The Awesome, Ever Amazing, Disappearing
Amy Cortez, Editor - The Eclectic Telegraph
the Looney Tunes character Taz,
the Tasmanian devil.
you're parenting a gifted, highly gifted or even profoundly gifted
student I am sure you can make the connection. Go ahead and allow
yourself that small indulgence of a chuckle at your situation.
Then give yourself a high five because that job, parenting a gifted
child, is a tiring job. If you are parenting and homeschooling
a gifted student, give yourself a box of expensive chocolates
and a huge high five because your job is an exhausting one. Trust
me. I know.
your student whirls through his homeschool day at full speed ahead,
marvel at this because if he were in the school system he might
be a really different person. He might be the awesome, ever amazing,
school systems really aren't set up to deal with this sort of
student though they would have you believe they are. Professional
educrats. You either love them or not, or you are somewhere in
between. One thing I have learned is that there are not many "professionals"
that are "trained" adequately to handle the needs of
all, or even most gifted students because each of these kinds
of students are as different as seashells on the beach. Few to
many regular classroom teachers in the school system see our gifted
kids as interferences to their classrooms, or worse, threats to
whole reason we homeschool is that I came to the realization that
the private school my student was in at second grade was not set
up to deal appropriately with the kind of student he was then
he that has become [our story].
For several years after my decision to homeschool my gifted student
I wondered if it was just our situation, my imagination or are
the educationists really not prepared to deal with kids like mine?
My biggest fear was that if my student stayed in the school system,
who he was would just disappear. It seems there is plenty written
on this topic and that my fears are justified.
Denied: How to Stop Wasting our Brightest Young Minds
by Jan & Bob Davidson
From the Book Jacket ~
With all the talk of failing schools these days, we forget
that schools can fail their brightest students, too. We
pledge to “leave no child behind,” but in American
schools today, thousands of gifted and talented students
fall short of their potential. In Genius Denied, Jan and
Bob Davidson describe the “quiet crisis” in
education: gifted students spending their days in classrooms
learning little beyond how to cope with boredom as they
“relearn” material they’ve already mastered
years before. This lack of challenge leads to frustration,
underachievement, and even failure. Some gifted students
become severely depressed. At a time when our country needs
a deep intellectual talent pool, the squandering of these
bright young minds is a national tragedy.
brilliant suggestion the school that my student was in, mind you
a fancy more than $10,000 a year private one, was that my student
could "skip a grade". Though I do believe in accelerated
learning, I cannot see how it can be successful in the school
system when so much emphasis is placed on keeping the same aged
kids together, forcing them to learn the same things at the same
time. It just didn't make sense to me. When I asked what the gifted
education policy was at the school, they really didn't know what
I was asking about. Neither did I, but I was hoping to find out
what they knew.
then I have looked at what "gifted education policy"
really means and just like schooling policies, gifted education
policies are different by state. In looking at this to find a
common thread though, I did find that in general, if there is
a gifted education program in place, it most likely is not funded
well and not staffed with people who understand how to deal with
the very individual needs of gifted students. Some places you
may even find that Gifted Education is lumped in with "spScial
Ed." as mandated by the
Individuals with Disabilities Act. Special Education teachers
are very different than those who are trained to deal with the
general the Special Education teacher is knowledgeable
about child development and is articulate in typical and atypical
child development. generally this person will have a bachelors
degree in education with a specialization in Special Education.
Gifted Education Specialist is knowledgeable about theories
and practices of the education of the gifted and talented including
how to identify gifted and talented. This person is also knowledgeable
in strategies that provide for effective teaching of gifted and
talented students. Typically this person will bachelors degree
in education ,will hold a Professional Teacher License and will
have completed a graduate level program for the preparation of
the gifted education specialist.
Education Policies across the United States
In Ohio, most identified gifted students do not receive
any gifted services and spend the vast majority of their
time in regular education classrooms led by teachers without
gifted education credentials. Further, gifted specialists
working in isolation lack the resources and authority to
implement comprehensive gifted services...[read
there has been some articles written on "Acceleration"
in the public school system. I would imagine that school administrators
are waking up to the idea that these kinds of students could potentially
help out with the requirement No Child Left Behind inflicts on
districts for proof of progress through testing. The odds are
high that, a gifted student is going to do very well at a standardized
test simply because it might be the only challenging thing they
have seen all year.
lets students excel
Once frowned on, skipping grades now accepted in gifted
BY CINDY KRANZ | ENQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Sunday, December 10, 2006
...The educators found the rate of grade acceleration in
Ohio was less than one child per district during the 2004-05
We Should Advocate for Gifted and Talented Students
from the National Association for Gifted
there are approximately three million academically gifted
and talented students in the United States; however many
are not receiving the support and programs they need to
reach their highest potential. Gifted and talented students
need a challenging curriculum and a well-trained teacher
who can inspire and motivate them, as well as challenge
them to excel...
Data points from this article:
The National Research Center on the Gifted and Talented
(NRC/GT) found that many gifted elementary school students
already know between 40 and 50% of the material to be
covered in the class.
According to the NRC/GT, most gifted and talented students
spend at least 80% of their time in a regular education
properly trained teachers, students cannot excel to their
highest potential, and often find themselves bored and
frustrated in school.
According to an NRC/GT study, 61% of classroom teachers
did not receive any training in meeting the needs of gifted
and talented students.
The NRC/GT also found that gifted and talented students
experience no instructional or curricular differentiation
in 84% of the activities in which they participated.
2005, .00029% of the federal K-12 education budget goes
to gifted and talented students.
comparison, 3% of the federal K-12 education budget
goes to the Reading First Program, 2% to Drug Prevention,
and 2% to English Language Acquisition. 57% covers the
rest of the programs in the No Child Left Behind Act,
and 31% is dedicated to children with disabilities through
the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).
(Note: although some states classify gifted students
without disabilities in the "special education"
category, federal funds from IDEA does not support these
I was still trying to decide if the school system could serve
my gifted student, the one thing I knew for sure was that my student
was pretty advanced in his thinking and ideas more so than some
of the other students he brought home for play dates. When I asked
the school if the teachers in the next grade had any special training
to deal with a younger student that had been advanced they replied
that it wasn't necessary as the curriculum would keep him busy
enough. When I asked to see the curriculum for the next year,
I was presented with a very loosely formatted outline that contained
topics I knew my student already was well versed in. It was at
that point I knew who he was would just disappear. It was at that
point I decided homeschooling was the only way to go -- whatever
"Gifted and Talented" Fraud
by Ned Vare
Isn't it amazing how many five year olds go off to school
as bright, curious, trusting ("gifted and talented")
kids, and in a year or two become dull, angry little aliens?
Parents who expect the government schools to provide high
quality academic education for smart children will always
Templeton National Report on Acceleration
Nation Deceived: How Schools Hold Back America’s
Estimates of Levels of Giftedness
Deborah L. Ruf, PhD, 2004
customary method of grouping children for instruction in
schools is heterogeneous (mixed ability) grouping and whole
class instruction. Despite considerable evidence that the
achievement span among children of the same age can be –
and usually is – quite significant, children are almost
always strictly grouped with others who are the same age
as they. The intellectual differences between children of
the same age become socially and academically problematic
when the children are continually grouped together in schools
all day for all their instruction and activities.[read
have been homeschooling for the last 7 years and I have had many
people ask me many questions regarding how I do it, what we study
and when. Generally I respond that I have found that the education
of my particular student involves a very tailored study plan that
considers how he learns and processes information. I keep track
of what I have learned about homeshooling my particular student
at our website Bright
Kids @ Home with the hope it could help someone else considering
the same thing.