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Sat, Nov 02


Kellam High School

SENG Virginia Beach Mini Conference

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SENG Virginia Beach Mini Conference
SENG Virginia Beach Mini Conference

Time & Location

Nov 02, 2019, 8:00 AM – 4:30 PM

Kellam High School, 2665 W Neck Rd, Virginia Beach, VA 23456, USA


About The Event


8:00-9:00 AM  Registration 

9:00-10:00 AM Opening Keynote: Auditorium

Understanding your gifted child from the inside-out: A guide to the social and emotional lives of gifted kids (Dr. Jim Delisle)

10:15-11:15 AM Session 1 

A. “THIS IS ME”: Artistically Gifted and Talented Students; Who They Are and What They Need to be Successful 

(Andrea Warren) 

B. How Do You View the World? A Discussion of Diversity and Equity for Gifted Education (Robert Jamison)

C. Calming the Calamities: A Gifted Perspective of Managing Anxiety, Anger, and Angst (Christine Turo-Shields)

D. The Inconvenient Student: Critical Issues in the Identification and Education of the Twice-Exceptional (Michael Postma)

11:30 AM-12:30 PM Session 2

A. Can’t you just chill out?: Appreciating the intensities of gifted individuals 

(Jim Delisle)

B. An Ecological Model of Suicidal Behavior Among Gifted Children and Adolescents (Tracy L. Cross )

C. Academic Acceleration and the Social and Emotional Development of Gifted Learners (Keri Guilbault)

D. Twice-Exceptional Parent and School Partnerships: Ten Ways to Maximize Two-way Advocacy (Ken Dickson)

12:30-2:00 PM Lunch/Discussion (mingle with the speakers)


2:00-3:00 PM Session 3

A. Affirming Culturally Different Gifted Learners through Culturally Responsive Practices (LaQuiche Parrott and Nicole DeVries)

B. Supporting Social Emotional Learning to Maximize Gifted Student Achievement 

(Kipp D. Rogers)

C. Ten Tips for Advocating for Exceptional Learners With Elected Officials 

(Ken Dickson)

3:15-4:15 PM Session 4

A. Parent Support in the Gifted Community 

(Kasi Peters)

B. Post-Traumatic Growth: Thriving Amidst Trauma & Tragedy

(Christine Turo-Shields)

C. Understanding the Role of Assessment and the Gifted/2e Learner

(Michael Postma)

4:15-4:30  Closing Remarks  Auditorium


Key Note: Understanding your gifted child from the inside-out: A guide to the social and emotional lives of gifted kids  (Jim Delisle) Auditorium

Parents of gifted children and teens have many questions about how best to meet their intellectual and emotional needs.  They want to know what giftedness is and the label’s impact on other family members.  They want to know how to advocate for their gifted child in a school setting mired in “bringing up the bottom” rather than “raising the bar” at the top.  They want to know how to set expectations that are appropriate and attainable.  And they want to know how to juggle the wide range of emotional intensities that often “comes with the territory” in raising gifted kids. 

Session One:

A. “THIS IS ME”: Artistically Gifted and Talented Students; Who They Are and What They Need to be Successful (Andrea Warren) A107

As an infant, she could bounce on beat of the music. She loved watching opera, listening to classical music and ballets. Before she could read, she memorized her favorite book and enjoyed sitting with the book appearing to read it word for word. She could harmonies before she knew what she was doing. What should a parent do with a child who exhibits artistic skills at a young age? How can the school community support and encourage artistically gifted students?

Session Goals:

· Parents will be able to identify and recognize a student who exhibits advanced skills the arts.

· Parents and teachers will understand their roles in supporting artistically gifted and talented students.

B. CALMING THE CALAMITIES: A Gifted Perspective of Managing Anxiety, Anger and Angst (Christine Turo-Shields) A109

From generalized worry to heart-pounding panic attacks to raging outbursts, these emotional struggles can range from bothersome to debilitating. This workshop highlights experiential techniques to manage the emotional intensity of gifted children, teens and adults. Agitation and relaxation cannot physiologically exist in the body at the same time. Create confidence in your children, students and in yourself by tapping strengths, power and tools to impose a relaxed body posture by over-riding mental agitation, over-excitabilities and existential depression. These strategies successfully benefit children and adults for managing emotional distress related to anxiety, anger and angst.

