Disappointing news about testing...

Posted by: pinkpanther

Disappointing news about testing... - 12/20/07 08:41 AM

In my state, kids are screened before they are given an IQ test. Approved screeners are the NNAT, OLSAT, K-BIT, and Slosson. DD9 did not do well on the NNAT because she's highly verbal and weak on visual-spatial. The school told me that they don't use the K-BIT and Slosson because they're "too hard", and all kids will take the OLSAT in 3rd grade anyway. I did some digging and found out (from the gifted specialist at the state dept. of ed)that the reason no one uses these two screeners is because the tests have been poorly administered in the past and kids were also passing questions to each other. As a result, the state raised the cutoff scores so much that it's hard to qualify for services with these tests.

This makes me really angry. My highly verbal kid gets left out as a result of all of this mess, and we really don't have many options since the state doesn't accept private testing. I can request a more verbal screener, but what's the point? We're hoping she does well on the OLSAT in the spring...

Thanks for letting me vent.
Posted by: EandCmom

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 12/20/07 09:34 AM

Pink - I feel your pain!!!! My 2e has gotten left out too because of his 2e-ness and it is just the pits!!! I'm sorry - I know it is very disappointing. Dottie has a great point though, is your program worth the fight?? I decided ours was not worth it and that it is just their loss they don't get to have my funny, highly verbal child in there. (great way to spin it right???) LOL! If your is worth it, then maybe you can find a way to fight it.
Posted by: pinkpanther

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 12/20/07 09:37 AM

Yes and no. They don't do much in grades 3-5 but pull-out a few hours per week. However, they do go on great field trips to museums and things like that. DD's teacher told me that although she's not a huge fan of the program, she thinks that DD really needs it because she's so advanced, especially in math.

In middle school, GT kids have more placement options in terms of advanced classes. It's really just an issue of advocacy at this point. Fortunately, she's got a great teacher who is really trying to push her ahead. It's just not enough.

From what I've read, it is recommended that the NNAT NOT be used with highly verbal kids, and it makes me angry that it's the school's only option. I think she will do much better on the OLSAT because of the verbal component.

DD6 will face the NNAT soon because we're having her screened this year. She's much better at visual-spatial tasks than DD9, so it might not be an issue at all for her. Stinks for DD9, though. Her intellectual peers (and social peers) are in GATE. She's actually helping them with math.
Posted by: delbows

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 12/20/07 09:38 AM

My first question is the same as Dottie's. Is even it worth it?

My suggestion would be to get the private testing anyway. Maybe they would at least accept the individually administered results as a screener. How could they possibly argue with that request?
Posted by: pinkpanther

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 12/20/07 09:43 AM

Originally Posted By: delbows

My suggestion would be to get the private testing anyway. Maybe they would at least accept the individually administered results as a screener. How could they possibly argue with that request?


We've considered that option. Since she takes the OLSAT in a few months anyway, it may not be necessary. If she scores high enough on the OLSAT, she can qualify for an individually administered IQ test at school. We may do it anyway, though.
Posted by: Grinity

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 12/20/07 10:46 AM

Pink,
Does your DD like tests? If so, perhaps request the K-BIT and Slosson anyway. There is a chance that even if the bar is 'rediculously high' that she would pass it with ease.

I also like the idea of private assesment. This year's teacher sounds like a gem, but I wonder if subject acceleration or a grade skip will be part of the solution for your daughter. You could try to formally apply for the full grade skip for next year as a way to rush the individualized testing. In the end, no matter what the test says, "Gifted is as Gifted does." IF you daughter is doing the advanced work, that is reason enough.

Best Wishes,
Grinity
Posted by: pinkpanther

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/01/08 07:30 AM

Just a quick update after last night's 3rd grade open house...

DD9's teacher approached me and brought up the GATE testing and how shocked/sorry she was that DD didn't pass screening. She told me that she had let the GATE teachers know exactly how she felt about DD--that she had taught 3rd grade for 16? (I forgot exactly how long she said) years, and she KNOWS DD's gifted. She also said she's going to make specific teacher recommendations for DD for next year since some will be better matches for her in terms of being able to give her what she needs. AND, the teacher is also going to talk to the new teacher about fighting for DD. Wow! DD really has made an impression on her teacher!

I've been doing research and documenting in an effort to advocate for DD. I still don't know what the best alternative is for her. We won't get OLSAT results until late in the summer. Maybe we should consider private testing this summer just to give us more ammo.

I know I've complained about little things with DD's teacher, but overall she's a gem. I just wanted to share...

