Authorities, parents, and educators have long recognized that intellectually gifted students require specialized educational experiences that promote the development and expression of their potential. If gifted individuals—as children, youths and adults—are to experience fulfilling lives and if society is to derive optimal benefits from gifted individuals’ uncommon potentials, an educational program must be structured to develop more fully their exceptional and varied abilities, interests and talents.
The Fulton County gifted program is a response to the need to address the unique learning characteristics, interests, personal needs and capabilities of gifted children. The program emphasizes the gifted students’ need for interaction with intellectual peers. Emphasis on the individual highlights the fact that there are differences among gifted students and a need for specialized educational experiences to meet these differences.
Basic to the philosophy of this program is the idea that no one teacher, resource, or instructional method can meet the needs of gifted students. Education for the gifted is viewed as a cooperative endeavor characterized, facilitated, and realized by the efforts of numerous individuals in the schools and community.
These goals are accomplished in Fulton County schools by providing the basic curriculum to identified gifted students in the regular classroom, adjusting the rate and depth of their learning and using a variety ofappropriate teaching methods. Further differentiation beyond that in the regular classroom is accomplished through seminars, individual projects, advanced placement courses, directed studies, internships and joint enrollment. These are designed to intensify and extend their particular interests and aptitudes. Educational experiences for gifted students provide the additional variety and flexibility necessary to adjust and extend the Fulton County curriculum to meet these individuals’ needs.