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Old 02-20-2012, 03:03 PM
 
350 posts, read 618,415 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EDS_ View Post
Big G with all due respect you are of your mind if you expect any particular HS anywhere to compete with TAMS. TAMS is the creme from the creme of the crop. It's a handful of kids from around the US - TAMS also provides a jump on completing college early.
I've been talking with my TAMS friends about this program, and it seems this would have allowed many of them to stay in Plano ISD, as opposed to going to TAMS. In my opinion, that's what makes the program so special: previously, you would have to go to TAMS (which really draws only from Texas) if you had the capability to take classes like Abstract Algebra in high school, but now Plano is providing that opportunity in district, which hasn't been done at other schools. These classes, coupled with the already existing upper-level science classes like AP Physics C, will provide a course selection quite competitive with TAMS. After all, much of the allure of TAMS comes from the dearth of upper-level math classes elsewhere; if your're a sophomore or a freshman in BC Calculus (there's one freshman this year, from Shepton, in BC...), you don't have much left for you at any school. Plano is a top feeder for TAMS, and much of the top of the TAMS class comes from PISD. This program will hopefully help end the brain-drain TAMS has on Plano.
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Old 02-20-2012, 03:34 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PISDstudent View Post
I've been talking with my TAMS friends about this program, and it seems this would have allowed many of them to stay in Plano ISD, as opposed to going to TAMS. In my opinion, that's what makes the program so special: previously, you would have to go to TAMS (which really draws only from Texas) if you had the capability to take classes like Abstract Algebra in high school, but now Plano is providing that opportunity in district, which hasn't been done at other schools. These classes, coupled with the already existing upper-level science classes like AP Physics C, will provide a course selection quite competitive with TAMS. After all, much of the allure of TAMS comes from the dearth of upper-level math classes elsewhere; if your're a sophomore or a freshman in BC Calculus (there's one freshman this year, from Shepton, in BC...), you don't have much left for you at any school. Plano is a top feeder for TAMS, and much of the top of the TAMS class comes from PISD. This program will hopefully help end the brain-drain TAMS has on Plano.
1. I meant to say all around Texas, not the US although I believe a few TAMs kids are from other states.

2. You make a great point that Mathrocks may offer many high achievers a good reason to stay in PISD instead of moving on to TAMS. The distinction, that I think a lot of people on CD miss, is that TAMs is college not so much a different path to a high school diploma.
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Old 02-20-2012, 04:08 PM
 
Location: Dallas, TX
2,346 posts, read 5,791,659 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EDS_ View Post
Big G with all due respect you are of your mind if you expect any particular HS anywhere to compete with TAMS. TAMS is the creme from the creme of the crop. It's a handful of kids from around the US - TAMS also provides a jump on completing college early.
Response 1: What PISDstudent said.

Response 2: If I'm out of my mind, so is Dr. Andreescu, the entire PISD school board, the PISD curriculum department, and a couple dozen math teachers across PISD. This program really is, as hard as it might be to believe, designed to allow PISD to, in fact, compete with TAMS. That's something no one else, public or private, is doing right now. It came about, in part, due to concerns by school board members that the large number of PISD kids leaving for TAMS meant we weren't fully serving the community. It will be interesting to see if PISD can pull this off.



Quote:
Originally Posted by PISDstudent View Post
(there's one freshman this year, from Shepton, in BC...),
I'm pretty sure I know who this kid is. Initials N.B., went to national MathCounts last year, got a perfect AMC 8 score in 7th grade?
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Old 02-20-2012, 04:26 PM
 
350 posts, read 618,415 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big G View Post

I'm pretty sure I know who this kid is. Initials N.B., went to national MathCounts last year, got a perfect AMC 8 score in 7th grade?
That's the one I was thinking of .

And yes, I agree that college vs. high school is a big distinction for TAMS, although hopefully students in PISD and elsewhere will be able to secure much college credit in 11th/12th grade in all subjects.
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Old 02-20-2012, 05:36 PM
 
7,283 posts, read 8,112,371 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big G View Post

Response 2: If I'm out of my mind, so is Dr. Andreescu, the entire PISD school board, the PISD curriculum department, and a couple dozen math teachers across PISD. This program really is, as hard as it might be to believe, designed to allow PISD to, in fact, compete with TAMS. That's something no one else, public or private, is doing right now. It came about, in part, due to concerns by school board members that the large number of PISD kids leaving for TAMS meant we weren't fully serving the community. It will be interesting to see if PISD can pull this off.
Does that not make my point?