· Increase awareness of physiological impact of emotional intensity, over-excitabilities as well as existential depression and perfectionism

· Gain effective emotion regulation strategies of physiological soothing, including diaphragmatic breathing, relaxation, visualization, etc.

· Examine Socratic reasoning, cognitive restructuring, presupposition, and growth mindset in order to increase confidence of emotion regulation strategies

C. How Do You View the World? A Discussion of Diversity and Equity for Gifted Education 

(Robert Jamison) A129

The goal of this introspective session is for participants to think about diversity and equity through a more expansive lens. Participants will review common terms used in schools, classrooms and communities and how these terms impact gifted identification and support for students. Furthermore, the session will review effective practices when working with students identified for gifted education services to ensure their academic, social, and emotional needs are met.

D. The Inconvenient Student: Critical Issues in the Identification and Education of the Twice-Exceptional (Michael Postma) A126

The twice-exceptional child presents a puzzling paradox to educators as they will occasionally shock you with their brilliance while frustrating you with their performance. Generally speaking, 2e children are highly gifted individuals that struggle with debilitating deficits. As such, they are difficult to identify and diagnosis, let alone teach. This workshop will explore the unique wiring of the 2e brain, prevailing damaging myths, common characteristics of 2e children, types of 2e diagnosis, identification procedures (including a checklist), and discuss general strategies for classroom instruction and assessment. 

Session Two:

A. Can’t you just chill out?: Appreciating the intensities of gifted individuals 

(Jim Delisle) A107

Above all other attributes, gifted children, teens and adults share a common characteristic: intensity.  These intensities may relate to academics, where nothing below straight-As is acceptable; emotions, where extreme highs and lows leave no room for moderation; and everyday life, where relationships are deeper, disappointment is stronger, and even simple questions have complex answers.  In this session, these and other intensities will be addressed, as will ways that educators and parents can learn to appreciate them for the assets they are instead of the deficiencies that many make them out to be. 

B. An Ecological Model of Suicidal Behavior Among Gifted Children and Adolescents (Tracy L. Cross and Jennifer Riedl Cross) A109

Many students with gifts and talents engage in suicidal ideation, a small number will make a suicide attempt, and a very small portion will die by their own hand. Clearly, those interested in developing talent among these students must understand both positive and disruptive psychological and social issues and factors. According to Durkheim (1951), egoistic suicide results from a lack of social integration due to a limited or nonexistent social network. The lived experience of students with gifts and talents often includes fraught social integration (Coleman, Micko, & Cross, 2015). Understanding and preventing suicide, therefore, becomes an essential aspect of developing talent that is sustained over time. The common pathway to suicidal behavior on which students of any ability level may find themselves is fairly well understood. Research on suicidal behavior of students with gifts and talents is uncovering a pathway that is unique to them. Building on a spiral model of suicide among students with gifts and talents (Cross & Cross, 2017), this session will offer an emerging theory of suicidal behavior in this population that includes psychological and social issues and factors.

C. Academic Acceleration and the Social and Emotional Development of Gifted Learners

(Keri Guilbault) A129

Research on acceleration shows many positive effects on the social and emotional development of carefully selected accelerants. In this session, we will dispel myths and discuss the research on acceleration and how it can be a successful strategy that supports the social and emotional well-being of gifted learners

D. Twice-Exceptional Parent and School Partnerships: Ten Ways to Maximize Two-way Advocacy (Ken Dickson) A126

Too often parents face too many challenges when seeking help at their schools regarding meeting the unique needs of their twice-exceptional (2e) learners. The presenter identifies ten school components on which teachers and parents can develop effective partnerships to maximize services for twice-exceptional learners. Essential parent questions and ideal responses accompany the ten identified components.


Session Three:

A. Affirming Culturally Different Gifted Learners through Culturally Responsive Practices (LaQuiche Parrott and Nicole DeVries) A107

In the research, “culturally responsive means to respond proactively and empathetically to appeals, efforts, and influences” (Ford, D.Y., & Kea). Dr. Donna Ford goes one step further to explain that “at its heart, culturally responsive classrooms are student-centered and by default, culture-centered” (Ford, D.Y, 2010). This session will outline how Virginia Beach City Public Schools integrated culturally responsive practices to respond to academic and emotional needs of the gifted learner, and the overall diverse student demographics of the school district. Participants will engage in a simulated activity focused on one’s culture, reflect and discuss ways to leverage culturally responsive practices within the classroom/school settings.