Happy Friday!
Posted by: kimck

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/01/08 07:56 AM

I'm so glad you have an advocate for you at the school! That's great. That teacher does sound like a gem. Private testing may be a good idea and then you'll hopefully know exactly what you should advocate for, if nothing else.

Good luck! Keep us posted!
Posted by: Grinity

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/01/08 08:36 AM

Originally Posted By: pinkpanther
She also said she's going to make specific teacher recommendations for DD for next year since some will be better matches for her in terms of being able to give her what she needs. AND, the teacher is also going to talk to the new teacher about fighting for DD. Wow! DD really has made an impression on her teacher!


I think specific teacher reccomendations (if they are followed) is some of the best news you can get. A teacher-advocate for your child is probably the best thing you can hope for.

I really also think that you need private testing ASAP. My cynical side says that if the teacher is noticing your child's giftedness then they are either 'way smart' or in that nice bright, 'educable' group that teachers tend to love. ((Although the Math a few grades up tends to make me doubt that.)) Still, I think that the chance that you can get a clearer insight into her needs is worth the price of individualized testing with a tester who is very familar with both GT and Highly/Profoundly gifted kids.

Either way, Best Wishes,
Grinity
Posted by: pinkpanther

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/01/08 08:53 AM

I've often wondered if she's just "in that bright, educable group" but she continues to stay ahead of her peers, especially in reading and writing. She also has an unusual memory. She can tell me about a book she's reading with great detail, practically quoting certain passages. It's uncanny.

Also, it recently snowed here (yes, in AL). The last time it snowed here she was a year old, and we were living in a different house. She's never seen any pictures of herself in the snow, and we haven't talked about it, but I overheard her telling her sister about playing in the snow with Mom at her old house. Weird.

I agree that we need private testing. The money...ugh!
Posted by: cym

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/01/08 11:12 AM

I know of at least one kid who didn't screen gifted but was privately tested in EG/PG range.
Posted by: pinkpanther

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/11/08 08:00 AM

My psychologist friend gave DD9 the WASI yesterday. He had been planning on giving her the new SB to get more experience with it, but he changed his mind. I think during the car ride on the way over he realized how verbal she was and that the WISC would be better. I don't know why he didn't give her the full WISC, but he did mention that if she has a test at school it would be the WISC and he didn't want to give her the same thing.

Anyway, I have forgotten some of the specifics (I've emailed him to find out), but her verbal score was in the 99th percentile (140 if I remember correctly). Her lowest of the four subtests was block design, but she was still in the 90th percentile on that. She does appear to have a verbal/performance discrepancy, and the psych did mention that visual tasks were harder for her. I can't remember her FSIQ right now. I was just glad to hear the 140 verbal number!

Although this was a quick estimate, it does justify what DH and I have said about DD9 all along--that she's verbally gifted.
Posted by: pinkpanther

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/11/08 10:40 AM

He said the subtests were similar but not identical and that retesting shouldn't be an issue.

He said we would get back together and discuss it in greater detail. I think he will at the very least give me a copy of the resuls. Hopefully, I can push him for a little more.

He also said that after the testing he talked with DD about general test-taking strategies and what to expect from a full assessment. Even though it was a short assessment, he seemed to have her pegged by the end of it. He picked up on her habit of second-guessing herself on items with which she's not as comfortable. I told him about her 110 on the NNAT, and he said the second-guessing could have contributed. The weird thing is that she scored in the superior range on the matrix part of the WASI. She was much more comfortable with him than she was at the school screening, though.
Posted by: pinkpanther

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/11/08 10:58 AM

Thanks! I agree with you about not believing the silly things the school says. I think that in the last 24 hours I've gone from elated to irritated (at the school).

Yes, this definitely makes me want to do full testing. I just don't know what the best course of action is at this point. The school doesn't accept outside testing for GATE placement, but they will consider it as a referral. Since DD was screened in the fall, she is supposed to wait a year to be screened again. I'm sure this is so the aptitude portion will be valid. Maybe they would go ahead and give her the WISC based on her WASI score? She also takes the OLSAT this spring, and I know the school will argue that I wait for that. If DD qualifies automatically with the OLSAT, great. If we go ahead and do the WISC testing now and the school needs to do further testing after the OLSAT, we might have a retesting issue.

Maybe the psych will have some advice.
Posted by: Grinity

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/12/08 03:32 PM

((frustration noise))
Just thought I'd add a little music for you to spin your head to!

