Evaluation and Accountability Overview
Exceptional Children's Educational Act (ECEA) Rules defines "Evaluation" as:
Procedures, methods, and tools used to initially identify a gifted child, assess and monitor the child's progress, and evaluate the child and the gifted program. Evaluation includes, but need not be limited to:
- Identifying the child's unique strengths, interests, and needs;
- Monitoring the child's academic achievement and growth and affective goals;
- Identifying the priorities and concerns of the child's family and resources to which the family and the child's school have access; and
- Determining program strengths and areas for program improvement. [12.01(15)(a-d)]
Accountability may be described as the responsibilities of the administrative unit (AU) to gather, analyze and report data for the purpose of identifying programming strengths, determining areas for continuous improvement and complying with state accreditation and monitoring requirements.
Program evaluation is a systemic, comprehensive appraisal of the gifted education program plan and drives future decision making for continuous improvement. It relies on using meaningful data, such as gifted identification demographics, Advanced Learning Plans (ALPs), performance on state and local assessments, and results from stakeholder surveys and/or focus groups. Additionally, program evaluation supports the AU’s efforts for state and local accountability requirements.
The Exceptional Children’s Educational Act (ECEA) is Colorado’s primary law with requirements for the implementation of specific elements and procedures for gifted education. ECEA Rules contain a specific section defining key requirements for the element, Evaluation and Accountability. However, it is noted that all elements within the Rules contain indicators that support an AU’s systemic process for program evaluation. Data collected help drive decision making and program development. For more information about the components of a comprehensive program evaluation, access the Program Evaluation web page.
Key indicators for implementation within the element of Evaluation and Accountability:
- Unified Improvement Plan (UIP) gifted addendum addresses methods by which gifted student performance is monitored and measured and how methods align with the state accreditation process;
- Gifted students' affective growth is monitored and measured to ensure continual development;
- Gifted student achievement and growth data are disaggregated for reporting and progress monitoring; and
- Gifted program self-evaluation includes periodic feedback and review from stakeholders and informs stakeholders of the methods for program evaluation.
Soliciting periodic feedback from stakeholders is part of a continuous program evaluation process and defined in ECEA Rules. Stakeholders include: administrators, teachers, parents, families and students. How and when AUs collect feedback may vary. Providing results of stakeholder feedback is a required component of the Colorado Gifted Education Review (CGER). CDE provides guidance on how to conduct a survey and/or focus group to obtain stakeholder input for the purpose of program evaluation.
Resources for Evaluation and Accountability:
- Program Evaluation Webpage
- Program Evaluation Guidance Document
- Conducting a Program Evaluation Survey
- Conducting a Program Evaluation Focus Group
- Colorado Gifted Education Review (CGER)
- Gifted Enrollment
- Unified Improvement Plan Gifted Addendum
- Affective Goals
Note: If you are not able to access the resources or need additional support, please contact the Office of Gifted Education Gifted Program Administrator.