Gifted and Talented

Dear parent,

We would like to let you know that we have not included you daughter in our latest “Gifted & Talented” list. You may assume we feel she has no notable gifts, and no particular talents. We shall therefore exclude her from various clubs, trips and opportunities. We will make sure that every teacher who has her in their class sees a big, fat, “NO” in the “Gifted and Talented?” column on their class spreadsheet. These teachers will have to make no specific provision for her in their planning.

We will specially appoint a gifted and talented coordinator in our school to organise lots of extra stretch and exciting activities. This coordinator will ignore your daughter, and spend none of their time doing anything for her benefit.

You may also be interested to know that there used to be a National Academy for Gifted and Talented Youth. They did wonderful work in providing support for talented young people. As your daughter is is neither gifted nor talented, she would have effectively been entirely invisible to this organisation… although they’ve closed now, which will make her feel better, I’m sure.

Incidentally you may be interested to know that the government defines gifted learners as those who have abilities in one or more academic subjects, like maths and English, and talented learners as those who have practical skills in areas like sport, music, design or creative and performing arts. Your daughter has none of the above.

Kindest regards,

Your school

Note: Just updated after being slapped on the wrist and reminded NAGTY was closed in 2007 (or possibly 2010, the wikipedia article is unclear). Oops. Apparently the replacement is either Warwick Uni’s IGGY or DfE’s YG&T. Incidentally I’d welcome someone writing an opposing view to this – always happy to be contradicted.

Edit: Fantastic opposing view (also in epistolary form!)  by @GiftedPhoenix

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