Frankly, I think that once you have a little bitin writing from your psychologist friend, you are in position to go to the Principle and become a crying lump in her office. This is just ridiculous. Again, if you had a happy child waiting would be fine,(maybe) but you don't - you've been a good girl long enough, I think it's time to be a squeaky, and wet, wheel!

Does you school do WISC testing for kids who screen into the gifted program? If so, ask them to start the WISC now based on your preliminary results and her need. Tell them that your little one needs help NOW, not 'in the spring' - which turns into next year. Tell them Grinity said so, ((LOL))

Smiles,
Grinity
Posted by: pinkpanther

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/13/08 07:42 AM

DH and I have been talking a lot since Sunday about how we should handle this. Fighting the system is so complicated, and we want to do it the right way. What's worse, DD has been having stomach aches and not wanting to go to school. She swears nothing's wrong, but DH and I think differently...

Yes, our school system uses the WISC and SB, depending on the kid's strengths. I have no doubt they would use the WISC on DD. I think it's pretty much their standard test unless a kid shows great visual or mathematical strengths.
Posted by: incogneato

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/13/08 08:10 AM

Hi Pink,

Sorry to hear what is going on with DD. Fighting the system is very complicated. Why don't you think in terms or working with them to solve the situation.
Any success I've had so far is with the: let's work together approach. For sure, I'm still in the middle of things, we're not out of the woods either.
I have an HG kindergartener who thinks she is stupid because K teacher doesn't think she is special. Yesterday she announced it is really K teacher who is stupid, but she still likes her. smile

Could you get people behind you to help with talks at the school. The stomache ache thing is a big deal. We were just at the pediatrician's and there is actually a medical term for kids who have stomache aches because of discomfort at school. Of course I can't remember the name of it!
If you tell the school, look, my child is so upset at school she is having physical symtoms, something needs to change, let's have a meeting......Hopefully that is a good place to start.

What about you friend that is the psychologist friend? Could he/she help you.

You can get a lawyer and people have been successful doing that. If it came down to it, and I exhausted all my options and alternative schooling wasn't an option either, I would get a lawyer too.

But what can be done before now and then?

I think a school will respond better if they understand the child is not doing well emotionally because they are not being challenged. For some kids I believe it literally hurts to be bored.
I don't think they are as understanding when they think we are supercompetitive moms setting unrealistic expectations for our children because we are tied to our children's success in an unhealthy way. Unfortunately this is a common misconception.

Or, they just read that awful book Dottie spoke about.

You'll never know unless you get in there and get your hands a little dirty.

We are cheering for you Pink, whatever you do.

Incog
Posted by: pinkpanther

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/13/08 09:02 AM

Originally Posted By: incogneato
Sorry to hear what is going on with DD. Fighting the system is very complicated. Why don't you think in terms or working with them to solve the situation.
Any success I've had so far is with the: let's work together approach. For sure, I'm still in the middle of things, we're not out of the woods either.
Incog


Thanks, Incog! Yes, I definitely think the "work with" approach is the way to go. DH and I have decided that however we decide to handle it, we at least need to sit down with them and let them know about the info we have and how we feel. A good heart-to-heart is definitely in order. DD's teacher has been such a supporter that I have no doubt she's on our side. I have mixed feelings about getting my psych friend involved in something messy, but if he's willing, then okay.

The stomach ache thing actually started with headaches and then evolved into both. After several doctor visits and an MRI, the pediatrician concluded it's migraines, which can manifest themselves abdominally in kids. The funny thing is, she had NO symptoms over Christmas break.
Posted by: Grinity

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/13/08 01:21 PM

Originally Posted By: pinkpanther
The stomach ache thing actually started with headaches and then evolved into both. After several doctor visits and an MRI, the pediatrician concluded it's migraines, which can manifest themselves abdominally in kids. The funny thing is, she had NO symptoms over Christmas break.


Heart to Heart is just right! My best friend in HS, who I loved for his recitals of Monty Python skits, was also the class Validictorian, and had ulcers in high school as well. He said at the time it was because of all the pressure he put on himself. Look back I have to wonder if his perfectionism wasn't a result of years of being in a poor fit classroom and never having been taught at his 'readiness level.' Even though he has done well in life (I hear from my Mom) the price just seems so unnescessarily high! According to his mom, he would have liked to ask me out romantically, but didn't have the nerve...would elementary level experience with taking on tough challenges and overcoming them have given him the self esteem to do that? The world will never know.

So Pink - take heart! Your daughter is 'acting in' where my son used to 'act out' but the message is the same: "Help!" Please take this with the same seriousness of purpose you would if your DD were biting kids and throwing chairs - because her inner pain is the inner-directed eqivalent, ok? Her school really really needs to know about this, in all it's ugly details.

