Melanie Spooner- Gifted Teacher
CLASS- Creative Learners Actively Seeking Success
CLASS is a K-8 program of study. Students in kindergarten through fifth grade will receive the equivalent of five 45-minute sessions of Gifted and Talented services each week through one of the following methods: cluster grouping method, collaborative method, or resource method. Cluster grouping consists of CLASS students grouped in a heterogeneous classroom setting that is taught by a Gifted and Talented certified teacher. Collaborative models consist of CLASS students grouped in a heterogeneous classroom setting that is instructed by the classroom teacher, but lessons are planned with the Gifted teacher. The Resource model is when CLASS students are pulled from their regular classroom setting and will receive services with a Gifted and Talented certified teacher.
CLASS PROGRAM VISION
Our vision is to be an exemplary gifted program as we advocate for and meet the needs
of each child in the Dawson County Gifted Program.
CLASS PROGRAM MISSION
• We will determine appropriate learning environments and strategies for gifted learners.
• We will encourage innovation and exploration.
• We will regularly review services to determine current effectiveness, relevance and necessary modifications.
• We will make decisions for gifted learners based on data and research.
• We will consider the needs of the gifted learners as primary in making program decisions.
• We will address concerns at the source.
• We will encourage creativity, critical thinking, independent initiative and collaborative skills.
CLASS PROGRAM BELIEFS
Dawson County School System Gifted Education Program Believes:
• Gifted learners have the potential and/or demonstrated ability to learn, think and perform at levels, which are measurably higher than other learners of like age, experience, or environment.
• Giftedness knows no boundaries of socio-economic class, gender, or race.
• The education of gifted learners is a shared responsibility among students, family, school, community and society at large.
• Association with gifted and talented peers, as well as learners of all ability levels, stimulates learning and contributes to affective development of gifted and talented learners.
• Recognizing, developing and valuing gifts and talents decreases risk of social and emotional difficulties and/or academic underachievement, while challenging and rigorous activities enhance positive self-esteem and prepare them for future success.
• Gifted and talented students need a rigorous, extensive, accelerated and/or compacted curriculum delivered in a creative, flexible and supportive instructional environment.
Frequently Asked Questions:
What is a gifted student?
A gifted student is one who demonstrates a high degree of intellectual, creative and/or artistic ability(ies), possesses exceptional leadership skills, or excels in specific academic fields and who needs special instruction and/or special ancillary services to achieve at levels commensurate with his or her abilities.
How do students qualify for CLASS?
The "Multiple Criteria Rule" mandates that information be gathered in each of four categories: mental ability, achievement, creativity, and motivation. A student must meet criteria in any three of the four categories to qualify for gifted program placement, with at least one of the criteria being met by a score on a nationally-normed test. Any test score used to establish eligibility should be current within two years.
What tests are used to qualify students for CLASS?
The following tests or checklists are used in Dawson County for the purpose of evaluating students for the gifted program:
Mental ability - CogAt - Cognitive Abilities Test
Achievement - SAT9 - Stanford Achievement Test or ITBS - Iowa Test of Basic Skills
Creativity - TTCT - Torrance Test of Creative Thinking (Figural Edition)
Motivation - Renzulli/Hartman Motivation Behavioral Checklist (K-4) or Product/Performance
GPA - Grade Point Average for fifth graders or Product/Performance
When are students tested for CLASS?
Dawson County students are tested during the months of October and April.
What should I do if I want to refer my child for gifted testing?
Contact your child's homeroom teacher or Ms. Spooner to receive the Parent Referral forms. These forms must be turned in by September 15th (for testing in October) or February 10th (for testing in April). As with any evaluation process, you will be asked to give permission for the evaluation to take place.