OCPS Considers Gifted School
Several board members said they know families who have removed their children from Orange public schools because their children weren’t being challenged. It was in that context that board members discussed the idea of a gifted academy for kindergarten to grade 8.
Though the board didn’t come to any conclusions, there seemed to be some support for a school that could focus on the needs of highly gifted learners. However, several other board members were concerned that such a school would create a brain drain from other schools or damage the fabric of neighborhood schools.
But board chairman Bill Sublette said the district has already been approached by one parent who wants to create a charter gifted school in the district. Sublette called it “inevitable” that the district would need to create more extensive programs for highly gifted students or face competition.
Superintendent Barbara Jenkins said her staff would begin to assess whether there might be enough students to fill such a school and to survey parents to see if there is interest. The board will consider the gifted academy idea again during a conversation about magnet schools next week.
Related OCPS Board presentation on Gifted Education, Feb 2013