GAM Advocacy Platform

In the State of Missouri, “gifted children” means those who “exhibit precocious development of
mental capacity and learning potential as determined by competent professional evaluation to the
extent that continued educational growth and stimulation could best be served by an academic
environment beyond that offered through a standard grade level curriculum.” RSMo. 162.675
GAM has actively supported the needs of high-ability and high-potential learners in
Missouri since 1980. GAM provides teacher training, curriculum development, parent support,
regional seminars and workshops, scholarships, student competitions, and awards. Further,
GAM conducts an annual state conference for all Missouri stakeholders in gifted education. In
addition, GAM employs a legislative consultant to advocate for gifted students at the state level
and through the legislative process.

GAM Advocates for:
1. Legislation to support funding for gifted education in all Missouri Public Schools.
2. Legislation to support a mandate to provide gifted services to identified gifted students in
all Missouri Public Schools, through a state-approved gifted program.
3. Legislation to require each school district to report annually to DESE regarding the
programs or services being provided for gifted students within their district and the
number of students being served.
4. A required undergraduate level course in gifted education to prepare future teachers to
address a wide range of abilities and to facilitate their use of instructional strategies to
maximize their students’ potential.
5. Professional development in differentiation to assure that all teachers are equipped to
differentiate the curriculum for a wide range of learners, including students from diverse
populations, with a focus on academic rigor.
6. Mandatory Professional Development hours for school personnel responsible for the
coordination and administration of gifted programs and services in the areas of Nature
and Needs of Gifted Learners and Curriculum and Instruction for Gifted Learners.
7. Initiatives and opportunities which will benefit gifted students beyond high school, (i.e.
Bright Flight, Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, Dual Credit).
8. The support of enrichment programs which go above and beyond school requirements
including summer programs, higher education opportunities, Missouri Scholars
Academy, Missouri Fine Arts Academy, as well as other programs which support gifted
9. A state-wide Advisory Council with members who have experience with gifted programs
to advise the State Board of Education regarding applicable rules and regulations, as well
as other issues that relate to programs for gifted and talented students.
10. A full-time Director of Gifted Education position through the Missouri Department of
Elementary and Secondary Education.

For further information concerning advocacy please contact:
Kyna Iman, GAM Legislative Consultant,
Heather Tomicich, GAM Legislative Public Issues,