DCSD Gifted Education News

Welcome Back to a New School Year! September, 2020

Douglas County School District Gifted Education

The Douglas County School District strives to seek out and nurture student potential. We are committed to partnering with families and our community to recognize and support high potential/advanced/gifted and talented learners who require differentiated programming to meet their educational needs and prepare them for their chosen endeavors in society.

Director's Corner

We remain committed to supporting ACCESS, AGENCY, and EMPOWERMENT to and for learning opportunities that surface and nurture the potential in each of our students. This includes all aspects of Advanced Academics and Gifted Education. Although gifted programming and services may look different in hybrid and eLearning models, our teams will continue to implement equitable identification/evaluation practices, communication and collaboration structures, and programming and services to meet students’ academic and social emotional needs.

In Hybrid and eLearning

  • DCSD Gifted Education Facilitators will connect with parents/guardians of students identified for Gifted Programming with information on revising and implementing the Advanced Learning Plan (ALP).

  • School and district staff will collaborate with the eLearning teacher(s), additional support staff (e.g., special education provider(s), ELD teacher, school counselor), the student, and the family to ensure the ALP is created/updated and implemented.​ ​

  • The ALP will outline the academic and affective goals for the student based on his/her strength area(s) and include all aspects of gifted education programming and services to support the attainment of these goals.

Advanced Learning Plans

In alignment with state law and guidance, ALPs are considered living documents; therefore, ALP goals and programming options may have adjustments made throughout the year as necessary. The student’s ALP team may meet to determine which services can be provided to best meet the student’s needs during this time. The ALP team may meet by alternate means, including phone and internet platforms, to amend ALP goals or document programming changes as a result of any changes in your child’s learning environment.


Processes for equitable evaluation for Gifted Identification will continue in both the hybrid and eLearning environment. School and district staff will collaborate with the eLearning teacher(s) to ensure students who are in the evaluation/identification process and/or with Talent Pool designation receive the appropriate opportunities and interventions to continue to nurture their strength areas. The Gifted Education Facilitator at the student's school of enrollment will partner with the eLearning teacher(s) to continue the gifted identification process.


At both the elementary and the middle level, eLearning Teachers will use Edgenuity as the core curriculum and differentiate the pacing, content, and instructional strategies to add the depth, complexity, and rigor necessary to meet the academic needs of the advanced/gifted learners in their classes. This may include, but is not limited to, access to above grade level course, content, and curriculum; compacting material to increase the pace of instruction; the use of supplemental resources; the use of instructional strategies designed for advanced/gifted learners (e.g., inquiry based learning, Depth and Complexity Framework, Socratic Seminar).

If you have questions about any aspect of your child’s gifted programming, please connect with the Gifted Education Facilitator at your child’s primary school of enrollment and/or visit our DCSD Gifted Education page (linked).

We appreciate your continued communication and collaboration as we partner to support your children.

With gratitude,


Parenting Gifted Children

Distance Learning Round Two – We’re in this Together

From National Association of Gifted Children (NAGC)

August 13, 2020

Advice from Educators for Parents of Gifted Children

In preparation for the coming school year and the probability that distance learning will continue to be a part of the school experience, the Gifted Development Center’s virtual education leaders group continues to meet. Members have pooled their collective wisdom to provide support for families in the coming year. The suggestions offered below come from what group members learned from their initial distance education experiences and suggestions they want to share with their families for the year ahead. They are offered in the hope that they will make this year’s distance learning experiences positive, and maybe even joyful, for families.

Continue reading this article here.

Dear Tired Mama of Gifted Kids…

By Colleen Kessler, Raising Lifelong Learners

...parenting – gifted kids is not for the weak. There’s the anxiety. And the asynchrony. And the overexcitabilities. And the intensity. And the perfectionism. You often think that whomever came up with the term gifted to describe children like yours, may have used the word gift to remind themselves that children were a blessing.

Because oftentimes giftedness is not.

Take heart, mama, it is worth it.

Read the entire article here.

