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Old 07-10-2008, 10:40 AM
 
24 posts, read 108,677 times
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Hi, We live in loundon county. No matter how much reseach I do, I am still totally confused about the gifted/magnet schools. How, when and who decides that a child is gifted? Is there a test or program we need to enroll in?

And are these gifted schools public or private, in essense, do we have to pay tuition? I keep hearing that the best GT schools or programs are in Fairfax county. Can a loundon county resident join those schools? what are the best elementary schools in Fairfax or loundon county?

I know I asked a lot of questions, but pl bear with me and let me know your suggestions.

Thanks tons !!
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Old 07-10-2008, 12:29 PM
 
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My son was in a GT program in Fairfax County. They are housed in regular county elementary schools, and there is no tuition. Admission is based on standardized test results and teacher recommendations, though parents can request consideration of students who miss the test cutoffs. However, as a practical matter, students with low test scores are unlikely to be offered admission, unless there are special circumstances such as disability or limited English skills. There are just too many high-achieving and high-scoring students in the system, and limited places in the GT schools. Overall, about 3% of 2nd grade students are offered places in GT centers, though the rate varies from one school to another. Some schools consistently send a much higher percentage of their students to GT centers. There is no official prep program (thank goodness), and I'm pretty sure, but not certain, that the school system does not accept the results of privately administered tests (though it did at one time). Loudoun County residents are not eligible for the GT centers, though they may apply for admission to the Thomas Jefferson magnet high school.
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Old 07-10-2008, 07:17 PM
 
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Thank you so much for reply. It does answer my questions. I am surprised that Loudon county does not have a GT program, considering it is one of the fastest growing counties. I wonder what the parents of gifted kids in loudon county do.

Can anyone give me a list of the best elementary schools in loudon county? ALso, is fairfax county the only place in NOVA for the best GT programs?
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Old 07-10-2008, 08:03 PM
 
Location: Virginia
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http://cmsweb1.loudoun.k12.va.us/5093051015625/site/default.asp
They do have a program. I found this link in about a minute.

And, it is spelled "Loudoun".
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Old 07-11-2008, 08:55 AM
 
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Thank you tgbwc. That link is very helpful. And the Loudoun spelling, I guess I was just too fast in typing. But usually Google helps out in those instances when I do searches
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Old 07-11-2008, 09:06 AM
 
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My son was in FFX GT (we have taken him out of county schools but because of other factors) but I volunteered in the school every week for 2 years and and here is my take. There are 2 tests given (CoGAT and Nagleri) during the 2nd grade to determine GT "material" kids. These are non verbal IQ type tests and there is really no way to prepare. However, there are few things I realized..they also administer one of these tests at the end of 1st grade (and do not send the scores home) and the reading assessment test (RAT) score at the end of 1st grade makes a difference because the 2nd grade teachers tend to put kids with high scores in higher reading groups. Those kids tend to get better teacher recommendations and are basically in the teachers vision and are generally pulled out by the GT services teacher for some "additional" services.
Also, now in FFX county there are center based GT program and school based GT program(maybe because of overcrowding at Centers?) and the schools are really pushing for kids not to go to center based but if you go to a school based GT and then you decide to move to another part of FFX county, you do not qualify for the center based program automatically.
If a child does not make a cutoff, one can appeal and take the Cogat test again (for free) or pay to have the test taken at GMU etc. There are kids with high scores but other behavioral type issues (well...talking in class, not helping other kids.. etc) who do not make it to the program also and conversely there are kids with low score with teacher recommendations who make it to the program(who do not have to retake an test).
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Old 07-11-2008, 09:21 AM
 
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The school-based and center-based GT programs are different. It is much easier to qualify for the school-based program and, in our experience, it was a complete waste of time. Others may have had different experiences, but the teacher in charge of the program at my sons' school was not particularly sharp, which is deadly when you're working with smart kids.
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Old 07-11-2008, 10:48 AM
 
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I'm not clear on the terminology, but I'm guessing that school-based GT are the programs where kids get pulled out of the regular classrooms for "enrichment"? My kids' friends who were in these programs said they were a waste of time. They would rather have stayed in their classrooms instead of having to make up whatever they missed. (It seems like that would be disruptive to the teacher, too.) I've heard that part of the reason for them is to placate parents whose students don't make it into the full GT program. None of this is based on my own experience, it's just anecdotal, so take it for whatever it is or isn't worth.
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Old 07-11-2008, 10:59 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yankeesfan View Post
I'm not clear on the terminology, but I'm guessing that school-based GT are the programs where kids get pulled out of the regular classrooms for "enrichment"? My kids' friends who were in these programs said they were a waste of time. They would rather have stayed in their classrooms instead of having to make up whatever they missed. (It seems like that would be disruptive to the teacher, too.) I've heard that part of the reason for them is to placate parents whose students don't make it into the full GT program. None of this is based on my own experience, it's just anecdotal, so take it for whatever it is or isn't worth.
I dont believe in those gifted programs. You kids need to be able to deal with different types of children from various social or economic backgrounds to be successful. Those GT schools sound like a test taking race.
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Old 07-11-2008, 11:15 AM
 
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Default not gifted

The other thing I'm worried about is whether my kid is going to be worried about or feel less of herself because she's not gifted. Or what is one of my daughters is gifted and the other isn't? I am thinking of sending her to Haycock Elementary which I think is a gifted center school, but not sure. When/if she discovers she's gifted or not gifted, what is that going to do to her self-esteem? I'm hoping to start her off in Montessori, so they don't even do testing there at all. Sometimes the whole gifted thing makes me want to use private schools instead. I might keep her in Montessori through elementary partly because of the testing/gifted school thing. I read a great article on the subject that kind of biased me against the gifted programs even though I'm not that educated on it as a whole.
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