Category Archives: Choose a School

Kindergarten Readiness — What Does it Mean?

Learning to writeby Meg Freedman

As a parent, you might have heard that “school readiness” is required before your young child can enter kindergarten. But what exactly does that mean and why does it matter?

Research shows that students who are ready to learn in kindergarten—the beginning of a child’s formal education—tend to be more successful throughout school and in life after school. Children with lower levels of school readiness in kindergarten tend to lag behind academically throughout their school years and are more likely to exhibit unfavorable behaviors as adults—such as being unemployed and committing crime.

So at its heart, “readiness” is about getting a solid start in school as a base of success for lifelong learning.

In Colorado, students are monitored for readiness before and during kindergarten to ensure teachers know how to meet each child’s individual needs. The state provides an assessment, known as TS GOLD, to monitor student development.

Want more detail on readiness, the test, and why it all matters? We’ve got you covered:

?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????Diving deeper into the lingo:

Officially, “readiness” speaks to whether a child is prepared to learn in a formal school setting. In Colorado, the Office of Early Childhood defines school readiness as:

  • Physical well‐being and motor development,
  • Social and emotional development,
  • Language and comprehension development, and
  • Cognition and general knowledge.

In everyday terms, school readiness speaks to how well a child can perform activities such as:

  • Appropriately interacting with people,
  • Speaking and listening,
  • Holding a pencil or climbing a jungle gym,
  • Singing a song or sorting objects,
  • And other similar social, physical, and academic activities.

How readiness is measured

Colorado’s Achievement Plan for Kids (CAP4K) requires all Colorado public schools to complete two major activities around school readiness. For every student in pre-kindergarten and kindergarten classes in Colorado public schools, local schools must:

  1. Assess (measure) school readiness, and then
  2. Create an individualized school readiness plan using information from the assessment.

Most Colorado public schools currently measure school readiness with an assessment system called Teaching Strategies GOLD (often referred to as TS GOLD). [1] This assessment happens in the classroom, during school hours, at multiple points throughout the school year. Teachers observe students and collect work the students produce into a portfolio. The system then compares the collected students’ information to show where students’ skills fall in relation to their peers.

How Do Schools Use TS GOLD Assessment Results?

Schools can use TS GOLD assessment information in several ways, in addition to informing students’ individual school readiness plans:

  • Teachers can use results to help them teach to individual students’ needs, and for talking with students’ caregivers,
  • School administrators can use results to examine class development trends, and train teachers, and
  • School districts can use collective assessment results to make decisions about funding allocation for professional development.

According to the Colorado Office of Early Childhood, schools may not use readiness assessment results to deny students’ progression to kindergarten or first grade.

Where and How Are TS GOLD Results Stored?

Teachers enter students’ TS GOLD assessment results (including images of the portfolio items) in a secure web-based system. Local school districts “own” the information, and they can also choose to store supplementary information about students in the TS GOLD system, such as demographic information and notes about parent-teacher communication. The TS GOLD system does not collect student Social Security numbers, phone numbers, or home addresses.

Where Can I Get More Information About Readiness Assessment in Colorado?

  • Colorado Office of Early Childhood Kindergarten Readiness
  • Colorado Department of Education School Readiness – Kindergarten
  • Colorado Department of Education School Readiness and Teaching Strategies GOLD Fact Sheet

[1] TS Gold is the first assessment tool that the state school board approved. The board is reviewing—and may approve—additional assessment systems in the future. A few Colorado school districts and charter schools have received waivers allowing them to use their own school readiness assessment systems.


Meg FreedmanMegan Freedman is a freelance writer and researcher, with a special focus on medical and wellness topics. She lives in Denver, Colorado with her husband and three children. 

Tips for Choosing a Safe School, by Heidi Ganahl

Heidi GanahlColorado School Grades partners with Moms Fight Back to highlight school safety issues. In this post, the organization’s founder Heidi Ganahl offers an update to her 2013 blog post about how to choose a safe school.

As moms, one of our biggest concerns is keeping our children and families safe – sometimes that means our own watchful eye and sometimes that means trusting our kids to the safe keeping of others. As much as we love our children, we simply can’t be by their side every minute of every day and it falls to our community schools and school officials, as well as our children’s teachers, to maintain the level of safety we expect and that our children need to thrive.

All children deserve safe classrooms where they can learn and grow without fear or stress – but not all schools are created equal. With school choice, we as parents are able to make careful, more deliberate decisions about where to send our kids to school – but finding the right school is much more than simply comparing teachers, curriculum, performance, and extra curricular activities. School safety standards and procedures must be a part of the math we do when weighing one school against another.

