Our rationale: We recognise that the learning needs of gifted, talented and twice exceptional students may differ cognitively, socially, and emotionally from other students and that planned provision is necessary to assist students to move towards the fulfilment of their potential.
Gifted and talented children at Ōpaheke School are those children who have outstanding potential (relative to their peer group) and/or demonstrate high performance in a variety of educational, leadership and cultural opportunities across the curriculum. We have a commitment to equity in both the identification of and provision for our gate students. We honour Te Tiriti o Waitangi by prioritising te ao Māori principles of giftedness in our identification criteria.
Twice Exceptional students are those gifted students whose performance is impaired or masked by a learning or physical disorder or condition.
The identification of gifted and talented students is flexible and ongoing and will take place through a range of techniques that may include:
- school enrolment data
- school assessment data
- student/parent/teacher interviews
- analysis of creative work
- teacher observation
- teacher, parent, peer and self nomination.
In order to best support and challenge our students, there is an ongoing gathering of information. Gifted and talented abilities may emerge at different times in a student's education and in different circumstances. At Ōpaheke School, we offer a responsive learning environment so that we can be sensitive in addressing the varying needs of our students. At times the provision to cater for needs is completed outside of school, e.g., specialised sports coaching or music tuition. We know that one size does not fit all and each case is treated on an individual basis with the most current information available. Not all parents of Gifted and talented students want their child identified on the register. Together, the classroom teacher and parent establish ways to best meet the student’s needs in the classroom, as part of the regular programme. Occasionally, referral to specialist services for a formal diagnosis of giftedness may be recommended.
At our school we prioritise catering for the needs of our gifted students within their classroom through targeted, differentiated teaching. From time to time, and in some areas of the curriculum, this may not always be possible, in which case it may be recommended that outside agencies be consulted, such as Mind Plus. We also offer enrichment activities at our school. Through providing such opportunities, we believe anyone’s and everyone’s talents can be noticed. Enrichment activities may include: writing enrichment, MCYA Challenge, e-pro8, Arts, Science, chess club, various sports teams, kapa haka, etc. Some are run by class teachers, some by volunteer parents, and some are an additional cost, payable to an outside provider.