REACH PTA is a parent group dedicated to supporting gifted and talented programs in District 205 and encouraging higher level educational opportunities for ALL District 205 students. Our area of focus includes:
- Providing parent resources for gifted and advanced learners
- Organizing advocacy at local and national levels
- Sponsoring and/or promoting academic-based extra-curricular activities that are accessible to all students
- Collaborating with REACH teachers to provide additional resources and student opportunities.
Mike Byster Program-March 3, 2016- Bryan Middle School Auditorium 7-8:30pm
Calling ALL district 4-8th grade students to participate in a fun and interactive program with Mike Byster- March 3, 2016, Bryan Middle School Auditorium 7pm. Mike Byster is one of the fastest mathematical minds in the world. But his real passion is in teaching kids to have the academic confidence that both sets them apart from the crowd, and sets them up for success in all parts of life for decades to come. Featured on 20/20 for his ground breaking techniques to help kids master complex math concepts, Mike has traveled the country working with kids and parents to show how they can work together to greatly improve their child's memory and focus. Parents are asked to stay for the program to be a part of the interactive and fun program. No siblings please. Bring paper, pencil and be ready to learn! For more information on Mike Byster please read the attached parent letter.
University of Illinois Engineering Open House: Enter to win a $50 AMAZON gift card!
The REACH PTA would like to remind all families about the upcoming 2016 University of Illinois Engineering Open House which will be held March 11th and March 12th. The Engineering Open House is an annual student-led event featuring two days of exciting exhibits and captivating competitions that showcase the talent and ingenuity of engineering students at the University of Illinois. This event is open to the public at no cost, and is appropriate for families and students of ALL ages. Friday evening the event displays an innovative light show and during the day the interactive exhibits get the students in the action. Many of the exhibitors will be handing out free merchandise as part of their exhibit. The Engineering Open House has been a favorite event for Elmhurst families for many years, and students who have attended continue to talk about the event years afterwards. For more information about the Engineering Open House visit their website. The REACH PTA is encouraging families that attend the event to submit a selfie from the event to be posted on the REACH PTA website, and be entered to win an AMAZON gift card. Submit your pictures at Patricia.Glosner@icloud.com. Drawing will be held at the April REACH meeting. The winner will be notified via email.
What is Gifted?
Illinois Definition of Gifted and Talented
Children/youth with outstanding talent who perform or show potential for performing at remarkably high levels of accomplishment when compared with other children/youth of their age, experience, and environment. A Child shall be considered gifted and talented in any area of aptitude, and specifically, in language arts and math, by scoring in the top 5% locally in the area of aptitude.
Illinois General Assembly, Illinois Compiled Statues Section 5, Public Act 094-0151, Article 14
Is My Child Gifted?
While some commonalities exist across giftedness, one size does not fit all. Gifted learners exhibit different characteristics, traits, and ways to express their giftedness. Various issues must be considered for identification:
- Giftedness is dynamic, not static. Identification needs to occur over time, with multiple opportunities to exhibit gifts.
- Giftedness is represented through all racial, ethnic, income levels, and exceptionality groups.
- Giftedness may be exhibited within a specific interest or category—and even a specific interest within that category.
- Early identification in school improves the likelihood that gifts will be developed into talents.
To get more information about identification, characteristics/traits of gifted, test assessments, and domain/level of giftedness please visit the National Association for Gifted Children Website.
In the News
Congress Includes Several Provisions to Support High-Ability & High-Potential Learners within ESEA Reauthorization-NAGC Press Release December 8, 2015
The National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC), the nation’s leading voice for high-ability and high-potential learners, applauds Congress for including several provisions to support such learners within the Reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), also referred to as ESSA, the Every Student Succeeds Act.
- The ESEA Reauthorization marks the first time that Congress makes clear that Title I funds may be used to identify and serve gifted students, which will ensure that high-ability students from low-income families and other under-served populations receive the challenging instruction that they require to achieve their potential.