((hugs and pats))
Grinity
Posted by: incogneato

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/13/08 01:48 PM

I agree wholeheartedly. Whether it's migraines, stomaches aches or "I'm the dumbest one in class."
It is a cry for help and the onice is on us to fix it.
I think the school will listen.
Migraines are often stress induced.
I get migraines, they stink. I also tend to get them when I'm not sleeping well. Also, can be stress related.
Look around the school. Are there special needs kids getting their needs met?
I see all kinds of kids get one on one teacher time for HOURS per day because spanish is their first language and they need to learn English to learn. That's great, I love to see the school providing this service, I think they should.
And I'm not shy about asking for special services for my special children if/when they need it.

Incog
Posted by: pinkpanther

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/13/08 02:14 PM

Originally Posted By: Grinity
So Pink - take heart! Your daughter is 'acting in' where my son used to 'act out' but the message is the same: "Help!" Please take this with the same seriousness of purpose you would if your DD were biting kids and throwing chairs - because her inner pain is the inner-directed eqivalent, ok? Her school really really needs to know about this, in all it's ugly details.

((hugs and pats))
Grinity


I never really even considered that as a possibility until recently, and now it makes so much sense! Thanks.
Posted by: Kriston

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/13/08 02:16 PM

I had migraines as a kid. They went away about the time I got out of elementary school. I always figured that was because of some hormonal change, but maybe they stopped because of the increased challenge that middle school presented to me.

That I'm having migraines again now, some 25-30 years later--what does that mean then?

Anyway, I just wanted to chime in that I wouldn't take migraines or stomachaches lightly.

K-
Posted by: pinkpanther

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/13/08 02:22 PM

Really? Your DD, too? This is really fascinating. I'm just kicking myself for not really thinking about this earlier. DD does tend to internalize things and put pressure on herself, but I never made the connection.

I think the same may be true for my DD in terms of her early years. She went to 4K-1st at a private school that offers a more challenging curriculum (the kids work a year ahead).
Posted by: pinkpanther

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/13/08 02:26 PM

You, too? Does anyone know if there is any research connecting giftedness and migraines?

I asked our pediatrician if she thought it could be hormonal, but she said she didn't think so. I can't remember now what her reasons were, though. One of the first questions she asked us, though, was how school was going.

We are definitely going to take it seriously.
Posted by: pinkpanther

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/13/08 02:29 PM

Originally Posted By: Dottie
DD11, my creative child was interestingly enough...a "nurse abuser" in K-4th. DD13 was a HUGE rule follower, but DD11 always found a way out of doing what she didn't want to do.


LOL! Your girls seem to be a lot like mine. DD9 is my rule follower (the internalizer). DD6 doesn't really try to get out of work (yet), but she definitely goes mentally AWOL on tasks that are repetitive or boring for her. I guess her way of escaping is more mental rather than physical.
Posted by: Kriston

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/13/08 02:32 PM

It makes sense that there's some connection with GTness, though I haven't seen any specific studies. The increased sensitivity of GT kids--particularly to stress--combined with the increased stress in the lives of underchallenged GT kids seems likely to make them migraine targets. (or at least more likely than ND kids, anyway...)

Migraines also run in families, just as GTness does. My mom and uncle have migraines, and though I don't know for sure, I'd guess both are probably vanilla GT or MG, perhaps higher. I also know that if one or more of your parents have migraines, chances are you will have them, too. (My sister and I both get them, and we were both GT kids.)

Dunno if that helps...
Posted by: Kriston

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/13/08 03:07 PM

I googled migraine and gifted children and found these things--though I don't vouch for my sources. This is the Internet, and I'm not doing any fact-checking, plus some may be multiple citations of the same basic source. I'm not looking too closely...

http://www.riage.org/perfectionism.html (par. 2 especially)

http://stuartbuck.blogspot.com/2004/04/gifted-children.html (the link didn't work, so this one is really questionable...)

http://www.aph.gov.au/Senate/Committee/eet_ctte/completed_inquiries/1999-02/gifted/report/c02.doc (see esp. the intro and section 2.9.)

http://books.google.com/books?id=QD4_wZM...5eeKhXtrSGcw98g

Basically, it looks like it's accepted as fact that perfectionism is more common in GT kids than ND kids, and one of the commonly accepted symptoms of perfectionism is migraine. Ergo, GT kids get migraines more than most kids.

