Letter to Parents

Dear Parents and Guardians,

The purpose of this letter is to provide you with an overview of how St. Louis Public Schools will be screening and identifying students with Gifts and Talents and what that means in terms of services provided to those students. The following time line will be used in the process for identifying gifted and talented students.

Important Dates:

Friday, May 6, 2011: Deadline for parent/guardian gifted and talented nomination papers due to the TSN office.

May 9-13: Gifted and talented screening team reviews student profiles.

June 1-7: Parent/guardians receive notification by mail of gifted and talented screening team’s decision.

Monday, July 11, 2011: Last day for parents/guardians to submit appeal to Mr. Brimmer.

Early August, 2011: Parent/guardians receive responses to appeals by mail.

How can my child benefit from a Gifted and Talented Program?

Students identified as being gifted and talented will receive supplementary educational opportunities to advance their gifts. Summer enrichment programs, pull-out programs, and scholarship opportunities are a few benefits of a gifted and talented program.

What are the identified areas for Gifts and Talents?

Students identified for gifted and talented services are not selected as a reward for either good performance or model behavior but because they have different learning needs. Therefore, the goal of the identification process is to apply comprehensive and unbiased procedures to find students who possess superior abilities and/or potential in one or more of the following identified areas of giftedness:

General Intellectual Ability:Demonstrated excellence in most academic areas.

Specific Academic Ability: Exceptional ability and performance in a single academic area.

Creativity:Exceptional ability to use divergent and unconventional thinking in arriving at creative and unusual ideas or solutions to problems.

Leadership:Exceptional ability to relate to and motivate others.

Performing Arts:Ability to create or perform in music in a way that suggests exceptional talents.

Artistic:Ability to draw, paint, sculpt, photograph, or arrange media in a way that suggests exceptional talent.

Identification Process All students will be screened in the Spring for areas of giftedness following the same general format. The G&T Coordinator collects pertinent data. In late Spring, the G&T Screening Committee, a team of teachers, counselors and the G&T Coordinator will review the data and determine whether students are eligible as gifted and talented in each area and, if so, at which level.

No specific score on any one measure determines eligibility. The G&T Screening Committee does not produce individual eligibility reports. Parents / guardians may appeal the decisions of the G&T Screening Committee to the District Administrator.

Identification Tools

To identify students, St. Louis Public Schools uses multiple, culturally-sensitive criteria appropriate to each category of giftedness. Three types of data are used in the process of identifying a student as gifted:

  1. Test data (e.g. MEAP, STAR Reading, STAR Math, Quarterly assessments, Classroom assessments, etc…)
  2. Performance Data (e.g. grades, student work samples and recordings, grade level benchmark tests)
  3. Supporting Data: (e.g. Gifted and Talented Evaluation Scales, Parent, teacher and student nomination forms and checklists, letters of recommendation)
Nomination Form and Parent/Guardian InventoryParents, guardians, and students can nominate students for consideration. You can pick up a nomination form from the office at T.S. Nurnberger Middle School. Complete the nomination and turn it into the office at T.S. Nurnberger Middle School. Be sure to submit one nomination form for each area of giftedness.

Parents and Guardians nominating a student must also complete a Parent/Guardian Inventory as part of the screening process. The inventory sheets can also be picked up at T.S. Nurnberger. Complete and turn into the office at the middle school. Only submit one inventory, regardless of the number of nominated areas.

All nominated students will be screened for the area(s) indicated for consideration, with supporting documents brought to the G&T Screening Committee in the Spring for review.

Note:  if your child has been identified previously, you do not have to re-nominate her/him.

Parental Appeals Process  

Parents and guardians who wish to appeal the decision of the screening committee have one month to do so following the receipt of the letter of eligibility. Those wishing to appeal mush complete and submit a Gifted and Talented Appeals Form along with new evidence to the district Gifted and Talented Director. Parents and guardians will be notified within a 2 week window of the decision.

What if I have questions?  

Please contact me at 989-681-5155 or by email at brimmer@edzone.net if you have any questions.  The St. Louis Public Schools will have an informational link on the district web page that can be accessed by going to http://stlouisschools.net. Simply click on the “Gifted and Talented” link at the top of the page.