Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Maybe everyone is "gifted".

The school district we live in puts a very big emphasis on providing special services to those who are what they call, "identified gifted". My daughter is one of those that are "identified". There are all sorts of resources provided by our district for both the parents of gifted and the gifted students. For students, there are many advanced classes and college credit classes offered. They even have their own PTA type group which puts on a symposium every year with several speakers and other information for parents. I have been to some of their meetings and they certainly do like to toot their own horn about all the wonderful things they do for the gifted kids.

I also have experience with the opposite end of the spectrum. Over the years, a few of my children have needed help in reading, writing and speech. To receive any help in these areas was quite difficult. I was told there actually was no help for writing and I ended up having to pay for private tutoring. Other services can take almost a year to get and not even have satisfactory results.

Last year at one of the meetings for the parents of gifted, the school representative was telling us all about the things they do for the gifted students. Besides the classes, each student also had some sort of gifted specialist looking out for them. We were told that if the child's grades began slipping the specialist would be called in to find out why. This person would check with the student to make sure that assignments were being turned in and their locker was organized and help if needed.

"Gee, couldn't EVERY student benefit from that?" I thought to myself. I began to wonder just how many "unidentified gifted" students there were in this district. Perhaps if every student were treated like they were "gifted", they would be.