Author Topic: Gifted Education  (Read 51 times)


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Re: Gifted Education
« on: February 15, 2022, 01:52:41 pm »
Genius Denied, by Jan and Bob Davidson, 2004

Now I read this and it seems like it must be written by Jan.  So I tend to refer to the author as 'she'.

She is consistent with the other voices in the Gifted Movement.  Some of these voices I like, some I do not, and there are still large areas I an unclear about.

Comparted with the other GM voices, she is more critical about the focus on athletics in primary and secondary schools.  Other GM voices don't want to take this kind of a position because for some GM, athletics is their forte.

She is more openly critical of peer culture and of the kinds of things they talk about, than most GM voices are.  And then she is focused on the Extremely Gifted, which is probably IQ > 145, and about 0.1 to 0.7% of the population.

Now some people are critical of the Gifted Movement and they don't want any special accommodations in schools.  They definitely don't want much money spend there.  But in the GM they compare it to Special Education, where a huge amount of money is spent.

Like all educators, she does not like George W. Bush's No Child Left Behind.  But Bush did appropriate a huge amount of money for Special Ed.  For CA this is over $900,000,000.

She considers pull out programs and enrichment times to be completely inadequate.  And trying to restrict a Gifted Child to grade level work is completely ridiculous, as it is to expect them to be tutoring other children after they have finished their assignments.  And she doesn't really like having just independent study time either.  So she wants special classes, often college level classes.  She wants Gifted Children to have access to college classes.

She also notes that some Universities have 4 week summer programs, having gifted children reside in their dormitories and attend special classes.  This gives them the chance to learn something more, and especially to be with intellectual peers.  And for many this is what they live for, this is the only time in a year which they get this.

I keep reading her because I want to know if there is anything else she says, anything outside the usual gifted movement envelop.

There is one thing already, she lists some of the published detractors and tries to refute them

For example:

Sapon-Shevin, Mara, "Playing Favorites: Gifted Education and the Disruption of Community", 1994

And then some who take issue with the GIfted Movement are taking issue with the amount of tracking in schools.  And I would interject that in much of Europe and throughout Latin America and I think in Japan, the tracking is much more extreme.

So there has been conflict with ACORN who objects to the three public "exam schools" in NYC, Stuyvesant, Brooklyn Tech, and Bronx Science.

And then arguing against tracking and effectively against the Gifted Movement we have:

Wheelock, Anne, "Crossing the Tracks: How "Untracking" Can Save America's Schools" 1980

And then of most interest arguing against tracking:

Oakes, Jeannie, "Keeping Track: How Schools Structure Inequality" 1985

And then writing specifically about a court ordered detracking in San Jose CA, Oakes also writes:

Oakes, Jeannie, Kevin Welner, and Susan Yonezawa, "Mandating Equity: A Case Study of Court-Ordered Detracking in the San Jose Schools (Berkeley: California Policy Seminar's Policy Research Program, 1998)

I am going to avail myself of as much of the above counter material as I can.  I want to understand it.

I would say that the Davidson's and other voices in the Gifted Movement are trying to say that they are talking about children who are so far beyond the norm, that these tracks don't really apply.  But the GM Is still going to interact with the issues over tracking.  I have mixed feelings about this myself.

These kinds of issues relate to the views of our two major political parties too.  And some in the GM, like the Davidsons, do seem tied to Republican views.  But others that I like more do seem tied more to Democrats.  But again, this is still supposedly about children who are so far out there, that these political tents might not really apply.

Here on page 178, the Davidsons offer advice to parents, "What Parents Can Do"

"Assure your child that it is okay to be different.  Highly intelligent children often feel disconnected from their classmates and other age peers.  To learn about how gifted children develop friendships, visit the Parent section of:"

This is good:

That's okay though.  We can disregard this and still do it Icey and Nicespice's way.  Stamp "Suspected Neurodivergent" in red on a child's school records.  And then Icey and Nicespice are designing a suitable Neurodivergent Internment Camp Tag.


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