Saturday, September 19, 2015

We Don't Need To Worry About The Smart Kids

If you concern yourself with the future competitiveness of the nation, you need to worry about the smart kids.  If you concern yourself with equity, you need to worry about the smart kids:
The second big reason to attend to the schooling of high-ability youngsters is a version of the familiar equity argument: these kids also deserve an education that meets their needs and enhances their futures, just like children with other distinctions and problems. They have their own legitimate claim on our conscience, our sense of fairness, our policy priorities, and our education budgets. What’s more, many of them also face such challenges as disability, poverty, ill-educated parents, non-English-speaking homes, and tough neighborhoods.
I sometimes wonder if some people don't resent the smart kids.


Ellen K said...

My blog on exactly this same topic. And yes, I am concerned that in our PC desire to educate the least able of our students, we are shortchanging kids who are the foundation of our future.

PeggyU said...

Resent the smart kids? I can guarantee you they do. I worked with a boy who was pulled out of his regular 7th-grade classes for math because he was too advanced for the courses the school offered and the school would not provide any other options. His parents had to find a program for him, had to have it approved by the school administrators, and then had to hire someone to sit with him (that was me) because they wouldn't allow him to remain in the math classroom while he did his online homework. I would not have thought schools would actively obstruct a child's education, but I witnessed it with this kid. The administration would not promote him to a higher grade, even though the high school teachers assessed him and determined he would be a good fit for pre calculus. Teachers were willing to accommodate his needs, but the administration would have no part of it. He was perceived as something of a trouble maker because he challenged the system. The resentment was tangible.

Darren said...

I was being gentle in my closing comment.

Pseudotsuga said...

ah, the wide divide between the bureaucracy (the administration) and the educators. It seems like the job of the administration often is not to facilitate education, but rather to create policies and then enforce them--regardless of logic, effectiveness or common sense.
Remember the business of a bureaucrat is to create and maintain a job, and really nothing else. The goal of an education bureaucracy is not actually education, in the long run.

momof4 said...

I'm with Peggy U; admins (school-based and district) are a HUGE part of the problem. Picture an incoming freshman, already registered for all academic classes at honors level,who tried to take his keyboarding class in summer school, instead of in September along with several classmates. It went all the way to the EdD deputy superintendent for curriculum and denied on the basis that it was a HS course and they weren't yet in HS. Even worse, this idiot said that since my DS had taken honors algebra I in eighth grade, he could take geometry in SS - as if taking non-honors,remedial geometry with kids who had already failed it (only kids who took SS) would be adequate preparation for honors algebra II with trig - at a HS nationally known for its outstanding math/science program. BTW; there weren't enough kids registered for the keyboarding class, so it wasn't offered - and they wonder why they're seen as idiots.