Download .pdf version here: Meeting Minutes 12.3.18

  1. Welcome & Introduction of New Reps
    1. Introductions by Jason and brief recap of previous meeting and goals for new reps.
    2. New members introduced themselves.
      • Fay Privette – Alice Ponder
      • Claire Verinder – J.L. Boren
      • Steffanie Steelhammer – Tarver-Rendon
      • Mike Coyne – Asa Low
      • Robert Bryant – Judy K. Miller
      • Melissa Lechman – Frontier/Ben Barber
      • Jaina Modi – Anna May Daulton
  2. TAGT Parent Support Group Membership
  • TAGT Overview – state gifted and talented organization founded 40 years ago for teachers and parents.  They have a very robust website with resources for parents, teachers, and students.  TAGT Connect provides a question/answer forum to create a support community.  Parent sessions during conferences.  Also twice exceptional conferences.  Parent webinars on different topics.  Scholarships and scholarships for summer camps/various things.
  • Group decision made via email that we would like to become an affiliated parent group with the state wide gifted and talented group. We decided to affiliate with TAGT to access additional resources for our group. 
  • Sara was appointed treasurer for this activity since we will need to collect money for the membership. 
  • All members who wanted to participate split the cost.  The following parents committed to donating for the membership:  Claire Verinder, Shannon Wilson, Amy Campbell, April Burdett, Helen Prokhorenko, Kathryn Hardy, Stephanie Ivory, Sara Valline,  Jennifer Guest, Kendra Hopkins, Steffanie Steelhammer, Cheryl Edwardsen, Natalie Hernandez, Kristen Stone, Alexander Davila, Christen Doggett, Mike Coyne, Julie Hamilton, Jaina Modi, Casey Brown, Kristi Ferguson, Jason Bair.
  • Membership covers up to 100 parental memberships. 
  • Once we are enrolled, we will have more information about how to access the super-secret content available to us through the member site including a forum to connect with other parent affiliated groups throughout the state.
  1. Campus Reports
  • New reps should meet with GT specialist and principal.  Starting point for conversation:
    • What does GT look like at my campus?
    • What are goals for the year and how can we as a parent organization help?
    • Are there changes that you would like to see? 
    1. Campus Rep Reports on Meetings with Principals & Specialists
  • Jason, Lakeridge High School.  Met with Specialist and Principal separately.  High School GT has unique challenges because of the nature of their coursework.  New principal this year.  Approach is differentiation in terms of “micro-assessments”.  Trying to close the loop on what each individual student needs.  Opportunities include AP Classes and college campus tours but these are not necessarily specific to GT.  Maker space being introduced to students.  Lookng at student led AP study groups and teacher training for AP teachers. Noted that teacher turnover can be a challenge. 
  • Cheryl, Linda Jobe Middle School.  Met with GT Specialist.  Participation in infinite study is dwindling.  Just a few students are participating since they made it optional. The challenge is there is no grade to it so parents/students are not supporting extra work.  Prinicipal is happy with moving from clustering to sections.  Feels like they are making progress year over year. 
  • Kristie – Jerry Knight STEM Academy. Passion project done during club time.  GT Club meets weekly and students are given the opportunity to work on the project during that time.  All students are going on the field trips since STEM is comprised of 75% GT students.  Handout with GT parent information was posted to website and sent out to parents. 
  • Kelly, Della Icenhower Intermediate. Passion projects are completed during win time.  All kids are clustered on one team.  Field trip to SPARK tomorrow, it is an old warehouse that artists have taken over and built an industrial playground. 
  • Kelly, Mary Jo Sheppard. Field trip this year to science tech institute.
  • Kendra, Summit High School. Challenge is having the right AP classes for the GT kids.  Filling the gap with clubs to meet interest.  Working on some projects like a robot that is a bell ringer for Salvation army.  Also made a t-shirt cannon. 
  • ???, Cross Timbers Intermediate. Working on projects like the egg drop challenge.  Field trip is an in-house field trip this year.  Perot museum came in house to show amusement park physics.  Looking at opportunities for building a bridge in the GT student community with opportunity for high school GT students to come back to younger grades and help guide field trips to get involved in giving back to their community.  Did a newsletter, to help introduce them to this committee and made it active and clickable to connect to links. 
  • Melissa, Morris Elementary. Discussed better ways to communicate with parents beyond kindergarten testing.  Suggested a letter when kids are identified.  Used to get pulled out during win time but they have stopped pull outs and now the librarian will come into their classroom for GT time. 
  • Sara, Mary Lillard Intermediate. Biggest concern of principal was getting information to parents.  5th grade GT is separated, 6th is dispersed with general education because of scheduling challenges that they had.  They work on a project each 6 weeks with time dedicated during the school day.  GT Specialist is super busy.  Field trip this year will be in-house (Perot Museum heart dissection).  Working with another parent to get a study group going for PSAT.  Created a newsletter with what kids are doing and info on NAGC with links for more information.
  • April, Mary Orr. Challenge is communication with parents.  There will be two projects this year, completed during win time.  GT kids are dispersed across teams. 



