First of all, I am excited to be WATG President for the next year! When I was asked to take on this role, I thought, hmm...how can I fit this in? I am a full time classroom teacher and I love it. I teach fifth grade language arts and science. Can I do both? Should I try? Over the past 21 years I have held many positions on the board. In fact, I was President of WATG from 2009-2011. Other positions I’ve held include Acceleration Project Lead, Programming Committee Chair, Scholarships Chair, and Secretary. No matter which role I am filling for WATG, some things never change. Wisconsin has passionate, dedicated educators and families who volunteer their time and expertise to ensure that WATG keeps our mission in mind in all that we do -- “to educate about and advocate for the needs of the gifted in Wisconsin.”
Another aspect of WATG that remains the same is that we continually strive to improve and grow. Over the past few years we have adjusted to all virtual board meetings, conferences, and committee meetings. In the midst of this stress, our WATG Board Members have put forth new ideas to add to our Programming efforts -- we now offer podcasts and Town Hall Meetings on gifted issues. I am so proud of all of the projects in the works!
Our Membership Committee also succeeded in their “Pandemic Pivot.” They had to cancel in-person membership events because everything had gone virtual. Our Membership team brought forth new ideas to grow our connections with stakeholders and managed to recruit more board members than ever! Additionally, they added over 150 new parent members in less than six months!
Our Government Action Committee achieved the Herculean feat of doubling the line item for gifted in our state’s budget! As a result, $474,400 is now appropriated for grants each year. Long hours, hard work and heaps of preparation were involved to present to legislators, educate them, and advocate for more funding for our gifted students.
For these reasons and more I decided I couldn’t pass up a chance to work with such an inspiring group again! I am proud to be WATG President and spend another year working with our members and board, trying to make a difference for gifted students in Wisconsin. I welcome your ideas and your support.
Sarah Kasprowicz, President
WI Association for Talented and Gifted