Curriculum and Instruction

Gifted Education Extension Questions and Answers

On July 22, 2005, the Board of Regents adopted an amendment to Commissioner's Regulations that includes the following changes in the certification requirements.

  • Increases the education requirements for the gifted education extension of a teaching certificate to 12 semester hours in gifted education (previously 6 semester hours). This requirement better aligns with the competencies tested for in the New York State Teacher Certification Examination (NYSTCE) test.
  • Defers until September 1, 2006 the implementation of the requirement that a teacher must hold a gifted education extension or have obtained from the State Education Department a Statement of Continuing Eligibility (SOCE).

Please note: This is a brief summary only; it is not an exhaustive description of the amendment. For more detailed information, see the Chart of Recent Certification Changes. You may read the complete text of the regulatory amendment by clicking on the following link: Proposed Amendment to the Regulations of the Commissioner of Education Relating to the Extension in Gifted Education of a Teaching Certificate.

December 2003 Field Memorandum on the GT Extension

Click on a question to view the answer.

What is "Grandpersoning" and how will it apply to the Gifted Education Extension?

What is often referred to as "grandpersoning" is the Statement of Continuing Eligibility (SOCE), for which current teachers of gifted and talented may apply. An applicant for the SOCE must first hold a permanent certificate. In general, applicants will need to document satisfactory service as teachers of gifted and talented for 3 years within the last 7 preceding the adoption of new regulations (between September 1, 1998 and August 31, 2006). Applicants must currently hold a permanent State Certificate and provide a board of education resolution, dated at least three years prior to the SOCE application, confirming the appointment of the applicant to a gifted and talented assignment.

The application form for all SOCEs is the same and can be obtained from the the college, BOCES or the Office of Teaching in the State Education Department. To order the form from the Office of Teaching you can email: tcert@mail.nysed.gov. A SOCE will only confer eligibility in the grade levels of the teacher's base certificate just as the new extension will only confer eligibility in the grade levels of the teacher's base certificate.

The Office of Teaching has issued guidance on several issues related to the Application for a Statement of Continued Eligibility (SOCE). These clarifications respond to a number of questions that teachers and administrators have asked. They may be summarized as follows:

  1. The code that should be used for this application is: 9170 SOCE – Gifted and Talented
  2. Fingerprint clearance is not required for the the SOCE.
  3. The School Violence and Child Abuse Workshop is not required for the SOCE.
  4. Transcripts are not required for the SOCE application.
  5. The Office of Teaching will now accept applications for the SOCE.
  6. The Office of Teaching will accept prior work in non-public (as well as public) schools for the 3years within the last 7 years needed for the SOCE.
  7. All applicants for the SOCE must hold a permanent teaching certificate at the time they apply.

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Will the certificate or the SOCE be a K-12 extension for someone who is certified in specific grade levels such as K-5, 6-8, or 7-12?

It extends your eligibility within the grade level and subject of your existing or new certification.

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How can I find which colleges and universities offer programs that lead to the certificate?

You can check the Inventory of Registered Programs on the State Education Department website. On the Inventory search section you should indicate that you are searching for a program leading to a teacher certification and then you will be offered a menu that includes the gifted extension.

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What are the education requirements for the Gifted Education Extension?

Education Courses must cover the following:

12 semester hours in:

  • knowledge of the characteristics of gifted students who learn at a pace and level that is significantly different from their classmates
  • knowledge of various tools and methods for identifying and assessing gifted students and skill in using such tools and methods
  • knowledge and understanding of appropriate curriculum design for gifted students
  • knowledge and skills for planning, providing, coordinating, and evaluating differentiated teaching and learning environments to challenge and assist gifted students in learning to their highest levels of achievement
  • skill in collaborating with other school staff, families and the community to provide appropriate individualized instruction for gifted students

(candidate must achieve at least a C in all undergraduate level courses and a B- in all graduate level courses submitted to meet content and pedagogy requirements)

Examination Requirement

  • Pass the NYS Teacher Certification Examination
  • Content Specialty Test in Gifted Education

Preparation guide for the Content Specialty Test for the Extension external link icon

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What are the approved courses for the new extension certificate?

Approved courses are either a part of the approved program or are determined through a transcript evaluation. In addition, there will be a content specialty test.

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How will a transcript be evaluated?

The Office of Teaching will develop a matrix for replicating a model gifted and talented program and will review transcripts based upon this. This is still being developed but information will be distributed as soon as it is available.

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What about folks who already have a Masters in Gifted Ed—will they be approved for the extension?

If the program that provided his/her Master's degree becomes an approved program, the certificate can be issued based upon retroactive completion of the program and recommendation of the institution of higher education. Alternately, it is likely that most people with a Masters in GT can evidence the coursework for transcript evaluation.

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Is there reciprocity for certified teachers of gifted education with other states?


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Will there be any flexibility in the implementation of the requirement for an extension?

There is no flexibility outside of the Commissioner's Regulations. As of the 2006-2007 school year, teachers must hold either the SOCE or the certificate required to serve as a teacher of gifted education.

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Up to what percentage of time will someone be allowed to teach gifted students without the extension?

Commissioner's Regulations provide for the possibility of an incidental teaching assignment. Currently, an out-of-title assignment of not more than .2 (1 period a day, 5 periods per week) of a full teaching load can continue to be approved by the District Superintendent. While the incidental assignment remains for the present in Regulations, there are serious questions about its viability when viewed from the perspective of No Child Left Behind.

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Last Updated: June 3, 2009