• Review information to include observations and recommendations from outside consultant’s program review.
  • Create and support a Highly Capable vision, mission and program to recommend for fall 2014 implementation.

Basis for Establishment:

  • Implementation of the new policies and procedures servicing K-12 Highly Capable Learners Legislation WAC 392-170-012
  • Align program needs to support The Bellingham Promise

Decision-Making Process:

  • Advisory group to the superintendent.

Plan of Work:

  • Convene committee to discuss the work of the year and review the results from the program review
  • Research best practices serving Highly Capable Learners and take into consideration:
    • Identification Processes
    • Testing Criterion
    • Highly effective service models
  • Identify and prioritize program needs
  • Establish a vision, mission and plan to support the Highly Capable Program aligned to the law and students’ needs
  • Draft implementation plan and timeline to support the committee’s recommendations
  • Submit recommendation and proposed plan to the superintendent.


Total of 18 committee members:

  • 5 Teachers: Dana Smith, Kris Carpenter, Michael Finley, Jeff Jacobs, Rachel Smith
  • 3 administrators: Keith Schacht, Michelle Abernathy, Kate Baehr
  • 1 English Language Learners (ELL) specialist, Lori Radvany
  • 4 Parent Representatives: Haley Davis, Veronica Douglas, Laurene Rusing, Rebekah Sharf
  • 1 Executive Team Member, Mike Copland
  • Co-chairs Michelle Kuss-Cybula, Director of Teaching and Learning, and Adrienne Somera and Susan Cotton, Teachers on Special Assignment.


  • Regular meeting attendance at all committee meetings
  • Support the process
  • Represent all students in Bellingham Public Schools
  • Respectful and collaborative interactions with committee members
  • Co-chairs will communicate and post all meeting agendas and minutes, and keep stakeholders informed regarding process and progress



  • 8 a.m. to 11 a.m., Tuesday, Nov. 26, 2013 – Minutes
  • 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., Tuesday, Dec. 3, 2013 – Minutes
  • 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2014 – Minutes
  • 8 a.m. to  3 p.m., Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014 – Minutes
  • 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2014 – Minutes
  • Recommendation

Budget Implications:

  • Substitutes will be provided for participating staff release time

Related Documents: