A A A A U A + A - Revert Back To Original

District

  • N104 W13840 Donges Bay Rd
  • Germantown, WI 53022
  • Phone: 262-253-3900
  • Fax: 262-251-6999
  • Superintendent
    Jeff Holmes
FAQ - Gifted Education and Talent Development


Frequently Asked Questions

 

Incoming/New Families

  1. How do I know if my child is GT?
  2. How do I get my child assessed to see if he/she qualifies?

  3. What does GT look like at each level?

  4. Is there grade acceleration?

  5. At what age are kids assessed?

  6. Can my child get credit for an outside course?

  7. Is there online learning for school?

  8. How is my child assessed? What’s the process? What if I don’t agree with the assessment? What tests are used?

  9. If my child is already identified in a different district, does he/she need to be reassessed?

 

Current Families

  1. If my child was just identified, what does this mean?

  2. What are the identification criteria?

  3. What can I do as a parent to assist in continued growth of my child?

  4. How does this impact placement of my child during the next school year?

  5. How prepared are the teachers to support this student population?

  6. How vested is our district towards students who are GT?

 


 

Answers

 

Incoming/New Families

1. How do I know if my child is GT?

There are many ways to determine giftedness, and many ways in which a child may be gifted. State law includes these areas for identification as gifted:general intellectual, specific academic ability, visual/performing arts, creativity, and leadership. As your child’s parent you have undoubtedly seen signs of giftedness in your child (early speech/language development, problem solving ability, etc.) from an early age.

Giftedness is determined by assessing the child through the use of various reliable screening/assessment instruments such as the Screening Assessment for Gifted Elementary and Middle School Students or the Test of Mathematical Ability in Gifted Students.  Parent/Teacher input is also important and is sought through the use of rating scales, checklists, and/or personal interview.

 

2. How do I get my child assessed to see if he/she qualifies?

You can contact your child’s classroom teacher(s) first with your request, or contact the Coordinator for Gifted Education and Talent Development at 262-941-9100. 

 

3. What does GT look like at each level?

At the elementary level the needs of most gifted students are met within the regular classroom through the use of differentiated instructional strategies.Examples of the differentiation our GSD teachers use to support your child’s learning include:

  • Individual/Independent Work
  • Flexible Grouping
  • Pre-assessments
  • Adapted Instruction
  • Enrichment/Enhancement Activities
  • Problem-Solving and Critical Thinking Activities

These opportunities are also offered at the middle/high school level.  Middle school GT students may be placed in classes with their academic peers who have similar ability and talents.  Honors, AP classes, and online courses are offered for high school students.

 

4. Is there grade acceleration?

There is a possibility of grade acceleration although it is not widely practiced. The needs of a majority of gifted students are able to be met within the classroom and/or through enrichment/enhancement opportunities at their current grade level. If grade acceleration is appropriate it will be determined through testing/screening/interviews conducted by a team of specialists including the School Psychologist, GT Coordinator, Reading Specialist, Guidance Counselor, and Social Worker. The child’s current classroom teacher will present documented evidence of the child’s ability to succeed beyond their current grade level. A teacher from the next grade level will be consulted to provide information on expectations for that grade level. Parental input is also vital in making this important decision.

 

5. At what age are kids assessed?

Children may be identified as young as kindergarten. State law mandates that children may be identified in grades K through 12.

 

6. Can my child get credit for an outside course?

Yes.  This would be determined in advance of taking the course by the Director of Teaching and Learning. 

 

7. Is there online learning for school?

On-Line courses are approved on an independent basis.  It is primarily used at the high school, though we have had middle school students participate, as well.  If upon successful completion of the course (B or better and proof of completion), the student will be able to earn credit.  However, no student will be able to earn high school credit prior to freshman year.  Therefore, the middle school student mentioned earlier will only be taking the course, not receiving high school credit. 

 

8. How is my child assessed? What’s the process? What if I don’t agree with the assessment? What tests are used?

Your child will first be referred for testing and identification through a referral made by the classroom teacher and/or yourself. In some instances a referral is made by the school principal. Your child will be assessed through the use of screening/assessment instruments, rating scales/questionnaires, classroom performance, a review of student cumulative records/standardized test scores, and/or personal interviews. A sample of the instruments/rating scales used include:

  • Screening Assessing for Gifted Elementary and Middle School Students
  • Test of Mathematical Ability in Gifted Students
  • Scales for Identifying Gifted Students: School and Home Rating Scales
  • MAP (Measures of Academic Progress) Scores
  • Standardized Tests:  WKCE
  • COGAT Cognitive Aptitude Test
  • District Assessments

After testing has been completed you will receive a written report confirming whether or not your child has been identified at this time.  You may be invited or request a conference to discuss the results. Should you disagree with the results/recommendations your opinion will be taken into consideration and everything possible will be done to reach an amicable conclusion.     