B. Supporting Social Emotional Learning to Maximize Gifted Student Achievement 

(Kipp D. Rogers) A109

As defined by the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL), Social Emotional Learning (SEL) is defined as, “the process through which children and adults acquire and effectively apply the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to understand and manage emotions, set and achieve positive goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain positive relationships, and make responsible decisions.” During this session, participants will learn how the essential tenets of SEL are utilized in Virginia Beach City Public Schools to guide teaching and learning, thereby enabling gifted and high ability students to achieve at their fullest potential within the K-12 classroom setting.

C. Ten Tips for Advocating for Exceptional Learners With Elected Officials 

(Ken Dickson) A129

Learners with exceptional needs require effective advocacy at every level, including Congress. You must never be intimidated, shy or think that you cannot or should not personally communicate with your elected Congressional delegations. They expect and need you to create close personal relationships with them. It is the strongest means of influencing legislative thinking and actions. In this session, the presenter will identify ten pointers to help maximize your communications with your congressional elected officials. 

Session Four: 

A. Parent Support in the Gifted Community (Kasi Peters) A107

SENG-Model Parent Groups provide a safe and supportive environment to freely discuss your child’s development and parenting challenges, connect with other parents, and increase your awareness of your child’s unique needs. During this interactive presentation you will learn about the variety of topics discussed in SMPGs, gain an understanding of the unique type of support SMPGs offer to families of gifted children, and experience a condensed version of an SMPG focusing on a topic of your choosing. Parents often describe their experience in SMPGs as transformative. Join us to find out if they can do the same for you!

B. Post-Traumatic Growth: Thriving Amidst Trauma & Tragedy 

(Christine Turo-Shields) A109

In life, bad things happen -- this is a truth of life.  When adversity and trauma occur, some feel victimized, some survive and others thrive.  Post-Traumatic Growth occurs in those that thrive . . . and it's important to realize that resilience skills can be fostered to support healing.  Join us for a lively discussion and examination of how growth does occur after tragedy.

This workshop will focus on:

· Participants will gain a greater understanding of Post-Traumatic Growth (PTG)

· Participants will be able to identify primary PTG manifestations as well as the use of the PTG Inventory

· Participants will learn practical tools to increase resilience that support PTG

· Participants will learn gain effective creative interventions which support PTG in clients

C. Understanding the Role of Assessment and the Gifted/2e Learner 

(Michael Postma) A129

Gifted and Twice-Exceptional students learn differently. As such, the role of assessment takes on a much different look with more emphasis on diagnostic and formative assessments being the primary tool to gauge learning and growth. This session will look at how one can engage, teach, and assess the learning of both the gifted and 2e learner.


Dr. Tracy L. Cross 

Dr. Tracy Cross holds an endowed chair, Jody and Layton Smith Professor of Psychology and Gifted Education, and is the Executive Director of the Center for Gifted Education and the Institute for Research on the Suicide of Gifted Students at William & Mary. Previously he served Ball State University as the George and Frances Ball Distinguished Professor of Psychology and Gifted Studies, the founder and Executive Director of both the Center for Gifted Studies and Talent Development, and the Institute for Research on the Psychology of the Gifted Students. He has published over 200 articles, book chapters, and columns; made over 300 presentations at conferences, and has published 10 books. He has edited seven journals including the Journal for the Education of the Gifted. He received the Distinguished Scholar Award in 2011 from the National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC), and the Distinguished Service Award from both The Association for the Gifted (TAG) and NAGC. He also received the Early Leader and Early Scholar Awards from NAGC and in 2009 was given the Lifetime Achievement Award from the MENSA Education and Research Foundation. For nine years he served as the Executive Director of the Indiana Academy for Science, Mathematics and Humanities, a residential high school for intellectually gifted adolescents. He recently completed his term as the President of the National Association for Gifted Children and the President of The Association of the Gifted. He lives in Williamsburg with his wife, Dr. Jennifer Riedl Cross and their French Bulldog Stu.

