Talented and Gifted Department

Mansfield City Schools Talented and Gifted Services

Veronica Williams Payne

District Gifted Coordinator

Phone: 419-525-6400 Ext. 1012

payne.veronica@mansfieldschools.org
 

Talented and Gifted Office

856 W. Cook Rd.

Mansfield, Ohio 44906

(419)-525-6400 EXT: 1012

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Gifted Identification
Defining “Gifted”
Gifted Characteristics
Ohio Law for Identification of Gifted Children
MCSD Identification Procedures
Approved Testing Instruments
Gifted Referral
Gifted Service Plan
Written Education Plans
Academic Acceleration
Early Entrance to Kindergarten
Parent Resources
Defining “Gifted”
WHAT DOES “GIFTED” MEAN? 

The Ohio Department of Education defines gifted children as, “students who perform or show potential for performing at remarkably high levels of accomplishment when compared to others of their age, experience or environment.” and who are identified under division (A), (B), (C), or (D) of section 3324.03 of the Ohio Revised Code. NAGC or the National Association for Gifted Children defines a gifted child as, “Someone who shows, or has the potential for showing, an exceptional level of performance in one or more areas of expression.”

The Mansfield City School District recognizes the unique characteristics and needs of each child including gifted children and strives to create differentiated learning opportunities and experiences for students who are talented and gifted. 
Gifted Characteristics
The Ohio Association for Gifted Children (OAGC) has compiled the following list of positive and challenging behaviors that may be typical characteristics of gifted children. Please note that all students are individuals and exhibit unique characteristics. This list as well as more information can be located in OAGC's Parent Handbook (Click here to open in new tab).

 

Characteristic

Positive Behaviors

Challenging Behaviors

  • Learns rapidly/easily  

  • Reads intensively

  • Advanced vocabulary 

  • Retains a quantity of information

  • Long attention span

  • Curious, has a variety of interests 

  • Works independently  

  • Alert and observant 

  • Has a good sense of humor 

  • Comprehends, recognizes relationships 

  • High academic achievement 

  • Fluent, verbal facility Forceful with words, numbers

  • Individualistic 

  • Self-motivated, self sufficient

  • Memorizes/masters basic facts quickly

  • Reads many books and uses library on own 

  • Communicates ideas well

  • Ready recall and responses 

  • Sticks with tasks or projects 

  • Asks questions, gets excited about ideas

  • Creates and invents beyond assigned tasks

  • Recognizes problems 

  • Able to laugh at self 

  • Able to solve social problems alone 

  • Does school work well 

  • Forceful with words, numbers;leads peers in positive ways 

  • Asserts self and ideas, has few friends; sense of own uniqueness 

  • Requires minimum teacher directions or help

  • Gets bored easily, resists drill, disturbs others

  • Neglects other responsibilities

  • Shows off, evokes peer resentment

  • Monopolizes discussion 

  • Resists class routine, dislikes interruptions 

  • Goes on tangents, no follow through

  • Refuses to work with others

  • Impolitely corrects adults

  • Plays cruel jokes or tricks on others

  • Interferes in the affairs of others

  • Brags, egotistical, impatient with others

  • Leads others into negative behavior

  • Stubborn in beliefs 

  • Is overly aggressive, challenges authority 


Ohio Law for Identifying Gifted Children
Mansfield City Schools accepts referrals, screens, identifies or reassesses students who perform or show potential for performing at high levels of accomplishment in the areas of superior cognitive ability, specific academic ability, creative thinking ability, and/or visual and/or performing arts. The district must follow policy and procedures established in an Ohio Administrative Code.   These rules specify that assessment instruments must come from the list approved by the Ohio Department of Education.  The guidelines below summarize the requirements for students to be identified as gifted. To read it in its entirety, please refer to sections 3324.01 to 3324.07 of the Ohio Revised Code located below.

