Symposium 6

Symposium (6):

Identifying Twice Exceptional (2e) Students in America's Schools

Chair:
Barbara Gilman
Presenters:
Megan Foley Nicpon, Ed Amend, Sylvia Rimm, Karen Rogers, Kathi Kearney, Linda Silverman and Mike Postma.

A review of 20 years of research on gifted children with co-existing disabilities (2e) indicates that identification is complex, dependent on a pattern of significant strengths and weaknesses, and best accomplished through comprehensive assessment. Yet, since the 2004 Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act, access to comprehensive assessment has been reduced and below-grade-level performance has become the primary determinant for service eligibility. Response to Intervention (RTI) first addresses the needs of students falling behind in the classroom, and only those students who are non-responsive to RTI are referred for special education services.
 
Many gifted children with significant learning disabilities manage to score in the average range on classroom assessments by using their advanced reasoning to compensate. Such students function not as average students, but disabled ones, requiring significant extra time to complete work and considerable support from parents just to keep up. They present as “conundrum kids” to many teachers, and may be viewed as “bright but lazy.” Likewise, some students with ADHD and Autistic Spectrum Disorder, assessed through RTI rather than specialists, have been found to be “not impaired enough” for interventions. Increasingly, twice-exceptional students missed struggle as the demands of their education increase. Without interventions and accommodations, college and even high school graduation may be out of reach.
 
This presentation addresses a multi-year study of the under-identification of twice-exceptional students by professionals in gifted education, assessment and advocacy. The resulting research paper will be discussed, along with recommendations to improve identification of these capable students in peril.

Biographies:
Megan Foley Nicpon, Ph.D., has served as project manager, postdoctoral scholar, psychologist, and supervisor of psychological services at the Belin-Blank Center at the University of Iowa. She joined the counseling psychology faculty in 2008 and has worked on several major grants, including the federally funded Iowa Twice Exceptional Study. Her research and clinical interests include assessment and intervention with twice-exceptional students, particularly gifted students with autism spectrum disorder, ADHD, and emotional/learning difficulties, and the social and emotional development of talented and diverse students. Awards include the Outstanding Research Award in Human Development Division E (Counseling and Human Development) of the American Educational Research Association and, twice, the Mensa Research Award, MENSA Education & Research Foundation. This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 
Edward R. Amend, Psy.D., licensed psychologist, provides comprehensive psychological services in KY and OH including assessment and evaluation, consultation, counseling, and therapy for gifted, disabled, and twice-exceptional students and their families. Dr. Amend is co-author of A Parent's Guide to Gifted Children and Misdiagnosis and Dual Diagnoses of Gifted Children and Adults: ADHD, Bipolar, OCD, Asperger's, Depression, and Other Disorders. He has served on the Board of Directors of Supporting Emotional Needs of Gifted; as President of the Kentucky Association for Gifted Education; Chair for the National Association for Gifted Children Counseling and Guidance Division; consultant to the Davidson Institute for Talent Development; and Contributing Editor for Roeper Review. This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 
Barbara (Bobbie) Gilman, M.S., is Associate Director of the non-profit Gifted Development Center in Westminster, CO, which specializes in the assessment of gifted children, with and without disabilities, for educational planning and advocacy; consultation with parents; and research on the gifted and effective gifted assessment. She wrote Academic Advocacy for Gifted Children: A Parent's Complete Guide and Challenging Highly Gifted Learners (for teachers). She co-chairs the National Association for Gifted Children's Assessments of Giftedness Special Interest Group. This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 
Michael G. Postma, Ed.D, is the Executive Director of Metrolina Regional Scholars Academy, a charter school for highly gifted students in Charlotte, NC. Michael has two children with dual exceptionalities and is active in that field writing and presenting on 2e and other educational issues. This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Sylvia B. Rimm, Ph.D., is a psychologist, Director of the Family Achievement Clinic, and previous member of the NAGC Board of Directors. She counsels part time at Menlo Park Academy in Cleveland. Dr. Rimm is a syndicated columnist, was a longtime contributor to NBC's Today Show, to public radio and a popular TV guest, is the author of more than 20 books, and co-author, with Gary Davis and Del Siegle, of the textbook, Education of the Gifted and Talented. She is the recipient of the Ann Isaacs Award, and the first recipient of the Palmarium Award, both for her contributions to gifted education. This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Karen B. Rogers , Ph.D., is Professor of Gifted Studies at the University of St. Thomas College of Education, Leadership, and Counseling in Minneapolis, Minneapolis. She has assessed many children using both the Wechsler and Stanford Binet intelligence tests and is author of Re-forming Gifted Education and A Menu of Grouping Options for Gifted Learners. This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 
Kathi Kearney, M.A. Ed., teaches gifted students at the Noble 8 Academy, as well as 4th and 5th grade gifted students in Berwick, ME. She also teaches online courses in gifted education for the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, and consults with homeschooling families in the United States and internationally. Kathi is the Past Chair of the Conceptual Foundations Network of the National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC), and has contributed scholarly journal articles on assessment, the highly gifted, rural and distance learning, minority groups, and Leta Hollingworth’s work on children above 180 IQ. She conducted validation studies of the Stanford-Binet-5, and is beginning a longitudinal follow-up study of rurally isolated gifted children, who were educated in a full-time, self-contained rural elementary gifted education classroom. This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 
Linda Kreger Silverman, Ph.D. is a licensed psychologist and founder of the non-profit Institute for the Study of Advanced Development and its subsidiaries, Gifted Development Center (GDC) and Visual-Spatial Resource in Westminster, CO. In the last 33 years, she has studied over 6,000 children who have been assessed at GDC, the largest data bank on this population. She has written over 300 articles, chapters and books, including Giftedness 101, Upside-Down Brilliance: The Visual-Spatial Learner, and Advanced Development: A Collection of Works on Giftedness in Adults. She served as editor and contributor to the textbook, Counseling the Gifted and Talented. This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it