Makes sense, I think. Though I'm not sure it's *just* the perfectionism that causes the migraines. Other stresses--like boredom--would hit even GT kids who aren't perfectionists. I'm betting those are a factor, too.

FWIW...
Posted by: incogneato

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/13/08 05:11 PM

"I had migraines as a kid. They went away about the time I got out of elementary school. I always figured that was because of some hormonal change, but maybe they stopped because of the increased challenge that middle school presented to me.

That I'm having migraines again now, some 25-30 years later--what does that mean then?"

Kriston,
Allergies can also kick off migraines. Any chance you could be allergic to elementary school teachers?

HEE HEE HEE

Incog

Posted by: Kriston

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/13/08 05:46 PM

ROFL!

Today I think I'm allergic to elementary students, or at least to the bad attitude that can sometimes accompany them (and that definitely accompanied mine today!). Argh.
Posted by: Grinity

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/13/08 07:40 PM

Originally Posted By: Dottie
DD11, my creative child was interestingly enough...a "nurse abuser" in K-4th. DD13 was a HUGE rule follower, but DD11 always found a way out of doing what she didn't want to do. On her preschool evaluation it was noted that she had to go to the bathroom daily just minutes before the regular cleanup time. And then from K on....we had literally dozens of nurse slips for all kinds of excuses. I never before thought of that as something to do with giftedness. What do we call that one Grin? Acting Elsewhere Altogether?


Oh Dottie Dear! It's called 'curriculum compacting' - hee hee hee! Your DD11 is a take-charge kind of kid.

Smiles,
Grinity
Posted by: Just ducky

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/13/08 08:45 PM

Okay, seriously, allergic to elementary teachers??? We are ALL wonderful beings and we ALL love our jobs and do them equally well. There was a mold made and it was perfect!!!

All kidding aside, I won't go as far as saying that migraines and gifted go together, but it makes sense. The same as my "nurse abuser" needs some extra TLC. I know that she is often "sick" because someone needs to give her some special attention. (And yes, she is often making herself physically sick.) The same way, I have a very emotional, very "highly talented" (I'm trying to practice that phrase since it is our new term you know) that I can watch his wheels turn and almost see him get frantic in front of my eyes.

Sometimes it may be because the challenge isn't there, but (don't be upset with me here) most of the time he stresses when I throw something out there that is a true challenge and stretches him. I truly believe that he is afraid of not being perfect and making a mistake.

Hopefully if we get a program going in the primary grades we will be over that by 4th grade. However, somewhere those kids have to learn that they aren't perfect and it is okay to make a mistake. That is probably going to be in a classroom where they are being challenged.


He is beginning to relax, but this year my other really top notch boys have pulled him in socially. I will forever be indebted to those young men because they have offered something that NO teacher could. Every child needs a friend and he just didn't fit. Somehow, they made him fit and he is one of the guys.

I like the phrase "work with" the schools. I can tell you that the other approach may get what you want, but in all likelihood it will not be delivered in the way you want it. None of us like to have the kid that the parent has made life a living nightmare for someone before us. (Been there/ done that and it is not fun.) Yes, you need to get what is right for you child, but PLEASE try the semi-calm approach first. I DO not even want to have your child (perfect fit for my class or not), if I know that you are the parent ogre.

One last thought, and this is gifted child or not, do find out what might be going on at school. There are so many factors having nothing to do with the educational aspect at all. Is someone bullying your child? I have fourth graders that are petrified of one of our sixth graders. He is Soooooooooo much bigger than they are and he bosses them around. Not really mean, just domineering. Is the teacher there? Having just been gone (for only two days), I had some major complaints from parents about kid complaints they never have gotten before about not wanting to come to school. The list is endless. Kids (and teachers) can be cruel. Please check.....you DO have a problem.

Kriston, today I am not allergic to those elementary kids. They just make me sick.
(Literally!!! The flu is going around, along with strep, and a bunch of other unnamed germs. My students' absences have been unreal!! In fact, we have truly been nurse (AB)users this past couple of weeks!)
Posted by: Grinity

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/14/08 02:51 AM

Originally Posted By: Just ducky
The same way, I have a very emotional, very "highly talented" (I'm trying to practice that phrase since it is our new term you know) that I can watch his wheels turn and almost see him get frantic in front of my eyes.

Sometimes it may be because the challenge isn't there, but (don't be upset with me here) most of the time he stresses when I throw something out there that is a true challenge and stretches him. I truly believe that he is afraid of not being perfect and making a mistake.


