What's New in Gifted Education | Davidson News | Legislative & Policy News | On the Web | In the News
What's New in Gifted Education
Gifted Chats on Twitter
Parents, educators and gifted
education advocates worldwide have recently come together to
share resources, ideas and innovative new ways of thinking
about gifted issues through chats every Friday on Twitter.
Organized by gifted advocate Deborah Mersino, these chats offer
an opportunity to discuss specific topics every Friday - one
topic at noon and one at 7 p.m. (EST) - using the hashtag
#gtchat. Participants can vote for the #gtchat topic
each week via a "Twtpoll."
Click here for more information, follow Deborah on
or search for #gtchat on Twitter.
New Study Reports
Wide Achievement Gaps Among Nation's Top Students
In the age of No Child Left Behind, the focus has been on raising minimum standards and students’ overall test scores. Among the nation’s top students, however, the achievement gap between those from different subgroups is widening, according to a new
Center for Evaluation and Education Policy report. The report shows achievement gaps have either widened, stayed the same, or slightly declined between sexes, racial groups, English and non-English-speaking learners, and those at different income levels since the late 1990s. To address these gaps, the report calls on federal, state, and local policymakers to better consider the needs of top-performing students and enact policies more supportive of acceleration, early college and grade skipping. Sources:
Center for Gifted Education at the College of William and Mary - National Curriculum Network Conference 2010
Gifted education professionals from across the country have the opportunity to share in discussions about curriculum, instruction, and assessment for high-ability and gifted learners at the Center for Gifted Education’s
15th National Curriculum Network Conference (PDF), March 10-12. The conference features nationally recognized speakers who will share their in-depth perspectives and research. For more information or to register please visit the conference website
http://cfge.wm.edu/professional_ncnc.htm, or contact the center by phone at 757-221-2166 or by email at
2010 Davidson Fellows
Scholarship - Application Deadline Approaching
Applications for the 2010
Fellows scholarships are available
online. Young people under the age of 18 have the opportunity to earn a
$50,000, $25,000 or $10,000 scholarship in recognition of a significant piece of
work in the categories of Science, Technology, Mathematics, Music, Literature
and Philosophy, or a project that represents Outside the Box thinking. The
application deadline is March 3, 2010.
THINK Summer Institute
THINK Summer Institute, one of the most academically rigorous summer programs in the country, will run July 10 through July 31, 2010. Thirteen to 16-year-old students can earn six college credits at this three-week residential program on the campus of the University of Nevada, Reno. THINK applications are currently being accepted. The next deadline is Feb. 24 and the final deadline is March 31.
The Davidson Academy of Nevada
Upcoming Tours for Prospective Students
Visit the Davidson Academy of Nevada, a free public day school for profoundly gifted pupils on the University of Nevada, Reno campus, during one of our public tours on
Thurs., March 25, Thurs., April 15 and Fri., Aug. 6.
are required and can be submitted online at
2010-2011 application is available online at
www.DavidsonAcademy.UNR.edu/Admissions and the deadline
has been extended to
May 21. Read The Davidson Academy
How to Apply page, the
Test Score Criteria and the
Application Review Process
for more information.
Prospective students interested in receiving email updates about the Academy can sign up for the free
Explore The Davidson Academy eNewsletter by
clicking here to subscribe.
The national Davidson Young Scholars program provides FREE services designed to nurture and support profoundly gifted young people and their families, including talent development and educational advocacy, an online community,
and annual get-togethers. Applications are due the 14th of each month.
Ambassador Program is designed to provide Young Scholars with the training and skills to develop, implement and manage their very own community service projects. The new decade has brought us a cohort of Ambassadors-In-Training who are just beginning the
18-month training process. This includes seven online seminars and one-on-one advising from a member of the Davidson Institute’s Ambassador Team. Please visit the
Ambassador webpage and click on the project links at the bottom of the page to learn more about the incredible accomplishments of
some of our inaugural Ambassadors! Be sure to keep an eye out for young people doing amazing things in your community, they might just be a Young Scholar Ambassador!
Issues Discussion Forum - A Meeting Place for All Things
Register for the
Gifted Issues Discussion Forum and become a part of one of the most active gifted education forums on the web! With nearly 3,000 registered members, it's a great place to
share and interact with others about an abundance of gifted
Legislative & Policy News
Jacob Javits Gifted and Talented Students Education Act – President Obama's recently-released fiscal year 2011 budget eliminates Javits, the only federal source of funding for gifted and talented education. The 22-year-old program, funded at $7.46 million for fiscal year 2010, is designed to support
research and development applied to teaching strategies to address the needs of gifted learners, particularly those from disadvantaged and underserved backgrounds.
The Administration has proposed consolidating Javits with two other programs
into a new fund, called the College Pathways and Accelerated Learning fund. The National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC)
press release (PDF) advising Congress to restore Javits funds.
See also NAGC’s Advocacy Toolkit designed for state and local advocates in gifted education. Sources:
Multiple States – Dozens of public high schools in Connecticut, Kentucky, Maine, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Vermont will introduce a program allowing 10th graders who pass a battery of tests to get a diploma two years early and enroll in community college, starting in the fall of 2011. The program is being organized by the
National Center on Education and the Economy. Source:
New York Times.
