BILL REQ. #:  S-3973.1 


State of Washington61st Legislature2010 Regular Session

By Senators Oemig and McAuliffe

Read first time 01/19/10.   Referred to Committee on Early Learning & K-12 Education.

     AN ACT Relating to highly capable students; creating a new section; and providing an expiration date.


NEW SECTION.  Sec. 1   (1) The legislature intends to include the program for highly capable students as part of the definition of basic education effective September 1, 2011. Before the program is implemented as a basic education program, work must be done to establish standards, guidelines, and definitions for what constitutes a basic education program for highly capable students who excel intellectually, academically, and artistically and the appropriate funding structure for such a program.
     (2) The office of the superintendent of public instruction shall convene a technical working group with representatives who have significant expertise in the education of highly capable and gifted students. The working group may convene advisory subgroups on specific topics as necessary to assure participation and input from a broad array of diverse stakeholders. The working group must consult with and seek input from nationally recognized experts; researchers and academics on the unique educational, emotional, and social needs of highly capable students and how to identify such students; representatives of national organizations and associations for educators of or advocates for highly capable students; school district representatives who are educators, counselors, and classified school employees involved with highly capable programs; parents of students who have been identified as highly capable; representatives from the federally recognized tribes; and representatives of cultural, linguistic, and racial minority groups and the community of persons with disabilities.
     (3) The working group shall make recommendations to the quality education council and to appropriate committees of the legislature by December 1, 2010, on the following:
     (a) Standardized state-level identification procedures, standards, criteria, and benchmarks, including a definition or definitions of a highly capable student. Students who are both highly capable and are students of color, are poor, or have a disability must be addressed;
     (b) Appropriate programs and services that have been shown by research and practice to be effective with highly capable students but maintain options and flexibility for school districts, where possible;
     (c) Program administration, management, and reporting requirements for school districts;
     (d) Appropriate educator qualifications, certification requirements, and professional development and support for educators and other staff who are involved in programs for highly capable students;
     (e) Self-evaluation models to be used by school districts to determine the effectiveness of the program and services provided by the school district for highly capable programs;
     (f) An appropriate state-level funding structure; and
     (g) Other topics deemed to be relevant by the working group.
     (4) The recommendations shall take into consideration that access to the program for highly capable students is not an individual entitlement for any particular student.
     (5) This section expires August 1, 2011.

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