Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Hope for the Extremely Gifted Child???

According to the New York Times the University of Nevada is opening a public school for extremely gifted children. For too long the needs of gifted children have been ignored. While the public education system spends billions of dollars to help children with disabilities, it spends a pittance on those with gifts. For longer than I care to remember I have been arguing that children who are gifted have needs that are just as special as those who have disabilities. (And I say that as someone who believes deeply in the mission of special education and inclusion.)

American education has been, by and large, an exercise in serving the average child. For decades, children who had disabilities were shunted off to secluded classrooms where they languished socially and educationally. That changed over the past thirty years, but there still remains a lot to be done. However, it should not come at the expense of education gifted and talented students (as I believe it often has). We must be dedicated to teaching ALL children, regardless of ability. And Nevada's school is a step in the right direction.


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