Gifted & Talented Programs
Suttons Bay Talent Development Program
Suttons Bay’s Talent Development Program is founded on the belief that students’ needs should be individually addressed. Students who demonstrate outstanding abilities in a particular area such as intellectual, creative, artistic, leadership or academic fields are offered an Individual Learning Plan (ILP) so that they may continue to advance and challenge themselves at a faster pace than their peers in their area of aptitude.
The elementary level (K-4) uses an enrichment model that includes teachers who are trained to meet the needs of talented students within the classroom. The multi-age environment allows for teachers and students to reach beyond the grade level curriculum and challenge our youngest learners. Students are screened during in the spring of their fourth and fifth years.
Recommendations are based on teacher or parent recommendations and test scores. All candidates are given a Cognitive Abilities Test (CogAt).
In grades 5 through 8, there is a blend of grade level, multi-age and ability grouped courses. Classes have tiered instruction to meet the various levels of challenge within the regular classroom setting. High school courses may be offered early when aligned with their ILP. On-line courses through our Virtual High School are available to expand exploratory course offerings. With faster paced middle level instruction, students are able to access higher level high school course offerings sooner. Students in grades 7 and 8 take advantage of High School classes as they are ready for them.
At the high school level, (9-12) students have the ability to excel academically through Honors and Advanced Placement courses, testing out of a course, on-line courses from many sources, as well as dual enrollment directly at the college campus in Traverse City. And starting in the Fall of 2012, Early College, in conjunction with Northwestern Michigan College, will allow students to complete both an Associates Degree and a High School degree in just five years, tuition free!
The Cognitive Abilities Test or CogAt measures developed abilities, not innate abilities. Because these abilities are closely related to an individual’s success in school in virtually all subjects, test results are often used to plan effective instructional programs
Each qualified student is placed on an ILP for one school year. In this plan, we determine which classes the student may excel in and other options that may be available at the time, such as an independent study or an on-line learning class.
An ILP allows us the option to have a student moved up a grade in one subject area rather than lifting them for the entire grade level. Instruction is usually in the form of a math or English class at the next grade level, however, other coursework can be considered during the development of the ILP.
Students are required to maintain an 80% average in their coursework in order to continue in the classes. Power School, parent-teacher conferences and report cards are used to keep the students and parents informed of the student’s progress through out the year.
The talent development coordinator will also monitor students’ progress throughout the school year. If any changes or modifications need to be made on an ILP, either the school or parent may call a meeting to determine the best course of action for the student at that time.
On-line options are available through a variety of on-line sources, including our own instructors. Courses in all subject areas are offered each semester. Students who choose to take an on-line class may be scheduled during their school day. Each student is assigned to a mentor teacher and is expected to work on their curriculum independently both at school and at home. On-line courses can offer a range of opportunities that allow students to pursue other academic interests outside of what is offered at SB schools.
Dual Enrollment means taking a college class or classes while in high school. High school requirements, college admission requirements and State law determine participation in dual enrollment. To gain admission to NMC prior to high school graduation, a student must take the ACT or COMPASS placement test at the college and submit a special “dual enrollment” application. (Suttons Bay High School will pay for the tuition.) Students are responsible for purchasing their books and/or supplies, and for paying the $20 registration fee.
Early College allows SBHS students to begin their college study at the same time they are completing their high school requirements. Beginning in their freshmen year, students who are interested in the program are encouraged to take college readiness courses. To be eligible for the program, students must earn qualifying scores on the COMPASS test and complete an application packet. A typical schedule will have sophomores take one NMC class each semester (in place of one HS class), juniors and seniors taking two NMC classes each semester (in place of two HS classes), and, in the thirteenth year, four NMC courses each semester plus their last HS class. Graduates will earn up to 62 college credit hours of classes that will transfer to participating colleges and universities in Michigan.
There are many opportunites for Academic Enrichment at Suttons Bay Public Schools. Among them are:
- The French club is an addition to French class that meets during seminar with an emphasis on sharing and exploring aspects of French culture. Activities include learning how grapes are grown, tasting types of French cheese and visiting Black Star Farms to speak with their French cheese maker, having lunch at Patisserie Amie (a local French restaurant), making French food together, watching French films, and participating in French traditions.
- Business Professionals of America (more information coming soon)
- National Honor Society - The purpose of the National Honor Society is to create enthusiasm for scholarship, to stimulate a desire to render service, to promote leadership, and to develop character in the student's secondary schools. Students who have a 3.4 GPA or above are invited to apply.
Students who demonstrate outstanding performance in four criteria: scholarship, leadership, service and character are selected by a faculty advisory panel to be inducted into The National Honor Society in the fall of each school year.
- Odyssey of the Mind is an international educational program that provides creative problem-solving opportunities for students from kindergarten through college. Team members apply their creativity to solve problems that range from building mechanical devices to presenting their own interpretation of literary classics. They then bring their solutions to competition on the local, state, and World level. Thousands of teams from throughout the U.S. and from about 25 other countries participate in the program. Suttons Bay has proudly sent teams to the state level of competition in the past three years.
- FIRST Robotics (see link for more information)
- Spanish club offers students in Spanish 1 through 4 the opportunity to participate in an extracurricular club where they can use the language in new settings and celebrate the culture. To be acknowledged as an active member, students must attend regular meetings during seminar without missing more than 2 per semester. They must also participate in a minimum of 2 events, fundraisers or projects put on by the club. Some regular events include holiday celebrations, community dinners, restaurant trips, morning coffee & conversation hour, Jarritos Mexican Soda sales, Shirt design and sales, Dominican Republic Spring Break Service Trip, Cooking & Pot-Luck lunches, Giving Tree decorating and set up (at Christmas), Spanish movies, volunteer trips to the Migrant Day Care, and other service work.
- Trip to Washington DC - Every other year, the 7th and 8th grade students are provided with an opportunity to travel to Washington DC as an enrichment experience. Students travel as a group and see many of the historical sites of our Nation’s capitol. The cost of the trip includes all expenses. Many students raise their own funds to travel through out the year. The next DC experience will be offered in May 2013.
- The 7/8 Robotics team competed in Novi on February 25 and came in fifth! Here is a team picture:
For further information about Suttons Bay’s Talent Development Program, please contact our TD Coordinator, Cindy Crandall at email@example.com