- ESEA requires states to say how they will use valuable training dollars to equip teachers in how to identify high-potential learners and to meet the academic needs of such high-performers, and it requires school districts that receive such funds to address the unique needs of gifted students.
- The law retains the authorization of the high-impact Jacob Javits Gifted Education Grant program, which has yielded numerous strategies to identify and serve academically talented students, particularly those from communities that have historically been under-represented in such programs.
Advocacy is an important part of ensuring that your child is provided the best learning environment based on their learning abilities. The national organization, National Association for Gifted Children is an excellent advocacy resource for working with you teachers, school, administration and/or congressman.
The federal government plays a small role in gifted education policies and funding. Decisions are made at the state level, which then requires localities to follow the state’s guidelines on identification and programming or allows localities to make independent decisions about gifted education. Each state and, in some states, each district or school will have differing policies and practices related to advanced learners - The Illinois Association for Gifted Children has information on advocacy at the state level.
SENG (Supporting Emotional Needs of the Gifted) is dedicated to fostering environments in which gifted adults and children, in all their diversity, understand and accept themselves and are understood, valued, nurtured, and supported by their families, schools, workplaces and communities including webinars and information about starting parent groups. http://www.sengifted.org
The National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC) is an organization of parents, teachers,educators, other professionals, and community leaders who unite to address the unique needs of children and youth with demonstrated gifts and talents as well as those children who may be able to develop their talent potential with appropriate educational experiences. Parenting for High Potential is the quarterly magazine designed for parents who want to make a difference in their children's lives, who want to develop their children's gifts and talents, and who want to help them develop their potential to the fullest. http://www.nagc.org/
The Illinois Association for Gifted Children is an organization of parents, educators, and others committed to the education and development of children with diverse gifts and talents. We educate, support, and influence those who touch the lives of children and focus our energies to meet the needs of children with gifts and talents in Illinois. (Great section on advocacy.) http://iagcgifted.org/
Local Area Programs for Gifted and Talented Students
http://educate.dom.edu/academics/gifted-talented - Dominican University, River Forest
http://www.centerforgifted.org/ - Northern Illinois University, multiple locations
http://www.ctd.northwestern.edu/ - Northwestern University, multiple locations
Hoagies is the "All Things Gifted" resource for parents, educators, administrators, counselors,psychologists, and even gifted kids and teens themselves! Your kids will love it as much as you will. http://www.hoagiesgifted.org/
Kidsource has a host of links to articles on gifted and talented students ranked by depth and breath of information within them.
Prufrock Press offers award-winning products focused on gifted education, gifted children, advanced learning, and special needs learners. For more than 20 years, Prufrock has supported gifted children and their education and development. The company publishes more than 300 products that enhance the lives of gifted children and the teachers and parents who support them and contains blogs, newsletters, and articles. http://www.prufrock.com/
The Institute for Research and Policy on Acceleration (IRPA) is dedicated to the study and support of curricular acceleration for academically talented students. They serve educators, parents, students, administrators, policy makers...in short, anyone with an interest in learning more about why and how academic acceleration works for meeting the needs of high-ability students.
The Institute for Educational Advancement (IEA) is a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting our nation's most talented young people in pursuing their full academic and personal potential. This is a wonderful searchable resource databases.
The Chicago Gifted Community Center is a volunteer-based, non-profit organization created by parents of gifted children. The mission of the Chicago Gifted Community Center is to facilitate educational and emotional support for gifted children and their families. This organization helps to unify different local organizations whose sole purpose is to serve directly the needs of local gifted families and to link them all together in a community. http://chicagogiftedcommunity.org
STEMDuPage has been developed as a resource for residents of our county and beyond, by the STEM Team at the DuPage Regional Office of Education in conjunction with the STEM Team Advisory Committee. There goals are to provide information, encourage connection and collaboration, and motivate learning and play in the areas of Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics: http://www.stemdupage.com/index.html