I'm not upset with you Ducky, I think that this is a good observation. My son too would 'show' lots of signs of stress when finally I started Afterschooling him and getting him some information that was at his 'readiness level.' So I had a ringside seat. Also, in early el. I'd get reports of wild 'age-innapropriate' behavior during the 1% of the time they would give him an assignment that he didn't feel he could do. ((Crying or Deer in Headlights or telling the teacher "No, my way is better" all highly innapropriate in a 2nd grader. Usually to a writing prompt, or being asked to edit a writing assignment.))

But I don't think that this is a different stress than the headaches and tummyaches of "I don't want to go to school." I think it's all part of the same "Poor Fit" package. I call it the Goldilocks problem: When a child is so used to everything being easy and boring, challenging work really scares them. Everything becomes "too easy or too hard" and it takes a while to find the "just right" in level and pace.

During the afterschooling, I told myself over and over: Yes, he has lots of feeling right now, but if we weather this storm now, together, he won't be stuck doing this alone away at college. I remembered that all through 3rd and already in 4th grade, his friend has been used to sitting down to 30, and then 45 minutes of homework afterschool, EVERY schoolday. ((I'm not a big fan of homework, but at least it can be a sign that the child is developing some experience with effort+academics)) My son didn't get to gradually 'ramp up' his 'bottom power' but was infrequently being asked to exceed it, and yes, looking very stressed. The big difference is that after the time with me gradually streching himself, he looked proud and pleased. This never occured with the daily 'I'm too sick'stress.

Sylvia Rimm has a wonderful book that was my guide, "Why bright kids get poor grades" about underachievement and perfectionism and rescue. My only complaint is that it's aimed at an ND audience, and so she spends 8/9th of the book pointing to parent behavior and coaching change, only to sneak in at the end that , of course, all these signs and symptoms can also be seen amoung the highly gifted kids who are truly underchallenged in the regular classroom.

I agree that having a peer group is key, but for whatever reason, some kids have a much better chance at finding their peers in classes with older kids. My son was able to find some other brigh bored boys to hang out with and really enjoy in 4th grade. By the end of the year he had partners in the 'no work ethic' club. At your school I can't imgaine it happening, but most other places, a kid who isn't highly adaptable, is going to need friends and academic challenge - neither is dispensible.
Posted by: incogneato

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/14/08 04:26 AM

Gee, I need to start getting up earlier. smile

Just Ducky,

I am so sorry. I was trying to make a funny and I didn't mean it to be at your expense. It refers back to much earlier posts when Kriston was telling us about a very bad experience with her son's teacher which resulted in her home schooling.

You are obviously an excellent teacher and I wish you were at my child's school.

I firmly believe we should work with the schools to to have our children's needs met, that's what I'm currently doing. I have the greatest respect for teachers, it's a hard job.

On the other hand, I also believe exceptional and highly gifted children seem to be the last group of outside the norm kids to have their different learning needs met in school. I think we have far to go in this respect and I plan to make my mark, so to speak, in the process of improvement.

Incog
Posted by: pinkpanther

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/14/08 08:56 AM

Okay, so here's the latest after talking with the psych friend. DD's VIQ was 140, her PIQ was 119, and her FSIQ was 134. There's definitely a discrepancy there which totally explains DD's low NNAT score and the reason she was denied entrance into GATE. The phych asked me what the school cutoff was, so I explained how it all worked (130+ on individual test or 17 out of 20 points on a matrix for schools that screen, like ours). He was very puzzled at the school's reasoning for using only a nonverbal screener because he said a verbal score is a much better indicator. He said we should consider asking the school to do the WISC or have it done privately.

Here's the rub. My friend doesn't want to produce a writeup of her WASI because he's our friend and it would not be ethical. I completely understand this. He said that he's given 900+ WASI's, so he feels very confident that these scores are an accurate reflection of her abilities. He's definitely concerned for DD and on our side in all of this, but he also wants to do the right thing professionally.

So now what we need is hard core evidence for the school. Whether that's in the form of writing samples or private testing results, I don't know. Then there's still the OLSAT in the spring. I just don't know the right way to approach this. My friend can definitely recommend someone to test DD privately if we choose that route.

DH and I are having lunch today...there will be lots to talk about.
Posted by: Kriston

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/14/08 09:17 AM

Yes, 'Neato's joke was completely at the expense of one particular teacher, JD! She was the reason we're practicing "emergency homeschooling" this year.

She made my gentle attempts at advocacy a referendum on her teaching ability. How does a parent deal with it when the TEACHER makes it personal? So unprofessional! I apologized to try to get the train back on the tracks, and she ignored my apology. Meanwhile, my son's acting out got worse as he grew more unhappy. We saw no good solution to this impossible situation, and we pulled him out for HSing. It was highly unpleasant, so we laugh to keep us from crying/punching something/having a nervous breakdown.

