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#1 of 6 Old 01-15-2011, 06:26 PM - Thread Starter
 
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DS' school does the MAP assessment. I'm not very familiar with it and know only what they sent home and I've read online. We received his language score on Friday and will receive his math score next week. His language score is 2 standard deviations above the national mean that I found in online documentation. He is in K. The scores provide a mean for fall, winter, and spring. He's between winter/spring for 1st grade. I anticipate his math score to be a good bit higher. 

 

Our state as a rule does not identify or single out children who are or may be gifted until 4th grade. They do some system beginning in 2nd grade where they separate the "top" 25 percent of the kids from the other 75 percent, but the district information is very unclear about what they do differently with those children. It says they are tapped as "possible to be determined as gifted."

 

Sooo...is 2 SDs above the mean enough to ask them about differentiation? I actually think he's happy where he is (which is a hybrid K/1 reading group) in language, but he's miserable in math. It's starting to show in his behavior (i.e. talking and playing during math class), and I'd like to address the problem before it becomes a bigger issue.


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#2 of 6 Old 01-15-2011, 06:50 PM
 
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In my state 2 standard deviations below the mean is the score needed to receive special education services.  Following that I would think 2 sd above the mean should be enough to start the testing process for gifted education services.  So the state dept of education's policy is not to id gifted students until 4th grade?  If so you may not have much of choice but to wait, but, I would definitely talk to his teacher and perhaps the gifted education teacher and talk about differentiation in math.  Research your state's dept of education website, specifically the page about gifted/talented education.  You may find some helpful information to bring to the school's attention to help your child get the appropriate education.


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#3 of 6 Old 01-15-2011, 07:21 PM
 
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95% of the population falls within 2 standard deviations above/below the mean. this means that 2.5% fall at or above 2 standard deviations ABOVE the mean, and 2.5% fall at or below 2 standard deviations BELOW the mean. (This is approximate, there are actually small bubbles that increase the extremes, so it is not quite a normal curve, but 2 standard deviations above the mean is well within the 25% requirement you stated your state uses).

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#4 of 6 Old 01-16-2011, 07:55 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by spedteacher30 View Post

95% of the population falls within 2 standard deviations above/below the mean. this means that 2.5% fall at or above 2 standard deviations ABOVE the mean, and 2.5% fall at or below 2 standard deviations BELOW the mean. (This is approximate, there are actually small bubbles that increase the extremes, so it is not quite a normal curve, but 2 standard deviations above the mean is well within the 25% requirement you stated your state uses).


I know what standard deviation is. 

 

In a percentage value, according to a testing chart I found this morning, he is at the 96th percentile nationwide for kindergarteners. I understand that most PG scales (DYS, for instance) require 99th percentile, but I'm asking where parents view that cut-off when considering asking for differentiation within the school. IOW, would the school view his scores as "only 96%?" 

 

My son asked a number of kids in his class what they made, and many did not hit the proficiency level. He was able to be happy for a couple of friends who improved but still didn't reach the expected mark, which is good progress for him socially. Knowing that many kids aren't proficient doesn't surprise me, given what I know of the achievement levels in the schools here. The majority of the schools are in years 2 & 3 of state intervention for failing to meet NCLB benchmarks.

 

Still, I feel a bit of the same "smart kids will be okay" attitude that I felt growing up, and I don't want my personal issues/biases to influence my thoughts on my son.

 

As I've said, he's significantly stronger in math. He is somewhere around 3rd grade in skill, higher in conceptual understanding. I don't know how that will translate wrt this test, but I'm assuming he will hit the 99% mark.


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#5 of 6 Old 01-16-2011, 08:01 AM - Thread Starter
 
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In my state 2 standard deviations below the mean is the score needed to receive special education services.  Following that I would think 2 sd above the mean should be enough to start the testing process for gifted education services.  So the state dept of education's policy is not to id gifted students until 4th grade?  If so you may not have much of choice but to wait, but, I would definitely talk to his teacher and perhaps the gifted education teacher and talk about differentiation in math.  Research your state's dept of education website, specifically the page about gifted/talented education.  You may find some helpful information to bring to the school's attention to help your child get the appropriate education.



You make a good point re: services on the other end of the spectrum.

 

Our state has "gifted student service plans," which are similar to gifted IEPs in other states. They're not required until Grade 4. The official lit from my district says that the district recognizes that different speeds of development makes it impossible to recognize giftedness in children younger than age 10. I will reserve my true thoughts for that belief, but I will say that I have no problem pushing the issue to get what my children need. Considering that my 4YO, who still has 18 months until she's eligible for K, is reading fairly close to DS' level, I anticipate her needs being an issue when we get there as well.

 

In theory, my son's school moves children around fairly freely between grades, but in reality, that means that they move children back. They have no problem putting 1st graders who are otherwise on target but need remedial reading into the K classes for phonics/reading instruction, which is great. They also send some 1st graders back for math, but K students generally don't get sent forward. It honestly feels like a way not to retain students but still give them remedial work, rather than a way to create groupings based on ability and not age.


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#6 of 6 Old 01-16-2011, 08:35 AM
 
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My daughter was accepted into the gifted program this year.  She is in the 3rd grade.  In k and 1st she was in enrichment, which is like the precursor to the Quest program.  In our school district they don't test for Quest until the 2nd grade.  She was tested last year and didn't make the cut off, which frankly shocked us all.  Tested this year on the same test and didn't score high enough either.  I had to research the dept of ed's website and arm myself with knowledge to advocate that she needed additional testing.  The Quest teacher agreed with me and petitioned the school to let her administer the other tests. My daughter scored high on them and was able to go into gifted.  If I hadn't pushed a little that one bad test would have kept her from receiving the appropriate education for her.  It sounds like you really can't get around them not offering formal gifted education until the 4th grade.  But, you can request a meeting and discuss your son's math abilities and the fact that because he is not being offered appropriate instruction in math he is starting to become bored, act up, etc. 


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