Alliance City Schools (ACS) accepts referrals, screens and identifies, or screens and reassesses students who perform or show potential for performing at high levels of accomplishment in the areas of superior cognitive ability, specific academic ability, creative thinking ability, and/or visual and/or performing arts. ACS follows the policy and procedures established in Ohio Administrative Code 3301-51-15. These rules specify that assessment instruments must come from the list approved by the Ohio Department of Education.
Students may be referred in writing using the district referral form found on the district website on an ongoing basis, based on the following:
- Student request (self-referral);
- Teacher recommendation;
- Parent/guardian request;
- Student referral of peer; and
- Other (e.g., psychologist, community members, principal, gifted coordinator, etc.)
Students are screened using the i-Ready Diagnostic and whole grade testing in grades two, five and eleven as well as when an individual or group identification test is given. When the screening assessment has been completed, if the score meets cut-off scores specified in department of education guidance, the student is tested for gifted identification using a department of education approved assessment. Whole-grade screening occurs in grades two, five and eleven.
Equal Access to Screening and Identification
The district takes the following steps to ensure the equity for these traditionally underrepresented populations:
- Selecting assessments which allow the accommodations in a student’s Individualized Education Program or 504 Plan
- Administering assessments in a student’s native language if the language serves as a barrier to identification
- Securing school psychologists to administer instruments where applicable
The district ensures there are ample and appropriate scheduling procedures for assessments and reassessment using: group tests; individually-administered tests; audition, performance; display of work; exhibition; and checklists. Upon receipt of a referral, the district will:
Test the student using a department of education approved assessment. When the identification assessment has been completed, if the score meets cut-off scores specified in department of education guidance, the identification decision is made and student’s educational needs are determined. Identification scores remain in effect for the remainder of the student’s K-12 school experience.Parents will be notified of results of screening or assessment and identification within 30 days.The district shall provide at least two opportunities each year for assessment in the case of student requesting assessment or recommended for assessment by teachers, parents or other students.
When the identification assessment has been completed, if the data is from an approved screening instrument or from an identification instrument on which the student is within a district-specified range below the identification score, re-assessment for possible identification occurs using a different approved assessment.
The district ensures that any child transferring into the district will be assessed within 90 days of the transfer at the request of the parent. Parents shall contact the building principal. The district accepts scores, completed within the preceding 24 months on assessment instruments approved for use by the Ohio Department of Education, provided by other schools and/or trained personnel outside the school district.
Resolution of Disagreement
A resolution of disagreement with the parent over the result of any part of the identification process which would include:
- Screening procedure or assessment instrument (which results in identification);
- The scheduling of children for assessment;
- The placement of a student in any program; and
- Receipt of services.
Parents should submit a letter to the superintendent or designee outlining the nature of the concern. The superintendent or designee will convene a meeting with the parent/guardian, which may include other school personnel. The superintendent or designee will issue a written final decision within 30 days of the appeal. This written notice should include the reason for the decision(s).