Every child has talents to nurture

I can acorss this article today (Feb. 08 2007).

Source: HeraldTribune.com

"Who's gifted?" As a retired teacher with 38 years' experience, I can answer that question easily. Every child on Earth is talented and gifted in some way. Each child has a unique ability that another does not. It is the job of education to develop each child's gifts as much as educationally possible while remembering that much of the development of those gifts is the responsibility of the person who owns them. (Remember how little formal education Thomas Edison had?)

It is unconscionable that we, as a society, are willing to create "pricey" classrooms to teach the "gifted" students while we leave the "regular" kids behind, squeaking by on regular funding. There should not be one penny's worth of difference in any classroom in America between the "gifted" and the "ungifted." We have no way of predicting which child or whose gifts will turn into another Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, Henry David Thoreau, Mahalia Jackson or George Washington Carver.

We did not become the great nation we are by segregating the so-called Talented and Gifted kids into elite, expensive classrooms while the "regular" kids languish in the mediocre, underfunded classrooms. Much about talent and giftedness is, like beauty, in the eye of the beholder. One child's gift is another child's bane, but they all are gifted and talented in some way.

It is our job to provide the best universal public education possible, to each and every youngster, and it is very bad business and very shortsighted to be serving all the cream to an elite few. Every parent should be able to have a bumper sticker that reads, "My child has been identified as a TAG kid"! They all are TAG kids. All you have to do is find out what the talent is.

Jorita Madison