Gifted and Talented Education
State administrative code NJAC 6A:8-3.1 defines students who are gifted and talented as those students who possess or demonstrate high levels of ability in one or more content areas when compared to their chronological peers in the local district and who require modification of their educational program if they are to achieve in accordance with their capabilities.
The Board of Education of the Elk Township School District recognizes gifted and talented as those students whose abilities, talents, and potential for accomplishment are of a higher ability level.These programs and curricular modifications will also address the rigorous learning needs of gifted and twice-exceptional students. The identification process is developmentally appropriate, non-discriminatory, and aligned to the district's programs and services. It is, therefore, the intention of the Board of Education to implement differentiated instruction and programs in Kindergarten through grade six to support the growth of gifted and talented students.
Policy used to identify students as Gifted & Talented students:
(will be updated in 2020-21 to reflect NJDOE updates)
Procedures used to identify students:
The gifted and talented programs and opportunities are open to any student who meets two or more measures that include student performance on commercial/district assessments, exceed expectations in academics (SBG), teacher recommendations (supported by learning data), and/or exceed expectations on the NJSLA (grade level appropriate) as measured in a yearly snapshot.
The student should begin to or display characteristics such as:
- Exceeding expectations within academics
- Being inquisitive and creative
- Being independent learners
- Being self-motivated and active participants in learning
- Possessing strong critical thinking and problem solving skills
- Demonstrating a high reading ability (in the higher grades) and/or being an avid reader
- Possessing excellent writing skills (in the higher grades)
- Possessing a good understanding of math computational skills (in the higher grades)
Continuum of services offered to G&T students:
- Differentiated instruction is practiced at all grade levels and content areas to meet the needs of all students in classrooms on a daily basis. Through the use of ongoing assessments, differentiated activities, and flexible grouping, teachers tailor instruction to challenge and motivate students.
- In grades K-3, students are provided a learning environment to address each child’s educational needs. Students in these grades are also provided opportunities to engage in STEAM projects/activities to challenge their learning and development.
- Students in grades 4-6 are provided with project-based learning opportunities as an additional weekly class. As they mature, students in grades 4-6 may exhibit variations in skills, interests, abilities and backgrounds that may assist in developing thinking and problem solving skills. Through these additional opportunities, students can develop their learning and skills beyond the traditional classroom environment.
Criteria used for consideration for eligibility for the G&T services:
Using a district snapshot gathered in late spring and early fall, multiple data points regarding student learning is collected to identify those students who qualify for gifted and talented opportunities. Any student who meets two or more measures that include student performance on commercial/district assessments, exceeds expectations in academics, teacher recommendations (supported by learning data), and/or exceeds expectations on the NJSLA will qualify for gifted and talented services. Parent and/or student requests will be taken into consideration when viewing the multiple data points.
Once students have been identified for G&T, teachers, students, and families are notified in early fall of placement. G&T programs begin in October and end sometime in mid- to late May, depending on the completion of the projects. Classroom accommodations and modifications to challenge and support gifted students occur throughout the school year.
Questions or Complaints regarding Gifted & Talented services:
Please review the above information and reach out to the individual Gifted & Talented teacher. If concerns or questions remain, please contact the principal. If concerns or questions still remain, please direct them to the superintendent in writing (a copy will also be forwarded to the county superintendent). Please refer to the following NJSA Statute regarding Gifted & Talented requirements: NJSA 18A:35-39