When Liz Fitzgerald realized her son and daughter were forced to read books in math class while the other children caught up, she had them moved into gifted classes at their suburban elementary school.
Just 100 miles down the road in Taliaferro County, that wouldn’t have been an option. All the gifted classes were canceled because of budget cuts.
Such disparities exist in every state, according to a new report by the National Association for Gifted Children that blames low federal funding and a focus on low-performing students.
The report, “State of the States in Gifted Education,” hits at a basic element of the federal government’s focus on education: Most of its money and effort goes into helping low-performing, poor and minority students achieve basic proficiency. It largely ignores the idea of helping gifted kids reach their highest potential, leaving those tasks to states and local school districts.