So how and where can you learn more about the safety of the school your child attends, or the school you’re considering?

You can talk to school officials, other parents, and directly to your own child – asking your child if they feel safe at school is a great way to begin to gauge safety at school. But it can be difficult to get the full picture on school safety when it comes to issues like bullying, internet safety, social media safety, and mental illness in youth. And it can be even more difficult to get real answers about things like weapons at school and physical violence in the classroom.

Even if you’re already happy with the school your child attends, and especially if you’re doing research in consideration of a move, keep an eye to safety by asking these important questions:

  1. Who at the school is responsible for school safety and are they immediately available and authorized to make decisions if there is an incident?
  2. Are there specific and easy to understand policies and procedures in place and enforced around issues like social media, internet use, bullying, weapons, and physical violence?
  3. What efforts are being made to eliminate safety threats at school?
  4. Is there an anti-bullying program in place at the school and are students and teachers alike made familiar with the program?
  5. Is there an anonymous reporting system available to students who have experienced or witnessed violence or bullying at school?
  6. What is the school’s response to students who are troubled or known to be bullies?
  7. How and when is the parent community notified of violent or threatening incidents at the school?
  8. Is there a plan with local first responders in preparation for an emergency situation?
  9. In the event of a crisis, where can parents call and what are the procedures for retrieving children from school should an emergency arise?

For additional information and questions to ask your child’s school, The National School Safety and Security Services created a list of 10 Practical Things Parents Can Do To Assess School Security and Crisis Preparedness.

Excerpted from the Back to School Safety eBook by Moms Fight Back.


Why are there no new grades this year?

csg 2015

Colorado transitioned to a new test in 2015 – the CMAS/PARCC exam – and since the new tests are different, previous years’ scores can’t be compared to this year’s results. That would be like comparing apples and oranges.

Given the change in the test, the state decided to take a time-out from school accountability this year, meaning it will not put out any new school ratings.

Because Colorado School Grades is based directly on data from the Colorado Department of Education, we too are not posting new ratings this year.

Parents who are searching for a new school for their child should look at last year’s grades as a benchmark and then visit the school, talk to the school’s principal, meet their child’s prospective teachers. Colorado School Grades’ Families Take Action blog provides lots of resources for parents searching for a new school.

This year’s new test results set a baseline for students to grow from. With a baseline, the state will be able to measure growth again in future years – and along with it, Colorado School Grades expects to release new ratings next year.

Want more information on the new tests and your child’s test scores? Here are a few resources:

Climb Higher Colorado, a nonprofit coalition with broad information about the tests and standards

GreatSchools’ Colorado Test Guide for Parents

Colorado Department of Education Resources for Parents


Should Your 8th Grader Get to Pick Her High School? by Maren Stewart

Once upon a time there was an 8th grader who shadowed several high schools. After the first visit, her mother asked her what she thought about the school, to which the girl quickly replied, “it was great and I think it is my first choice!” A bit surprised, yet encouraged by her daughter’s enthusiastic and decisive answer, the mother inquired as to why. “I really liked the school colors,” the girl replied.

Just a few blocks away, another 8th grader was shadowing several high schools. After the first visit, his mother asked him what he thought about the school, to which the boy quickly replied, “it was great and I think it’s my first choice!” A bit surprised, yet encouraged by her son’s enthusiastic and decisive answer, the mother inquired as to why. “They had a really good lunch,” the boy replied.

should your 8th grader pick her high schoolBoth of the mothers experienced the same feelings of disappointment and frustration. They knew that deciding where to go to high school was an important decision. How, they wondered, could their children approach it with such a lack of maturity and sophistication? Didn’t they understand the importance of the decision and the ramifications it would have on their future?

Then they remembered an important fact: their children were just that – children.

Thirteen year-olds should not be expected to demonstrate the same level of critical thinking and good judgment as adults. And that is why 13 year-old shouldn’t be deciding where to go to high school.

Over the years, I’ve heard people talking about the high school selection process and how they were simply going to let their child decide. I remember being surprised that parents would give their children so much control over such an important decision but figured they had good, smart, responsible kids and that I simply didn’t understand how it all worked since my daughter was much younger.