Read parents' concerns in the comments section at the
COLORADO – Members of the Colorado General Assembly recently introduced House Bill 10-1253, which “distinguishes, where necessary, the education of gifted children from that of children with disabilities in the ‘Exceptional Children’s Educational Act.’” The bill would also require the state board of education to appoint an advisory committee to assist with issues related to gifted education services and programs. Source:
The Cañon City School District is adding an early entrance program for highly gifted children in kindergarten and first grade for the 2010-11 school year. The program will allow highly gifted 4-year-olds to gain early entrance to kindergarten and highly gifted 5-year-olds early entrance to first grade. Colorado state law defines “highly gifted” students as those who score in the top one-tenth percentile. Source:
Cañon City Daily Record
– As part of a new district
proposal, gifted elementary school students in District 300 would no longer be pulled out of their classrooms for weekly one-hour sessions with gifted education specialists, as part of planned changes for the 2010-11 school year. Instead, they would be clustered in classrooms dedicated to teaching high-level thinking skills. Source:
The Courier News (article no longer available online)
IOWA – A new program at the
Connie Belin & Jacqueline N. Blank International Center for Gifted Education and Talent Development at the University of Iowa will train parents, teachers and other professionals teaching methods for twice-exceptional students. Funded in part by a $165,000 federal grant, the program will train those who work with students who are gifted but
also face disabilities. Sources:
If Iowa is awarded a grant from the national
Race to the Top Fund, schools from across the state would launch pilot programs in “competency-based” education, which would allow students to be grouped by ability, not by grade, and allow them to advance at their own pace. Source:
MINNESOTA – The Brainerd School District is considering ways to improve K-12 gifted programs. Some of the suggested improvements are to employ a district gifted and talented services coordinator and implement enrichment programs. Source:
– A new public charter school for gifted students will open in August 2010 in North Charleston. The
Palmetto Scholars Academy will accept a
total of 216 students in grades 6 through 8 in its first year, with additional grades added for high school each successive year. Source:
Daniel Island News
As part of recent budget cuts, the Georgetown County School Board has been forced to eliminate the Gifted and Talented Summer Program. Source:
Myrtle Beach Sun News
UTAH – The newly formed Canyons School District is seeking to implement the "Response to Intervention" (RTI) program, which will track gifted students’ achievement and tailor instruction to fit their needs. Source:
Salt Lake Tribune
Revamped Gifted Education State Policy Database
The Davidson Institute's
Gifted Education State Policy Map was recently updated to reflect a wealth of
new information included in the NAGC report,
2008-2009 State of the States in Gifted Education (PDF). Click on your state to view their
specific definition of giftedness, as well as updated key personnel and statistics. The legislative section contains information on many topics never before covered, such as states’ policies on acceleration, identification and teacher training. The color status of 12 states
also changed: Alabama, Alaska, Connecticut, Hawaii, Illinois, Kansas, Louisiana, Massachusetts, North Carolina, Utah, Washington and Wyoming.
How gifted-friendly is your state? Find out at:
Gifted Education Policies.
If you know of new legislation, please contact the
On the Web
Gifted Exchange Blog
Read Laura Vanderkam's take on all things gifted, with recent posts including:
- Planning for Early College
– Since every state promises children a free and appropriate education up to grade 12, wouldn't
it be a logical step to say that the state would promise a free and appropriate education up to the equivalent age?
Join the discussion
- Gifted brains . . . more efficient? – If high IQ brains are more efficient, can training make any brain more efficient? If IQ
falls within a certain range, then it would seem that one could push toward the top of a range through repeated use.
Networking - Impacting the World of Gifted Education
With social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter
exploding onto the scene over the past few years, parents,
students and gifted education advocates have been able to
use them to communicate and access information like never
before. In addition to the #gtchat mentioned at the top of this newsletter,
check out this
Davidson Gifted Database article for an ever-growing
list of gifted organizations and advocates on social
networking sites, as well as links to gifted advocacy blogs
and other online publications.
Suggest a Resource
Suggest an Article
In the News
Feb. 19, 2010 -
The Wall Street Journal,
Fleeting Youth, Fading Creativity
Feb. 17, 2010 -
Multilingual 3-year-old joins Mensa
Feb. 12, 2010 -
The MIT Tech,
One country, one set of standards
Feb. 10, 2010 -
New York Times,
Expansion of A.P. Tests Also Brings More Failures
Feb. 9, 2010 -
Prodigy who has autism comes into his own as performer, mentor
(Joseph P. Kahn)
Feb. 9, 2010 -
What Brain Imaging Shows Us About Gifted Learners
Feb. 9, 2010 -
Is genius genetic or is it nurtured?
Feb. 2, 2010 -
San Diego News Network,
Teaching teachers to teach the gifted
Jan. 31, 2010 -
New York Magazine,
Why kindergarten-admission tests are worthless, at best
Jan. 28, 2010 -
It is not elitist to nurture gifted pupils
Jan. 22, 2010 -
Elementary gifted ed made easy
Jan. 22, 2010 -
Taunton Daily Gazette,
Massachusetts school takes whole-child approach to learning
Jan. 17, 2010 -
More freedom, fewer rules for gifted students?
Jan. 12, 2010 -
Don't leave gifted students behind
(Marcia Law & Ann Robinson)
Jan. 8, 2010 -
New York Times,
In Suburban Schools, an Alternative to A.P.
Dec. 24, 2009 -
college student wows many
Discuss these stories and more on the
Gifted Issues Discussion Forum.
"They have an extraordinary ability but also a disability. It's about minimizing barriers. It's going to be our task to make life a lot easier for these children."
~ Dr. Nicholas Colangelo, Director of the Belin and Blank Center for Gifted Education and Talent Development,
on twice-exceptional students,
Iowa City Press-Citizen
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