Author(s)

Amy ValadezFollow

Department

School of Education

Degree

Doctor of Education (EdD)

Chair

Gail Collins

Primary Subject Area

Education, General; Education, Teacher Training; Education, Sociology of; Education, Curriculum and Instruction; Education, Tests and Measurements

Keywords

Gifted Education, Gifted Students, No Child Left Behind, Social Constructivism, Standardized Testing, Standards Based Reform

Disciplines

Curriculum and Instruction | Education | Educational Assessment, Evaluation, and Research | Gifted Education | Social and Philosophical Foundations of Education

Abstract

The push by the Federal government to directly increase and positively impact achievement since the implementation of No Child Left Behind (NCLB) (2001) gave rise to the educational design known as standards based reform (SBR). This legislation impacted all sub-groups by measuring growth for sub-populations to determine yearly adequate progress. The growth of the sub-population of gifted students, however, was not included in the determination of a school's or county's success, so the impact of standards based reform on the gifted student is lacking. Therefore, this case study examined educators' perspectives of standards based reform on the gifted child in three Georgia middle schools where the total immersion into standards based reform had occurred for at least four years. I interviewed a purposeful sample of teachers of gifted students as well as administrators from these schools. In addition, general education teachers who have students identified as gifted in their classes completed questionnaires. To conclude the data collection, I conducted focus group interviews with select participants. I used a cross-case analysis methodology to analyze the data and employed data triangulation, feedback, a member check and an audit trail to secure credibility in the findings. The research concluded that standards based reform is detrimental to the gifted child through due to SBR's lack of rigor.