DESCRIPTION OF GIFTED TALENTED/DISCOVERY PROGRAM
The Elementary Discovery Program is a cross-curricular thematic based pullout program for students in grades K-5. Participating students will demonstrate skill in self-directed learning, thinking, research, and communication as evidenced by the development of innovative products and performances that reflect individuality and creativity and are advanced in relation to students of similar age, experience, or environment.
This elective is an inquiry, project based course that makes connections across the disciplines and meets the state mandates for the Gifted and Talented. This course is only available to identified Gifted and Talented students.
In order for students to remain active in the GT Program, they must participate in Honors or Pre-AP Coursework. Students who do not participate in any of these courses will receive a letter noting that they are choosing to “furlough” those requirements for a year. If a student furloughs for more than one year they are considered inactive and may be exited from the program.
Identified GT students are served through group and individualized instruction in the classroom as well as through special programs. These special programs include extensions of the classroom programming, accelerated pacing, enrichment activities, specially designed courses, Pre-AP and AP classes, dual credit coursework, grouping with GT peers, and exams for acceleration.
All students who have previously been identified gifted by Lake Travis ISD are admitted into the program. Teachers, parents, or students may nominate students for the program. Nominated students will have the option to participate in assessment to determine eligibility for the program according to district guidelines.
In order for students to remain active in the GT Program, they must participate in Honors, Pre-AP, AP or Dual Credit Coursework. Students who do not participate in any of these courses will receive a letter noting that they are choosing to “furlough” those requirements for a year. If a student furloughs for more than one year, they are considered inactive and may be exited from the program.
GT Graduation Recognition Criteria
Up to three of the criteria may come from successful completion of an AP class (with a final, un-weighted grade of a B or higher) and/or passing the AP exam with a score of 3 or higher.
At least one of the criteria must come from meeting one of the standards listed below: (students may not repeat any of these as part of their 4 criteria, i.e., two 2nd place finishes at the regional level = 1 criteria)
- Completion of an advanced GT independent study.
- National Merit Scholar - Commended or higher designation.
- Publication in an approved nationally or state recognized journal or magazine (can be print article, photo, or art publication). No Internet publication will be accepted.
- Individual Regional Placement (1st -6th) or any Individual Statewide Recognition or Qualification in any UIL Competition, including academics, arts, athletics, band, cheer, choir, dance, forensics (speech and debate), orchestra, theatre, DECA, HOSA or VASE.
Seniors who are in year one of a GT furlough and meet the above criteria will be eligible for recognition. Seniors who are in year two of a GT furlough are considered inactive and will not qualify for the GT recognition.
Students must complete the required criteria and submit the appropriate documentation to the counseling office prior to May 1st of their senior year.
DISCOVERY PARENT COMMUNICATION
Each campus coordinator is responsible for holding an orientation meeting for parents of GT/Discovery students informing parents on how their students receive GT/Discovery services at the respective campus.
Individual teachers will post specific GT/Discovery information and options on their individual campus websites under the “Families” tab. Additionally, the campus coordinator is also responsible for disseminating information about out-of-district opportunities for GT/Discovery students to their parents (i.e. summer camps, scholarships, etc.)
ASSESSMENT PHILOSOPHY FOR DISCOVERY PROGRAM
The Discovery Program is available to all qualifying students regardless of race, gender, socioeconomic status, special need or limited English proficiency. The identification process for the Discovery Program is rigorous and fair. It is also flexible enough to accommodate students who join the school from other districts.
Assessment results may be drawn from quantitative and/or qualitative data from a range of several areas:
- quantitative data including the results of nationally normed ability tests, teacher assessments, other available test data, such as standardized tests and baseline assessments.
- qualitative information including classroom observation.
DISCOVERY SCREENING PROCEDURES
Fall Semester – The last day of the 1st grading period is the referral deadline for grades K-12. Services for identified students will begin 2nd semester.
Spring Semester– The last day of the 3rd grading period is the referral deadline for any NEW students in grades K-12 enrolled in LTISD after the last day of the 1st grading period. Services will begin in September of the next school year.
A teacher, parent, student, or other interested persons observing a student with consistent evidence of gifted characteristics may refer him/her during the appropriate referral window.
ENTRY PROCEDURES FOR STUDENTS TRANSFERRING INTO LTISD
Students identified as gifted in another school district transferring into LTISD must meet the LTISD GT/Discovery program standards and will be required to go through the screening process. Similar tests meeting the same standards as LTISD may be substituted. If a student is transferring from a public school GT program, the campus has 30 calendar days to complete the screening process and make the appropriate placement.
REASSESSMENT PROCEDURES FOR NON-QUALIFYING STUDENTS
Referral opportunities for gifted/talented identification are made available to students once per school year.
A nationally normed test score is valid for two years. A student will not be allowed to retake the same test within the two year window.
APPEALS PROCEDURES AND TIMELINE
In the event of an appeal, the District Selection Committee will review the appeal form and accompanying evidence to ensure proper placement of all students without regard to race, gender, socioeconomic status, special need or limited English proficiency.
Upon receiving the appeals form, the District Selection Committee will meet and deliver a response within six business weeks. The parents/guardians will receive notification by mail within one business week of the District Committee’s decision.