TALENT DEVELOPMENT/EXTENDED LEARNING PROGRAM
Don't let opportunity pass you by...
Gifted and talented behavior consists of behaviors that reflect an interaction among three basic clusters of human traits: above-average general and/or specific abilities, high levels of task commitment, and high levels of creativity. Individuals capable of developing gifted behavior are those possessing or capable of developing this composite set of traits and applying them to any potentially valuable area of human performance. Persons who manifest or are capable of developing an interaction among the three clusters require a wide variety of educational opportunities and services that are not ordinarily provided through regular instructional programs (Maine Department of Education, 2023).
Provide advanced, engaging, rigorous challenges through competitive programs, civic engagements, mentorships, accelerated opportunities, extension activities, curriculum compacting, partnerships with college and community organizations, resident artist programs, dual enrollment, early entrance, and extracurricular opportunities that are effectively integrated into a multi-tier approach utilizing targeted needs assessments, ongoing screening, and established processes designed to monitor each student's progress (Maine Department of Education, 2020).
LoS - LEVELS of SERVICE MODEL
The Millinocket School District's Gifted Program is aligned with Maine's Department of Education's vision of providing Maine schools with resources to assist in developing equitable and responsive advanced programming designed to meet the unique needs of 3-12 students who excel or have the potential to excel more quickly in the school and follows the LoS Model. It is an approach that does not rely exclusively on test scores for identification but rather uses a four-step process designed to meet the needs of all students, including advanced, gifted, profoundly gifted, ELL, and twice-exceptional students. LoS offers a framework for recognizing, nurturing, and celebrating all students' varied strengths, talents, and sustained interests. The model is comprehensive and can be used in many different school situations. It takes a holistic view of children's learning and has strong goals for student self-motivation and independent learning. Opportunities are designed with an understanding that there are six types of gifted students. Parents, community members, and teachers are encouraged to join the Talent Development Committee (TDEL)to share ideas. The committee meets monthly from 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM in room 202. If you want to join the TDEL Committee, please complete this interest form (TBA).
How are students placed in the different levels?
Level I - Services for ALL students. These opportunities are available for all students within the classroom. The majority of students' needs are met within this tier. "Differentiation for GT students in the Tier 1 setting includes pre-assessment, learning contracts, independent study design, modifying instruction for depth and complexity, coaching on higher-order thinking, and strategic, flexible grouping" (Maine Department of Ed, 2022).
Level II - Services are EXPLORATORY OPPORTUNITIES for MANY students. These are opportunities based on student's interests. and are offered before or after school and include athletic, theatrical, technology, music, art, and other diverse opportunities such as Mock Trial, Chess, Cribbage, Scrabble, Newspaper and Math Clubs, Esports, etc. Schedules and participation requirements vary. Exploratory opportunities can be located on the school's after-school calendar and in the main office.
Level III - Services for SOME students. Targeted acceleration. "A Tier 3 setting includes additional academic supports designed to help high-achieving students extend their learning goals when they have achieved them in the Tier 1 setting and require further accelerated opportunities. Talent Development Tier 3 supports are provided by qualified staff, including individualized work with increased intensity and rigor in programming, practice, or monitoring" (Maine Departement of Ed, 2022). These opportunities include various competitions, presentations, and performances. According to the Davidson Institute, "Academic competitions play an important part in learning for highly gifted students. They are designed to inspire, enlighten, create enthusiasm, and entice students to try their hardest, helping maximize their abilities (2023)". Students are individually evaluated by the Talent Development Team (G &T Teacher, Special Education Coordinator, and grade level team teachers) for appropriate Level III educational plans and services. Additionally, opportunities are provided for recommended students during the Elective Period Advanced I (STEM) and Advanced II (Humanities). Participating and new students are accessed after semester one by the Talent Development Team to ensure continued student success using the below assessments. As part of the assessment process, all students complete an interest survey.
Students can be referred to the program in various ways (observational evidence of skills attained, inventories, standardized test scores) from various sources (parents, teachers, self, G&T teacher, other students). Eligibility requires three of the following assessment options for students 1) score 85% or above on the NWEA national test in either math, reading, social studies, science, general intellectual ability, or any combination of these core areas 2) score in the honors range on the iReady test 3) classroom teacher referral 4) parent referral 5) a recommendation from the Gifted teacher 6) examples of student achievements (portfolios, physical examples of projects or work, observations, auditions, oral presentations, interviews, grades, etc.). Parent consent is required for eligible students, and participation is optional. Students will be evaluated at the beginning and end of the first semester by the Talent Development Team and may move in and out of the program as needed.
Level IV - Services that are for FEW students. In some cases, a student will require more than Tier 3 Interventions. This level of intervention involves significant changes to student learning experiences and is addressed on a case-by-case basis aligned with students' academic, social, emotional, and behavioral needs. These services require three of the following 1) teacher recommendations, 2) parent recommendations, 3) examples of achievements (portfolios, physical examples of projects or work, observations, auditions, oral presentations, interviews, grades, etc.), support outstanding talent ability, 4) NWEA scores in the 95% or higher, iReady score range are above grade level, CogAT (95 %), or Wechsler (98 %). These services include curriculum compacting, grade acceleration, dual enrollment, early entrance, internships, mentorships, and optional advanced opportunities offered during the RTI period. Students will be evaluated at the beginning and end of the first semester by the Talent Development Team and may move in and out of the program as needed. Parent consent is required, and participation is optional.
MTSS for Accelerated Learners. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www11.maine.gov/doe/mtss/funding/gpa/gt
Davidson Institute. (2020, December 18). List of academic competitions for gifted students. Davidson Institute.
Acceleration and Enrichment
The below Level III and IV options provide diversity and individualized programming to meet the advanced learners' intellectual needs.
Students are allowed to enter primary school or higher education programs ahead of their peers of the same age.
Interest based activities and opportunities that expand the students knowledge base.
The curriculum is condensed or moves at a faster pace so students can complete a course quicker than usual.
Students remain in the same grade as their peers, but move ahead into higher grade levels for the specific where they exhibit advanced abilities.
Students move ahead one or more grade levels in all subjects.
Students take classes which allow them to earn credit for high school and college courses simultaneously.
Students participate in extracurricular activities before or after school that they excel in or interest them.
Students work with an expert mentor in a specific field of interest either on or off campus for predetermined amount of time.
A professional learning experience that offers meaningful, practical work related to a student's field of study or career interest.
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