Failing Our Brightest Kids: The Global Challenge of Educating High-Ability Students (Educational Innovations Series)

In this provocative volume, Chester E. Finn, Jr., and Brandon L. Wright argue that, for decades, the United States has done too little to focus on educating students to achieve at high levels. The authors identify two core problems: First, compared to other countries, the United States does not produce enough high achievers. Second, students from disadvantaged backgrounds are severely underrepresented among those high achievers. The authors describe educating students to high levels of achievement as an issue of both equity and human capital: talented students deserve appropriate resources and attention, and the nation needs to develop these students’ abilities to remain competitive in the international arena.

The authors embark on a study of twelve countries and regions to address these issues, exploring the structures and practices that enable some countries to produce a higher proportion of high-achieving students than the United States and to more equitably represent disadvantaged students among their top scorers. Based on this research, the authors present a series of ambitious but pragmatic points that they believe should inform US policy in this area.

This candid and engaging book takes a topic that is largely discussed behind closed doors and puts it squarely on the table for public debate.

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    By Jen on October 21, 2015

    Can we do better? American Education has focused on equity for several decades–on making sure that children who come from disadvantaged backgrounds reach a minimum level of proficiency. And there has been some success in closing that gap.On the other hand, bright and high ability children are often neglected with the assumption that they will do fine anyway. The authors are concerned with those children for whom the minimum provides no challenge. How have these children been served? And how do…

    By Anonymous on October 21, 2015

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