NAGC Compass Points
Jun. 28, 2012

From Where I Sit:
Overlooked Gems Part Two: The NAGC Summit on Developing the Talents of Low-Income, Promising Learners

Paula Olszewski-Kubilius, NAGC President
A group of about 60 educators and researchers met in Washington, D.C., on May 30-31 to tackle the complex and multi-faceted problem of how to develop the talents of low-income, promising learners. This research summit was funded by the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation and conducted by NAGC. It was a follow-up to a conference with a similar focus held in 2006 called "Overlooked Gems," when Joyce VanTassel-Baska was NAGC president.

Academic Barriers for Children in Poverty

Participants in the summit heard from experts about the ubiquitous effects of poverty on children’s lives, specifically that poor children are more likely to be in schools with few resources to either support or challenge them including the most important resource of all, experienced teachers. We learned that there are barriers at every step of the way for these children and that their paths to talent development are blocked from the very start. Many children in poverty enter pre-school already 18 months developmentally behind compared to their more advantaged peers. Children in low-income families who start kindergarten in the top quartile of achievement are less likely to stay there as they proceed through school, less likely to take algebra before high school, enroll in AP classes, earn high scores on AP tests, or attend selective colleges and universities.More

NAGC News to Note:
Call for Gifted Child Quarterly Articles

Gifted Child Quarterly is planning a special issue on twice-exceptionality for the fall 2013 issue and is seeking proposals for manuscripts. For the special issue, we define twice-exceptional as possessing high levels of talent in one or more domains as well as a mental, emotional, or physical disability. We are most interested in empirical articles but will also consider review and theoretical papers. The deadline for proposal submissions is Sept. 1. Prospective authors can find more information here.More

Ready for a New Opportunity?
Have the dog days of summer got you thinking about new challenges? Or perhaps you're an employer looking to locate new professionals? There's one destination for both the employer and the potential employee at the NAGC Career Center. Visit today.More

Your Mailbox is Bursting with NAGC Publications!
Just when you thought it was safe to open your mailbox this summer, you find it full of worthwhile reading materials! Individual NAGC members are now reading the latest issues of Gifted Child Quarterly and Teaching for High Potential. The focus of THP is STEM. Also in the mailbox this month is the latest issue of Parenting for High Potential, which examines the many facets of acceleration. PHP is published four times each year in print and an additional four digital-only issues.More

Share Your Experience and Expertise
NAGC members are encouraged to learn more about the work of our 13 standing committees. NAGC's committees and task forces accomplish important work in many content areas. Consider applying to join an NAGC Committee. As a committee member, you will devote time, energy, and ideas to lead NAGC projects and programs forward, and in turn, lead the field in supporting wide-ranging efforts on behalf of gifted children. You would be appointed to a one-, two-, or three-year term. Your involvement makes a world of difference. Find out more here. Applications are due by July 23.

Or perhaps you are an experienced speaker or consultant who wants to support NAGC while sharing a message with state or regional conference attendees. Here's how conference organizers participate in the NAGC Expert Speakers Program. If you'd like to join our pool of "experts," click here.More

Parent Corner:
Parenting for High Potential is HOT This summer!

Mariam Willis, NAGC Parent Outreach Specialist
NAGC parenting outreach efforts have started the summer off with a bang. On June 12, NAGC Parent Outreach Specialist Mariam Willis was interviewed on Education Talk Radio by Larry Jacobs. She discussed the urgent need for parent advocacy and the ways NAGC is making parent advocacy groups more accessible to you through free resources and new ways to connect online. To hear her interview click here.More

The Learning Curve
Getting Out from Under Underachievement

Check out the latest featured sessions on the NAGC Live Learning Center available to you at no charge! This month’s sessions focus on underachievement. One of the most frequent questions we hear at NAGC is "How do I keep my child challenged?" The resources on the NAGC website address this topic from two perspectives. First, there are articles with strategies for thinking ahead proactively. You will also find resources to help dig a bit deeper to learn "why" the child is becoming disenchanted with school. NAGC’s publication Connecting for High Potential has also addressed issues surrounding underachievement from both the parent and teacher perspective. NAGC appreciates the support of Pearson, our Learning Partner.More

Get Your Group On!
To those who follow Internet deals the term "Group On" has taken on a new meaning, but it still works for the NAGC 59th Convention. Did you know that when you gather together 10 or more individuals for the NAGC Convention and pre-convention events you can save 10 percent? Think about the power of the group as you can conquer the 500 content-rich sessions to maximize your learning! The NAGC Convention is the largest annual event devoted to gifted education. It's your opportunity to brush up on a little-known subject area, or reinforce your skills and knowledge in another.

