Identifying gifted and talented students

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By Damien Sweeney
damien.sweeney@education.ky.gov

I had the opportunity to meet gifted and talented coordinators recently at the Kentucky Association for Gifted Education session. We spoke quite a bit about ways to create equity and access in gifted and talented.

I learned about Warren County’s school district’s Services for Unlimited, Multi-Talented Minds and Inspiring Talents (S.U.M.M.I.T.). S.U.M.M.I.T. is designed to offer students a continuing experience of support, challenge and success.

Warren County uses a unique screener that helps identify gifted and talented students. They consider the following when identifying students:

  • Environmental constraints, such as: Is the student transient? Is the student in a home with little enrichment/stimulation?
  • Language considerations;
  • Cultural considerations, such as lower self-esteem due to self-comparison with dominant culture standards; inability to function meaningfully in dominant culture due to limited exposure, etc.;
  • Economic considerations, such as is the student from a low-income family or an area with high levels of poverty;
  • Medical issues; and
  • Other potential influential issues.

Warren County isn’t simply looking for students who perform well on certain tests. They are much more interested in giving access to all students. For more information about the system Warren County has created to screen for potential gifted and talented students, contact Supervisor of Elementary Instruction Lorie Richey at lorie.richey@warren.kyschools.us.

Do you have students who are twice exceptional? These students also are known as “2e,” meaning they are gifted with a learning difference. Check out this virtual conference opportunity and share it with parents of 2e students as you see fit. For more information, contact Molly Isaacs-McLeod at mimjd@me.com.

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