Fast forward several years and now we are in the process of selecting a high school…and I can’t imagine letting my daughter decide. She is good and smart and responsible and she absolutely will be part of the decision. Our daughter is fully participating in the process. She has done research on school websites, talked to friends, and visited/shadowed several schools. She is getting information and forming opinions. We very much want to hear her thoughts and opinions and we will seriously consider her input and preferences. However, we will not abdicate the decision, and in so doing, abdicate our responsibility as parents.

Kids need parents to help them navigate through life and I believe that parents do know best when it comes to their kids. School colors and hot lunches certainly can be considered in the high school decision process but they shouldn’t be the driving factors.





Public Versus Private School — How to Choose? by Meg Freedman

public v privateWhen I talked with other parents during our school search last year, private vs. public school seemed to be the most personal and historically ingrained of any aspect of the school choice process. “I went to public school and I turned out ok.” Or “I went to private school. It’s what I know.” But like any parenting choice, we have an opportunity to do something different and maybe better for our kids than was done for us. So it makes sense to look with fresh eyes at your current private and public school options before deciding.

That said, some of the views I have heard from different parents may help you more productively mull the choice between public and private schools.

Some Pro-Public Perspectives

  • “Give the public school system a chance first. If it doesn’t work out, you can always switch to a private school.” – The second sentence is true. Luckily it’s true about any school decision you make. As hard as it is to switch schools, if you need to do it, you can. And we don’t have crystal balls to predict that in advance.
  • “You could take what you’d spend on private school tuition and get a mountain house instead.” – Ok. Some private schools cost so much money. If we sent all three of our kids to certain private schools nearby, that would be $70,000 per year.
  • “Don’t worry about it until high school – that’s when school really matters.” Huh? So many people (including my own husband) brought up this point during our school search. I guess you could say that college is the most important stage of education for your career and general success in life. So it makes sense that since high school performance most directly impacts what type of college you’ll get into, high school the most important stage of education. But you could also argue that the earlier the influence on a child, the more deeply it’s ingrained. Our brains calcify a little more every second once they’re formed, so it might be more important to foster good intellectual habits in first grade than 12th.

Some Pro-Private Perspectives

  • “What’s more important to spend your money on than your kids’ education?” -  I try to buy organic, whole-grain, local food. We bought a warm house in a pretty nice neighborhood. Shouldn’t I invest in my kids’ education too? The assumption there is that tuition-based education is better than public school. Which again, depends on where you live, and on your values and life experiences.
  • “Private schools have better physical security” – I had one friend who told me that she slept better at night because her kids’ private school has a wall around it. For a minute this made me feel terrible for sending my kids to a moat-less public school. The word “Newtown” makes my chest hurt like anyone else. But one of the hardest—and most necessary—things about parenthood for me is to let my kids out into the dangerous world and trust that they’ll be ok.
  • “There’s diversity because of the scholarship program” – Fair. Many if not all private schools I researched in Denver during our search had clear messaging about how hard they worked to make their schools inclusive for families who couldn’t afford the tuition. But it helps to look at the statistics. If 5% of the kids there were on scholarship, how much do they influence a school’s climate of cultural and socioeconomic diversity? On the other hand, the private Catholic college I attended had half its students on some aid or scholarship plan. At first blush, it seemed like a preppy rich kid school. But I met many working class friends there whose parents had to scrape by to get them there.

Meg FreedmanMegan Freedman is a freelance writer and researcher, with a special focus on medical and wellness topics. She lives in Denver, Colorado with her husband and three children.

Students & Parents Celebrate School Choice Week at the Colorado State Capitol

Sky View Academy kids dancing

Sky View Academy kids dancing

School choice supporters from across the Centennial State converged on the west steps of the Colorado Capitol for a history-making rally and celebration on Monday, January 26, 2015 at 9 am. The message of the event: school choice is working for Colorado families.

Colorado Senate Education Committee Chairman Owen Hill (R) and State Senator Mike Johnston (D) spoke at the event and students from the Excel Institute performed.

The event, which brought together education advocates of all ideologies and backgrounds, put a positive spotlight on the success of Colorado’s broad portfolio of education options for families, which include traditional public schools, public charter schools, public magnet schools, online academies, private schools, and homeschooling.

Senator Michael Johnston at the School Choice Rally

Senator Michael Johnston at the School Choice Rally

Senator Owen Hill at the School Choice Rally

Senator Owen Hill at the School Choice Rally

In addition, students, parents, and teachers shared their personal school choice stories. The event coincides with National School Choice Week (January 25-31, 2015).

