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ERIC Number: EJ885951
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 9
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 32
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0016-9862
Putting Standards into Practice: Evaluating the Utility of the NAGC Pre-K-Grade 12 Gifted Program Standards
Matthews, Michael S.; Shaunessy, Elizabeth
Gifted Child Quarterly, v54 n3 p159-167 2010
Despite their importance, there has been surprisingly little scholarly examination of the "NAGC Pre-K-Grade 12 Gifted Program Standards" (NAGC, 2008/2000; Landrum, Callahan, & Shaklee, 2001) since their publication a decade ago. As part of a larger study investigating the effectiveness of local policies developed within the framework of state law, we used a qualitative approach to examine the "minimum" and "exemplary" criteria from the Student Identification portion of these "NAGC Standards." Through this process we developed a 27-item checklist, which we then used to evaluate 43 locally developed plans for identifying diverse gifted learners from one large state in the southeastern United States. Based on this experience, we identify the strengths and weaknesses that we encountered in using the "Standards" for this purpose. We provide the checklist items we developed, and we offer specific suggestions for how the "Gifted Program Standards" in their currently ongoing revision process might be made more user-friendly for practitioners to apply toward effective evaluation of gifted program documents. Putting the Research to Use: Our experience in using the Student Identification portion of the NAGC Pre-K-Grade 12 Gifted Program Standards highlights some difficulties in using a national standards document directly to evaluate district-level program descriptions and policies. Specifically, we found three aspects that hindered the application of the Student Identification framework to the evaluation of local policies: 1) A standard identified as Exemplary could be met in some cases without first satisfying the Minimum requirement of the same numbered standard; 2) Some standards included more than one criterion within a single numbered standard, and district documents satisfied one but not all of these criteria; and 3) The lack of consensus on terminology led to the use of some words such as "screening" to mean different things in the NAGC Standards than in the district documents, while other terms were too broad (such as "culturally fair") or too narrow to prove useful in evaluating plan quality. The responsibility for developing and implementing policies and procedures often rests at the local level. Consequently, we believe that practitioners will find a checklist such as the one we have developed and presented here to be a useful bridge between the language and aims of standards documents and the tangible goals of those who develop and implement policies within the framework of state rules. We suggest that the currently ongoing revisions to these NAGC Standards should consider our findings in the three areas described above, and we recommend continued support for the development of ancillary materials as has been provided for these and other national standards documents. (Contains 1 table.)
SAGE Publications. 2455 Teller Road, Thousand Oaks, CA 91320. Tel: 800-818-7243; Tel: 805-499-9774; Fax: 800-583-2665; e-mail: journals@sagepub.com; Web site: http://sagepub.com
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A