The battle for gifted education funding continues to be fought in the State of Ohio. Today we are informed that the Senate Education Chairman has called for gifted testimony in less than a week. The call has gone out for witnesses willing to travel to Columbus to testify or support gifted education funding. There is no greater voice than that of a parent of a gifted child who has been figuratively lost within our public education system. There is no lobbyist on the planet who can compete with the compelling testimony of a child who has been there. I urge anyone in Ohio with high ability children in the public schools to attend and offer support or testimony.
In that regard, the Ohio Association for Gifted Children (OAGC) has sent out the following plea to parents and/or students who follow gifted education issues:
“Update 4/9/09 – Can I Get a Witness? In a move that makes things a little tricky for gifted advocates, the Senate Education Chairman has called for gifted testimony this Tuesday on April 14th. This is somewhat unusual as the Ohio House has not released or “dropped” the Substitute Bill for HB1 yet much less passed it out of the House. But if this is our opportunity to show support for gifted education in Ohio, then let’s give them a show, shall we? I need witnesses and supporters to come on April 14th to the Senate Education hearing,…” (details here)
“…While we may not know what the House has done to fix gifted education, this is still a great time to educate the Senate about gifted children. If you testify and as you continue to contact your senator please tell your story, because that is the most compelling testimony you can provide,…”
Who sits on the Education Committee? See: Ohio Senate Education Committee
Gifted students sit on the threshold between what we know they need and what we are willing or able to provide. About them rages a battle of adults attempting to preserve the status quo or threatening to tear it asunder. It’s politics – and I do not pretend to understand the nuances of it all. But it has become increasingly clear that we can not afford to resist distance learning options and that public education must become more nimble in how it serves its students. Our gifted students will continue to underperform if we do not provide them with adequate education opportunities. And districts will lose high ability students as parents seek out alternatives to meet their child’s needs if they can not find them in our public schools.