Ohio Revised Code 3324


Specific Academic Ability- A child will be identified as exhibiting “specific academic ability” if within the preceding twenty-four months the child performs at or above the ninety-fifth percentile on a national level or state approved individual or group standardized achievement test such as the Terra Nova, Iowa, or Measures of Academic Progress. It is possible for a child to be identified in more than one specific academic area including math, reading and/or writing, science, and social studies.

Superior Cognitive Ability- A child will be identified as exhibiting “superior cognitive ability’ if within the preceding twenty-four months, the child performs  two standard deviations above the mean, minus the standard error of measurement or at or above the ninety-fifth percentile, on an approved individual or group standardized basic or composite battery of nationally normed intelligence test such as the Cognitives Ability Test (CogAT) or NNAT3.

Creative Thinking Ability- A child will be identified as exhibiting “creative thinking ability” if within the preceding twenty-four months the child scored at or above An IQ of one standard error or higher on an approved intelligence test and obtains an approved score on creativity checklist such as the Scales for Rating the Behavioral Characteristics of Superior Students by a trained educator.

Visual and Performing Arts-A child will be identified as exhibiting “visual and performing arts ability” if the child obtains an approved score on an evaluation by a trained educator in music, visual arts, theater, or dance.  Such as the Ohio Dept. of Education Rubric Gifted & Talented Evaluation Scale (GATES) Section and obtains an approved score on an ability checklist in a certain area of the arts.
MCSD Identification Procedures
Multiple steps have been put in place for the identification of gifted students.  All Mansfield City Schools students are provided with the opportunity to be screened and identified as gifted through whole grade screenings. Whole grade screenings ensure equal access to screening and further assessment when appropriate.  Individual assessments are also available when required. The district ensures equal access to screening and further assessment of all district children, including culturally or linguistically diverse children, children from low socio-economic backgrounds, children with disabilities and children for whom English is a second language.  Appropriate accommodation as each assessment permits including the opportunity to take tests in their native language.  

Whole Grade Screening

In order to cast a wider net and provide the opportunity for any student to be identified as gifted, whole grade or universal screenings are implemented each year. All students in grades 2 and 6 are screened for superior cognitive ability and creative thinking ability as part of the whole-grade screening process.
 
For identification in a specific academic ability in the areas of mathematics, reading, writing or a combination of these skills, students are assessed in grades 2-10  two/three times a year via the NWEA MAP (Measures of Academic Progress) whole grade screenings.

Individualized Assessment

Some students qualify for individual assessment. For individual assessment, parent/guardian authorization is obtained prior to the assessment and parents/guardians are notified of the assessment results.

Assessment strategies provide additional data necessary for an identification decision. Strategies for additional assessment include the individual and group-testing requirements of Ohio Revised Code Sections 3324.01-3324.07.

For individual assessment, students are pre-assessed using student records, observations, and teacher, parent or peer nominations which are noted on the referral form. Upon receiving parent permission to test from the parent or guardian, an approved and appropriate assessment will be administered. Notification of assessment results will be shared with the parent/guardian of the student.

Approved Testing Instruments

The testing instruments used by our school district personnel are selected from the Ohio Approved List of Assessment Instruments for the Identification of Gifted Children. For information about required scores, please see the district policy (Click here to open in new tab).
 
Superior Cognitive Ability 
  • The Naglieri Nonverbal Ability Test (NNAT3)
  • Cognitive Abilities Test (CogAT) Form 7 VQN Composite
  • WISC-V
  • Woodcock-Johnson IV

Specific Academic Ability 
  • Measures of Academic Progress Growth 2-5 and Growth 6+ (Math/Reading)
  • Woodcock Johnson IV Tests of Academic Achievement, Third edition 
  • TerraNova Achievement Tests (Math/Reading/Science/Social Studies)
  • The Iowa Assessments 
  • PSAT/SAT/ACT

Creative Thinking Ability
  • The Naglieri Nonverbal Ability Test (NNAT3) or The Cognitive Abilities Test (CogAT) or the WISC-V or the Woodcock Johnson IV
-AND-
  • Scales for Rating the Behavioral Characteristics of Superior Students Creativity Checklist
-OR-
  • Torrance Test of Creativity Ability-Figural

