Now more than ever, high-ability students from low-income families will need specialized attention and guidance from their parents and teachers. Many less-resourced families have experienced illness or personal and financial instability, and low-income students’ schooling may have experienced long interruptions due to a lack of resources at home.
Gifted education is usually thought of as comprising separate classrooms that participating students attend for part of the day, and that move faster through curricular material or examine it at greater depth than “regular education” classrooms. This, of course, is only possible because all of the students in gifted classrooms are up to the challenge of this enhanced instruction.
Last week, NY1 reported that the New York City Department of Education will end its elementary-level gifted and talented test after administering it in person this April.
I’ll miss the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation now that it has closed its research and evaluation department, where I served as director from 2011 to 2020. After almost a decade examining challenges faced by high-ability students, I’ve learned a lot. I want to share with you ten of the key takeaways.
At a virtual town hall in Brooklyn about how the pandemic will change admissions to high-performing selective schools, New York City officials got a lecture on systemic racism.
As our country grapples with racial injustice, there are persistent calls to diversify elite institutions at all levels, from corporate and foundation boards to law schools and medical schools to undergraduate programs. All good.
On this week’s podcast, Fordham’s Checker Finn joins Mike Petrilli and David Griffith to discuss the growing, misguided war on selective-admissions high schools. On the Research Minute, Amber Northern examines how community college credentials affect graduates over time.
Two big public-school systems in the D.C. area are on the verge of letting their zeal for equity and racial justice lead to consequences they may end up regretting. Fairfax County, which operates one of America’s best known and most esteemed “exam schools,” is may use a lottery, rather than test scores and other quality measures, for admissions. And Loudoun County is considering revising its rules for “professional conduct” by school staff to punish employees—teachers included—in truly Orwellian ways.
Academic acceleration—either through grade skipping or advanced coursework such as Advanced Placement or early college access—is a longstanding practice for primary and secondary students who show above average ability for their age and grade level.
Students who have the kinds of talent scientists and engineers need to solve problems by visualizing how objects could be rotated, combined or changed in three dimensions often struggle at school.
The Covid-19 pandemic has further exposed the inequities that have long existed in K–12 education system.
As I noted in a recent post, attitudes toward advanced education are cyclical. From gifted education to talent development programs, from honors classes to AP, we have experienced a largely positive stretch of media attention and state-level policy gains.
Michael J. Petrilli’s recent article “Half-Time High School may be just what students need” is compelling. Yet proposals to cut school time in half in grades nine through twelve may be only half right.
Amid the plague that surrounds us, essential attention is properly getting paid to the education challenges of out-of-school kids: What can their parents, their schools, and their districts do to compensate for missed classroom time and the learning loss that’s bound to occur between now and the resumption of something resembling normalcy.
America’s schools have ceded significant ground to trendy nostrums and policy cure-alls that do little to adequately teach young people the skills and knowledge required to realize their full potential and emerge from school as fully-functioning citizens. The latest round of dire NAEP civics and U.S. history scores underscore our continuing failure on the citizenship front.
That K–12 education in the U.S. has long been plagued by “excellence gaps” is no secret, although the terminology may be just a decade old (and owes much to Jonathan Plucker and his colleagues).
This report presents key findings from Learning in the Fast Lane: The Past, Present, and Future of Advanced Placement, by Chester E. Finn, Jr. and Andrew E. Scanlan, and published by Princeton University Press in 2019.
Considerable research suggests that “math skills better predict [individuals’] future earnings and other economic outcomes than other skills learned in high school,” report Eric A. Hanushek, Paul E. Peterson, and Ludger Woessmann.
Gifted education in the U.S. is too scarce and lacks substance, and that’s especially true for high achieving black and Latino children. A new report by the Education Trust concludes that this gap has “everything to do with policies, adult decisions, and practices and little to do with students’ academic abilities.”
Education is a great equalizer, yet our nation does not consistently support advanced students, especially low-income, and racial and language minority students. Too often, these students are drastically under-challenged in school, leading to boredom, underachievement and incalculable amounts of lost potential.
Most everyone has read by now about the dismal scores on our Nation’s Report Card, which again measured how fourth and eighth graders did in math and reading. Aside from fourth grade math, marks on the 2019 National Assessment of Education Progress were generally flat or down, especially for our lowest-performing children. One prominent official remarked that “the bottom fell out.” But the results among high achievers offer a bright spot that has been mostly overlooked and undercelebrated.
Learning in the Fast Lane: The Past, Present, and Future of Advanced Placement (Princeton, 2019), the new book by Chester Finn and Andrew Scanlan, tells the story of the Advanced Placement (AP) program, widely regarded as the gold standard for academic rigor in American high schools.
Gifted education scholars have long pounded the drum regarding the need to increase racial and ethnic diversity in gifted programs. A recent study we published in the Harvard Educational Review suggests that increasing socioeconomic diversity needs similar attention.
Part I discussed Robert Pondiscio’s “Tiffany Test”: How do high-achieving students fare as they move through a high-poverty elementary school?
What happens to initially high-achieving students from high-poverty families as they move through elementary school? In the opening of his new book, How the Other Half Learns, Robert Pondiscio worries about these students while teaching fifth grade in the South Bronx.
When considering the available options for gifted high-school kids, the Advanced Placement (AP) program may not be the first thing that comes to mind. That’s too bad because AP might be America’s most effective large-scale “gifted and talented” program at the high school level.
Advanced Placement (AP) courses are the gold standard for preparing students for college. In fact, studies have found that AP participation correlates with higher rates of college enrollment and completion, even among young people who don’t pass their end-of-year AP exams.
Last week in Austin, at the annual “summit” sponsored by the PIE (“Policy Innovators in Education”) Network, prizes were conferred on a handful of state-based education-reform groups that had accomplished remarkable feats in the previous year, this despite the reform-averse mood that chills much of the nation.
American K–12 education is awash in reforms, nostrums, interventions, silver bullets, pilot programs, snake oil peddlers, advocates, and crusaders, not to mention innumerable private foundations that occasionally emerge from their endless cycles of strategic planning to unload their latest brainstorms upon the land. Yet when subjected to close scrutiny, not much actually “works.” The six-decade old Advanced Placement program is a rare and welcome exception.
The latest Education Next poll asked respondents whether they support ability grouping, whereby students take classes with peers at similar academic achievement levels, and for middle school the majority’s answer was no.