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ADMINISTRATIVE LETTER NO. 40

 

POLICY CODE: IHBB

 

TO: Superintendents of Schools

 

FROM: Susan A. Gendron, Commissioner

 

DATE: June 25, 2004

 

SUBJECT: Change in Gifted and Talented Statute

 

The 121st Legislature enacted a statute related to gifted and talented education. The statute reads:

 

Sec. 10. 20-A MRSA 8104, sub-1, as amended by PL 1999, c. 790, Pt. N, 3,

is further amended to read: 1. Establishment. Each school administrative unit shall, commencing with the 2004-2005 school year, fully implement its plan for phasing in gifted and talented educational programs. Beginning with the 2004-2005 school year, a school administrative unit may apply to the commissioner for a one-year waiver of this requirement if full implementation of this requirement presents an undue burden.

 

Sec. 11. 20-A MRSA 8104, sub-2, as enacted by PL 1985, c. 463, 1, is further amended to read: 2. Rules. The commissioner shall amend or adopt rules to implement this section, including the identification of students, needs and resource assessment, and program planning, development and implementation. Rules adopted pursuant to this section are routine technical rules pursuant to Title 5, chapter 375, subchapter 2-A.

 

Each school administrative unit (SAU) is required to fully implement its Gifted and Talented (GT) Plan during the 2004-2005 school year in accordance with Maine Department of Education Regulation 104, Educational Programs for Gifted and Talented Students. Please note that there is a provision that allows you to request a one-year waiver for implementation of your approved plan from the Commissioner of Education. This waiver request may be submitted, using the guidelines that will be provided in December 2004, to the Commissioner no earlier than January 15, 2005. The waiver may be granted if the Commissioner determines that a good faith effort has taken place to implement the SAU's Gifted and Talented Plan and up to an additional year is needed to complete the implementation.  The plan will then need to be fully implemented in 2005-2006.

Enclosed are the guidelines for the 2004-2005 Gifted and Talented Application. The application requires the submission of the Gifted and Talented Plan for approval. This is the plan that the SAU will be required to implement during 2004-2005. While there is no specific format, the enclosed plan requirements must all be addressed. The Gifted and Talented Plan is required to be part of your Comprehensive Education Plan (CEP). If you have integrated the GT Plan within your CEP, you may submit only the portions of that plan that address the required components or you may submit the entire CEP with the GT components highlighted. As most of the GT plans on file at the Maine Department of Education were developed in the late 1980s, we strongly suggest that you submit an updated plan.

 

The certification, the budget pages, the student identification information and the plan/application must be submitted to the Maine Department of Education by June 30, 2004. A series of technical assistance workshops have taken place during 2003-04 to assist in the development of the plan. Materials are available from these workshops. Please contact Wanda Monthey at 624-6831, wanda.monthey@maine.gov, if you have any questions or would like further information.

 

Enclosure: 2004-2005 Gifted and Talented Application/Plan