Share the love — and the learning — and register as part of a group. The deadline for group registration discounts is Sept. 21. Online registration is available for credit card payments. To submit via mail when using a purchase order, click here for the 2012 Group Registration Form.More

GT Neighborhood News
Federal Grant Opportunity

The National Center for Education Research at the U.S. Department of Education has announced a grant competition in the Evaluation of State and Local Education Programs and Policies research program. In previous years, a few grants have gone to evaluating local gifted education programs. Do you have a research proposal to evaluate state or local gifted education policies or a program model that impacts student learning? (Note: This is NOT a strategy to fund the policy or program being evaluated.)

The proposal requirements and evaluation component are detailed here. Note that the application packet will be available in mid-July; the grant application deadline is Sept. 20. The number of grants will be determined by the funds available, although the estimated range of awards is $200,000 — $1 million each year for grants up to five (5) years.More

Do We Know How to Teach Highly Able Learners?
Education Week
Teaching highly able learners is a topic that we often ignore in education. We discuss how to teach struggling learners and spend a great deal of time discussing how to meet the needs of special education students. However, when parents state that their children are gifted, some teachers (and a few administrators) politely smile and roll their eyes when the parents leave the room.More

Girls in Science: Gender Gaps Still Persist in STEM Subjects
Education Week via The Christian Science Monitor
Evidence abounds that women have made huge inroads in the academic and professional spheres since the federal Title IX law on gender equity in education was enacted 40 years ago. More than half those graduating from college each year are women. The percentage of law degrees earned by females climbed from 7 percent in 1972 to about 47 percent in 2011. Likewise, far more women are earning advanced degrees in business and medicine.More

A Day in the Life
Education Week
A randomly selected day from this past school year: The day starts early, a little after 7:30 a.m. It's just me and our District's 11 administrators in an Admin Team meeting, writes blogger Tamara Fisher, President of the Montana Association of Gifted and Talented Education. We've been regularly discussing features of, and their questions about, the gifted program: identification, programming options, outreach to parents. Only one member of the Admin team has ever attended a conference on Gifted Education, and very few have attended workshops or related professional development in or near our district. Yet they're making decisions about what will or won't be happening for these kids (within and outside of the GT program).More

Gifted Education: How Are Children Selected and Is It Uniform Across Georgia School Districts?
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution Get Schooled blogger Maureen Downey addresses questions regarding of how students are selected in gifted education and whether the process is biased? Read her answers.More

Testing Experts Play Critical Role in Students', Teachers' Futures
Orlando Sentinel
Heather Wright often meets people who are confused about exactly what she does for a living. That's not surprising. After all, how many psychometricians have you ever met? Wright, an energetic former English teacher, is a leader in a little-known realm of education. Psychometrics is the intricate science behind measuring what people know.More

An iPad on Legs: Is ActivTable the Next Interactive Whiteboard?
KQED's MindShift
In the race to develop the classroom of the future, tech giant Promethean has taken another step forward this year with a new product called ActivTable. Think iPad on four legs. The newest gadget is the latest in Promethean's range of interactive classroom products—smart boards, classroom response systems that resemble game show buzzers, teacher dashboards—and is the first of the company’s products designed especially for small group learning.More

Kids Delve Into Desert, Look to The Stars
Hi-Desert Star
"Green group to this tree," Dr. Deborah Turner shouts one recent morning, to students in the Copper Mountain College courtyard in Joshua Tree, Calif. "Blue and gold bees over here," the curriculum specialist for Morongo Unified School District continues as she directs her charges toward an awaiting classroom. The 110 Gifted And Talented Education students who have just promoted from grades four through nine are participating in summer Kaleidoscope Days.More

Admissions 101: What Are the New Hidden Gems for Summer College visits?
The Washington Post
Education columnist Jay Mathews reveals his "Hidden Gems" college list of "100 schools that deserve more attention than they are getting."More