Dr. James Delisle

Jim Delisle, Ph.D., has taught gifted children and those who work on their behalf for more than forty years, including twenty-five years as a professor of special education at Kent State University. He has taught students in elementary and secondary schools and, for the past six years, has worked part time with highly gifted ninth and tenth graders at the Scholars’ Academy in Conway, South Carolina. The author of more than 250 articles and twenty books, Jim is a frequent presenter on gifted children’s intellectual and emotional growth. Jim and his wife Deb live in Washington, D.C., and North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

Dr. Nicole DeVries

Nicole DeVries, Ph.D. is the director of K-12 Programs and the Office of Gifted Programs for Virginia Beach City Public Schools. She holds a bachelor’s degree and Master’s of Education from Old Dominion University, as well as a Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership from Regent University. Dr. DeVries oversees several areas, including gifted programs and English as a Second Language (ESL). She is committed to providing students who these programs serve high-level, engaging academic opportunities, while also focusing on meeting their social-emotional needs.

Ken Dickson

Ken Dickson has been a fixture in the field of Gifted & Talented Education for decades. His dedication and passion to the gifted community, and especially gifted students from non-traditional backgrounds, has been continuous with more than 40 years of service in Baltimore County Schools in differing administrative roles. His interests include applications of research and practices concerning academic and cultural diversity relationships. A special interest focuses on educational equity and interventions that support students’ access, support, and opportunities for learning in exceptional educational learning environments. Ken serves as a member of the Council for Exceptional Children; the Board for The Association for Gifted of the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) and the Editorial Review Board for Supporting Emotional Needs of the Gifted. He is a past member of the NAGC Board of Directors and the Executive Board for the Division for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Exceptional Learners of CEC. Ken has also dedicated his life to working for equity and cultural inclusion in gifted programming. In 2017, Ken received the NAGC Presidents Award for his service.

Robert Jamison

Mr. Robert B. Jamison is the coordinator of School Counseling Services for Virginia Beach City Public Schools (VBCPS). Mr. Jamison earned a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology at the University of Virginia in 2004. In August 2008 he was hired as a professional school counselor in VBCPS and the following school year was promoted to School Counseling Department Chair. In September of 2013, he earned a promotion to central administration becoming an instructional specialist for the Office of Guidance Services and Student Records in VBCPS. Committed to educational leadership, Mr. Jamison earned an Educational Specialist degree from Old Dominion University in December 2016. Over the past year Mr. Jamison has supported school counselors across the state of Virginia as a member of the Board of Directors for the Virginia School Counselor Association. From 2017 through 2018 Mr. Jamison was appointed to and began serving on the Virginia Commission on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, established by Governor McAuliffe in Executive Order 69. Whether it be conducting professional development activities, training faculty and staff, or meeting with families, Mr. Jamison enjoys working and collaborating with all stakeholders, especially students. 

Dr. LaQuiche Parrott

LaQuiche Parrott, Ed.D. is the director of Opportunity and Achievement for Virginia Beach City Public Schools which supports the Department of Teaching and Learning through training for transformation and social-emotional development with an emphasis on equity and diversity initiatives. The most important part of her role is to provide support through professional learning opportunities for school leaders and teachers to cultivate cultural awareness and actions that result in, welcoming, safe inclusive learning environments for students, families and school staff. Prior to the role as director, Dr. Parrott served as an elementary school principal and taught at the elementary level in the Hampton Roads area

Kasi Peters

Kasi Peters, MT-BC is a board-certified music therapist with 20 years of experience working in pediatric music therapy. She has co-authored the Individualized Music Therapy Assessment Protocol, and is co-author of a number of chapters in different music therapy books. Kasi holds a certificate in Gifted and Talented Education through University of California Irvine and currently serves on the Board of Directors for SENG (Supporting the Emotional Needs of the Gifted), Gifted Homeschoolers Forum, and Profoundly Gifted Retreat. As a SENG-Model Parent Group Master Facilitator, Kasi co-facilitates support groups for families raising gifted children. Her efforts in this area were recognized as she was presented with the 2017 SMPG Facilitator of the Year award. Over the past six years, together with Adriane Ransom, Kasi has co-facilitated SENG-Model Parent Groups and presented to schools and parent groups on a variety of topics related to giftedness. They also founded Square Pegs, an educational consulting service dedicated to helping families looking for alternative education plans, and Westside of Los Angeles Gifted Group, an in-person and online resource for parents of gifted children. She lives in Culver City with her husband and two highly gifted children.

