening.

    Data Referral:  A referral may be generated from a data source such as an assessment made for universal screenings, curriculum-based assessments, standardized tests, and other assessments of achievement and/or ability.


    Gifted Screening Process

    Steelton-Highspire  uses a multi-criteria process to determine eligibility for the Gifted Program.  At each step the guidance counselor should be in contact with parents to share the information and make an appropriate team determination about continuing the screening.  To view the complete Steelton-Highspire  Gifted Screening or Evaluation  associated flowchart please refer to the Gifted Teachers for each building. This  process is concluded by our School Psychologists who will create the Gifted Written Report and, with the team, make an official determination of eligibility.  This process will either move to the creation of the Gifted Individual Education Plan or end as a result of this meeting.


    Present Levels of Educational Performance and the GIEP Process

    The development of any appropriate educational delivery system is contingent upon knowing where students are and responding appropriately.  In an effort to make teacher feedback more measurable and diagnostic we have created a teacher feedback form which gives us two important pieces of information.  First, how are students performing when compared to like classmates (Gifted/High-Achieving), secondly defining the specific strengths and needs within those content areas from which the GIEP Team can create specific goals?  This change, along with the commitment to deepen our pool of Present Level Assessments will create the foundation for much more meaningful instruction and intervention.  The quality of a GIEP can be directly linked to the quality of the determination of present level.  Without good present levels you have no basis for an effective GIEP. 


    Present Levels, Assessments and Individualization

    The Steelton-Highspire  School District has committed to the administration, collection and response to present level data through our K-12 use of our benchmark and common assessments.  We have begun to create common, curriculum-based assessments, for all content areas at each level of education.  As a result, we will be able to track student progress longitudinally and within school years to ensure instruction is appropriately targeted.  This commitment to ongoing assessment and careful data review will yield an instructional program that will define new levels of sensitivity to individual student need.  Counselors, teachers and parents will now be able to make data-informed recommendations regarding course selection and appropriate levels of rigor.  The truly exciting aspect of this will be the ability to make adjustments within those larger increments of time with respect to instruction and intervention.  GIEP goals and the specially designed instruction that result from these goals will be reviewed for their effectiveness on an ongoing, rather than annual basis.  The net result will be a program of instruction and intervention that responds to individual student needs in a timely and effective manner.


    Additional Resource Information

Last Modified on May 21, 2014