Empowering Gifted Educators as Change Agents
A Playbook for Equity-Driven Professional Learning
Through an accessible, research-based program of professional learning, this critical resource empowers gifted educators to become change agents for equity in their classroom, school, or district.
Designed for practitioners seeking to increase the rate of identification and retention of underserved gifted populations, this book guides readers through the Four Zones of Equity-Driven Professional Learning Model, a practical set of tools specific to the field of gifted education. Readers will develop an all-inclusive professional learning plan specific to their teachers’ understanding of cultural norms, guiding participants to gain insight into the characteristics of gifted marginalized students, coaching faculty in ways to increase classroom support, and equipping educators with the tools necessary to build effective partnerships with parents and communities.
Ideal for gifted educators, coordinators, and administrators, this playbook is packed with practical ideas, strategies, and activities to bring meaningful, equity-driven professional learning to life.
Table of Contents
Introduction 1. The Need for Equity-Driven Professional Learning 2. Introduction to the Four Zone Equity-Driven Professional Learning Model 3. Seven Guidelines for Equity-Driven Professional Learning for Gifted Educators 4. Zone 1: Increasing Educators' Understanding of Cultural Norms and Equity 5. Zone 2: Increasing Educators' Understanding of Characteristics of Gifted Marginalized Students 6. Zone 3: Increasing Classroom Support for Educators and Gifted Marginalized Students 7. Zone 4: Increasing and Developing Partnerships with Parents and the Community 8. Professional Learning is an Iterative Process
Katie D. Lewis is Associate Professor and Director of Secondary Education and Post-Baccalaureate Programs at York College of Pennsylvania, USA. She is also a Board Member of The Association for the Gifted (CEC-TAG).
Angela M. Novak is Assistant Professor and Academically and Intellectually Gifted Coordinator at East Carolina University, USA. She is also a Board Member of CEC-TAG and the National Association for Gifted Children's Diversity and Equity Committee.
"The authors' approach toward equity-driven professional learning takes a comprehensive view toward creating systemic change in serving diverse gifted learners. Unlike "piece-meal" approaches, this authentic resource takes a broad, overarching examination of the abundant obstacles that have prevented progress toward equity in gifted education. They then demonstrate, through numerous cases, scenarios, lessons, and activities, specific and practical actions school leaders and teachers can implement to overcome biases and obstacles inherent in our schools. Every teacher in the U.S. should have this book; I will be buying it for my teachers!"
Dina Brulles, Director of Gifted Education for Paradise Valley USD in Phoenix, Arizona; USA
"The Four Zones Equity-Driven Professional Learning Model (4ZEPL) has the power to restructure access to gifted and talented services in the classroom, at the school site, and district level. This guide offers a practical model that integrates culturally responsive professional development in response to the student's funds of knowledge. This book is a necessary addition to every district administrator, coordinator, or teacher's bookshelf who advocates for equitable access to gifted and talented services."
Julia Nyberg, Executive Director of California Association for the Gifted, USA
"The authors take a needed step in moving the equity in gifted education conversation to include the root causes and families and communities in the iterative process. Through the 4ZEPL framework and process, educators will address underrepresentation in their gifted services and mitigate attrition because of mismatched services or the absence of appropriate "bridge" supports. This text will be instrumental in empowering and equipping gifted educators to exact positive changes in their schools and districts."
Monica Simonds, Director of Advanced Learning Programs and Services for Richardson ISD, Texas; USA
"Written with administrators and teacher educators in mind, Empowering Gifted Educators as Change Agents provides a fresh look at what equity-driven, research-based professional learning looks like. For those hoping to close the gap between best practices, identification and retention of under-served gifted learners, there can be no better playbook for change than the Four Zones Equity-Driven Professional Learning Model. The authors of this book have produced a game plan to achieve transformative change that empowers teachers to be the change while becoming advocates for antiracism not just in thoughts but also in practice."
Wendy A. Behrens, President-Elect of CEC-TAG, USA
"The need for greater inclusivity and culturally responsive practices in gifted education cannot be ignored. Dr. Lewis and Dr. Novak have presented a systematic approach to equity driven professional learning that will guide school faculty as they progress on their individual journeys toward diversity, equity, and inclusion in gifted services."
C. Matthew Fugate, University of Houston-Downtown, USA
"Finally, a book about engaging teachers of gifted in ongoing professional learning using data to determine needs! A bonus is the conversational tone emitted throughout. Reading it feels like I'm chatting with Angela and Katie over coffee. Powerful."
Jolene Teske, Advanced Learning Supervisor for Des Moines, USA
"Chocked full of creative ideas for quality professional learning activities, this playbook provides facilitators with fresh learning experiences to build awareness about equity in delivering gifted education services. By exploring their Four Zone Equity-Driven Professional Learning Model, the authors lead readers through understanding applicable research and theories relevant to delivering culturally responsive professional learning."
Bronwyn MacFarlane, Editor for STEM Education for High Ability Learners and Specialized Schools for High Ability Learners: Designing and Implementing Programming, USA