PISD can try, I wish them well, but TAMS kids earn college credits at a real college studying subjects like engineering etc. TAMS has been doing this for a couple of decades. PISD is just getting started.
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Old 02-20-2012, 07:41 PM
 
105 posts, read 249,300 times
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First of all, we're talking about a 5 year old here. This 5 year old may well turn out to be gifted. But (no offense) many people think their children are gifted at that age -- and many children do genuinely appear to be gifted at that age. But as children grow up, the truly gifted ones begin to stand out more and more (around middle school and later), and the other above average students begin to fall back a tad from "truly stellar." I think plenty of parents of high schoolers and older can say they have witnessed this phenomenon -- either in their own children, or in their children's peers.

This 5 year old may be so gifted as to need or strongly desire a program such as TAMS as s/he approaches 10th grade. But right now? Is it even worth discussing? I'd say the poster should worry more about a great school DISTRICT than orient herself solely around a great high school.

Furthermore, TAMS is available to the entire state. Plenty of people in my kids' school district are capable of attending TAMS, could easily get into TAMS, and still decline to apply to TAMS. The number of kids accepted from Plano (or anywhere else) is really kind of irrelevant. I think that number speaks more to how many from each district apply than to how many from each district are worthy. We personally know dozens of children who chose not to apply but whose 'stats' equaled or exceeded those who chose to apply (my own kids being amongst them). In any case, wherever this poster moves, her child will be able to apply to and enter TAMS if she is truly gifted. That will all happen in roughly 10 years.

My own kids attended Flower Mound public schools in LISD. They are now in college. We could not have been happier with their education!! I mean, I find myself frequently counting my blessings for just 'happening into' such a fantastic district. Each kid got four-year full-tuition scholarships OR MORE to really great colleges. Each kid got accepted to every college on their list (except one kid who was rejected by Stanford, but accepted by MIT and others). Each kid scored near perfect scores on the SAT, which they each took only once. Each kid was a National Merit Finalist. And every bit of their test and college entrance success was learned in Flower Mound public schools, not at home, and not via tutoring. (They studied a standard Princeton Review guide on their own the week prior to taking the SAT. Plus, they did a few practice tests out of the back of the book. The background knowledge, testing prowress, and repetition was already there from years of excellent education.) Each kid had phenomenal experiences in music, volunteer work, and leadership throughout their middle and high school years. Each kid entered college with tons of AP credit. Each kid had caring, smart, personable, incredible teachers whom they keep in touch with to this day. I cannot say enough good about the Flower Mound public schools!

However, I also believe that similar experiences can be found in Plano, Southlake, Colleyville, Coppell, and a number of other school districts in the DFW metroplex. (And I agree that Plano's high school math program is absolutely the best of the best. Math opportunities at that level did not exist in my kids' Flower Mound schools.)

My point is, private schools are great. They tend to have great funding and great reputations. Their attendees get some great special privileges. Their graduates might be able to get their feet in the door a little faster at some places than any given public school graduate. BUT, I believe the education at some of our public schools meets or exceeds the education found at schools like St Marks or Hockaday. A lot of parents feel better paying all that money -- and/or earning that name recognition. Some seem to think that if it costs a lot, it must be the best. But I don't think they're getting anything for their money (other than the name recognition) that my own kids didn't get in public schools for 'free.'

Two of my kids stayed in Texas for college. They each attend college with plenty of Hockaday and St Marks kids. The St Marks and Hockaday kids have nothing over my kids or their similarly-achieving peers. From what we can tell, all of that 'came out in the wash,' and the playing field is level, if not skewed to favor the public school graduate.

That's just one opinion, based on one family's experience. Everybody gets to make their own choices with their money -- and their children. And everybody gets to believe what they want to believe. So, please don't slay me.

Regarding the community -- Flower Mound is also a really nice suburb. Friendly. Family-oriented. Well-planned and growth-controlled. Lots of parks and ball fields.

