Black Children Are Gifted. Treat Them That Way.

Why Talented Black and Hispanic Students Can Go Undiscovered

According to the New York Times “Black third graders are half as likely as whites to be included in programs for the gifted, and the deficit is nearly as large for Hispanics…New evidence indicates that schools have contributed to these disparities by underestimating the potential of black and Hispanic children. But, when one large school district in Florida altered how it screened children, the number of black and Hispanic children identified as gifted doubled.”

“Broward County, which includes Fort Lauderdale, has one of the largest and most diverse student populations in the country…In 2005, in an effort to reduce disparity, the County introduced a universal screening program, requiring that all second graders take a short nonverbal test, with high scorers referred for I.Q. testing. Under the previous system, the district had relied on teachers and parents to make those referrals…The share of Hispanic children identified as gifted tripled, to 6 percent from 2 percent. For black children, the share rose to 3 percent from 1 percent. For whites, the increase was more muted, to 8 percent from 6 percent.”