Michael Postma

Dr. Michael Postma is currently the part-time Programming Director for the SENG Organization. A consultant, speaker, and author, Dr. Postma is dedicated to the holistic development of gifted and twice-exceptional through his company’s Agility Educational Solutions and newest venture Gifted and Thriving. Over the last two decades, Dr. Postma has worked as both a teacher and administrator in the public school system and is the architect of the Minnetonka Navigator Program, a magnet school for highly and profoundly gifted students. He currently lives in Bellingham, WA and is the father of four children, three of whom are twice-exceptional. His latest book, The Inconvenient Student: Critical Issues in the Identification and Education of Twice-Exceptional Students is published through Royal Fireworks Press. You can reach Mike at:

Kipp D. Rogers, Ph.D. 

Dr. Kipp D. Rogers is the Chief Academic Officer of Virginia Beach City Public Schools, the fourth largest school division in Virginia with 67.000 students and 86 schools and specialty centers. A versatile over-achiever with considerable experience and execution in the skill sets of instructional leadership, professional development, and innovation; a “hands-on” leader who not only can inspire and lead a high-performance team, but the technical skills to build and develop a cohesive organization with transparency and trust at its core. An author of four books on technology integration, Dr. Rogers regularly conducts professional development for educators that is centered on leveraging technology into instruction and leadership. He has had classroom teaching and administrative experience at all levels in urban and suburban school districts. Dr. Rogers taught 7th and 8th grade science in the Talented and Gifted program in Newport News Public Schools. He also taught Pre-K and 3rd grade gifted students in the Gifted Enrichment Program at the College of William and Mary. Dr. Kipp Rogers received an international Leadership and Vision Award for his work with using mobile learning devices as instructional tools. 

Christine Turo-Shields

Christine Turo-Shields, LCSW, LCAC EMDR therapist has a personal and professional passion of working in the world of the gifted. . . raising two 2e children (one gifted and one profoundly gifted).  She has worked with a plethora of gifted children, teen, and adults, and currently facilitates a gifted women’s anxiety group. She knows the blessings and burdens of the minds of our brightest!  As an expert in the GT/HA world, she consults with school districts on case consultations regarding gifted students as well as conducts and coordinates trainings and presentations for educators and parents. She coaches gifted parents, introducing them resources which will aid in navigating their children’s world emotionally, socially and behaviorally. Christine has been an integral part in the development of the Gifted Family Program for Central Indiana Mensa – a program so successful that it won the American Mensa Gifted Children Program Award for 2010. Her article, "The Rocket Science of Raising Gifted Kids" has been published in the National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC) newsletter, and she has been a presenter at the NAGC and SENG national conferences, most notably on trauma healing among gifted individuals.  She also serves as a co-facilitator of SENG 2e online parent groups. She serves as consultant to various school districts in Indiana and has served as a member of the Behavior Team with PGR (Profoundly Gifted Retreat) as well as a webinar facilitator for the Davidson Institute.   

Dr. Andrea Warren

Dr. Andrea F. Warren has served public school students throughout the state for 38 years. She presently serves as the executive director of The Governor’s School for the Arts (GSA) and has served in this position for the past ten years.  GSA is a regional arts program that serves high school students who attend public high schools in Chesapeake, Franklin, Isle of Wight, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Southampton, Suffolk and Virginia Beach. During her tenure and with the assistance of the City of Norfolk, she has been able to obtain a permanent home for the school on Granby Street. This search led to the renovation of the100 year-old Monroe building, now called the Perry Family Arts Center, and the Shulman’s building. Under her leadership, GSA has created a Visual and Performing Arts College Fair, which serves all young artist across the state by providing an opportunity for students to speak with recruiters, participate in masterclasses and participate in college auditions. Additionally, GSA has created summer camps/programs, which cater to middle and high school students, in the area of visual arts, vocal music, and musical theatre. Serving gifted and talented students at The Governor’s School for the Arts has been one of Dr. Warren’s greatest joys and she looks forward to sharing her experiences and passion for working with young artists with parents and educators.


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