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Government backs gifted and talented children

Government backs gifted and talented children

Education Minister Trevor Mallard announced today that 17 programmes in schools, national and regional organisations will be funded to ensure New Zealand’s gifted and talented students have the opportunity to reach their full potential as New Zealand’s future leaders.

“Our Government is intent on building the knowledge economy, and laying the foundations for this country’s economic transformation. Helping our talented and gifted children achieve their potential as this country’s future leaders is a critical element of this,” Trevor Mallard said.

“Many of these children are at the crossroads of their development and learning. The programmes I’m announcing today will help them on the right path forward. The learning of all our children needs to be well supported if New Zealand wants to flourish economically, culturally and socially.”

The Government has made $1.2 million dollars available for education programmes targeted at gifted and talented students. National when it was in power did not specifically fund this area of education.

Trevor Mallard announced the details of the programmes at Hamilton Boys High School today. The school is to set up a “virtual online classroom” which will be available to rural students who currently are not catered for. The rural students will have the opportunity to learn with Hamilton Boys High School gifted and talented students who are already in special programmes.

“It’s important to remember that gifted and talented learners have needs that are significantly different from those of other children.

“They require different learning opportunities and may need special emotional and social support to realise their potential.

“The programmes being made available for gifted and talented students are diverse but they all provide opportunities for these learners to interact with others with similar abilities,” Trevor Mallard said.

Attached: List of organisations providing programmes for gifted and talented students, which will be funded by the Government.

Organisation Contact E-mail Phone
Future Problem Solving NZ -Programme for meeting the needs of highly creative gifted students. It includes an online component and support for Community Problem Solving in a cluster of six Northland schools. Robyn Boswell 09 438 9377
George Parkyn National Centre for Gifted Education - Development of a website for rural gifted students from years 2-8 and scholarships for a limited number of gifted students to attend the George Parkyn National Centre for Gifted Education one-day schools. Rosemary Cathcart 09 376 3235
Gifted Kids Programme - Professional development for teachers who have students going to the Gifted Kids Programme one-day schools so that the students’ needs can be met in the regular classroom. Christine Fernyhough 0274 422225
Gladstone Primary School - Extension of an existing programme to investigate how to best meet the needs of gifted underachievers and gifted students with learning disabilities/ difficulties in years 1-6. This programme involves specialist modules and mentoring. Emma Best 09 846 9744
Programme to meet the needs of gifted Mäori students in kura kaupapa Mäori. No contact details at present
Hamilton Boys’ High School Virtual Classroom - Development of a virtual classroom and holiday camp for gifted year 8-9 boys in rural Waikato schools. Susan Hassall 07 855 2099
Turanga and Gisborne
Tairawhiti REAP – Programme for meeting the needs of gifted students in the Turanga/Gisborne area. This involves a cluster of 10 primary schools. Judi Rendall 06 867 4187
Wanganui West Schools Cluster - Development of an electronic academy and immersion days to meet the needs of gifted students in rural Wanganui schools. Mervyn Bloor 06 342 1841
Palmerston North
Massey University College of Sciences - Development of a mentoring programme in science for year 11-13 gifted girls with potential talent in the sciences. John Holland 06 350 5565
Aranui High School -Programme for meeting the needs of gifted Mäori students in secondary school. This involves student and parent hui, counselling, mentorships, courses, visits to local tertiary providers, guest speakers and role models based on needs. Graeme Pollock 03 388 7083
Halswell School - Development of a programme for year 6-8 gifted students with potential talent in science, includes links with a local high school and university. David Clayton 03 322 7038
Ilam School - Extension of an existing programme to investigate how to best meet the needs of highly gifted students in years 1-6. This programme involves inquiry based learning and links with the local university. Lyn Atkinson 03 3487 492
NZ Chemistry Olympiad -Extension of an existing programme to include differentiated extension material for gifted year 12-13 students with potential talent in Chemistry. This programme involves an international competition and training camps. Dr Robert Maclagan 03 364 2456
NZ Mathematical Enrichment Trust -Extension of an existing programme to investigate how to best meet the needs of gifted students with potential talent in mathematics. This programme involves an international competition, correspondence extension material, university links and training camps. Alan Parris Alan Parris - 03 3892039 ext 809
Sirius Programme - Extension of an existing programme involving cluster days for students from 20 North Canterbury schools to include online materials for teachers, students and parents. Rod Thompson 03 313 8792
Timaru Boys’ High School -Programme to meet the needs of gifted boys at secondary school, who are exceptionally gifted, highly creative, underachieving, or have learning difficulties. This programme includes mentoring, student workshops, counselling and Future Problem Solving. Nick Simpson 03 688 8588
Music Heartland Programme -Programme for developing musical talent in gifted students from age 9-13 in Otago schools. Errol Moore 03 479 3809

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