Visual and Performing Arts 
  • Ohio Department of Education Rubric for Visual and Performing Arts (for the discipline being evaluated) 
-AND-
  • Scales for Rating the Behavioral Characteristics of Superior Students Checklist
    Ohio Checklist of Artistic Behavior (Dance Only Age 14+)

Identification

Data obtained from the approved identification instrument will be compared with the cut-off scores specified by the Ohio Department of Education. Identification decisions are made based on the cut-off scores specified by the Ohio Department of Education. Further education and identification plans are determined based upon identification.
 
Identification scores remain in effect for the remainder of the student’s K-12 school experience.

Reassessment 

When the screening assessment has been completed, if the data from an approved screening instrument on which the student is within a district-specified range below the identification score, reassessment for possible identification may occur.
 
Parent Authorization

Parent authorization is not required for whole grade assessments; however parents may opt their student out of whole  assessment participation by submitting a written request. Parent authorization is required for individual assessments.
 
Out of District Scores

The district accepts scores, completed within the preceding 24 months, on assessment instruments approved for use by the Ohio Department of Education once provided by other schools and/or trained personnel outside the school district.
 
Transfer Student Scores

The district ensures that any child transferring into the district will be assessed within 90 days of the transfer at the request of the parent if the request is made at registration. Parents shall contact the student’s teacher, building principal or the gifted consultant for the building.
 
Appeals Procedure

After an identification decision is reached, an appeal by the parent can be made. An appeal is the reconsideration of the result of any part of the identification process which would include the screening procedure or assessment instrument, the scheduling of the child for assessment, or the placement of a student in any program, or the receipt of services.  In the event of an appeal, the superintendent or designee will convene a meeting with the parent/guardian, which may include other school personnel. The superintendent or designee will issue a written final decision within 30 days of the appeal. This written notice should include the reason for the decision(s).
MCSD Gifted Referral
Children who attend the Mansfield City School District may be referred for gifted screening and assessment in writing using the district gifted referral form which can be obtained from your child’s school office or from the Talented and Gifted office. Referrals are accepted in October, February, and March of each school year.

Referrals may come from the following:
  • Child request (self-referral)
  • Teacher recommendation
  • Parent/guardian request
  • Child referral of peer
  • Other (e.g., psychologist, community members, principal, gifted coordinator)

Upon receipt of a referral, the district will:
  • Follow the process as outlined for identification
  • Notify parents of results of screening or assessment and identification within 30 days of the completion of assessments.
District Gifted Service Plan

Cluster Grouping 

An identified child may be placed in a cluster of high ability students who have been identified in any or all of the following areas: the superior cognitive,creative thinking reading/language arts, or math, science, and social studies and in visual and performing arts when it is possible. In a cluster, the students will be served by the general education classroom teacher. The teacher will be responsible for completing professional development in gifted education.  A curriculum specifically designated for gifted students may be used or higher level core curriculum standards will be addressed. The general education  classroom teachers selected to teach gifted clusters are given professional development in differentiation and methods and techniques appropriate for gifted students. 

Honors, AP and College Credit Plus 

Middle School students who are identified as gifted have the option to take honors classes in reading/language arts, math, social studies or science. High school students have the option to take honors classes, college credit plus options (students grades 6-12 may apply) and Advanced Placement (AP) classes. 

Acceleration

Mansfield City School District offers acceleration for students who desire to challenge themselves academically at a higher level and who qualify for both whole-grade and single-subject acceleration.    Acceleration is another form of service for gifted students. This formal acceleration process can be completed as early entrance to kindergarten, early entrance to first grade, individual subject areas, a whole grade acceleration, or early graduation. Testing and data collection is required to determine if the child is a good candidate for acceleration. Mansfield City Schools uses the Iowa Acceleration Scale, above grade level testing, and conferencing with principals, teachers, and parents to determine a child’s eligibility for acceleration. 

