Gifted children reach their full potential
Angela Mazzone, who is in Landmark Education’s Team, Management and Leadership Program in Houston, TX, is a devoted mother and dynamic, committed member of her community. Angie has two daughters that are classified as “Gifted and Talented”, and she is determined that both girls, as well as other gifted children, receive an education that is challenging, inspiring and appropriate to their needs.
Angie was moved to action when she received a phone call from Andrea Badot, another devoted mother with a gifted child in the local school district. Both women saw the great need for designing school curriculums that would propel gifted and talented students to thrive, be enlivened and excel at educational experiences that are appropriate to their needs and achievement levels. With the “No Child Left Behind” legislation put into place by President George W. Bush, many programs focusing on the needs of gifted children were eliminated. Angie saw how the elimination of Gifted and Talented school programs affected children like hers. Gifted Children were not stimulated, not challenged, bored and not living up to their greatest potential. The attitudes of school administrators were that gifted students are already smart enough and did not need any addition help.
Angie took action and revived a community organization that had advocated for these children over six years ago, but had become defunct. ‘Humble ISD Parents for Gifted and Talented Program (PFGT), is a non-profit organization open to all adults interested in advocating for the unique needs of gifted children. Angie understood
that taking a powerful stand for these ‘Special Needs” children created a space for her to be in action. “If you have a cause that you are committed to, the universe aligns, and miraculous things happen,” Angie Said.
Angie’s Landmark TMLP Game is called “Education for Everyone”. The Outcome of her Game is that all elementary schools across the United States would have magnet school curriculums that support gifted and talented children. She created teams of people to help her achieve her vision around her game. These teams include many parents, a Board of Directors, a fundraising team, a media team, and a membership team.
On April 6th, 2010, the organization put together a special evening called ‘PFGT Summer Camp Fair’. Speakers talked of the special needs of gifted students, and how parents could select a summer camp for their gifted children. The meeting provided an opportunity for interested parents to join PFGT, meet other parents, and pick up guides and information about issues of interest to the parents of these special needs children.
PFGT now has over 40 members, and the organization aims to influence school administrators, school boards and politicians to support programs for gifted children.
The organization intends to have over 100 members by the end of the summer of 2010. The immediate goal of PFGT is to design a dynamic school curriculum for Gifted and Talented students by July, 2010.
For Angie, creating teams and leaders within a community changed the perception that nothing could be done to support Gifted and Talented children. She began the communication that made miracles happen. Being in action and creating solutions that the community needs will help ensure that all children are valued and nurtured.
Written by: Robert Weiss
Edited by: Sharole Beckman