Excel Academy Dance

Excel Academy Dance

“Colorado has been a leader in school choice, but it is crucial that we expand the number of educational opportunities available,” said Pam Benigno, Director of the Independence Institute’s Education Policy Center. “As a state, we have not kept up with the demand for choice— especially for the kids who need options the most.”

School Choice Week scarves“Children are 10% of our population and 100% of our future,” said Deborah Hendrix of Parents Challenge. “Choice in education is paramount for our country’s success.”

“As a business community, we are working to make Colorado the best place in the world to raise a child and grow a business,” said Scott Laband, President of Colorado Succeeds. “We know that education is central to that effort, as is access to high quality school choices. Everything we do is focused on making sure our state provides all children in Colorado with world-class educational experiences.”


School Tour Tips from a Mom, by Maren Stewart

checklist iconChoosing the right school for your child can be a daunting task. There are so many choices…and so little time.  Numerous resources exist to help with the decision making process from on-line databases and grading systems to sophisticated school websites and even professional coaches/advisors.  However, in my opinion, nothing is as beneficial as an old-fashioned visit.  Seeing it is believing it, and shadowing a potential school can be a really great opportunity for both you and your child.  Be sure to make the most of it by preparing with the following tips:

Be Intentional:  You and your child should have several things in mind as you visit a school.  Don’t simply let the experience wash over you but be thoughtful and deliberate about the things you want to see, hear, and experience.

Be Inquisitive:  Don’t be afraid to ask questions – both factual and otherwise. You want basic information, but it is also good to get opinions from teachers and students. And don’t make assumptions; this is your chance to learn so much more than a website or marketing materials can convey.

Be Open:  Visit with an open mind, free of pre-conceived perceptions.  If you go expecting or looking for certain things, you likely will miss out on some valuable insights. And, sometimes you might even be pleasantly surprised to learn things weren’t at all what you thought.

Each visit is – and should be – unique but here are a few things to keep in mind:

boys in a gymnasiumPhysical facility:  is it a place you would want to spend the majority of your time?  Just like a work environment, our kids spend a great deal of their days at school.  It doesn’t need to be fancy but is it bright and welcoming?  Is it clean and well-maintained?  Is school spirit visible?

….and is there a gymnasium and does it look well-equipped?  A cafeteria that supports healthy food options? Are there outdoor areas for recreation or quiet studying?  Is the library updated and is technology incorporated?  A stage/theatre?  Dark room? Art room? Science Lab?  These may be important resources, depending on your child’s interests,

bored studentStudents:  what are the kids doing?  How are they interacting with each other?  Does there seem to be a sense of camaraderie among the students?  Are they laughing and smiling in the hallways and common spaces?  Do they generally look happy and engaged?

…and do they participate in class?  How?  Do they show respect for their teachers and each other?  Do they appear curious and interested or do they look bored to death? Hint: you can tell a lot simply from body language.

Teachers:  how do they interact with students?  Are they supportive and empowering?  Would you be afraid to ask questions or would you be encouraged to speak up and participate?  Is there a sense of mutual respect? Is there good rapport between them and the students?

…and are they articulate and knowledgeable? Do they seem passionate? Can you envision them igniting interest and curiosity in your child?  Are they people you want your child to look up to and emulate?  Are they good role models?

Curriculum: students learn in different ways so be sure to understand the model and how it is presented.  Is it a structured or more informal approach?  Is there a particular lens through which material is presented, i.e. a global or artistic perspective?  Regardless of your child’s particular interests, is it important to have PE every day?  How about art or foreign language?

high school bandExtra-curricular:  What types of clubs, sports and affinity groups are available?  Can students initiate efforts related to their own interests? Listen for examples of how widely accessible these opportunities are and whether students are taking advantage of them. Hint: you can find clues looking around the building for meeting notices, events and activity sign-ups.

Approaching your visit with some deliberative thought will prove beneficial for both you and your child.  However, while it is important to be prepared, you shouldn’t get too focused on specific things.  Be sure to experience the school during your visit – get its vibe – and try to picture your child being a part of it.

Using these easy tips and keeping in mind these few things will ensure that your shadow experience will be productive and meaningful. And, it will allow you and your child to make an informed decision that is right for both of you.

Tips to Calm Your Nerves After Filling Out the Choice Form, by Meg Freedman

researching a schoolThe time has come to fill out the Denver Public Schools choice form for 2015. If you submit your form by January 30, 2015, you have the best chance of getting a space for your child at your top-choice school. (If you need it, here’s the official word on how to enroll in a DPS school.)

