Education of Students who are Gifted and Visually Impaired a position Paper of the Division on Visual Impairments Council of Exceptional Children Stuart Omdal, Sandra K. Ruconich, Kay Alicyn Ferrell, and Anne L. Corn



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Education of Students who are Gifted and Visually Impaired
A Position Paper of the Division on Visual Impairments

Council of Exceptional Children


Stuart Omdal, Sandra K. Ruconich, Kay Alicyn Ferrell, and Anne L. Corn
Children and youth who are gifted and talented, by virtue of outstanding abilities, require differentiated educational programs and/or services beyond those typically provided to students of average ability.  Students who are gifted and talented (a) “perform or show the potential for performing at remarkably high levels of accomplishment when compared with others of their age, experience, or environment... in intellectual, creative, and/or artistic areas,” (b) “possess an unusual leadership capacity,” or (c) excel in specific academic fields” (U.S. Department of Education, 1993, pg. 26).  Students who are gifted exhibit the wide range of physical and/or sensory abilities, gender, ethnicity, and socioeconomic status represented in the general population.  However, students who are both gifted and visually impaired often remain ineligible for programs and services because the visual impairment itself masks or suppresses the gifts and talents.  Special education must be provided in order for students who are gifted and visually impaired to achieve their potential through implementation of a well-planned, systematic program based on individual needs, abilities, and disabilities

Students who are both gifted and visually impaired need programs and placement options that respond to their needs in four areas: (a) identification; (b) curricular modifications; (c) psychological needs and counseling; and (d) specially trained teachers and support services.  




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