Administrator Awards & Honors

Administrator of the Year

Distinguished Service Award

ITAG Research Award Grants

  • ITAG Research Award Grant – Forms are due each year by May 31
  • 2015 Award Recipients are Dr. Kristine Milburn, ELP Coordinator/PDCF & English Teacher and Brooke Gevock, TAG Teacher, Ottumwa High School.

About Research Award Recipient, Dr. Kristine Milburn

kristinemilburnDr. Kristine Milburn
ELP Coordinator/PDCF & English Teacher


Session Title: Supporting High-Achieving High School Students Who Take Rigorous Course Loads

Description: High-achieving high school students often struggle to balance academic, extracurricular, job, and family responsibilities. As high schools place more emphasis on taking rigorous course loads, teachers, counselors, and administrators must consider the impact a rigorous course load has on high-achieving students. To better understand the impact on the social-emotional lives of high-achieving students, Dr. Milburn explored the lived experiences of high school graduates who had taken four or more AP courses concurrently. She offers several recommendations for students, parents, and high school personnel to mitigate negative impacts.

About Research Award Recipient, Brooke Gevok

BrookeGevockBrooke Gevok
TAG Teacher, Ottumwa High School

Formal Research Proposal/Session Title: Identification of English Language Learners for Talented and Gifted Programs

Last January, Brooke began researching the identification of ELL students for TAG. She has been accepted into the doctor of education in leadership program at Drake University and intends on pursuing this topic for her dissertation. This session will summarize current research on the underrepresentation of English Language Learners in Talented and Gifted Programs. Recommendations will be made for best practices. This presentation will also include the importance of integrating critical race theory into the classroom.

2015 Administrator of the Year Award

Michael Dailey
Southeast Polk Community School District, Pleasant Hill

ITAG is proud to announce this year’s recipient of the ITAG Administrator of the Year Award. Michael Dailey is principal of Southeast Polk Junior High. He works with a staff of over 100 instructors, associates, custodians, cooks and nurses who are committed to the success of students.

Of gifted students, Mike says, “Middle level students are constantly trying to find themselves and their niche in the world. This can be a very tough time for all students at this age, but extremely difficult for those students who are talented and gifted. These students must be exposed to many opportunities and choices in education. TAG students can benefit from being put into situations where they can make their own educational decisions and be vested in their own learning.”

As an educator it is Mike’s goal to impact students in two different ways. The first deals with the educational and instructional components of school. He says it is his expectation that each student will experience academic growth that matches their personal capabilities during their time in junior high. He and his staff encourage students to find that “thing” that gets them excited about their education and the learning process. The junior high years are when students learn about themselves and their interests. It is important to feed that process by offering many opportunities while maintaining a strong focus on the core areas of learning.

Iowa Legacy Interview with Arlene DeVries

ArleneDeVriesArlene DeVries was the Community Resource Consultant for the Des Moines Public Schools for 24 years, where she arranged community experiences for K-12 identified gifted students. She began the week long summer residential camp for 6th – 8th grade gifted students held annually at the 4-H camping center. After being trained in the Supporting Emotional Needs of Gifted parent discussion groups in 1981 in Dayton, Ohio, she instituted these groups in the Des Moines area and facilitated 80 ten-week sessions. She went on to train facilitators in two day workshops throughout the United States and at World Gifted Conferences in The Hague, Netherlands; Toronto, Canada; Seattle, Washington; Hong Kong; Barcelona, Spain; and Adelaide, Australia. She was a member of the original SENG (Supporting Emotional Needs of Gifted) board of directors and went on to become their president and an Emeritus Board Member. She is co-author of two books from Great Potential Press, Gifted Parent Groups: the SENG Model, 2nd Edition; and A Parent’s Guide to Gifted Children. She has attended and presented at 100 gifted/talented conferences.

She served nine years on the board of directors for the National Association for Gifted Children. Prior to her board term she proposed to the board, they adopt a parent magazine. Several years later this came to fruition, and she served on the first advisory board for this magazine. For many years she was chair of the NAGC Parent/Community Division.
As a member of the Iowa Talented and Gifted Board, Arlene organized parent workshops throughout the state. She served as Co-Chair for the ITAG conference. Under her term as president, ITAG went from an all volunteer organization to a paid staff person. As president, she was instrumental in passing legislation that instituted the Post Secondary Enrollment Option act for gifted students. She organized local parents groups under the auspices of Iowa Talented and Gifted, thus enabling a network of parents to advocate and achieve state funding for local district gifted/talented programs. Arlene has received the ITAG Distinguished Service Award, the SENG Outstanding Leadership Award, and the Drake University School of Education Outstanding Alumnae Award. She currently teaches a Drake University on-line class, “Social Emotional Needs of Gifted.” Prior to her gifted/talented career, Arlene was a K-12 public school music education teacher. She is in her 27th year presenting the pre-concert talks for the Des Moines Symphony Classical Concerts.

NAGC Educator’s Tool Kit

Because of the increasing number of requests for information for administrators about high-ability and high-potential learners, NAGC convened a task force of administrators to develop concise videos, fact sheets, and supporting documents — tools that district leaders can use as briefing materials and as the starting point to advocate for and implement services for gifted students. Here is the link:

Pre-K-Grade 12 Gifted Programming Standards

Standards provide a basis for policies, rules, and procedures that are essential for providing systematic programs and services to any special population. While standards may be addressed and implemented in a variety of ways, they provide important direction and focus to the endeavor of program development. They also help define the comprehensiveness necessary in designing and developing options for gifted learners at the local level. Because these standards are grounded in theory, research, and practice paradigms, they provide an important base for all efforts on behalf of gifted learners at all stages of development.