Morris School DistrictK-5 Gifted and Talented Program
“The whole process of education should thus be conceived as the process of learning to think through the solution of real problems.” --John Dewey
The Morris School District’s mission is to serve the needs of all students, to accommodate equity, to provide a challenging education to develop excellent and innovative academic programs.
All schools in the Morris School District have a population of gifted students who demonstrate high levels of intellectual capacity in general knowledge and skills, or in content-specific areas as compared to their peers. The district believes that gifted students should be presented with opportunities and experiences that enable them to expand their talents. The Morris School District is committed to providing high quality gifted education programs in which neither excellence nor equity are sacrificed in the name of the other.
Research shows that gifted education can be delivered using various models. However, in an era of greatly accelerated change it appears that the best means for delivering this service is through engaging in a process that develops a valuable framework for thinking and problem solving; leveraging student interest is the primary “springboard” for engagement in the process. According to Joseph Renzulli, “If there are two overriding factors that brought the field of gifted and talented into existence, they are:
- Nature has not made every human being a carbon copy of every other, and
- Civilization has continuously produced men and women who have done more than merely learn about of replicate existing knowledge” (Van Tassel-Baska, p. 48 & 49).
The Morris School District Quest Program will utilize a triad enrichment (Renzuli) approach to offer enrichment experiences for all students. Using a combination of Type I, Type II and Type III activities, we will create a student-centered model for gifted education that is driven by student interests and passions and motivates learners through inquiry, research, discovery, active learning, complex problem solving and presentation of findings. At each level of the process of a well-developed gifted program, students’ individual strengths and weaknesses should be considered, as well as what is developmentally appropriate.