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The Grayson School will guide exceptionally gifted children to fulfill their potential through a highly individualized, accelerated learning environment that nurtures creativity, critical thinking skills, and confidence. Grayson offers its students an education worthy of their intellect and their intrinsic desire to learn and think deeply. Grayson also strives to be a valuable resource and an integral part of the gifted education community in Philadelphia and nationwide.
The Grayson School is designed as a first through twelfth grade independent, nonprofit school founded specifically to serve gifted students. When operational, it will be the only school of its kind in Pennsylvania.
Though gifted children have obvious potential for remarkable achievement, leadership, and discovery, they are routinely overlooked in education planning, funding, and execution. These students have intellectual, social, and emotional needs that are simply not met in standard classroom environments. Their parents may be told that "they’ll be fine" on their own, given their substantial innate abilities.
However, gifted learners are languishing in our current educational system. Between 18 and 25% of gifted students drop out of school. Of the students who remain in school, significant underachievement remains a problem. It’s clear that our educational system is not nurturing their gifts, and as a result we are missing an important opportunity to generate great benefits -- both for the students and for society as a whole.
In a familiar day school campus setting, Grayson students will attend core classes and electives with their academic peers, enjoy recess and lunch, and play sports after school. Here is the critical difference: all day, every day, the research-based principles and best practices of gifted education will provide the foundation for students' success.
At Grayson, coursework will be individually tailored to each student’s advanced abilities. Pre-testing on each new topic they take up will allow them to work on material they have not yet mastered, so rather than spending time on content they already know, they can move through separate curricular units -- or even a year's worth of curriculum -- at their own pace. They will spend their days with other academically-advanced peers, giving students an opportunity to relate to and grow with each other.
Through interdisciplinary projects and guided independent inquiry, Grayson students will solve real problems in the manner of practitioners of the field. Their teachers will be trained in the social and emotional needs of gifted learners, in addition to the delivery of accelerated curriculum. Parents and guardians will be explicitly included in their children’s education as an important part of the Grayson community.
- Jennifer Nance
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