So no, not you! So not you! Oh, SOOOOO not you! If you had been my son's teacher, we'd be baking you things every week to say thank you for the amazing you're doing! Not yanking our kids from the classroom.

P.S. I also agree that the challenge=deer in headlights is an accurate assessment of a common situation. You're not likely to get argument from anyone here about that! It's one of the reasons we all want our kids to be challenged early in pre-K/elementary school. How else will they learn to deal with challenge in a healthy manner?
Posted by: Grinity

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/14/08 11:43 AM

Hey! Dottie's book can't be any worse than my new book club's current fiction selection. I have to highlight just to see where I've read....

But on I press!


PinkP,
Congrates on the scores, I guess the question is, can he get you an appointment with a collegue this week and can he choose one who can get the write up done within 2 weeks? Sorry about the money, but in the face of her physical health, - just say "GO!"

A verbal score of 140 is solidly above the Moderately Gifted Range. I say that because WISC or SBV 145 on VIQ is Davidson YSP's version of PG, and 140 is only 1/3rd of a Standard Deviation away from that, no matter what the full scale score says.

I also think that part of what made school hard for my son around 2nd grade was his 'spiky' profile, 99.9 on VIQ, but much lower on PIQ. I think it meant that he could notice that many children who couldn't 'think' as well as he could, could 'do school' better than he could. Very confusing - From his 2nd grade teacher's point of view it was: "He must just not be trying, because he stumbles on the worksheets but rescues me time and time again during class discussions."

So I say, do not delay - kiss your hopes of normality and your money good-by. Not sure that the school will accept the score, but I predict that you will feel much more grounded. Think of it as training expense in your unpaid job as parent, if that helps.

Smiles,
Grinity
Posted by: Just ducky

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 02/15/08 04:40 AM

Neato,
As I get ready to head out the door, let me assure you that there is no need for apology. I know exactly what you are talking about. We all either had or still know teachers exactly like the one described. For me it was fourth grade (ironic that is now what I teach) and a little of third. Fortunately, in fifth I had a wonderful teacher that made my light bulb come on a little brighter. She made me want to learn and probably had the most influence in my wanting to become a teacher.

You know this is almost ironic, too, because a dear friend called last night asking for advice for his fourth grade teacher daughter. Some parents apparently had complained to the principal and the teacher was ripped apart because of it. She was told how awful she was, with no advice. I think, partly because of reading all that you all have written, my advice was very quick to come.

The one thing that I commend all of you on is that it sounds like you always start with the teacher. THAT is the number one thing to me. It never gets passed on exactly by the principal, so I truly admire the parent coming to me first. I had an issue a few years ago that the order came from the superintendent to move the child. (It involved some family issues more than teaching issues, but it floored me!! My principal had asked me a question about the two girls earlier, but I knew little else and then I get a message from the super's office to move one of the girls. My choosing, but one was to be moved. Had the parent at least come to me that might have been a little easier. Here I am moving a student from my room and really have no clue about the dynamics. Fortunately, I had enough insight from listening to the girls between themselves that I made the right decision. I know that, because the other girl's dad later told me that had I made the other choice in the move, he would have been at the super's office.)

My point being, you all seem to make the teacher the FIRST contact. I appreciate that for my colleagues. I am not saying that you should not move to the other levels. In these situations the administration MUST know what is going on.

I also truly believe that the higher ability are the last group that WE consider. They are the ones that give us the least concern when it comes to the measurable consequences (STATE TESTS) of our jobs usually. That doesn't mean that it is right. With our new mandate here in Indiana, I know that my colleagues are getting worried. The announcement I made this week does have them thinking. We are currently on the chopping block for below state average passing scores on ISTEP+ so everyone is focused there. Then I announce the complexities of the new LAW for high ability. The first question, are you willing to go back there to teach because we aren't sure we can do ALL of this. (I am not sure we can either and it worries me.) However, THEY are not going to hire someone, UNFORTUNATELY, to help us at the top. (Forget how much help, albeit not working, that we have for remediation and special education.)

Must go see my hacking, snotty nosed class!!! Wonder how many will be absent today?


