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Federal Grant to Help Strengthen Maryland’s Gifted Education Programs

Javits Award to Help Fund Gateway Program

BALTIMORE – The Maryland State Department of Education has been awarded a five-year federal grant to help increase the number of students gaining access to gifted education programs throughout the State.

With the help of the $1.6 million Javits Gifted and Talented Education Grant, MSDE will create the “Gateway to GT Education,” a set of online tools to help educators, families, and researchers better identify and serve students historically underrepresented in gifted education classes. MSDE will partner with the Johns Hopkins University Center for Technology in Education to build the system.

“The Gateway to GT Education Program marks our State’s first new effort in more than a decade to revitalize gifted education,” said Dr. Karen Salmon, State Superintendent of Schools. “We are thrilled to launch this new program dedicated to the critical educational needs of our highest performing students.”

In addition to launching the Gateway to GT Education, the grant will underwrite research and development of new State policies and guidelines for the identification of gifted and talented students. By working with local school systems, teachers, national experts and other stakeholders, MSDE intends to build consensus and facilitate the implementation of new identification policies.

The Javits program, authorized by Congress in 1998, is designed to carry out a coordinated program of research, demonstration projects and similar activities in order to enhance the ability of schools to identify gifted and talented students and meet their educational needs.

Of the 39 applications reviewed, Maryland’s was one of 12 to gain funding.

The major emphasis of the program is on serving students traditionally underrepresented in the nation’s gifted and talented programs, particularly economically disadvantaged, limited English proficient (LEP), and disabled students. In addition, the program attempts to help reduce the serious gap in achievement among certain groups of students at the highest levels of achievement.