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But if 2e kids are performing at grade level, it can make it difficult to persuade schools that they should provide remediation or accommodations through an Individualized Education Program or a 504 Plan.Choi says the survey showed parents are told that children in a gifted and talented program can’t have an IEP, which is not true.Gifted kids can use their strengths to compensate for the special need, and in the process mask their learning problems. In some cases, neither the disability nor the giftedness is recognized.
Not having both talents and disability identified can have emotional and behavioral consequences for children.“They know that they’re capable of more and yet something is holding them back, and they can’t really figure out why,” says Dr.
Laura Phillips, Psy D, a neuropsychologist at the Child Mind Institute.“That’s why you often see a lot of frustration and anxiety and even behavioral dysregulation in a lot of these kids.”They may come off as lazy because they’re clearly bright but performing poorly in some areas.
Also, some museums provide weekend programming for gifted students.
Getting support can help twice-exceptional children reach their full potential, both in terms of academics and on the emotional front. Zamora says, they can do better in school and have higher self-esteem. “When I work with any sort of learning disability, I tell parents the years from kindergarten through 12 grade are going to be the hardest years in their kids’ lives” because they are required to take all the core subjects.
Phillips says, “as giftedness in its truest definition is not limited to intellectual potential, but instead can refer to extraordinary capabilities in creative thinking, specific academic areas, psychomotor functioning, or visual/performing arts.” She says she and most school placement decisions use a Standard Score in IQ testing of 130 as the cut-off for gifted intelligence, which would place the child in the top 2 percent of the population.
Experts suggest that when a teacher sees a child who does just okay in some areas, but in one or two areas is a prodigy — or does exceptionally well in all areas except one, where she is lagging — the child should be referred for testing.
In some cases, parents may opt for private schools, with smaller classes and/or curriculum tailored to a particular student’s strengths and weaknesses. Phillips recommends that parents provide a lot of enrichment outside school.
One such resource: the Davidson Institute, including its Davidson Young Scholars Program for 2e students.
But it wasn’t until Logan was turning 5 and had his first neuropsychological assessment that his parents realized his potential, when he scored in a very superior range in visual-spatial thinking, including perception, analysis and synthesis.
This can translate into excellence in math, science and engineering.“It was a big surprise to us that he was really smart,” Choi says.