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Boy Not Challenged in Accelerated School

Gifted and Talented Expert Advice from Noreen H. Joslyn, LISW, ACSW

Q: My son's school does not have a gifted program. The school has told me that it is against their philosophy as an "accelerated school." My son is in kindergarten and has already taught himself how to multiply and divide. His homework consisted of simple counting. His teacher was not willing to teach him at a higher level than the class in general. I am very frustrated, but switching schools is not an option at this time. Do you have any advice? And what is your opinion of "accelerated schools"?

A: I need a definition of what they mean by "accelerated school." What it sounds like they are saying is that their entire curriculum is advanced, so they don't need to do anything more advanced for any one student. I question whether or not it's all that accelerated if math for kindergartners is simple counting exercises! Today, that skill is taught in academic preschools. If switching schools is not an option, then you need to meet with his teachers to determine what they can do for your son, and what their planned curriculum is for each year. Trust me, the curriculum is already planned out. You should be able to see it so you can understand what they are planning for your son's learning. Then you will be able to plan too. Good luck.

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Noreen Joslyn is a licensed independent social worker in the state of Ohio and is a member of the Academy of Certified Social Workers. She has a master's degree in Social Work, specializing in family and children, from the University of Pittsburgh. She is a psychiatric social worker in private practice with Ken DeLuca, Ph.D. & Associates, where she counsels parents and children.

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