NAGC Compass Points
Jan. 24, 2014

From Where I Sit
Share your expertise. Build our community. Proposal Deadline, February 3

Nancy Green, NAGC Executive Director
While I have seen the NAGC convention proposal process in action many times, I still marvel at the commitment our community makes to identifying and submitting hundreds of topics for possible presentation at the NAGC Annual Convention. In fact, I believe this process — with the support of NAGC's 15 networks — is the best way to create the most relevant and valuable professional experience for attendees. How else could NAGC offer a national convention focused on high ability and high potential with such a broad range of topics? From "Challenging our Young Mathematicians," to "Our Moral Imperative: The Ethics of Leadership in Gifted Education," our model is built upon the premise that we are all willing to share what we know and can do with fellow supporters of gifted and talented learners.More

News From Our Gifted Community
We Remember James J. Gallagher

On January 17, NAGC and the field of gifted education lost a beloved leader, passionate supporter and inspirational advocate. Among many notable titles, Dr. James J. Gallagher was a past president of NAGC who stayed active and influential in the organization before and after he served in this role. As we reflect on his many calls to action and frequent commentary about the state of general and gifted education in America, this favorite quote comes to mind.

"Failure to help the gifted child is a societal tragedy, the extent of which is difficult to measure but which is surely great. How can we measure the sonata unwritten, the curative drug undiscovered, the absence of political insight? They are the difference between what we are and what we could be as a society." — James J. GallagherMore

Capital Update
Javits Act Funding Restored

Advocates for gifted and talented students scored a huge victory when the Javits Gifted & Talented Students Education Act received $5 million for fiscal year 2014. The funds are part of the $1.1 trillion "omnibus" spending bill the Congress passed late last week. Thanks in large part to Senate Appropriations Committee chair Barbara Mikulski (MD), this is the first time since fiscal year 2011 that the Javits program has received any funding. "Our most gifted children need our help just as much as our most vulnerable do. They need to be held to high standards, they need to be challenged, and they need to be engaged. I’m proud to fight to support the Javits Gifted and Talented Education program — our nation's only federal program dedicated specifically to gifted and talented students," Sen. Mikulski said.

As gifted ed veterans know, the Javits Act funds the National Research Center on the Gifted and Talented as well as applied research on identifying and serving underrepresented gifted students.

The next step in the process will be for the U.S. Department of Education to develop guidelines for the grants made with these new funds, likely in late spring or early summer. NAGC will post information as it becomes available.More

New NAGC Award Recognizes District Level Coordinator/Administrator

NAGC has awards to recognize gifted education professionals in just about any position, at any point in their career, as well as awards for people outside the field who have instinctively taken part in advancing services for advanced students. NAGC's new award, the NAGC Gifted Coordinator/Administrator Award, was developed to recognize a district level gifted education coordinator or administrator. For most gifted education professionals, it is often lonely going because of persistent misunderstandings about what giftedness is and why it is important to do something different for those students. Help us recognize an outstanding district level administrator who has had a significant impact on the advanced students in his or her district and is, among other things, working to minimize bias in identification, create successful programs for twice-exceptional learners, and educate colleagues about the needs of gifted students.

Awards nominations are open until May 2 and are your opportunity to shine a warm light on deserving teachers, community leaders, advocates, scholars, and administrators. Learn about all the NAGC Awards and go to the NAGC Awards site to start your nominations today. More

Thank You 2013 Annual Fund Donors!

We'd like to extend a special thanks to all those who made the 2013 annual fund so successful this year. Your commitment to NAGC and its important work is simply awesome! Your generous contributions will help send more Javits-Frasier scholars to convention in 2014 and will allow us to broaden initiatives such as Common Core extensions for Gifted Students and programming for high-potential, low-income students.

The annual fund campaign was launched for the first time at the Convention in Indianapolis, and is part of NAGC's effort to find new funding streams so that we can continue to innovate and implement our programs more widely. For those who gave in 2013, we hope you will consider giving again (and more!) in 2014. For those who haven’t yet made a financial commitment, consider the impact your gift will have on gifted students around the country and the fantastic teachers who serve them. Donate today.