District GT News

Advanced Learning Plans

Every neighborhood school has a Gifted and Talented Facilitator who will be collaborating with you, your child and your child's teacher to finalize ALP goals before September 30. In the spring, GT Facilitators gathered information from your child's previous teacher to provide insight into areas in which challenge and growth might be translated into goals for this school year. This month, your school's GT Facilitator will be reaching out to gather additional information and help create academic and social emotional goals for the year. A copy of the collaborative ALP will be provided to you.

Engagement Opportunities

Colorado Association for Gifted Children Continues Conversations with CAGT

Our new online event series, Conversations with CAGT, is streaming on Facebook Live every Tuesday. Each week, we feature a different expert in gifted education who will speak on a current GT topic in a live video chat on CAGT's Facebook page with time for your questions!

Every Tuesday at 5pm!

Tue. Sep. 8th: Terry Bradley and Students
"Dear Teacher, Here's What I Need This Year"
Tue. Sep. 15th: Seth Perler
"Giftedness, 2e, and Executive Function"
Tue. Sep. 22nd: Jenny Ritchotte & Amy Graefe
"Nurturing the Social-Emotional Development of the Whole Gifted Child"
Tue. Sep. 29th: Jennifer Gottschalk

Our very own DCSD GT Team Lead!
"Nurturing Writing Talent"

Watch the recording of archived webinars here.

Connect with Other Parents of Gifted Children

Children First, Gifted Second

Children First, Gifted Second

Our blog is FREE and easy to subscribe to so you can receive every new blog post in your email box. You can also find us on Facebook at Children First, Gifted Second@parentinggifted and on Instagram at #childrenfirstgiftedsecond.

Through life and work we have come to know and understand the challenges of raising gifted children. Our experience has led us to believe that our sons and daughters are children first, gifted second. While the unique characteristics of gifted children often add stress to our jobs as parents, the basic principles of parenting still apply. We are not the definitive experts on parenting, but we have a lot of expertise in family relationships that unequivocally result in joy and gratitude, anxiety and frustration, disappointment and loss. This makes us hopeful pragmatists with a whopping combined 84 years of experience! Our purpose, as parents, counselor, and educator, is to share a perspective on parenting gifted children that is helpful, hopeful, and sometimes humorous.

Karen Kendig, MA Gifted Education and Jeff T. Kendig, MA Psychology, Licensed Professional Counselor, Certified Hypnotherapist

Douglas County Association for Gifted and Talented (DCAGT

Douglas County Association for Gifted and Talented (DCAGT) is an affiliate of the Colorado Association for Gifted and Talented (CAGT), which is an affiliate of the National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC).

DCAGT's mission is to:

1) foster an understanding of all gifted children, and any subcategories of giftedness (including twice exceptional (2e) children), and their exceptional needs and

2) advocate for gifted children’s needs through partnerships with educators, parents, administrators, legislators, organizations and the general public, and

3) support the educational and social/emotional well-being of gifted children and their families and caregivers.

We do not sell anything, and we do not provide legal advice, educational services, or mental health counseling.

Find our current newsletter here. Subscribe to our newsletter here.

Student Opportunities

CU Science Discovery in-person and virtual classes available

Read about In person classes: CU Science Discovery is excited to introduce small group in-person classes this fall. All classes will be held at various locations throughout Boulder County and will be exclusively outdoors. Each class will be led by an instructor and a teaching assistant and will be limited to eight participants. Costs range from $150 to $199

Read about Virtual classes: These tech-based classes are designed to give participants an opportunity to step away from traditional classroom content and learn something new. Each class is designed to inspire critical thinking and foster growth and curiosity, while allowing students to interact online with their peers in a safe setting. Costs range from $150 to $199

Please see website for scholarship opportunities.

Calendar of Events

Let's Talk 2e Virtual Conference for Parents - EARLY BIRD EXPIRES SEPTEMBER 8!:

Purchase your EARLY BIRD CONFERENCE PACKAGE NOW for just $97 and gain FOREVER access to this incredible conference featuring 19 sessions, 35 gifts from our speakers, entrance to our FULL EXHIBITOR HALL, LIVE Q/As with speakers in October.

Specific Interest Resources