Posted by: pinkpanther

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 03/28/08 06:17 PM

Originally Posted By: pinkpanther
Okay, so here's the latest after talking with the psych friend. DD's VIQ was 140, her PIQ was 119, and her FSIQ was 134. There's definitely a discrepancy there which totally explains DD's low NNAT score and the reason she was denied entrance into GATE. The phych asked me what the school cutoff was, so I explained how it all worked (130+ on individual test or 17 out of 20 points on a matrix for schools that screen, like ours). He was very puzzled at the school's reasoning for using only a nonverbal screener because he said a verbal score is a much better indicator. He said we should consider asking the school to do the WISC or have it done privately.

Here's the rub. My friend doesn't want to produce a writeup of her WASI because he's our friend and it would not be ethical. I completely understand this. He said that he's given 900+ WASI's, so he feels very confident that these scores are an accurate reflection of her abilities. He's definitely concerned for DD and on our side in all of this, but he also wants to do the right thing professionally.

So now what we need is hard core evidence for the school. Whether that's in the form of writing samples or private testing results, I don't know. Then there's still the OLSAT in the spring. I just don't know the right way to approach this. My friend can definitely recommend someone to test DD privately if we choose that route.

DH and I are having lunch today...there will be lots to talk about.


DH and I decided to write a letter to the school/school system and see what we could get from them in terms of more testing. After a month of waiting for a response (I did nag a few times via email), they are offering to test DD9 with another screener, probably the RIST. I'm not terribly crazy about this choice because it's a very short assessment, but it does have a verbal component. Since the system screens, the gifted ed specialist gives the screeners, so that's why it has to be a B level assessment (i.e. nothing thorough mad). If DD scores high enough to place, we're done. If she doesn't, but scores high enough for further testing, they will do that but the psychometrist is booked up into June.

DD is also taking the OLSAT/SAT next week. So, our other option is to opt out of the RIST and wait for OLSAT scores. The school gets the scores in late July or early August, and then they will look at her scores to see if she qualifies.

I only forgot to ask one thing: If DD tanks the RIST or falls short in individual testing this summer, will they still look at her OLSAT scores? I can't imagine why the answer would be no, but I'll have to ask. If the answer is yes, then I guess we have nothing to lose by requesting the testing now.

When I inquired about private testing, I was told that they could only use the results as a referral and not for placement. mad

Is this progress? All of this is making me nervous/sick!

Posted by: Ann

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 03/28/08 08:12 PM

Originally Posted By: pinkpanther
I only forgot to ask one thing: If DD tanks the RIST or falls short in individual testing this summer, will they still look at her OLSAT scores? I can't imagine why the answer would be no, but I'll have to ask. If the answer is yes, then I guess we have nothing to lose by requesting the testing now.

When I inquired about private testing, I was told that they could only use the results as a referral and not for placement. mad

Is this progress? All of this is making me nervous/sick!


PinkPanther Ė

Iím sorry you feel nervous and sick Ė yuck! Hopefully their answer will be *yes* and you can request testing now. I really donít understand their position on private testing. Iím glad that you have the support of your DH.

{{{hugs}}}
Ann
Posted by: EandCmom

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 03/29/08 08:54 AM

I wonder why they won't accept private testing? That seems strange. Maybe they just want results they are in control of?

I understand your frustration and I am so sorry they are putting you through this. Hopefully you'll get some good news before too long!!

EandC
Posted by: pinkpanther

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 03/29/08 09:44 AM

Here's what the letter said concerning private testing.

"Should you seek private testing, that would be at your own expense but the information may be considered as a part of the screening process to determine if further evaluations are warranted. However, assessments and evaluations administered and used to determine eligibility are to be administered by personnel employed and under the supervision of [school system]. Therefore, while you may seek private testing at your own expense, the results of that testing would only be used as a part of the screening process and not for determining eligibility for gifted services."

I think it's ridiculous that a kid with a 130+ on a privately administered assessment must then be tested again by their people. At this point, I guess private testing isn't worth it. On the other hand, they're going to decide whether to give her more testing based on a 10 minute screener? Yes, I do think it's a control issue.

She will get in eventually, whether it's through the screener and more testing or the OLSAT. It's just not going to be easy. I guess that's the price we pay for being in such a large school system that serves so many kids.
Posted by: calizephyr

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 03/29/08 10:38 AM

I was told that our public school would not accept private scores because the expense makes them discriminatory against those who cannot afford them. It took me three years to have my daughter tested
Posted by: Ann

Re: Disappointing news about testing... - 03/29/08 01:29 PM

Pink - "[T]hey're going to decide whether to give her more testing based on a 10 minute screener?"

I don't see how it's possible to assess a child in such a short period of time. Talk about unfair.

Calizephyr - "It took me three years to have my daughter tested."

WOW!!! Boy do I feel naive.