A 2013 Javits-Frasier scholar recently wrote this about her experience: "My NAGC experience in Indy was powerful! The conference reinforced the importance of our work: we will shape the future for our kids. This conference allowed me the chance to consider the whole child, from their emotional well being, to pedagogy, to the importance of research. Being immersed in this gathering of fellow professionals gave me the chance to make real connections with fellow educators, discover and explore valuable resources, and consider different approaches to working with our gifted population. I am so grateful for the financial assistance." —Gratefully, Lori MartinMore

Nominations Now Open for Board of Director and Network Positions

There are six opportunities this year for NAGC members to become part of the NAGC Board. The Board of Directors are the stewards of NAGC and bring the views and interests of its members to discussions of NAGC's direction and priorities. The term for successful candidates begins Sept. 1. Review the position descriptions and requirements online.

But the Board of Directors is not the only place available for NAGC members to make a difference in NAGC. Nine Networks are looking for Chairs-Elect. Chairs-Elect serve for two years and automatically roll over into the Chair position which also has a two-year term. It is a wonderful opportunity to work with others with similar interests and to help guide the direction of the Network and its offerings at the NAGC Convention. More information is available on the Network Elections Page. More

January Job Opportunities on the NAGC Career Center

Check out the NAGC Career Centerr for these posted positions:

Director, The Gatton Academy of Mathematics and Science, Bowling Green, KY
The Carol Martin Gatton Academy of Mathematics and Science in Kentucky invites applicants for the position of Director. The Gatton Academy, founded in 2007, is a statewide residential school for high achieving high school juniors and seniors interested in careers in STEM fields. It is located on the campus of Western Kentucky University, where Academy students take University courses taught by University faculty.

Gifted and Talented Admissions Coordinator, Laurel Springs School, West Chester, PA
Working from our office in West Chester, PA, the Gifted and Talented Admissions Coordinator will work to support our Gifted and Talented Academy by making outbound contact with potential Laurel Springs' parents/families and addressing customer inquiries and questions regarding our school.More

The Learning Curve
New Series of Webinars Explores Diversity and Equity Issues

Make the time to engage in conversations about diversity and equity in gifted education by registering for NAGC's series of four free-to-members and six affordable webinars. Converse with leaders and experts in the field who are ready to take your questions and hear your concerns.

Take this special opportunity to:

View a full description of the webinars and register today online.More

News You Can Use
Jack Kent Cooke Foundation's Talent Development Award

The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Talent Development Award is a one-time $500,000 grant to an exemplary organization committed to optimal outcomes in academics, leadership, and/or the arts for high-potential, low-income students in grades K-8. The grant is intended to propel an organization's work and bring strategies to a broader scale to transform more high-potential students into high achievers.

The nomination period deadline is February 3. For details about the Talent Development Award and how to nominate an organization, please visit their website.More

Cross: US Students Need Better Programs to Compete
The Virginian-Pilot
Another round of international test results, another dismal performance by U.S. students. If the stakes were not so high, the triennial release of the Program for International Student Assessment, or PISA, test scores would be the educational version of the movie "Groundhog Day," where the main character is forced to relive the same day over and over.More

Pilot Program to Let US High School Students Experience Antarctic Science at a Chilean Station
National Science Foundation
Three high-school students and a teacher from Wisconsin will participate in a joint pilot program of the U.S. and Chilean Antarctic programs that will send them to a Chilean research station this February for hands-on experience with Antarctic environments and ecosystems research. More

Should Schools Do More For Gifted Students?
Exceptionally smart students are often invisible in the classroom, lacking the curricula, teacher input, and external motivation they need to reach their full potential. A new 30-year study tracked 300 profoundly gifted children from age 13 until age 38, logging their accomplishments in academia, business, culture, health care, science, and technology. The results are published in the journal Psychological Science.More