If completing the choice form is a little fraught for you (like it was for me), pull up a seat. Let’s calm your nerves—or at least set your expectations.

1) Don’t get too attached.

Certain public schools have few spots for non-siblings or non-neighborhood kids, or they’re just small schools. And it can seem like hardly anyone gets into them. This includes neighborhood, charter, and innovation schools. Just know when you fill out your form, that some schools aren’t likely to have a spot for your son or daughter. But as I’ve said before—you can’t win if you don’t play. If you absolutely love a school, throw it on your form. Then try to forget about it so you’re not too disappointed if it doesn’t work out. On the other hand…

2) Be careful what you wish for.

My kids didn’t get spots at any of our “reach” DPS schools, nor did most of my friends’ kids. However, I did know someone whose daughter got a spot at a tiny and very highly-regarded charter school. When she got her choice result letter, my friend said “we only put x school on our form because we didn’t think we’d get in. Maybe we should have gone to the neighborhood school with everyone else.” Turns out her daughter’s thriving where she landed. Just know you could be the one to win the lottery.  And make sure you’d be truly happy to go to any of the schools you put on your list.

3) Don’t give up hope.

After you submit your choice form, the next step in the school enrollment process is for you to get a letter back in early March with your allocated “round 1” spot. If your child doesn’t get a spot at your top choice school at that point, there’s still plenty of time for that to change. I heard of people’s kids getting spots at schools a few days after the March letters were sent out, a few weeks before the start of school, a few days after the start of school, and even a few months into the school year. In a school system as large as Denver’s, there’s constant and significant movement in and out of schools. People move out of their neighborhood or of out of the school district, or get late-breaking spots at private schools, and subsequently open spots for other kids. I’m not saying scurry to the mailbox every day. But don’t be too bummed out if the initial result wasn’t what you were hoping for.

4) Be open to a happy surprise.

I like shiny things. So we put another neighborhood’s well-regarded school and two sought-after charter schools above our neighborhood school on the choice list. And I was a little crushed when we didn’t get into any of those other schools. The good news is that now we love the one we’re with. The community aspect of our neighborhood school has been amazing. On any given day on the playground, I can hang out with one of my old playgroup friends, one of my yoga teachers, one of my husband’s co-workers, and the realtor who sold the house across the street from us. When other moms and I carpooled to a school field trip the other week, it took three minutes to pick everyone up. I can’t swing a cat on a walk through the neighborhood without hitting a friendly face. And our kids are thriving in school. Turns out our last-choice school has benefits we couldn’t have realized until we were enrolled there.

playground aerialSpeaking of yoga teachers, one of mine centered a class around the idea to “hold it lightly.” Embrace what you love but don’t contract carpal tunnel with your clutch on it. With school choice, you may get what you wish for, or you may not, but you may be just as glad either way.


Meg FreedmanMegan Freedman is a freelance writer and researcher, with a special focus on medical and wellness topics. She lives in Denver, Colorado with her husband and three children

Tips to Take on the Tour, by Megan Freedman

School tourYou’ve made that list of schools to tour, so what should you look for on the tour?

I found it helpful to keep the tours sorted in a spreadsheet. Here’s mine including school names, addresses, websites, tour dates, admissions deadlines (if applicable) and other pertinent details. After you take the tour, add a few thoughts about your reaction to the school into the spreadsheet while it’s fresh on your mind. After a few tours, you may find it helpful to segment the schools you’ve toured into yeses, no’s, and maybes in terms of whether you’d like to apply/put on your choice form. That can help you select what information you need to retain and what bits you can mentally file in the dusty back of the drawer.

And don’t get too attached to any one school right away. I figured that out long after the fact. It’s natural to have strong feelings about a particular school. The campus, the teachers, or the culture may really appeal to you on a deep level. But our priorities evolved throughout our tour de choice. I fell hard for one school immediately, and spent the rest of the following week trying to convince my husband that we needed to give our kids “the best” and who needs to go to Disneyland when you can go to school X and so on. And then we had our son tested and the testing consultant steered us in a completely different direction, and school X plunked right off the table.

At the end of the day, if I could go back to 2013 and talk to myself before touring schools, I would say—think carefully but open-mindedly about the schools you’d like to tour. Go into each one ready to see what there is to see and feel your feelings about the place. Capture the logistical details (and your reactions) in one place that you can refer back to you later. And then let that information marinate for a bit. You’ll have time to make a rational choice later on about which schools you want to try to get a spot in.


