York Suburban School District strives for excellence in all programming, including gifted services. We believe that all students benefit from instruction that challenges them to reach meaningful academic goals. Our mission is to identify students in need of gifted services in accordance with the criteria set forth by the Pennsylvania Department of Education Chapter 16.
Students in need of gifted services receive individualized and specially designed instruction to develop their creative, cognitive and affective talents. Exposure to various processes and higher level thinking skills that include investigation, creative problem solving, independent study, critical thinking, citizenship and career awareness are provided.
York Suburban School District identifies students for gifted services by utilizing multiple criteria including: achievement test scores, acquisition and retention rates, cognitive abilities, expertise or performance in one or more academic areas, high level thinking skills, academic creativity, leadership skills, teacher information accessed through a gifted checklist, and parent information.
Gifted services in grades K-5 provide for options including compaction of curriculum, acceleration, enrichment through problem solving and creative projects, on-line courses and various summer camps such as Johns Hopkins and Lincoln Intermediate Unit.
Gifted services in grades 6-8 provide for options including seminar, writing competitions, MathCounts, on-line programs such as the Stock Market Game, science fair, current issues discussion, and independent study. A co-teaching model is also used with the general education teacher and the gifted teacher instructing students.
Gifted services in grades 9-12 provide for enrichment options including shadowing and mentoring opportunities, independent study, on-line courses, science fair and an engineering program for students (“Lead the Way”).
In the York Suburban School District’s (YSSD) referrals for gifted identification can be made by parents or by district staff. Following receipt of an evaluation request (verbal or written), the school will initiate the screening procedure. This screening includes the classroom teacher completing the YSSD Gifted Checklist to evaluate skills in various areas including verbal abilities, learning characteristics, motivational characteristics, and social abilities. Acquisition and retention rates, academic performance, standardized testing results and intervening factors are also considered on this checklist. Also as part of the screening process, the teacher of the gifted administers a Kaufman Brief Intelligence Test (k-BIT) to ascertain an estimate of cognitive ability level. Once all the data has been gathered through the screening checklist and K-BIT screening, the data are plotted on the YSSD gifted screening matrix to determine if further evaluation is required. If the student does not meet criteria for further evaluation, parents will be notified in writing and the data utilized to make that determination will be shared with them. If parents choose they may request a meeting to further discuss the decision to not proceed to evaluation. If the student does meet the criteria for further evaluation, the district will provide a Gifted Permission to Evaluate form for parent signature as well as a parent checklist/input form. The school psychologist will conduct an individual evaluation of cognitive abilities and academic achievement. A Gifted Written Report (GWR) will be completed by the school psychologist including teacher input, parent input, and evaluation information. The gifted evaluation and a copy of the GWR will be completed and provided to parents within 60 calendar days from receipt of the written parental consent.