U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Education
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 10-03-2011, 07:31 AM
 
2,611 posts, read 547,935 times
Reputation: 6513

Advertisements

There was an op-ed piece in the Atlanta newspaper today (unfortunately I can't find it online to link to it). A mom wrote about the Atlanta Public Schools' Challenge Program for the Gifted and Talented. They will be taking a field trip to Disney World for several days. One of her kids in the program; the other is not. The son who is not in the gifted program has supposedly been traumatized by his lack of inclusion in this. He now hates school, is afraid to do his homework because he may make a mistake, and cries constantly. This paragraph blew me away:

http://blogs.ajc.com/get-schooled-blog/

Quote:
As a result of my capable, "not-gifted" boy's exclusion from the 60-some percent of his class who attend the full-day, pull-out, gifted-and-talented program, he has become undone, He cries when he used to not. He agonizes over homework, afraid of of errors. He dislikes school. I will forever loathe those responsible for changing my boy. I thought we knew better to socially and economically sort children in 2011.
So---is she saying that 60+% percent of kids in her son's class are in the gifted and talented program? Can there be a majority who are gifted/talented? By definition, wouldn't they be in the minority? She later goes on to talk about a Duke University research project where every child was treated as gifted and the result was 20% of the kids eventually designated as being gifted as opposed to the control group of 10%.

And would a child really be so traumatized by his brother getting a special treat? Isn't it good for kids to learn that rewards/resources aren't infinite and that not everyone gets everything s/he wants? If kids aren't "sorted," then should every/any kid get a scholarship even if they have poor grades/scores, etc.?

I will agree with the author that the trip to Disney World is an unnecessary use of taxpayers' money (the kids have to pay for the trip, but the teachers will be getting their salaries) and that the "cast members" of the theme park shouldn't be more capable of teaching rigorous content than the teachers.

What do y'all think?

Last edited by toobusytoday; 10-03-2011 at 12:04 PM.. Reason: added link
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 10-03-2011, 08:19 AM
 
5,748 posts, read 10,519,139 times
Reputation: 4494
I find the entire situation appalling.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-03-2011, 09:59 AM
 
1,226 posts, read 1,985,068 times
Reputation: 1850
My first thought is that if their percentage of gifted kids is 60% of the school population, they are doing a great injustice to the truly gifted kids. Unless the district pools the gifted kids from a specific area, and houses them in this specific school, amongst that specific's school regular population. I was in a district that did this, and although my child was in the program, I did feel for the minority of the children that were not, because there was great pressure to label your child "gifted", and an obvious inferiority complex among those that were not. It was terrible, because the line is often blurry, and the "haves" had the best teacher's, the best books, the best technology. The "have nots" clearly got the short end of the stick. It bred such an environment of entitlement and bitterness, that I was very glad to leave it behind, even though I loved the education and opportunity my child was getting. And there were soooo many children that just didn't belong there, and couldn't keep up, but their parents had paid for all the private testing, even though the poor kids struggled to keep up. If it’s really 60%, I feel for those not included, because certainly not being included in a majority is tough for little ones, especially since I'm sure that the Disney trip is only one of the privileges that is waved in their face.

Now before my comment gets misinterpreted, I am a BIG advocate of gifted education and differentiation, it just needs to be exclusive, not inclusive, otherwise nobody benefits.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-03-2011, 10:17 AM
 
12,938 posts, read 19,854,740 times
Reputation: 34062
Here is the article:
Get Schooled | ajc.com

I am not really sure how I feel about some of this. My kids all went to Disney with their school when we lived in FL. They actually do a very good job of partnering with the schools. The kids are given assignments focusing on math and science to complete in the parks, and had a terrific time doing them. The trip was shorter, with only 1.5 days in the parks, but the price was less too, I think about $250.00

But, this is the APS system. There is no way 60% fall into the gifted category, and since so many students are economically underprivileged, the high price tag is ridiculous. Even from our upper class city in FL there were many students who couldn't afford the trip.