 

9. If my child is already identified in a different district, does he/she need to be reassessed?

When a child has been identified as Gifted/Talented in a different district his/her records will be reviewed and taken into consideration. However, since each district is different and may have different identification qualifications it is likely that some additional testing/screening may be done to determine identification and placement, and to develop appropriate educational programming to meet the child's needs.

 


Current Families

1. If my child was just identified, what does this mean?

You will receive a written report stating that your child has been identified as gifted and talented, along with the areas s/he has been identified in (General Intelligence, Specific Academic Areas, Creativity, Leadership, Visual/Performing Arts).  Questions and/or concerns that you may have will be addressed through a conference, either via phone or at the school your child attends.  Depending on the areas of identification your child's needs will, for the most part, be addressed within the classroom through differentiated instruction of our curriculum.  In some cases the assessment results indicate your child may need interenions and additional support services at time that go beyond the regular classroom.  Examples of the differentiation our GSD teachers use to support your child's learning include:

  • Flexible Grouping
  • Pre-assessments (Pre-testing before instruction actually begins to determine prior knowledge)
  • Adapted Instruction / Curriculum Compacting
  • Enrichment Activities
  • Problem-Solving, Critical Thinking, and/or Problem-Based Learning Activities

2. What are the identification criteria?

Please see the Identification and Programming section on this website for specific criteria used for identification

3. What can I do as a parent to assist in continued growth of my child?

Keep in close communiation with your child's teacher(s) to monitor progress as well as interventions that are being used with your child.  Join our state association, WI Association for Talented and Gifted (information appears on the Resources page) to network with other parents of gifted students.  Take advantage of the opportunities offered through P.A.G.E. to learn more about giftedness.  Learn as much as you can about giftedness in order to be an advocate, not only for your child but on behalf of all of the identified students in the Germantown School District.

4. How does this impact placement of my child during the next school year?

Once your child has been identified as gifted and talented the current teaching team for his/her grade level will take that into consideration when determining class placement for the next school year, especially at the elementary level.  At the middle and high school levels your child may be placed in classes along with his/her academic peers in order to continue challenging him/her and enriching/enhancing the curriculum.  At the high school level your child will have the option of taking honors and/or AP (Advanced Placement) courses.

5. How prepared are the teachers to support this student population?

Unfortunately coursework at the undergraduate level in working with gifted students is not a requirement  at many of our universities and colleges.  However, the WI Department of Public Instruction now offers a Supplementary Teaching License in the area of Gifted and Talented.  

Nevertheless, all teachers are expected to be able to meet the needs of each student they teach.  Obviously, this presents a significant challenge with the wide range of abilities of students who fill today's classrooms.  There are a variety of ways teachers can prepare to support this student population through coursework, independent study, cohort groups, conferences/workshops, and professional development.  Additionally, the Coordinator of Gifted Education and Talent Development is available to support the teaching staff either individually, through networking, and/or by providing professional development.

6. How vested is our district towards students who are GT?

The Mission Statement for the Germantown School District is Empower and Inspire Every Student to Success.  Our Beliefs for Teaching and Learning include:

  •        All children can learn.
  •        Each individual has the right to a safe environment.
  •        Every person has an unrestricted right to learn.
  •        Each child has the right to experience success.
  •        High expectations result in high performance.
  •        Learning never ceases.
The Germantown School Board approved the hiring of a full-time Coordinator of Gifted Education and Talent Development beginning in the 2012-2013 school year.  A K-12 Gifted and Talented Action Plan was developed during the 2012-2013 school year through the work of a GT Leadership Team, a GT Steering Committee, and a Parent Support Team.  The board-approved plan focuses on the following four objectives:
  1.  Comply with WI State Standard (t):  "Provide Access to an Appropriate Program for Pupils      Identified as Gifted and Talented."
  2.  Transition from the gifted education pyamid model to an inclusive Talent Development Approach that is in alignment with the GSD's and DPI's Response to Intervention (RtI) initiatives.
  3. Integrate K-12 Talent Development with the GSD's K-12 Department of Teaching and Learning Services.
  4. Develop and operationalize K-12 Talent Development aligne to the district mission to "Empower and Inspire Every Student to Success."

Since Fall of 2015, the position of Coordinator of Gifted Education and Talent Development has been embedded into the role of the Personalized Learning Coordinator, who also supports teachers as a technology coach, and serves as the District Technology Coordinator for State and District Assessments.

  • Germantown School District Office
  • N104W13840 Donges Bay Rd, Germantown, 53022
  • Phone: 262-253-3900