GiftedNYS is excited to kick off its Fall 2020 Advocacy Days with a free online Advocacy Coaching Session! Parents, educators, students, and anyone who supports gifted education for all of New York State are encouraged to participate.
Advocacy expert Kathy Giordano will help prepare participants to confidently communicate with their New York State legislators and share their unique perspectives on why gifted education is so important.
The theme for our Advocacy Days, See Me, reflects the fact that gifted individuals are found in every population and region of New York, yet most go undiscovered and unsupported in our state. Society has accepted many myths about giftedness that hurt our ability to provide for gifted kids. We know that gifted individuals are very diverse, and we hope to have many participating advocates helping to put a human face on giftedness.
We need our legislators to understand the personal impact that lack of funding, lack of support, and lack of appropriate educational opportunities has on gifted students, their families, and educators. If you’re fortunate to have experienced great gifted education, your story is important, too! What has quality gifted education meant for you, your child, or your students, and why do you think others can benefit from the same opportunities?
New York State does not currently provide equitable access to an appropriate education for most of New York’s gifted students. Most are unseen and underserved. Many are misunderstood. Consider:
- New York is one of only eight states that does not mandate or provide any funding for gifted education.
- In a 2015 survey by the U.S. Department of Education’s Civil Rights, only 127 of New York’s 732 school districts, or 17.4%, reported offering some form of gifted programming.
- Fewer than 2% of New York State’s students participate in gifted programs, compared to almost 7% on average nationwide.
- The stats for minority populations are even more concerning; only 0.9% Black, 0.6% Hispanic, and 1.1% Native American are identified as gifted in New York State. The number of gifted students with disabilities, also known as twice-exceptional (2e), is not even tracked.
- Many families simply don’t have the resources to provide the kind of education their gifted children need on their own. They need and deserve support from our education system.
New York State’s gifted students will continue to be overlooked, misunderstood, and underserved unless we speak up and call for change.
To learn more about Gifted New York State’s position, please read our appeal to New York State, Improve and Transform New York’s Gifted Education.
How to Participate
Our Advocacy Coaching Session is a FREE presentation open to GiftedNYS members and non-members. It will take place on the Zoom Meetings platform on Thursday, July 30, 2020 at 7:00 PM EDT. Registration is required in order to receive the private meeting link by email. Please visit the event listing to sign up.
Following the presentation, advocates will be encouraged to contact their elected representatives to share their stories by phone, email, or postal mail this fall.
About Kathy Giordano
With a background as a 7-12th grade English teacher and a parent, Kathy has been an education advocate and support for parents of children with diverse needs since 1993. For over thirty years, she has presented internationally regarding the recognition of and positive/proactive strategies for Tourette syndrome, executive function, sensory integration, social communication, sensory issues, advanced intellectual abilities and obsessive-compulsive symptoms.
Kathy recently developed an advocacy training for the Tourette Association of America. In 2012 Kathy presented to the US Congress the importance of continued funding for advocacy and awareness of the impact of neurological differences in the educational setting. Kathy has also co-authored several books, all with a focus on the importance of positive and proactive support of neurodiverse children.