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Nomination or 100% Testing?

April 13, 2011

Some school districts only test a student for giftedness if a teacher or parent nominates the student for testing.  Does that approach work well?

A nomination-based process fails to identify some of the gifted kids , particularly those in certain subgroups.

If you have wondered how many are missed, Brainerd, MN, has provided empirical evidence.  Brainerd just converted from a nomination-based process to testing of 100% of their students.

Sub-group Identified via teacher or parent nomination Identified by testing 100% of students % of class
Minorities

4.3%

4.8%

7.5%

Free/reduced meals

13.0%

36.0%

 
Special education

0.0%

14.0%

 

 

Male students were also under-identified:

  % identified via teacher or parent nomination % identified by testing 100% of students

Male

42%

57%

Female

58%

43%

 

100%

100%

 

A district that wants to make sure it provides a quality education for ALL its gifted students, needs to test everyone for giftedness.  Conversely, does a district that fails to test for giftedness open itself up to discrimination charges?

Read the complete article in the Brainerd Dispatch.

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