The identification process consists of a combination of subjective and objective measures to determine eligibility for the gifted program and includes an equitable opportunity for the inclusion of students who are culturally diverse, underachieving, disabled under IDEA guidelines, physically handicapped, or ADD/ADHD. Throughout the identification process, district personnel are careful to select measures that target the student's strengths.
All data collected as part of the identification process is protected by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). Access to this information is restricted to those personnel working directly with the identification process, working directly in the field education program, or has a documented need to access. Parents have the right to view their children's records at any time.
Out-of-state gifted eligibilities
Each state has a unique set of eligibility criteria for placement in a gifted program. Hence, a student moving to Mississippi with a gifted eligibility from another state must satisfy Mississippi eligibility criteria before being considered for placement in the gifted program. The eligibility ruling from another state may be used to initiate the referral process in Mississippi. There is no temporary placement in the gifted program while the student goes through the eligibility process within the local district.
NOTE: Students who have a valid Mississippi gifted eligibility ruling do not have to be reevaluated.
REFERRAL PROCESS FOR CONSIDERATION TO THE INTELLECTUALLY GIFTED PROGRAM
STAGE 1: REFFERRAL
There are two types of gifted referral processes:
• Type One – Mass Screening Referral process addresses those students who are mass screened for gifted eligibility
Mass Screening will be done each year at the first grade level using a group measure of cognitive ability assessment.
• Type Two – Individual Referral Process addresses those students who are individually referred for gifted eligibility.
Mass Screening Referral Process
Students who obtain a full-scale score at or above the 90th percentile on the normed group measure of intelligence shall move forward in the referral process. Students who scored at or above the 85th percentile but lower than the 90th percentile on the normed group measure of intelligence shall be subjected to an emerging Potential for Gifted Referral Checklist. If these students meet the criteria on the checklist, they shall move forward in the referral process.
A student shall satisfy two of the following additional criteria before moving forward to the Local Survey Committee Review of Referral Data Stage:
1. A score at or above the superior range on a normed published characteristics of giftedness checklist
2. A score at or above the superior range on a normed published measure of creativity
3. A score at or above the superior range on a normed published measure of leadership
Individual Referral Process
A student may be referred by a parent, teacher, counselor, administrator, peer, self or anyone else having reason to believe that the student might be intellectually gifted. All students comprise the initial screening pool of potential recipients for gifted education services.
Students participating in the Individual Referral Process shall satisfy three of the following criteria before moving forward to the Local Survey Committee Review of Referral Data Stage:
1. A score at or above the 90th percentile on a group measure of intelligence that has been administered within the past twelve months
2. A score at or above the superior range on a normed published characteristics of giftedness checklist
3. A score at or above the superior range on a normed published measure of creativity
4. A score at or above the superior range on a normed published measure of leadership
Documentation of measure shall be maintained in a written document approved by the local school board indicating that the district is using the state minimal scale/percentile score criterial on all referral measures. This document shall be distributed to district administrators, school counselors, and teachers and shall be available to parents at each school site.
NOTE: Any student who does meet the minimum acceptable criteria (score in the 90th percentile) on the normed group measure of intelligence during the Mass Screening Referral Process and does not qualify for the emerging Potential for Gifted criteria, can be referred by anyone for the Individual Referral for Screening Process. The individually referred student shall not be excluded from the referral process by their performance on the normed group measure of intelligence administered during the Mass Screening Referral Process. The maximum number of times a student may be referred is two (2).
STAGE 2: LOCAL SURVEY COMMITTEE (LSC) REVIEW OF REFERRAL DATA
Once the referral data have been collected, the LSC shall review all data and make one of the following recommendations:
1. The student has satisfied minimal criteria on at least three measures and should move forward to the assessment stage, or
2. The student has not satisfied minimal criteria on at least three measures, however, the LSC feels strongly that additional data should be collected and the student reconsidered at that time, or
3. The student has not satisfied minimal criteria on at least three measures and the identification process should stop.
Provisions for Emerging Potential for Gifted Populations At this point the LSC shall make the decision as to the possibility that the student could be eligible for consideration as a candidate for an emerging potential for gifted assessment. If it is believed that the student might have emerging gifted potential, then the Emerging Potential for Intellectually Gifted Assessment Checklist should be completed for possible use during the assessment process. The Emerging Potential for Gifted category makes provisions for certain factors that exist that may put the student at a disadvantage when inappropriate instruments are used during the assessment process.
STAGE 3: PARENTAL PERMISSION FOR TESTING
At this time, district personnel shall obtain written parental permission for testing. District personnel shall also notify parents in writing about their rights under FERPA.