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Posts Tagged ‘Washington Coalition for Gifted Education’

Governor Inslee has declared February 2, 2017, Gifted Education Day. We encourage you to remind your legislators that gifted education is basic education, and share with them what highly capable services mean to your family. Use the District Finder on the Legislature’s website, or call the Legislative hotline at 1-800-562-6000.

gifted-education-day-in-washington-2017

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Governor Inslee has declared January 29th, 2016 Gifted Education Day. We encourage you to remind your legislators that gifted education is basic education, and share with them what highly capable services mean to your family. Use the District Finder on the Legislature’s website, or call the Legislative hotline at 1-800-562-6000.

proclamation 2016

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Your Coalition leadership has been setting the stage for the next legislative session by meeting with key legislators and organizing their support of gifted education.

We realize that we must make a bigger impact than our largely volunteer organization has done in the past, by stepping up our professional lobbying, messaging, and media outreach strategies. The Coalition needs your immediate financial support nowCLICK HERE TO DONATE

We need total contributions of at least $17,500 to achieve these goals, and we rely on you, our supporters, to meet it.

  • Any donation is welcome. If you have donated $40 in the past, please consider doubling or tripling it. CLICK HERE TO DONATE
  •  Ask your parent support or advisory group to become a supporting member of the Coalition by making an organizational contribution.

The Coalition accepts donations online by credit card and PayPal.  Please CLICK HERE TO DONATE

Checks can be made payable to WCFGE and sent to:

Washington Coalition For Gifted Education
18149  147 Ave. SE
Renton WA  98058

The Coalition will be very active during this legislative session working to obtain full funding for Highly Capable Programs; we look forward to requesting your advocacy action once our behind the scenes work is done.

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The Coalition is pleased to announce that David Berg, Puyallup, and Janis Traven, Seattle, will be co-presidents for the next year. Both sit on the State Gifted Advisory Board and served on the Highly Capable Program Technical Working Group. Both have been active in gifted advocacy for many years and bring great knowledge and experience to the job.

If you need to contact either of them, you can do so at our wagifted@gmail.com address.

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The following is a treasurer’s report for the fiscal year to date, including projected expenses before the end of our fiscal year on August 31st.

Opening Balance 9/1/12
   $679.90
Income
    Individual vía Pay Pal
$33.68
   Individual
$2100.00
   Joint Memberships
$1260.00
   Organizations
$6180.00
   Total Income
$9573.68
   $9573.68
Funds on Hand
   $10253.58
Expenditures
   Fees
$75.00
   JM transmittals
$780.00
   Lobbyist
$5100.00
   Other – NEWS
$50.00
   Total Expenditures
$6005.00
   $6005.00
Balance 6/12/13
   $4248.58
Expenditures by 8/31/13
   Lobbyist
$2550.00
   JM transmittals
$70.00
   Treasurer’s expenses
$59.66
   Total
$2679.66
   $2679.66
Projected Balance 8/31/13
   $1568.92

The fund raising appeal in May brought in $1653.68. Without those generous contributions, we would have a negative balance on 8/31/2013.

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We now accept donations online by credit card and PayPal. We recommend that you make a contribution of at least $40.00, and are happy to accept more.

Donate Button with Credit Cards

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Effective September 1, 2011, highly capable programming became a part of Washington State’s definition of basic education.  The changes to the Revised Code of Washington (RCWs) were passed by the legislature, and signed into law by Governor Gregoire.  To make those changes to the RCWs meaningful, there also needed to be changes to the Washington Administrative Codes (WACs).

Members of the Washington Coalition for Gifted Education, Northwest Gifted Child Association, the Washington Association of Educators of the Talented and Gifted and many other groups concerned with the education of highly capable students in Washington State were involved in the process of revising the WACs.  Working with the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) and the Washington State Gifted Advisory Committee, suggested changes to the WACs were drafted and submitted for a public hearing.  The proposed changes can be viewed on OSPI’s website.

The hearing is to take place on November 28th, and written comment is due by November 19th.  More information is available on the Highly Capable page of OSPI’s website.

The WCGE was very pleased with the changes that resulted from this process, though there was one area of concern.  Together with the Presidents of WAETAG and NWGCA, we have submitted the following letter regarding our concerns:

The leadership of WAETAG, NWGCA and the Coalition are concerned about the wording in WAC, section 392-270-012. With Highly Capable Program services an integral part of basic education, basic education funds should be spent on Highly Capable Program services. We are concerned that the proposed wording of the section (may access basic education funds*) can be misunderstood or misinterpreted.

In viewing the wording of this section, it is necessary to remember that in: Sec. 2 (2) of 2776 reads as follows:

The distribution formula under this section shall be for allocation purposes only. Except as may be required under chapter 28A.155, 28A.165, 28A.180, or 28A.185 RCW, or federal laws and regulations, nothing in this section requires school districts to use basic education instructional funds to implement a particular instructional approach or service.

