Welcome to the Advanced Academics and Gifted and Talented Programs with Waxahachie Independent School District!
We are glad you are here and we look forward to serving the learning needs of gifted and talented and advanced students in our district. In the WISD Gifted and Talented and Advanced Academics Parent Handbook, you will find our goals for services as well as how our policies and procedures align with the Texas State Plan for the Education of Gifted and Talented Students. We offer many opportunities for our students throughout the school year. Information will be sent out throughout the school year through email and will be posted on social media such as Facebook and Twitter. We look forward to working with our students and families!
- Identification - Identify students in grades K-11 who demonstrate an academic need for gifted services using the criteria established by the district, approved by the WISD school board, and in compliance with the state mandates.
- Self-Directed Learners - Develop the students' capacities to become self-directed and to be confident in their ability to research and process information and to create and communicate their findings as they produce and present advanced-level products or performances as well as products and performances of professional quality at the high school exit level.
- Complex Thinking Skills - Enhance and refine the abstract and complex thinking and reasoning of students through more sophisticated creative and critical thinking activities as they reflect and refine their own thinking processes.
- Appropriate Instructional Strategies - Provide students with multiple opportunities to participate in learning experiences using advanced content (within the four core areas) which are defensibly differentiated in depth, complexity, and range through modification to content and/or process and/or product. Students will be able to work independently, with groups of other gifted students, and with groups of non-gifted peers.
State Definition of a Gifted and Talented Student
Texas Education Code EDUC §29.121 Definition: In this subchapter, "gifted and talented student" means a child or youth who performs at, or shows the potential for performing at, a remarkably high level of accomplishment when compared to others of the same age, experience, or environment and who:
- Exhibits high-performance capability in an intellectual, creative, or artistic area;
- Possesses an unusual capacity for leadership; or
- Excels in a specific academic field.
Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, § 1, eff. May 30, 1995.
WISD’s Definition of Gifted and Talented
Waxahachie ISD defines gifted and talented as any child or youth in grades K-12 who performs at, or shows the potential for performing at, a remarkably high level of accomplishment when compared to others of the same age, experience, or environment and who:
- Exhibits high-performance capability in general intellectual ability; or
- Excels in one or more specific academic fields: math, science, language arts, and/or social studies.
Students who participate in services designed for gifted students will demonstrate skills in self-directed learning, thinking, research, and communication as evidenced by the development of innovative products and performances that are advanced in relation to students of similar age, experience, or environment and reflect individuality and creativity. High school graduates who have participated in services for gifted students will have produced products and performances of professional quality as part of their program services.
-Texas State Plan for the Education of Gifted and Talented Students
- Texas State Plan for the Education of Gifted and Talented Students, April 2019
- Plan estatal de Texas para la educación de estudiantes superdotados y talentosos, Abril de 2019
The Waxahachie ISD Gifted and Talented Program provides instructional opportunities and other services designed to meet the unique needs of gifted and talented students. The teachers serving identified gifted and talented students have met the state requirements necessary for the assignment of gifted and talented students. As needed, the teacher will meet the students’ needs through modified delivery of instruction by accelerating and/or providing for greater depth, complex content, and enrichment activities. Students who participate in services designed for gifted students will demonstrate skills in self-directed learning, thinking, research, and communication, as evidenced by the development of innovative products and performances that are advanced in relation to students of similar age, experience, or environment and that, reflect individuality and creativity. High school graduates who have participated in services for gifted students will produce products and performances of professional quality as part of their program services.
Waxahachie Independent School District offers a variety of learning experiences and opportunities for gifted and talented students in grades K-12 which meet the mandates of the Texas Administrative Code. These services include but are not limited to, integrating Depth and Complexity into the curriculum, requiring advanced-level products and performances, and allowing identified gifted and talented students the opportunity to work with other identified students.
A continuum of gifted and talented learning experiences will be provided which will lead to the development of advanced-level products and/or performances. Such services will include use of Depth and Complexity elements, differentiation of content, process and/or product in the regular or Pre-AP, AP, and Dual Credit classroom, a cluster classroom model, participation in regional gifted and talented student seminars, independent studies, participation in the Texas Performance Standards Project, concurrent or dual-enrollment classes, and other services as deemed appropriate for the student. Services are available in all four core academic areas, including Language Arts, Math, Science, and Social Studies. Identified students will work independently, with other identified students, and with students of other abilities.
Documentation of services will be maintained and parents will be notified of in-school and out-of-school options during the school year that are relevant to the needs of the gifted and talented students. Students at the elementary level will be monitored through Advanced Learning Plans (ALP). For profoundly gifted students, credit by examination is available through Melissa Abadie, Director of Advanced Academics, to assist students in acceleration through classes and/or grade levels.
- Melissa Abadie
- K. Sabrina Ballard
- Joy Cook
- Lisa Pearrow
- Theresa Smithey
- Christie Wittenburg