Common Core – Letter to Superintendent

From MCGATE and MEGS about our concerns regarding GT Education and the Common Core State Standards and Curriculum

        MCGATE LOGO        And         MEGS logo

Maryland Coalition for Gifted and Talented Education       Maryland Educators of Gifted Students

Maryland Affiliates of the National Association for Gifted Children

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September 4, 2013 Dear Dr. Lowery: We are gravely concerned about a common misconception among Maryland’s school districts that the Common Core State Standards and Curriculum (CCSS/C) adequately meet the needs of gifted and talented students, thereby eliminating the need for the identification and differentiated programming mandated in COMAR 13A.04.07 Gifted and Talented Education.   The new MSDE video reinforces this misconception when Ms. Newlin, Secondary Supervisor in Kent County, says: “There is no longer a track [sic] for your less high performing students and a track [sic] for your higher performing students.  The rigor is there for everyone.” [1]  However, the CCSS/C does not include goals, objectives, and extensions for our State’s gifted and talented/advanced learners. [2] We are grateful, Dr. Lowery, for the support for gifted/advanced learners you have shown in the past.  These students and their schools need your continued leadership in this area.  We ask that you please:

  • Publicly refute at the CCSS forums and elsewhere the misconception that the Common Core State Standards and Curriculum will meet the needs of gifted/advanced students;
  • Correct the misleading information in the MSDE video to say something similar to: “The CCSS are not a curriculum.  Schools and teachers will still be expected to differentiate for all students, including gifted/advanced students and other students with special needs.” video http://media.msde.state.md.us/2013/BACK.mov
  • Continue to hold schools accountable for gifted identification, programming, and teacher training in Maryland According to state regulations.

Thank you for your time and attention.  The gifted/advanced learners of Maryland are counting on us. Sincerely, Yvonne Golczewski, President, Maryland Coalition for Gifted and Talented Education (MCGATE) Penny Zimring, President, Maryland Educators of Gifted Students (MEGS)

MEGS and MCGATE are Maryland Affiliates of the National Association for Gifted Children


[1] Not only do these words indicate that the CCSS/C will meet the needs of all students, but also the use of the emotion-laden word “track” prejudices the listener against any differentiated instruction for gifted/advanced students.
[2]  The National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC) notes that while the CCSS are considered to be more rigorous than most current state standards, they fall short in meeting the specific needs of gifted learners, and if held strictly to the standard, could actually limit learning,”http://www.nagc.org/CommonCoreStateStandards.aspx