The proposed revision to the WAC is misleading when it says that “districts may access basic education funds and highly capable categorical funds.” Since RCW 28A.185 is the section on Highly Capable Programs, it is exempted from this section of the law. Therefore, districts can and should be expected to use basic education funds for Highly Capable Programs.

We suggest that the second sentence of the new section be changed to read:

“School districts may access highly capable categorical funds in addition to basic education funds to provide appropriate highly capable student programs and services”.

This will clarify for districts that they are to use basic ed funds for HCP services.

We find all the other proposed revisions to be in line with the RCW 28A.185.

Irene Greve, President
Washington Coalition For Gifted Education

Charlotte Akin, President
Washington Association of Educators of the Talented and Gifted

Marcia Holland, President
Northwest Gifted Child Association

* WAC 392-170-012 Funds. For highly capable students, access to accelerated learning and enhanced instruction is
access to a basic education. School districts may access basic education funds and highly capable categorical funds
to provide appropriate highly capable student programs and services.

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Welcome back to another year of advocacy. We expect it to be busy. The recent revenue forecast is bleak, as is usual these days, and rumors are that there may need to be a special session this fall for a supplemental budget. Brrr!

If you are not following the Coalition on Facebook, you may have missed these two important articles:

You can follow us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/wagifted.

Supporting Emotional Needs of the Gifted (SENG) is a great organization and they have made available their booklet “The Joy and the Challenge of Parenting Gifted Children: Readings and Resources.”  If you don’t have a Kindle, you can also download a free Kindle reader to access this amazing collection.

The Washington State PTA will hold its annual legislative assembly on October 14th and 15th.  A proposal regarding support for highly capable is among the issues up for debate this year.  You can view the proposal here.

Our next message will be concerned with Coalition finances, with a Treasurer’s Report for our fiscal year ending August 31, 2011, and reminders about memberships. Look for it the middle of the month.

We have a lot of hard work ahead of us this coming school year and need both your financial support and participation in advocacy activities. Meantime, thank you to those who have recently renewed their memberships for the year 2011-2012.

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Gifted Education Day Report

Friday, February 11th, was a magnificent day for gifted. We filled the Columbia Room to capacity and beyond with enthusiastic parents and children. More than 45 legislators were contacted. The lime green scarves announced that supporters of Highly Capable Programs were out in force. Thank you, Puyallup ABC.

The crowd was addressed by Rep. Pat Sullivan and Rep. Bruce Dammeier, two of our staunchest supporters in the House, and by Gayle Pauley, Director of HCP at OSPI. Kelly Munn of the League of Education Voters spoke on effective advocacy. Also dropping in were Rep. Norm Johnson whose district is west of Yakima, Rep. Terry Nealey, whose district includes Pasco and Walla Walla, and Rep. Reuven Carlyle of Seattle, who stopped by for information and to talk with advocates.

Thank you to everyone who came to Olympia on Friday. We had delegations from Wenatchee to Stevenson down on the Columbia River, and all points in-between. Ages ranged from 2 1/2 months to grandparents.

Many of those in Olympia took home the STEM Report by the National Science Board. It is a powerful statement about the value and need for gifted programs. Be sure to read it and pass it on to local school officials.

If you took pictures of your meeting with a legislator, consider sending him/her a copy as part of an electronic thank you. And share your pictures on our Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/wagifted) or send us a copy so we can use them too. Thanks.

Legislative issues update:

The Supplemental Budget (which continues funding for HCP through the end of this fiscal year) is due out of conference any day now.

Substitute HB 1443, Sections 208 and 209, as voted out of committee, gives us something to build on in the future. We will keep you informed of its progress as it moves through the House and Senate.

SB 5475 is scheduled for executive session in the Senate K-12 Committee on Wednesday morning. This is the bill which would delay the inclusion of HCP into basic education until Sept. 2013. There are many amendments to be voted on but their impact on HCP is unknown.

From the K-12 Committee the bill will go to the Senate Ways & Means where it is scheduled for a public hearing on Thursday. We will testify; the message depends on what emerges on Wednesday from the K-12 Committee. This bill needs to make its way through the Senate and then repeat the process in the House.

Finally, there is the biennial budget. Experienced observers of the Legislature don’t expect it to appear until the very end of March or even early April.

Contacting Your Legislators

We are counting on your continued participation in our efforts to influence legislation and regulations for HCP.  Please focus your advocacy on behalf of education funding in general and HCP funding in particular. Our messages need to be positive and avoid comparison to other programs as each program is unique and funding sources are different. We need to make our case on our own merits, not in comparison to or competition with any other programs. Short, succinct messages are the most effective. We will post samples for your use.

Legislators continue to tell us that those who don’t make a concerted effort to contact them are not going to be heard or heeded.

According to Rep. Ross Hunter, chair of the House Ways & Means Committee, “We’re hearing from almost everyone but education about the budget cuts. It will be hard to protect even basic education dollars if we don’t start hearing about how these cuts will affect our kids’ education and how this will work at the local level.” Said another legislator, “You need to be heard, or even the staunchest education allies won’t be able to stop the cuts.”

We want to be heard!

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