Montgomery's Treatment of Gifted Students

Monday, December 22, 2008

We were surprised to read in the Dec. 16 Metro section the headline about Montgomery County Public Schools "erasing" the "gifted" label for students. The county Board of Education has made no such decision.

Unfortunately, the story left the impression that such a decision has already been made and ignored the comprehensive public process we have for considering such important issues.

A group including several stakeholders is discussing various options, including eliminating the label and moving to a services-based model. The group's recommendations will be reviewed by the Board of Education's Policy Committee and then considered by the full board. Parents and community members will be provided ample time for comment, which will be carefully considered before any action is taken.

At this point, the Policy Committee has not yet scheduled any action on this issue but is likely to consider it next year. Any claim that the board is acting to eliminate the label is premature.

SHIRLEY BRANDMAN

Bethesda

PATRICIA O'NEILL

Bethesda

Ms. Brandman is president of the Montgomery County Board of Education. Ms. O'Neill is the board's vice president and chair of its Policy Committee.

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