Gifted Phoenix Twitter Round-up: Number 3

This is the third in my series of monthly round-ups of @GiftedPhoenix Twitter activity related to gifted education and associated subjects.

It covers the period from 15 December 2011 to 11 January 2012 inclusive.

I am still experimenting with the best way to collate and present this information. On this occasion I have opted for fairly comprehensive coverage but have divided tweets into three categories, each presented in chronological order:

  • News items on gifted education outside the UK
  • News and comment on issues pertinent to gifted education within the UK
  • Research and opinion

I have only included tweets that contain a hyperlink to another source. (I haven’t rechecked that all these work, so apologies if you encounter any broken links.)

The vast majority are my own tweets; a handful are modified tweets or retweets of originals sent by others. I have stripped out all addresses and hashtags. I have also corrected a few typos – otherwise the wording is unchanged.

If you have any feedback about how I could improve the usefulness of these Twitter round-up posts, do please use the comments facility below.

Global News

Kenya’s Talent Development Programme reaches Mombasa –

Presentation outlining the differentiated maths curriculum in Singapore’s gifted primary programme –

An interview with Miraca Gross –

Filipino gifted education – – Apparently the gifted are considered ‘a laughing minority in any country’!

Does the US education system discriminate against high achievers? – – An uncomfortable read…

A database of presentations accepted for the 2012 giftEDnz conference –

Begavede barn er oftere deprimert A perception I don’t really share from Norway

21/12 LEGCO question on HK Academy for Gifted Education including primary support: Answer not yet in Hansard

Ingenius Scholarships awarded to 1000 Indian students with ‘all-round talent’ –

Twice Exceptional Newsletter 21 December 2011 –

An interview with the Philippine Association for the Gifted –

Kuwait’s National Center for #Gifted signs MOU with the Kuwait Petroleum Corporation –

Interview with Elaine Tuttle Hansen – new Director of CTY at Johns Hopkins:

What is the relationship between Massachusetts’ strong educational record and a limited approach to gifted education?

Press release on the January ICIE/Dubai Women’s College conference on Excellence in Education –

Comprehensive German perspective on gifted provision at pre-school level –

Who Is Currently Identified as Gifted in the United States?

Dropout Nation takes on those claiming that NCLB held back high attainers -and takes a sideswipe at gifted education:

African Gifted makes national news in Zanzibar!

Blog sensibly suggests CTY should collaborate with JHU’s school of education: – Often wondered why they haven’t

Azerbaijan is considering the introduction of a range of different specialist schools for gifted learners –

Azerbaijan is also considering following Kazakhstan in introducing a centre for ifted children (actually a ‘bank’) –

Article about Verity Prep, a school for gifted children in Kwa-Zulu Natal, South Africa –

Twice Exceptional Newsletter 9 January 2012 –

Nova Scotia Summit Gifted Education & Talent Development – NEAG on tour in NS!

The Global Center for Gifted and Talented Children on Facebook – Gifted education from around the world

UK News

Percentage of KS2 pupils achieving L5 in both English and maths fell from 23% in 2010 to 21% in 2011:

Only 72% of KS1 pupils with L3+ in KS1 achieve KS2 L5 English; comparable figure for maths is 84% – (Table 5)

Only 61% of pupils with L3+ in KS1 English and maths combined achieve L5+ in KS2 English and maths combined –

So a staggering 39% of KS1 pupils at L3 in both Eng and maths are not making the expected progress across KS2:

HUGE variation by school in percentage of pupils with KS1 L3+ in Eng and ma achieving level 5+ in both at KS2:

My comments on today’s league tables blog by Polly Curtis here – – are here –

Daily Mail on underachieving high achievers in primary schools – – but will ‘shining a light’ improve matters?

Are primary schools failing clever kids? Many condone gifted underachievement. So what will we do about it?

I accept DfE’s denial of ex independent selective academies: but I don’t see what Roskilly gains by making it up…

The Concord Review publishes secondary students’ academic research – – Would DfE/BIS support GT Voice to do the same?

Positive for Youth (para 4.30): ‘The NC Review…will take account of the needs of…the most able’:

Time to stop ability labelling? No levels or sets and, for consistency, mustn’t we ditch eg SEND labelling?

Read Ingotian’s tight treatment on shifting the bell curve. How many realistically will be left sub C?

