Gifted Support

  • The Owen J. Roberts School District is committed to working with parents to provide our students with quality educational experiences that will encourage them to be successful learners. In line with this commitment, a variety of services have been implemented to address the needs of students who need specialized instruction in order to reach their fullest potential in the learning process.


    To provide each gifted student with opportunities to excel using their strengths.


    Procedure for Screening and Referral of Students Thought to be Mentally Gifted

    Classroom teachers and guidance counselors use a screening process to review the progress of all students in order to identify those who are thought to be gifted and may require specialized instruction. In addition, teachers and parents may individually refer a child for screening if they feel the child may be gifted and require specialized instruction. The screening and identification procedure emphasizes the use of multiple criteria as a means of determining eligibility for gifted support services. Consequently, the screening process seeks input from multiple sources: teacher recommendations, ability as well as achievement scores, screening for creative talent, and parent recommendations. Students are referred for a multidisciplinary evaluation only after meeting specific screening criteria.
    Gifted Multidisciplinary Evaluation
    The Gifted Multidisciplinary Evaluation (GMDE) is a process to gather the information that will be used to determine if a child is mentally gifted and in need of special education services. A "Permission to Evaluate" form must be signed by the parents before the evaluation process may begin.  The evaluations gather information from parents, teachers and the student that is relevant to the child's academic functioning, learning strengths and educational needs. Information is gathered through observations, interviews and includes an evaluation by a school psychologist.
    Gifted Multidisciplinary Team and Gifted Written Report
    The Gifted Multidisciplinary Team (GMDT), a team of educational professionals and the parents, reviews all evaluation materials and a Gifted Written Report (GWR) is then prepared. This Gifted Written Report contains all of the information contributed by team members and assessment results. This report also includes recommendations to the GIEP team regarding eligibility for gifted services and the need for specially designed instruction. Reasons supporting the recommendation are included in addition to the names and positions of each member of the team.
    The Gifted Individualized Plan

    The Gifted Individualized Education Program (GIEP) Team reviews the recommendations in the Gifted Written Report and determines whether the child is gifted. If the GIEP team decides the child is gifted and in need of specialized instruction, the team writes the Gifted Individualized Education Program (GIEP) at the meeting.  The GIEP will contain a statement of the child's present educational performance including both academic/intellectual and social/emotional levels. Together, the team writes annual goals and short-term learning outcomes based on the child's needs and abilities. These goals identify areas which go beyond the program the child would receive as part of his or her general education. Annual goals describe what the child can be expected to learn during the year. Short-term learning outcomes are the sequential steps the child must take in order to reach these goals. Assessment timelines and procedures are included to provide a means to determine whether the goals and learning outcomes are being met. The GIEP will also include support services and specially designed instruction, based on the student's need and ability. A child's program is reviewed every year at a GIEP meeting. It may be reviewed more often if requested by any GIEP team member.
    Educational Placement
    Each child's gifted education program, including where the program is provided, will be developed at the GIEP, team meeting, which includes both the parents and teachers. The Notice of Recommended Assignment (NORA) identifies the educational program and placement for the child. The district must have a NORA signed by the parents indicating their approval before the child can be placed in a gifted program. A copy of the Notice of Parental Rights for Gifted students is presented with the NORA. This document describes the parents' rights and the procedures that safeguard your rights.
    Dual Exceptionalities

    A student may be identified gifted (Chapter 16 of Pennsylvania Department of Education rules and regulations) and also eligible for special education services (Chapter 14 of Pennsylvania Department of Education rules and regulations). In this situation, it is not necessary to use separate procedural safeguards or to develop separate Individualized Educational Programs (IEPs). For students with dual exceptionalities, the needs established under gifted status must be addressed in the procedures required for special education.
    Gifted Staff

    Name Title Email Phone Role
    Rebecca Derstine Gifted Support - EV/EC 610-469-2155 Gifted Elementary
    Lori Koury Gifted Support - FC 610-469-5561 Gifted Elementary
    Kelly Beaver Gifted Support - NC 610-469-5564 Gifted Elementary
    Lynne Ippolito Gifted Support - WV 610-469-2041 Gifted Elementary
    Stacia Bickell Gifted Support - MS 610-469-2638 Gifted Secondary
    Mary-Rita Bonner Gifted Support - MS/HS

    610-469-5384 Gifted Secondary
    Keith Morris Gifted Support - HS

    610-469-5202 Gifted Secondary

    Rachel Brown
    Gifted Support - HS 610-469-5220 Gifted Secondary