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    Joined: Nov 2010
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    Originally Posted by mnmom23
    Originally Posted by landofthelost
    The problem we now have is her score in the map test stayed the same in math now as it was in Nov. so they feel her strong subject is reading and will probably tell us subject acceleration in math is out.
    [b]This may be stating the obvious, but it is entirely possible that her math MAP score did not go up because she was not being taught anything new.[/b

    This is what I think. I also am going to ask if she only had a certain amount of time to complete the test or if she got through it all. This may have also had something to do with it.

    As far as any kind of acceleration we have talked it till we are blue in the face with them. If we want to go further with it we have to go before the board(which after this meeting may be what we do), but they will not approve it themselves. This is their method and that is that.

    I just want to be as knowledgeable about differentiation as I can be. I guess I feel if I go in there asking the right questions and they can't provide me with concrete proof the staff is highly trained, then that will be our argument to the board. I want them to prove that differentiation just isn't a buzz word they throw out there to placate parents. They better have the substance to back it up. IMO, if they can't then dd should be accelerated as that is the only way they are capable of meeting her needs at this time.

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    I know they say they won't do an official IEP, but can you give them a week to 10 days to physically show you the enrichment materials and to come up with a daily or weekly schedule of how they will enrich, what time will be set aside during the daily schedule, and what instruction she will be given? After your meeting with them, I would write them a letter thanking them for the meeting, summarizing what you understand their position to be, and formally asking for this information (with the deadline included). If they don't do this, then I, personally, would absolutely be going to the board. although it would be a shame if it had to get to that. If they do what you ask, then I would write another letter, reiterating the schedule and material that they have provided for you so that you will then have an written account of their offer.

    Please let us know how the meeting goes!


    She thought she could, so she did.
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    As a teacher, yes differentiation is the buzzword of the day. It is a great idea in theory but difficult in practice. Just one more thing to ask " are they ensuring that students who are on IEP's and performing significantly below grade level will not be in your child's class." the reason I ask is that it is completely unreasonable to expect one teacher to differentiate for students both 2 stadard deviations below and 2 standard deviations above grade level. This will let them know you are aware of what the lingo is. I agree don't sign until you can review. I also have asked to tape a meeting so that no one can go back and say something wasn't said.

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    Originally Posted by landofthelost
    As far as any kind of acceleration we have talked it till we are blue in the face with them. If we want to go further with it we have to go before the board(which after this meeting may be what we do), but they will not approve it themselves. This is their method and that is that.

    Does your state's RTI document or other gifted policy statements contain criteria for subject or grade acceleration? I find that if I use the bureaucracy's own words to support what I want, it is harder for them to dismiss me out of hand.
    Originally Posted by landofthelost
    I want them to prove that differentiation just isn't a buzz word they throw out there to placate parents. They better have the substance to back it up.


    The problem that we have found is that people throw around the word "differentiation" as if there is some standardized format for taking kids beyond the standard curriculum. It is heavily teacher dependent. Some teachers do it naturally, with no training. Others can have all the training in the world but just do not possess the mental flexibility to make it work consistently. I would try to talk to other parents about their experiences with the teachers proposed for next year. See if you can find out if one of the two has that natural gift to meet kids at their level. Then, try to lobby for placement with that teacher.

    Also, I think that you already know this but don't forget to put everything in writing. If they state something will happen, get a name and a date attached to the action item. Review your list with them before the close of the meeting. Circulate an email/letter after the meeting listing each team member's responsibilities. Next year, document your efforts to confirm that these commitments were met. Last, don't forget to thank everyone for their efforts to provide your child with a meaningful educational experience (even if you have to do it through gritted teeth).

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    Yes, this is for 1st grade. The RTI packet she sent me is actually the model Montana uses. It is something that they use, but isn't part of their policy. From what I understand the GT coordinator is trying to get something like this approved as part of their policy. It is just something she is going to use as part of our dd's plan.

    I do not think they have any intentions of using any kind of pullout program with her. It is all going to be classroom based instruction. They are just going to group the kids who tested high into her class, but it could be just one other child.

    They are being vague at this point on any commitment to how many children it will be and what specific teacher. It is my understanding it will be one of the two who are there, but they don't officially assign teachers before the end of the school year. Not even in cases of IEP's, which surprises me.

    I am going to go through with the meeting, but am now starting to lose a lot of my optimism with this as a viable option.

    What happens if the board turns our request down?

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    http://www.wrightslaw.com/bks/feta2/feta2.htm

    Second time tonight I am linking to this book--I would get it today and follow the suggestions--it is a very effective approach and if nothing else one day when you are before a judge with a stack of polite, reasonable, evidence based letters it will persuade the judge to see it your way. (according to pete wright who argued and won a case before supreme court).

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