North Carolina has had legislation governing gifted education since 1961, exemplifying the state’s strong commitment to gifted education for over fifty years. Following are state and federal legislative information. For the most recent federal legislative announcements refer to the National Association for Gifted Children’s Legislative Update Page at www.nagc.org.
Article 9B, Academically or Intellectually Gifted Students [N.C.G.S. § 115C-150.5-.8 (Article 9B)] is the current legislation mandating identification and services for gifted education K-12 in North Carolina. Article 9B provides a state definition for Academically or Intellectually Gifted (AIG) students and requires school districts to develop three-year plans with specific components that articulate how gifted learners will be identified and served.
The TALENT Act ("To Aid Gifted and High-Ability Learners by Empowering the Nation's Teachers Act") has been introduced in both houses of the U.S. Congress. In March, Senators Grassley (Iowa), Casey (PA) and Mikulski (MD) introduced S.512 and in June Rep. Polis (CO-2) and In Latham (Iowa-3) introduced H.R. 2338. The TALENT Act would amend the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), to support high-ability and high achieving students. The bill focuses on 4 key areas:
- Change The Assessment And Increase Public Transparency to ensure that schools can pinpoint the level at which students have mastered state standards and by reporting the students who perform at the advanced levels, disaggregated by subpopulations, on state report cards
- Emphasize Classroom Practice And Educator Preparation through professional development for all teachers and other school personnel so that more educators are able to identify and meet the needs of gifted students, and by requiring states and districts to include gifted students in their plans for use of federal Title II funds
- Focus On Underserved Populations And Confronting The National Excellence Gap, by including gifted students and high-ability students not formally identified for gifted education services in state and district plans for Title I funds, by allowing federal rural school funds to be used for teacher training in gifted education pedagogy, and by reporting on the achievement gaps at the advanced level between student subpopulations
- Continue Research And Dissemination of Best Practices in gifted education to support effective teaching and learning for gifted students.
NC AIG Program Standards
The NC AIG Program Standards were approved by the State Board of Education on July 9, 2009. These Standards provide a statewide framework and guide for the development of the local AIG programs. These standards reflect nationally-accepted best practices in gifted education, and help ensure that the potential of AIG students is optimally developed.
The North Carolina AIG Program Standards are critical in providing a statewide framework for quality programming, while still honoring local flexibility. In an effort to strengthen gifted education in North Carolina, these AIG Program Standards represent the State Board of Education’s and the NC Department of Public Instruction’s commitment to ensure that the academic, intellectual, social, and emotional needs of AIG students are being met.
The North Carolina AIG Program Standards are available here.
Academically/Intellectually Gifted Services are housed in the Academic Services and Instructional Support Department of the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction (NCDPI). Sneha Shah-Coltrane serves as the current Director of Gifted Education and Advanced Programs. The primary role of the Director of Gifted Education and Advanced Programs is to provide leadership, guidance and technical assistance regarding AIG issues, policies and practices.
AIG Regional Leaders help network and build capacity within a region. These Regional Leaders are not part of the RESAs but are volunteers who are AIG Coordinators themselves in local school systems and want to support the work of the region and state. See map to determine leadership for each region.
The National Association for Gifted Children provides an overview of gifted education statistics and policies by state. More information can be found at http://nagc.org/DataMapbyState.aspx.