Parliamentary Inquiry into the Education of Gifted and Talented Students

Filed under: Announcements — admin @ 01:44:21 pm

The Council of the Mathematical Association of Victoria will be responding to the Parliamentary Inquiry into the Education of Gifted and Talented Students by 31 May 2011. The Council wants your feedback first.

The Terms of Reference require the Parliament’s Education and Training Committee to consider:

  • The effectiveness of current policies and programs for gifted and talented students, with particular consideration of, but not limited to;

    • identification of gifted and talented students;
    • equity of access to quality educational choices for gifted and talented students and their families; and
    • impact on the learning, development and wellbeing of gifted and talented students.
  • the scope, coverage and effectiveness of current policies and programs for students from both metropolitan and regional school communities, school leaders, teachers and parents and carers to support gifted and talented students;
  • opportunities and strategies for enhancing support for gifted and talented students, their parents and carers, teachers and school leaders; and
  • opportunities for improved educational offerings for gifted and talented students through collaboration across all school sectors and with community, business and industry.

The MAV Council invites your views, with particular attention to:

  • the key benefits and issues surrounding programs for gifted and talented students, including any gaps identified in current programs;
  • any current projects currently underway specific to the education of gifted and talented students;
  • equity of access to programs for all gifted and talented students in Victoria;
  • addressing the issue of underperformance among gifted and talented students;
  • overcoming negative attitudes and misconceptions surrounding giftedness and talent;
  • mechanisms to improve the capacity of teachers to identify and adequately respond to gifted and talented students; and
  • any broader implicatiopns for school communities arising from the education of gifted and talented students.

In making your response please endeavour to provide examples of what you think may be best school and classroom practice.

Comments, Pingbacks

  1. To suggest that "gifted and talented" applies to a special group of students is to imply that the all others have either no gifts or talents. You might think that I am being precious or pedantic. But one thing we have learned from feminism is that language is important in framing our attitudes. God has endowed each of us with gifts and talents. The challenge is to recognise the gifts and talents of the people we meet - including ourselves. In practical terms, the challenge to the teacher is to encourage students to use their talents to learn. The first step for those who manage the educational system is to get the language right.

    Comment by Terry Mills [Visitor] — 05/05/11 @ 13:59

  2. As a parent I am shocked to find that some (not all) teachers of my son's gifted class do not feel compelled to actually give extension work. they continue to give work that is boring and repetitive, ( not just this year!)with very little understanding of problem solving (it is NOT "an exercise on worded questions that has one concept being tested and the heading problem solving on it"!) They do not know the difference between extension and acceleration. He hates Maths now because it is so boring. Teaching these sorts of kids MATHS should be about developing great DISCUSSIONS among their peers (so they benefit from being together), and giving them work that makes them THINK, not just regurgitate, allowing them to ENJOY the subject and want to explore deeper patterns not avilable to them in the ordinary class. A variety of activities, in and out of the classroom, some long, some short, and using different learning styles, will help to keep them motivated. schools should keep these activities ON FILE so noecomers to the role don't have to reinvent the wheel. it's just common sense really.

    Comment by Melissa Vollebergh [Visitor] — 05/06/11 @ 09:58

  3. Teachers in Australia are trained to identify children with ADHD, ADD, Autism and Autistic Spectrum Disorders but not Giftedness. Identifying gifted children should be part of their Uni Degree. I was told by my son’s ELC teacher that he had Autistic Spectrum Disorder and that he needs to see a psychologist simply because she could not understand him. The teacher in prep told me that there was “No such child as a gifted child” because she did not want to cater for him. The year one teacher yelled at him all the time. Ever since he began school all I’ve had is complaint after complaint when all he needed was challenging work. He was bored and this resulted in disruptive behaviour and underachievement. We moved him to a state school in Glen Waverley and he is the happiest since. He has got plenty of friends and no more complaints. He was also bullied at his previous school. All he needed was challenging work and teachers who understood him. Whilst it is not the best school for him we do not have many options. Most schools do not want to hear the word Gifted and are reluctant to mention it, fearing opposition from parents of normal kids. Some call it tagging and I call it identifying. We cannot cater for these children if we do not identify them. Gifted children also have traits that make them different to others and if their teacher does not understand this, life can be living hell. Most private schools and Government selective schools cater for these children from year nine. They do not become gifted in year nine- they are born gifted which makes me wonder is it really a gift or a curse. His previous school’s reluctance to accept him as a gifted child has left me with anxiety and stress. The community in general thinks we will be rich one-day. A gifted child cannot be successful if you do not nurture their gift and the road to this success is via hell. His present school has vertical Maths and many competitions and their willingness to accept the word gifted has made this school a haven for these kids. They need to be with like-minded kids and that can only happen when the society and schools understand them and if not the world can be lonely place!

    Comment by Edna Joseph [Visitor] — 05/11/11 @ 17:38

  4. My son is cursed with giftedness. We are in the process of trying to find a suitable school move for him as by year 3 his behavior is screaming loud and clearly how unhappy he is. On my journey I've consulted widely and come to the conclusion that cohort is as important as teaching. Finding like minded peers is the key as it allows children like my son to feel ok and not bored and will push him along. In this regard, having grown up in NSW in the seventies with it's successful OC classes and selective high schools, I think the current system in Victoria fails these children. I agree with the previous comments that giftedness doesn't appear at year 9, but is noticeable early. I think that we have to be careful that we get in early, and identify children before they develop poor learning patterns and bad behaviors,, and in part so that gifted education isn't subverted by the coaching industries so prevalent in NSW.

    Comment by Moira [Visitor] — 06/05/11 @ 19:50

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