Talented and Gifted Program

The Talented & Gifted Program serves students who demonstrate outstanding abilities or potential in the areas of general intellectual ability or specific ability aptitude.

  • Students who demonstrate outstanding potential when compared with others of their age require differentiated instruction.
  • Differentiated programming will enable these students to maximize their life-long learning potential and contribute to the betterment of their community.
  • Community-wide advocacy of differentiated programming for these students is essential.

These are the beliefs that have guided the design of the Davenport Community Schools Talented & Gifted (TAG) Program for students in kindergarten through 12th grade.

We recognize that gifted students possess superior abilities and/or potential and are, therefore, a unique segment of the district’s student population. If gifted students are to develop their abilities and/or potential, they need ongoing and varied educational opportunities to extend their learning. Through an integrated approach, regular classroom teachers and TAG Teacher-Facilitators work together to provide varied opportunities to these students.

TAG Survey:  A survey is conducted every three years to provide information on how well the program is working.  The purpose is to evaluate the implementation of the collaboration/differentiation model.  The latest edition of this survey was conducted in May of 2006. Talented and Gifted Executive Summary

Course/Grade Level Acceleration Approval Process - Revised May 2013

The Davenport Community School District recognizes that learners have different needs, and the district is committed to meeting the needs of its diverse learners.  Gifted students possess superior abilities and/or potential, and they need educational opportunities to extend their learning.  The guiding principle of the TAG program is to provide a variety of program options which are compatible with the learning characteristics of gifted learners, the unique needs of the identified students, and the resources of the district.  Course/grade level acceleration may be the best option for some learners.  Such acceleration paces students through the curriculum at a rate commensurate with their advanced ability.  It is recommended that students new to the district complete one semester/term before being recommended for acceleration.  Approval of the acceleration process includes:

  1. The person (i.e. parent/guardian, classroom teacher) recommending that a student be accelerated in a specific course/grade level contacts that building’s TAG Teacher-Facilitator and requests a “District Acceleration Request Form.” After completing this form, it is then given to building’s TAG Teacher-Facilitator.  The form will specify the reasons for the request.  Parent/guardian will be notified and given an opportunity to provide input.
  2. After the request has been received, a portfolio reflecting the student’s academic achievement including such items as student’s test scores, evidence of student achievement of grade level/course benchmarks, other available assessment information, written TAG Teacher-Facilitator recommendations, and teacher written recommendation for the subject(s) involved will be compiled by TAG Teacher-Facilitator and classroom teacher.  All data will be forwarded to the appropriate subject area Curriculum and Instruction Specialist(s).
  3. The subject area Curriculum and Instruction Specialist(s) will consider the request and determine if additional data are required.  Data will be gathered as needed. This additional data gathering process may take up to three weeks to complete.
  4. The team (i.e. current teacher, TAG Teacher-Facilitator, subject area Curriculum and Instruction Specialist(s), District TAG Coordinator, guidance counselor, and/or principal) will review the request, examine the supporting data, consider the long-term impact and implications on the student’s learning, and make a decision.
  5. A team meeting with the parents/guardians will follow.
  6. If the team recommends acceleration, the classroom teacher with the TAG Teacher-Facilitator’s assistance will prepare a personalized education plan for the student.
  7. If the team does not recommend acceleration, the requesting party can ask for reevaluation after the student completes at least one additional semester/term.
  8. Appeal Process:  If the parents/guardians disagree with the team recommendation, they may appeal the decision to the Director of Curriculum and Staff Development.

*Acceleration requests received after April 1 may not be completed by the end of the school year.

Service Strands
To better meet the needs of all of our students, those identified for the TAG Program receive instruction and educational services to fit their unique needs. This is done through a flexible services model called Service Strands.

This model focuses on collaboration between classroom teachers and TAG Teacher-Facilitators to better enable gifted and talented students to develop their unique abilities and high potential. The three strands are:

  • Exploration Strand – All students participate in classroom instructional activities. The unique needs of students begin to emerge during these activities. These unique needs may initiate a concern from the classroom teacher, who then confers with the TAG Teacher-Facilitator.
  • Modification Strand – For students whose needs go beyond the Exploration Strand, the classroom teacher and program facilitator collaboratively develop modifications. These modifications will be implemented by the classroom teacher and may include differentiation options such as acceleration, curriculum compacting, independent study, assignment modification, and/or flexible grouping. A TAG Service Summary is completed and reviewed annually by the TAG Teacher-Facilitator for each student served in the Modification Strand.
  • Extension Strand – Students whose needs go beyond the Modification Strand will be identified and may participate in the Extension Strand. At this time, the TAG Teacher-Facilitator will continue to work closely with the classroom teacher(s) and may work with students outside the classroom as well. A Personalized Education PLan (PEP) is completed by the classroom teacher and TAG Teacher-Facilitator and reviewed annually for each student served in the Extension Strand.

Educators’ Roles
Here are the roles of school administrators, classroom teachers, and TAG Teacher-Facilitators in providing appropriate programming to each TAG student:

Administrators 

  • Provide continued support for gifted and talented programming
  • Collaborate with and support the TAG Teacher-Facilitator
  • Supervise implementation in buildings
  • Serve on identification teams
  • Implement flexible grouping structures
  • Participate as curriculum experts

Classroom Teachers 

  • Provide differentiated instruction in the classroom
  • Assess students and provide appropriate instruction in collaboration with the TAG Teacher-Facilitator
  • Participate in the identification process
  • Serve on identification teams
  • Assist TAG Teacher-Facilitator in completing PEPs as needed

TAG Teacher-Facilitators 

  • Collaborate with classroom teachers to identify strategies, instructional practices, and resources for gifted students within the classroom
  • Provide staff development
  • Work with students whose needs are not being met in the general education classroom
  • Provide direct instruction as needed
  • Monitor student progress
  • Facilitate and coordinate selection procedures
  • Guide and document individual student programming on a TAG Service Summery and/or a PEP as required for students in the Modification and/or Extension Strand.
  • Compile and maintain personalized education plans
  • Participate in program evaluation

For more information on the Davenport Community Schools Talented & Gifted Program, please contact Melissa Trimble, TAG Coordinator, at 563.336.3825, 1606 Brady Street, Davenport, IA 52803, or trimblem@davenportschools.org

Links:
Iowa Talented & Gifted Association
Belin & Blank International Center for Gifted Education & Talent Development
National Association of Gifted Children