Gifted & Talented

D51 gifted education supports academic and social-emotional growth by equitably recognizing and nurturing our diverse youth with gifts and talents so they may develop their individual potentials.

Each gifted student in School District 51 is identified by their strength areas and needs. Educational programming is designed and implemented to match their identified needs. Student progress and achievement are monitored through ongoing dynamic assessment. Teachers of gifted students participate in professional development to increase knowledge, skills and understanding of gifted students and required instruction.

Gifted children mean those persons between the ages of five and twenty-one whose abilities, talents, and potential for accomplishment are so outstanding that they require special provisions to meet their educational needs. Children under five who qualify may also be served. Gifted students are capable of high performance in any or a combination of these areas:

  • General or Specific Intellectual Ability
  • Creative or Productive Thinking
  • Leadership Abilities
  • Specific Academic Aptitude
    • Reading
    • Writing
    • Mathematics
    • Social Studies
    • Science
    • World Language
  • Specific Talent Aptitude
    • Visual Arts
    • Performing Arts (Drama/Theater)
    • Musical
    • Dance
    • Psychomotor Abilities

GT Teacher/Liaison Directory and Schedule 

Gifted and Talented Frequently Asked Questions

Telephone Number (970)254-6903
Address- Compass Bldg 2768 Compass Dr., Ste 200, Grand Junction, CO 81506

Name Title Phone Number
Patti Virden Executive Director of Student Services & Support (970)254-5497
Heather Baskin Gifted and Talented Director (970)254-6903
Mandy Budd Administrative Assistant (970)254-6903
Brandy Headlee Gifted and Talented Coach  

GT Staff
2020-2021 Teachers & Schools


Sue Jerome Appleton Elementary School

Sean Gregersen

Broadway Elementary School

Sue Jerome

Chatfield Elementary Schools

Lance Powell

Chipeta Elementary School

Regina Black

Clifton Elementary School

Lance Powell

Dos Rios Elementary School

Gisela Ferguson

Dual Immersion Academy (DIA)

Jennifer Dennison

Fruitvale Elementary School

Taryn Noll

Lincoln Orchard Mesa Elementary School

Deb Lamb

Loma Elementary School

Taryn Noll

Mesa View Elementary School

Meredith Thornhill

Monument Ridge Elementary School

Christena Nelson

New Emerson School

Regina Black

Nisley Elementary School

Shawn Carstensen-Hays

Orchard Avenue Elementary School

Janelle McGowan

Pear Park Elementary School

Kristi Beale

Pomona Elementary School

Meredith Thornhill

Rim Rock Elementary School

Jennifer Dennison

Rocky Mountain Elementary School

Christena Nelson

Scenic Elementary School

Kristi Beale

Shelledy Elementary School

Dena Shirley

Taylor Elementary School

Sean Gregersen

Thunder Mountain Elementary School

Deb Lamb

Tope Elementary School

Susan Dailey

Wingate Elementary School


Stacy Feather Bookcliff Middle School

Tina Sleigh East Middle School & Challenge Program

Roxanne Johnson Fruita Middle School

Allison Bohall
Grand Mesa Middle School
Allison Bohall Mount Garfield Middle School

DebbieBeth Hoffman Orchard Mesa Middle School

Tawnya Bangert Redlands Middle School

DebbieBeth Hoffman West Middle School


Jessica Barton Central High School

Colleen Stabolepszy Fruita 8/9 School

 TBA Fruita Monument High School
Nicole Auld Grand Junction High School

 TBA Palisade High School

Brenda Chinn R-5 High School


Brenda Chinn Grand River Academy

Katie Brown Independence Academy

Annette James Mesa Valley Community School

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