A case study approach is used in the continuous identification process on the basis of mental ability, creativity, and task commitment. Emphasis is placed on potentially gifted students’ needs for specialized services rather than on a preconceived notion of labeling a child as "gifted". The referral process can begin when a student is referred..
The screening process begins after receiving a completed Parent Inventory and written permission from the parent. This typically takes 4-6 weeks and includes a review of the full screening and data by each school's Staffing Committee. Students are screened by a REACH facilitator with objective and subjective measures.
Subjective and objective assessments measure, both cognitive and non-cognitive areas. These are used to evaluate students’ needs for gifted and talented services. Each school has a facilitator and school-based committee which reviews the screening data collected, and makes recommendations for student placement based upon student needs. Students moving in from other districts or states will be re-evaluated using the placement criteria.
Referrals are made by:
- Talent Pool
- Community Members
- Transfer Students
The results of the screening are evaluated by a school’s Staffing Committee; the gifted and talented educator and classroom teacher(s), counselor, principal or asst. principal and finally reviewed by the director of the REACH program. Students and parents are notified about the placement decision by a letter sent in the mail. Parents are invited to setup an appointment to further discuss the results with the Director of Gifted Programs or the g/t facilitator.
Students qualifying for REACH, gifted and talented services during the 3rd -7th grades will be notified by mail so that the identified REACH student’s weekly schedule will be modified. Students attend their REACH classes for a minimum of 150 minutes weekly in block segments (most of our schools meet for extended time beyond the 150 mandatory minutes, weekly.
In exceptional circumstances acceleration is also considered a viable alternative for meeting a student’s academic needs. If a parent, teacher, or other staff member believes there is sufficient evidence to consider potential acceleration, that person is encouraged to initiate that conversation with the building prinicpal.