But again, lots of the DFW suburbs are great. A lot of them are quite similar!

Best of luck to you. If your child truly is gifted, s/he can do well at any number of great school districts in the area.
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Old 02-21-2012, 05:25 AM
 
1,212 posts, read 1,769,436 times
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And objectively, looking at who is doing well on the AMC 8,10, and 12 tests, the DFW privates are not anywhere near where the Math Rocks kids are. The PISD kids just dominate the AMC tests in North Texas. Again, it is because it starts early and its part of the long-term culture

2010 AMC 8 Statistics

I do think the DFW privates are behind the curve on this and that their focus is more liberal arts than STEM.[/quote]

I reviewed your AMc stats. Out of 181 kids, it appears approximately 20 of them are female. Is this percentage consistent with the math rocks program? If so, can you really contend that it is a superior program if it does not inspire young women to join?
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Old 02-21-2012, 06:02 AM
 
440 posts, read 959,260 times
Reputation: 297
Quote:
Originally Posted by EDS_ View Post
Big G with all due respect you are of your mind if you expect any particular HS anywhere to compete with TAMS. TAMS is the creme from the creme of the crop. It's a handful of kids from around the US - TAMS also provides a jump on completing college early.
They get great students but certainly not the creme of creme. Not sure of other school districts/ schools, I know for sure in FM high school the top creme do not go to TAMS.
TAMS is great but you loose the high school experience. The only benefit I see is going to Texas state public colleges and getting 1/2 -2 years of college education saved depending on the major. Most TAMS folks probably save 1 year. This works mostly for those who want to go to medical school but a year or two is not much in the long run. Most of the good out of state colleges do not give any credits to TAMS education. Academics is generally the primary focus of TAMS kids and they loose a lot on other fronts.
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Old 02-21-2012, 07:43 AM
 
7,283 posts, read 8,112,371 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adixyz View Post
They get great students but certainly not the creme of creme. Not sure of other school districts/ schools, I know for sure in FM high school the top creme do not go to TAMS.
TAMS is great but you loose the high school experience. The only benefit I see is going to Texas state public colleges and getting 1/2 -2 years of college education saved depending on the major. Most TAMS folks probably save 1 year. This works mostly for those who want to go to medical school but a year or two is not much in the long run. Most of the good out of state colleges do not give any credits to TAMS education. Academics is generally the primary focus of TAMS kids and they loose a lot on other fronts.

I get that a lots kids don't want to go for social reasons.

About 25% of TAMS kids are MNSF.
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Old 02-21-2012, 07:43 AM
 
11,671 posts, read 21,231,508 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adixyz View Post
They get great students but certainly not the creme of creme. Not sure of other school districts/ schools, I know for sure in FM high school the top creme do not go to TAMS.
TAMS is great but you loose the high school experience. The only benefit I see is going to Texas state public colleges and getting 1/2 -2 years of college education saved depending on the major. Most TAMS folks probably save 1 year. This works mostly for those who want to go to medical school but a year or two is not much in the long run. Most of the good out of state colleges do not give any credits to TAMS education. Academics is generally the primary focus of TAMS kids and they loose a lot on other fronts.
I would agree with this assessment. It takes a very specific student to choose a TAMS - usually one that is academically one-dimensional and on the awkward / outcast end of the social spectrum. To me, to be considered "creme de la creme", a student is well-rounded academically (ie, even if they're a STEM genius, they also are well-read and culturally engaged), sociable, and has some non-academic outside interests (athletics, art, theatre, volunteer work, etc).

The brightest buy in my HP class - who is now a professor- stayed at HP as did his small circle of STEM- minded kids. All have gone on to become very successful professionally and all but the professor series to have popped out of their "shells" and were surprisingly "normal" to very outgoing socially @ our 10-year reunion.

The two who left to go to TAMS are just engineers and haven't achieved the level of success the ones who stayed at HP have.

I think TAMS is great for meeting the needs of a gifted student from Little Elm or Granbury or some other third rate school system without resources for kids like these. Most of the bigger and better districts can appropriately serve gifted STEM kids through independent study, a broad AP curriculum, and dual credit through UTD or SMU.

Now - back to OP's question, what pre-school should gifted 5 year old attend?!
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