Meg FreedmanMegan Freedman is a freelance writer and researcher, with a special focus on medical and wellness topics. She lives in Denver, Colorado with her husband and three children

Learning about G & T, by Carie Sherman

G&TMy daughter starts kindergarten next fall, so I’m working to select the right school for her.

I recently attended an “open house” at our neighborhood school (we’re part of Denver Public Schools). It was fine, but I felt silly: I didn’t get the memo that kids weren’t expected to attend or that “open house” was code for “be on time or you’ll miss being assigned to the right tour group.”

Alas, our tardiness gave us an excuse to hop into a few different parent groups. In each group we invaded, a parent invariably asked:

“Is there a G & T program?”

Up until then, I thought G & T was a beverage served over ice with a lime. Which I began to crave after realizing the other parents knew the lingo. I was behind the curve and wanted to get more background on what this is all about.

So what does G & T (i.e. Gifted and Talented) really mean?

The National Association of Gifted Children define G & T as kids who, “when compared to others his or her age or grade, have an advanced capacity to learn and apply what is learned in one or more subject areas, or in the performing or fine arts.” This advanced capacity requires curriculum modifications to make sure the kids are challenged and learn new material.

Do all public schools have a G & T program? Why are they important?

In Colorado, gifted programs are mandated and partially funded by the state.

It might seem like a G & T kid would do okay in any classroom setting. But G & T kids aren’t stimulated by regular curriculum. A national study conducted by the Fordham Institute found that 73% of teachers agreed that “Too often, the brightest students are bored and under-challenged in school – we’re not giving them a sufficient chance to thrive.”

How does DPS identify G & T kids?

DPS begins assessing children for G & T in 1st grade. However, they also offer Advanced Kindergarten (AK), a curriculum for kids deemed academically advanced. Kids are accepted by application-only, and the program is only offered at select schools.

So do you have to be in AK to get into G & T? I missed the deadline, and because of that I already felt I was failing my daughter, who just began her education. Thank goodness for my friend Jonny, who made me feel much better.

Jonny’s daughter enters kindergarten next year, and he decided not to pursue AK. Why? He’d hoped the AK program would guarantee her a spot at the AK school (which receives higher grades than his neighborhood–or home–school), and that it would have some bearing on her future G & T acceptance. Neither are true. Once she entered 1st grade, she’d need to return to her home school or go through the school choice program. And then be reassessed by G & T.

It was a good enough reason for me to let go of my Bad Mama guilt.

Is Your Child G & T?

I reviewed the literature, and I’ll admit that I suspect my own darling exhibits G & T characteristics. But there’s a huge range of traits. Here are resources I found helpful:

  • Characteristics of G & T
  • Is my child gifted?

Yet, the only way to know for sure is getting her tested.

It’s DPS policy to screen all students for G & T beginning in 1st grade. The process seems to vary by the school, so DPS suggests contacting the gifted education teacher at your own school. And for anyone who can’t wait that long, there’s an option of getting tested independently.

What happens beyond kindergarten?

There are two programs at DPS — Gifted and Talented and Highly Gifted and Talented. DPS provides a handy-dandy chart outlining the pertinent info.

The website is helpful, but I was curious about how this really works. So I contacted my friend Jeanine, whose daughter is G & T at DPS. She explained that once your school district deems your child G & T eligible, the state mandates that your child receive an Advanced Learning Plan. The plan sets goals and makes accommodations. Jeanine has seen some issues related to consistency of receiving a plan … some years they receive one … some years they do not.

So what’s your best bet as a parent?

Jeanine says, bottom-line: Develop a good relationship with your school’s principal and your child’s teacher. Discuss your concerns about your child’s education, and be prepared to help them identify any special needs your G & T child may have in the classroom.

Last but not least, do all parents think their child is G & T?

Maybe. On some level, it’s likely most parents believe their kids are G & T. I’m no different. Yet the Colorado Association for Gifted and Talented says the G & T kids actually represent only 7.6% of the total K-12 public school population.


carie-shermanCarie Sherman chose freelancing for two reasons: more time at home with her daughter and a passion for stretchy pants. As a copywriter for the health care and education industries, Carie writes content for businesses, agencies, and nonprofits in Colorado and beyond. She blogs for Lupus Colorado and is a contributor to Colorado Parent magazine. She’s also on the copyediting team for the New York Common Core implementation. Carie is currently writing her first fiction novel. In her free time, she enjoys reading, yoga, collecting recipes, and implementing organizational systems that she’ll never follow.