Gifted services are provided by Plum Borough School District under the provisions of Chapter 16 of the PA Code. In order for a student to receive gifted services, eligibility must be determined through a gifted multidisciplinary evaluation conducted by a school psychologist. Gifted services provide specially designed instruction to mentally gifted students, whose needs cannot be met in the regular education classroom.
Plum Borough School District utilizes a two level screening process to determine whether a formal gifted evaluation is recommended. However, a parent may request a gifted evaluation at any time.
Level I Screening
All second grade students will be administered the CogAt assessment during the spring semester. The CogAt assessment is an online tool that measures general and abstract reasoning abilities tied to successful learning and problem solving. The CogAt is not an IQ test. Test results will be reviewed by the school psychologists and, along with other data (grades, benchmark assessments, observations), recommendations will be made for students to proceed to Level II Screening.
Level II Screening
If a student is referred as a potential gifted candidate outside of the district-wide screening process (by school staff or a parent), they would begin with Level II Screening.
Level II consists of the administration of a brief intelligence test, Chuska scales of acquisition and retention, and a review of the student's educational records. Signed parental consent is required for this process. Using this data, the school psychologist makes a recommendation as to whether a formal gifted evaluation is recommended.
If a formal gifted evaluation is recommended or requested, signed parental consent is required prior to beginning the evaluation. The formal evaluation consists of a full-length intelligence assessment and the collection of additional parent and teacher input.
The Pennsylvania Chapter 16 guidelines indicate that students with gifted ability are defined as "a student who has an IQ of 130 or higher or when multiple criteria as set forth in this chapter and in Department Guidelines indicate gifted ability."
The Plum Borough School District uses a majority checklist to determine whether a student meets the qualifications for gifted services. This checklist takes several pieces of data into account including norm-referenced cognitive ability and academic achievement scores, grades, parent and teacher input related to gifted characteristics, and acquisition and retention skills.