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Are Gifted and Talented Students Being Left Behind?

How many times you've heard about talented students being left behind? Or can you remember someone with exceptional abilities ignoring homework and classwork? Neglecting the brightest minds seems to be the primary problem of nowadays education. According to many researches and stories, gifted children are sometimes hard pushed to develop special abilities. The government now requires schools to recognize remarkable skills in students to improve them. Still, it can be hard to implement due to many factors.

For better understanding, we have to compare several educational systems. Each of them differs in some valuable points.

Are Gifted and Talented Students Being Left Behind?-1

Firstly, let's take a look at the U.S. educational system. The chief interest for schools is to support lagging students instead of gifted. Therefore, lessons' plans include activities to improve knowledge of masses. Although at first glance, it appears to be right, we can lose the greatest minds while focusing on the average. In general, the whole system should be changed to not only notice talents but to be able to unleash the potential in EVERY child.

Gifted students can be ignored as the main goal of teachers is to increase a general level of literacy. Undoubtedly, it's necessary to be done due to lagging American students. The last PISA tests demonstrated the real state of education in the USA: only a small percentage of students reached a top level of literacy. Still, it's a disgrace to ignore the needs of the most talented students as the future belongs to those great minds.

Poor scores of gifted students show that they haven't reached the highest level, too. In a nutshell, teachers and parents can't even notice unique abilities of someone because he/she concentrates on simple tasks.


Every student should face some challenges in the study to clear a low bar.

Also, to prevent meeting trouble half-way, teachers have to offer special courses and encourage students to attend it. The wide range of extra classes can interest children. Thus, teachers will know about their strong suits. In reality, these rules regularly are ignored, and as a result, we have - guess what? - underrated students.

Are Gifted and Talented Students Being Left Behind?-2

The educational system in Finland is a completely different story. The most significant thing about Finland educational system is its special attitude to every student. It has many benefits in comparison with the USA. Schools try to pay attention to everyone's special needs. There is no one-size-fits-all solution, so every student should be examined separately. In Finland, teachers don't identify children on a scale of lagging-outstanding. The only purpose is to understand what is the passion of each student and how to encourage he/she to work on it. In these conditions, gifted students are always enthusiastic about education and self-study. Moreover, teachers never ignore signs of involvement, so there is no separate group of "wunderkinds" because the whole class consists of unique minds.

Are Gifted and Talented Students Being Left Behind?-3

In other European countries, youngsters have various courses to visit. For instance, in Germany and Switzerland students of Gymnasium can choose extra classes. Therefore, gifted students always can prove themselves in a particular subject or several fields.

The most straightforward system is where education is not an interesting part of life but only an obligation for both teachers and students. By following it, we do have talented students who are being left behind. Why? Because they simply don't have a chance to evolve.

Final Thoughts

So, which conclusions can we make in discussing this question? Gifted students, of course, sometimes are being left behind. It takes place due to either neglecting, or obscurity both parents and teachers, or lack of enthusiasm. The educational system is a determinant of students' progress. It's impossible to implement the better study without improvements of the whole system and changing the rules which teachers and students are following.

In education, it's necessary to pay attention to both intellectual and psychological levels of every student, try to create conditions where every child can grow individually, and also remember about social life. In this case, students won't be victims of lack of ambitions or underrated skills.

On the other hand, if the setting isn't favourable for discovering new talents then how students would know about their uniqueness?

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