Looks like another satisfied customer for London Gifted and Talented –

London Academy of Excellence (16-19 free school for gifted disadvantaged) now has its own website –

London Academy of Excellence now asking only 5Bs at GCSE; seems to have dropped all criteria for disadvantage:

But London Academy of Excellence still only offering 12 A level subjects – – Verdict: a good idea much diluted

Compare with original LAE vision here: – that could have increased FSM flow to Oxbridge. Not now I fear

I guess the all-through School 21 will be a direct competitor: – Were both after the same premises at one time

The full text of Willetts’ speech at Policy Exchange this morning can be found here:

Baroness Campbell: Olympic legacy for youth sport needs proper funding

This preview of Twigg’s speech today suggests he might espouse progression by ability rather than age: Hope so

Further suggestions that the case against Aim Higher was less robust than claimed by Government –

Profile of Langley Hall Free School – – ‘Every child has some talent’ but they must all learn to play the violin!

The full text of yesterday’s Twigg speech: How does it relate to emerging Labour policy thinking announced by Burnham?

Grammar annexes would be useful if they enabled GS to take in lots more learners eligible for the pupil premium –

This plea for an end to ‘ability labels’ will run up against the new tripartite division in school performance tables –

This Statement of Intent tells you how the primary + secondary performance tables are constructed:

There’s an interesting difference between maths and English on the expected progress measure at KS2 –

Ahh! Regression to the mean again! Don’t think I ever saw the promised Feinstein defence of his diagram

State schools should be more ambitious for their pupils – – improved teaching standards are also key

What’s the best way for the independent sector to support social mobility? We need system-wide consensus

Direct link to DCMS’s new Youth Sports Strategy – – a partial reinvention of PESSCL or a new approach?

Primary Performance Tables: in 15 schools 20% or more pupils at L3 at KS1 were still at L3 4 years later:

The Miliband relaunch speech – – despite the theme, explicit commitments on social mobility are conspicuously absent

Benn analysis of contemporary selection fails to overlay academy/non-academy distinction or play in 16-19 free schools

Guardian has been let in on the Cambridge admissions process to see how it really works

Jowell calls for School Sports Coordinators to be retained to support new Youth Sports Strategy –

Thorough coverage of Sevenoaks Grammar Annex story in Telegraph – – What price virtual grammar school annexes?

News at a Glance: Grammar schools move to introduce catchment areas –

The Advocate for Access does his bit to get those last HE applications in before the 15 Jan deadline –

We have to nurture our ICT talent – – Amen to that! Haven’t seen much yet about this dimension

Research and Opinion

Tiger mothers, Wolf dads and the reality of Chinese parenting – – penned by the beautifully nomenclatured ‘Berlin Fang’

Yong Zhao restores some faith in education academics with this on PISA as a measure of ‘forced excellence’:

Continuing that theme, here’s Frederick Hess on ‘the new stupid’ part 1 – r

Direct link to ONS’s fascinating analysis of UK human capital and why it’s begun to decline –

The benefits of being gifted – (warning – rather checklisty)

An interview with Frank Worrell about that controversial ‘Rethinking Giftedness’ paper –

Gifted kids with learning problems (Psychology Today) –

The relationship between giftedness and creativity) Psychology Today –

Achievement as a function of effort and the need for personalised education – r

Study: IQ isn’t fixed at birth, can increase with education.

Wide-ranging blog post on school and creativity –

Why Don’t We Value Spatial Intelligence? –

Is Intelligence in the Genes?

Two interesting posts on ability bias and the returns to education – and

It pays to extend your next 5 minute argument with your teenager to the full half hour – – but focus on quality too!

How about this, on the interaction between Confucianism and creativity? –

We aren’t evolving higher intelligence because the evolutionary opportunity costs are too high

Must One Risk Madness to Achieve Genius? – An article packed full of fascinating material. Brilliant!

Intelligence: New Findings and Theoretical Developments, Nisbett et al: – Valuable round-up of latest research

The Advantages of the Middle-Age Brain – – much needed boost for those of a certain age!

Fascinating new report for US consumption on OFSTED inspection regime – – even quotes my old mate Ceri Morgan!

Communicate high expectations carefully – – Incidence of depression amongst high-achieving Chinese students

Schooling in adolescence increases IQ scores: (but only the abstract not the full text)


January 2012


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