Bad idea all around.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-03-2011, 10:57 AM
 
1,078 posts, read 2,214,101 times
Reputation: 1031
The actual G/T percentage in schools is 5% or lower. Why can't schools go back to emphasizing on the entire student body and not just the few who they feel are entitled? The way I look at it, EVERY CHILD, EVERY SINGLE CHILD is gifted in one way or another. Those who say the "truly" gifted students deserve anything more than any other child are fooling themselves. Aside from the fact that those people are the one's who segregate children into groups, they are the one's making the 95% of those not gifted feel like they have no reason to achieve higher goals. As parents, educators and community members, it is our duty to ensure that EVERY child be made to feel that they are important and that they make a difference. If we all did that, there would be less kids feeling like they don't even need to try.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-03-2011, 11:02 AM
 
1,226 posts, read 1,985,068 times
Reputation: 1850
Quote:
Originally Posted by magoomafoo View Post
The actual G/T percentage in schools is 5% or lower. Why can't schools go back to emphasizing on the entire student body and not just the few who they feel are entitled? The way I look at it, EVERY CHILD, EVERY SINGLE CHILD is gifted in one way or another. Those who say the "truly" gifted students deserve anything more than any other child are fooling themselves. Aside from the fact that those people are the one's who segregate children into groups, they are the one's making the 95% of those not gifted feel like they have no reason to achieve higher goals. As parents, educators and community members, it is our duty to ensure that EVERY child be made to feel that they are important and that they make a difference. If we all did that, there would be less kids feeling like they don't even need to try.
I agree EVERY child is entitled to an appropriate education. If they need special help to catch up, then so be it. If they need a special curriculum because they absorb at a faster speed, why should they be denied that?
EVERY child is NOT the same, they CANNOT be taught the same.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-03-2011, 11:34 AM
 
5,748 posts, read 10,519,139 times
Reputation: 4494
What the Sam Hill does Disney have to do with gifted education? Trips to theme parks have no place in education, period. Shame on the parents who came up with this plan.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-03-2011, 11:54 AM
 
1,226 posts, read 1,985,068 times
Reputation: 1850
Quote:
Originally Posted by formercalifornian View Post
What the Sam Hill does Disney have to do with gifted education? Trips to theme parks have no place in education, period. Shame on the parents who came up with this plan.
I agree. And this is an elementary school, too. Gifted or not gifted, I would not let my elementary school child go to Disney for a whole week. Its a dice roll on who you get as a chaperone.....and I'M certainly not signing up for THAT! I'm exhausted taking just my own kids, can you imagine a group of them that aren't even yours playing on the ropes, bumping into other people while playing on those lines, can I sit in front, can I sit in back, whining that they are tired, or thirsty, or how much longer is this line going to be? ....for a week?? No thanks!! Poor teachers.

If it was a Florida school, and they were going for the day, I might think differently, Epcot is very educational..... but an ENTIRE week????
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-03-2011, 12:20 PM
 
8,240 posts, read 14,918,267 times
Reputation: 3656
I think a cultural trip would be more appropriate, the Disney thing really bothers me.

I'm not against a trip for the GT kids, any more than I would be against a field trip for the SPED kids, or the average kids, as long as they paid for the trip themselves. The teachers should NOT be paid to go.

I find the kids and parents who aren't in GT and whining about not going to be annoying. Why does everyone have to have the same? Fair is getting what you NEED, not about getting the same as everyone else.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-03-2011, 12:43 PM
 
12,938 posts, read 19,854,740 times
Reputation: 34062
Quote:
Originally Posted by formercalifornian View Post
What the Sam Hill does Disney have to do with gifted education? Trips to theme parks have no place in education, period. Shame on the parents who came up with this plan.
As I said, Disney does offer educational programs. This is a list of their offerings:

Programs | Disney Youth Education Series | Disney Youth Groups

The kids learn ( at least a little) while having a great time.

My issue with the original article was that it wasn't really directed towards the truly gifted when so many kids qualified. Either open it to all, or up the requirements. Some programs are suitable for all kids.

These trips are actually pretty common in areas within a day's bus ride of the parks. This particular one is much longer than any I have heard of though.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Education
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2018, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top