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Gifted in Mississippi

Mississippi's eligibility processes and practices for the gifted

John Green

on 20 February 2011

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Transcript of Gifted in Mississippi

Elvis seen in Tupelo, Mississippi.
---Weekly Enquirer, 13 February 2011 Elvis taking gifted classes denied him as a boy.
---National Observer, 15 February 2011 June and Johnny Cash go back to Jackson, Mississippi,
become Elvis's private tutor.
----Country Watch, 17 February 2011 Cuts In Education: Gifted Programs First to Go.
----The Mississippian, 1 March 2011 State to Elvis: "You Ain't Nothin' but a Hound Dog"
----The Jackson Daily Journal, 4 March 2011 Elvis in Regular Ed. Classroom, Army Is Next
---The Patriotic Stripe, 8 March 2011 Cash Couple Crash, Johnny and June Just Riffed!
----Alliteration Daily, 12 March 2011 A Brief History of Gifted Education Programs in Mississippi. If Elvis were indeed a gifted lad, he would probably not have received services because the State of Mississippi did not mandate such educational services until 1989. Before that date, districts could choose to serve gifted students. The regulations for the gifted education programs in Mississippi go into great detail distinguishing between intellectually, academically, artistically,and creatively gifted students and describe programs and delivery models but in reality... ...only the intellectually gifted regularly receive specialized instruction. (Sorry Elvis.) Academically gifted students are taught in honors and AP classes in
some high schools, and those identified as artistically and creatively gifted rarely benefit from programs
offered by the public schools. Holy Graceland! (I know Graceland is in Memphis, Tennessee but let's stay with the Elvis theme) The Mississippi Gifted Education Act of 1989 mandates that public school districts provide gifted education programs for intellectually gifted in grades 2-6! Many districts offer gifted programs only through the 8th grade. After that age, good luck! Since the Great Recession, many rural school systems have cut their gifted programs at the upper levels. Even before the recent budgetary crisis, retiring gifted teachers at the high school level were sometimes not replaced. The state funds gifted teacher units using two formulae: one for grades 2-8 and another one for grades 9-12. Resources and tests are purchased using funds from the Special Services Department which, in turn, are heavily financed with federal funds. Mississippi's state identification process is similar to that of Georgia.
Regarding Assessment...there are two phases. Phase II assessment involves the
adminstration of an individual test
of intelligence by a licensed examiner. Gifted students in grades 2-8 are served by endorsed teachers in a resource room (a pull out model) of no more than nine children for a minimum of five hours per week. Intellectually gifted students in grades 9-12 may be served in an academically gifted pull-out program in a class of seven or fewer (like the one for intellectually gifted students in grades 2-8) or in an honors/pre-AP/AP class of 14 or fewer students. My research for this prezi involved reading the regulations for the gifted programs in Mississippi and corresponding with two gifted teachers (one recently retired) from Mississippi. If I had not known better, I would hardly believe that my sources were describing the same state. In phase I, students must satisfy the minimal acceptable criteria on any three of seven measures (an intelligence test,
a characteristics of gifted checklist, a creativity test, a leadership assessment,
a cognitive abilities test, an achievment test, and any other state approved local district's measures).
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