Teacher Professional Development Requirements 

Mansfield City School District teachers providing gifted services must receive special training to serve gifted students in the classroom. The district offers ongoing training and support for teachers serving gifted students in order to meet the academic and affective needs of students who are gifted. A general education teacher who is designated as a provider of gifted services shall: 


Upon receipt of a referral, the district will:
  • Receive specialized training in gifted education 
  • Earn clock hours of professional development related to gifted education as specified 
  • Participate in ongoing professional development related to gifted education as specified 
  • Participate in the development of the "Written Education Plan."
Written Education Plans (WEP)

Written Education Plans (WEP) will be written collaboratively with the teacher providing service and the district gifted coordinator.  The parent/guardian of the student will receive a copy of the Written Education Plan. The intent of a WEP is to outline the instructional strategies that are appropriate for each gifted student and how their needs will be met in the classroom. 

A WEP consists of the following parts:

Cover Page- The cover page provides general information about the student, parent contact information, the area(s) of identification, the date of identification, student interests and learning styles, and the student’s present levels of performance. 

Annual Goal Page-The goal page outlines the annual goal for the student and the content area in which the goal will be addressed. It also outlines the specific program components or curricular interventions that will assist in accomplishing this goal. This page also includes the state the policy for waiver of assignments and scheduling of tests as stated below: 

The Mansfield City School District recognizes the diverse needs of gifted students and will support their learning opportunities by providing appropriate learning challenges within the place of regular or typical assignments in conjunction with this plan. 

The Annual Goal Page also outlines the Student Progress Measures or how the student will prove mastery of the goal.  

Finally a service setting will be indicated at the bottom of the goal page outlining where the service will take place throughout the school year. 

Signature Page-The signature page is where each participant will sign the WEP. It also includes a signature for parents to initiate service for the initial WEP and indicate that a copy of the WEP and district policy has been received. 

See a sample WEP from the Ohio Department of Education here

Academic Acceleration

Mansfield City School District offers acceleration options for students who may be eligible for academic acceleration and who desire to challenge themselves academically at a higher level.    Acceleration is another form of service for gifted students. This formal acceleration process can be completed as early entrance to kindergarten, early entrance to first grade, individual subject areas, whole grade acceleration, or early graduation.   Testing and data collection is required to determine if the child is a good candidate for acceleration and students must meet a criteria for acceleration. Mansfield City Schools uses the Iowa Acceleration Scale, above grade level testing, and conferencing with principals, teachers, and parents to determine a child’s eligibility for acceleration. 

Early Entrance to Kindergarten 

Ohio law requires districts to use the Ohio Department of Education’s (ODE) approved evaluation process to make the determination if a child's developmental readiness, social-emotional maturity and academic readiness qualifies them for early placement in kindergarten.  This is determined by your district of residence’s kindergarten entrance date. The Ohio Department of Education classifies early entrance to kindergarten as a gifted education whole-grade acceleration. This whole-grade acceleration designation extends throughout their educational path in all Ohio schools.   

Early entrance is only appropriate for the exceptional child. Students do not need to be identified as gifted for early entrance to kindergarten, however, students who are good candidates are often identified as gifted. 

Below, you will find the application for early entrance.  If you are interested in early entrance to kindergarten and your child turns 5 after the cut-off date of August 1st, please see the application below. This application must be completed by April, 29th 2022. No applications will be accepted after this date.  

Once your application has been received by the Talented and Gifted office, your child's readiness evaluation will be scheduled with our kindergarten teachers, gifted coordinator and /or school psychologist.The Iowa Acceleration Scale (IAS) will be used as an instrument to make placement decisions. Based on the guideline established in the IAS, students must have a cognitive ability score of at least 115 (above average) to even be considered for early entrance. Also, students must score in a certain range in reading, writing, and math to qualify. Students accepted for early entrance are expected to perform above average compared to most children the same age.  Social and emotional development is also taken into consideration.  

Early Entrance to Kindergarten Application 

Early Entrance to Kindergarten Readiness Checklist