    1. Other Campus GT Activities & GT Field Trips
  • Discussed sharing newsletters and possibly posting them to our website. 
  • Discussion surrounding difficulty of planning  GT field trips by Oct 1st.  Teresa provided insight into the complexity of budgeting, buses and staffing that result in this early deadline. 
  1. Spring Events/Speaker Planning
  • GT Symposium will be held February 11th
  • Suggestions for potential speaker include: Dan Hitman – Specialist at Asa Low, Jenny – Danny Jones Gifted Guru (Social and emotional), Kelly Teel – Practical tips for being a gt parent, Panel discussion. 
  1. Advanced Academics Coordinator – Teresa Francis
    1. Proposed Changes to State Plan
  • Will take effect in 19/20 school year. 
  • Previously broken into three categories: Compliance, Recommended, Exemplary.  The proposed state plan will eliminate the category of recommended and move those tasks to the Compliance category. This will result in more challenges for the districts to meet compliance but will be better for the kids.  The state will also provide supplemental guidance resources to help schools comply by having a better understanding of what the states expectations are. 
  • Big changes are: 
    • More social and emotional components to the plan.  May come in the form of writing social and emotional lessons for teachers to do with the kids.  Recognizing that GT kids have different needs.
    • A requirement for an IEP for gifted kids may be coming.  Lots of discussion about how that would be implemented, who would do it and how it would impact the individual child.  Districts across the state perform differently this is an opportunity to better meet the needs of those children.  This will help document that kids are getting what they need, socially and emotionally.  Our district would work to make criteria simple enough that it is not prohibitive for the teacher to complete.  Promoting communication between school and home.    
    1. Other Updates
  • Summary from TAGT Conference - Pod Cast “Bits of Wisdom”  Affiliated with hoagies gifted education – highly recommend joining, great parent resource. 


  1. Instructional Coaches report – Melinda Beckett, Brigette Cardenas
    1. Brigette Cardenas K-6 Coach
      1. Intermediate - kids at this level are working more independently.  Seminars – teaching students about academic discourse.  Working on projects and presentations.
      2. Elementary – Pushing higher levels of questions.  Training teachers on justify, explain, compare contrast tasks.  Seeing even young students prepared to justify the answers to questions.



    1. Melanie Beckett  7-12th grade
      1. High School - helping with writing on the AP tests.  Providing teachers with professional development for AP classes. 
      2. Middle school - independent study projects and focused activities. 


Future meetings will be 6:30 pm at RL Anderson: Feb 4, Mar 4, Apr 29


Mansfield GT PAC Attendance 9/24/18
Kendra Hopkins - Summit
Jason Bair - Lakeridge
Melissa Lechman - Frontier/Ben Barber
Cheryl Edwardsen - Linda Jobe
Kristi Ferguson - STEM Academy
April Burdett - Mary Orr
Julie Hamilton - Donna Shepard & Nancy Neal
Kelly Keel - Icenhower & MJ Sheppard
Sara Kay - Lillard
Mike Coyne - Asa Low
Faye Privette - Alice Ponder
Steffanie Steelhammer - Tarver Rendon
Claire Verinder - JL Boren
Melissa Allen - DP Morris
Jaqueline Jaeger - Kenneth Davis
Natalie Hernandez - Roberta Tipps
Jaida Modi - Anna May Daulton
Jennifer Guest - Judy Miller
Ronald Bryant - Judy Miller