Saturday, July 31, 2010

This is Our Moment

In clinching his party's nomination for president, then candidate Barack Obama made his famous 'This is our moment' speech. In it he stated, "Tonight we mark the end of one historic journey with the beginning of another ... This is our moment. This is our time. Our time to turn the page on the policies of the past.

Regardless of your politics or country of origin, many great advances in history have come at seemingly dark moments. Resolution of problems are born out of humankind seeking different approaches and new opportunities.

Gifted advocacy is at this point. The global economic crisis has sent financial support spiraling downward with no end in site. Gifted education funding always seems to be the first item on the chopping block.

Amidst all the negative news, there is hope and it is being driven by technology. The very nature of the problem is also the solution. Lack of support by politicians and the general populace is being countered by the gifted themselves. Online communities are forming throughout the world such as #gtchat on Twitter. Great minds are being brought together with the simple idea that our future depends on supporting those minds who have the capacity to make the world a better place.

Politicians will try to build walls and seek support from the very constituencies they created who cannot understand how their education was usurped from them under the guise of 'test results will mean you are smarter'. It is the role of gifted advocates to say enough is enough! If governments are unwilling to support the gifted, then they will simply do it on their own.

This leads to the premise of this post. In terms of supporting our gifted children - this is OUR moment; this is OUR time! Funding really isn't the issue; SUPPORT is the issue. Realizing the magnitude of the consequences for not supporting gifted children is what needs to be understood by the world's leaders. Mindsets need to be changed and attitudes toward the gifted need to be adjusted.

It is incumbent upon this generation ... parents... to support the next generation ... our children. It is not a matter of 'if', but of 'when'. The time is now! Nations who do not come to the realization that supporting their gifted youth is a matter of great opportunity will fall behind those who had the foresight to do so.

6 comments:

  1. You said it all in a nutshell... countries who do not listen beware... You are a good and insightful writer.. Your thoughts come across clearly and susinctly... Will pass Gn your link...

    {hands the author and icecream soda with 2 (two) straws...) Les

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  2. I like it! This is no time for sitting about moaning. It's time for action. At the risk of sounding cheesey: "Yes we can"

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  3. Frazzled...love the Bob the Builder approach to gifted! Can we build it? Yes we can!

    The energy is there--we've all felt it in our community. Now to identify and take the next step. One step at a time we will get there.

    Thanks, Lisa, for waving the banner so well!

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  4. Thanks for the push! We need to be reminded that we have the power to make a difference - individually and as a united force!

    A GT conference in Second Life? I need to find out more. That's a reason for me to try again. First foray into Second Life was aweful due to limited computer power, second was bumbling - I ended up in Germany. But I'd try a third time for a GT conference!

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  5. agree!

    Important too to remember that advocacy is an ongoing process - that you often need to start over at the beginning of each and every school year. That you need to pass on the wisdom that you acquire piece by piece to all who come after you, and ask for their wisdom in return. And that we continue to strengthen our children to advocate for themselves, sometimes loudly, sometimes by stealth (what books can I read? what films can I see? What adventures can I seek out?)

    Articles like this remind us too of the wealth of information that we now have at our finger tips and no longer have to scour the world for.

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  6. This is so fitting, the idea of it is awesome. I do think the key is to tap the 'kids' who have recently emerged from the ed system and have the issues fresh in their heads, I now recognize issues I dealt with and others in my family dealt with when we were kids. I think we just of assumed someone out there was fixing the problem. Now that I have kids, I am outraged that the same problems in education exist 30 years later, and how difficult it is to get schools to see it and act on it.
    I can't help but be skeptical. There is still such a 'help those who can't help themselves' attitude among the democratic party(the place most underdogs go to get support), and there are still so many misconceptions about 'gifted' learners that essentially disqualify our kids from receiving help in those minds. We first need to help people see that "gifted" doesn't = better, it does mean different than the norm, and fair treatment for students is not always equal treatment in education. That's not to say the Republican party is the answer either, their lack of support comes in the form of too much help- interference via overemphasis on testing that results in good/borderline teachers giving up their good teaching due to lack of faith, the great teachers know better and keep on doing what ought to be done, but there aren't enough of them.

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