Gifted and Talented Education

MSAD 58 is committed to finding and supporting gifted and talented students. In Maine all school systems must have a gifted and talented plan and must submit an annual report to the Maine Department of Education. MSAD 58 staff adhere to the laws on gifted and talented education, which can be found in Chapter 104 online here https://www.maine.gov/doe/gifted/laws/index.html

How are students screened in MSAD#58?

In MSAD 58, a district-wide screening is completed for grades 3, 6 and 9. Students can be identified in English, math, science, social studies, and/or art. In those grades we look at achievement tests (like NWEA and MEA, and blind scoring of work samples for Art) and teacher reports. Once the team has identified the children in the top 10% of these measures, parents will be notified. The team will ask for parental permission to conduct an intelligence test which measures potential, called the Cogats (Cognitive abilities test). Once all data has been collected, the district Gifted and Talented team reviews the data to make decisions about qualification. By law, only the top 5% of students will be identified. Families will be notified of the outcome of these decisions as well.

Who is on the committee?

The committee is made up of teachers, the Gifted and Talented Coordinator, Laureen Olsen and the Gifted and Talented consultant, Sue Boyce Cormier. They can be reached at lolsen@msad58.org and sueboycecormier@msad58.org

How are families involved?

Parents and teachers may refer children to the Gifted and Talented program at any time. Building principals have referral forms.

Once the children in the top 10% of the NWEA/ MEAs are identified, a letter is sent home requesting signed parental permission to administer the Cogats intelligence test. The results of these tests are sent to the parents. Once this is completed, the Gifted and Talented committee reviews all of the compiled data via a blind spreadsheet to make final decisions on identification.

A letter is sent to the parents of all newly identified students to find a mutually agreed upon time to hold a Gifted and Talented review meeting. This meeting typically includes the student, the parents, the classroom teacher and the Gifted and Talented coordinator and Gifted and Talented consultant. The majority of the identified Gifted and Talented students in this district are primarily served in the classroom, a differentiation log is set up that enables parents to see how their child’s program is adjusted to ensure that their gifted needs are being addressed on a regular basis.

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