Secondary School Gifted Education Programme

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Secondary School Gifted Education Programme

Postby WeiHan » Wed Jan 05, 2011 10:25 pm

Hi,

What are the reasons that MOE scrap the secondary school gifted education programme?

WeiHan
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Re: Secondary School Gifted Education Programme

Postby autolycus » Wed Jan 05, 2011 11:53 pm

WeiHan wrote:Hi,

What are the reasons that MOE scrap the secondary school gifted education programme?

Here are some points:

1. The broadening of the GEP to include a) a lower entry requirement and, b) people who 'study' to meet GEP entry requirements, made the local GEP a much less stringently selected cohort than other GEPs elsewhere.

2. There was a dearth of teachers actually certified to teach gifted pupils.

3. There were obvious problems arising from GEP students being seen as a specially selected group.

But what killed the Secondary-level GEP was the rise of the Integrated Programmes. You can start by reading about it at the end of this 2002 speech, or in this 2004 speech, or this 2006 speech. After looking at those speeches, you will have a really good idea.

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Postby WeiHan » Thu Jan 06, 2011 12:29 pm

I have read those articles mentioned before. The MOE will never say that the gifted class is seen as a specially selected group and there are problems. My colleague who was a former GEP have concurred that their class never mix with the mainstream and he thinks it is a major problem.

Secondly, from the article, I am still not sure. Is the IP considered more superior than the gifted programme? It is mentioned in the articles that some of the pedagogies of gifted education are applied in IP. Does it means that the GEP ceased because it is a duplicate of IP? If it is a duplicate of IP, does it means that we have now extended the benefits of GEP to more students since there are definitely more IP students. What I don't understand is that the article seems to say that within IP schools, there are still a school based GEP programme. If IP is already a form of GEP, are there still a different class in IP schools that formerly offered GEP? These are my doubts.

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Postby verykiasu2010 » Thu Jan 06, 2011 3:29 pm

As an example :

Both HCI & RI are both IP and Independent schools

In HCI, GEPpers are in iSpark, plus those mainstreamers t-score above 265 this year. So it is a mixed class for iSpark. The other 3 consortium (mini schools) are all mainstreamers

In RI, the GEPpers are in the last 7 classes, also contain some mainstream high scorers.

In both schools, GEPpers differentiation stop at sec 2, as from sec 3 onwards they are streamed by subject combinations.

In RI, the school says all classes are taught using GEP pedagogy and curriculum and every student benefit from the system. The reason for the initial grouping is because the last 7 classes will learn at a faster pace. Non-GEPpers will have enrichment course like how-to-research studies to help them catch up with GEPpers on learning speed. They all have the same book list : Math 2 contain topics we see in Additional math (sec 3 stuff like quadratic inequality) and for science, they all buy the 'O' level physics, 'O' level chemistry, and 'O' level biology

In terms of definition, the so-called SBGE (school-based gifted education) stops at sec 2. It is stated that by sec 3 there isn't much difference between 'gifted' or otherwise....based on current understanding of GEP's "giftedness"....(not talking about those truly genius)
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Postby INNOVATE » Thu Jan 06, 2011 3:56 pm

Personally feels that the cohort size which are really gifted is no more than 0.1% ie 50 or less. Current practice is way too generous which renders a fair number of high ability pupils manage to get in thru training every year.

At secondary level, with establishments such as IP schools, NUS High, SOTA and SSP, there's no need to have any formal GEP. Agreed with MOE'S stand. At jc level, there's MOE's humanities programme for scholars, CLEP and MLEP etc, so senior high is also taken care off. Each uni has its own scholars' development programmes.

So every thing is in place to cater to the very top students.

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Postby WeiHan » Thu Jan 06, 2011 5:12 pm

That means, in reality, there is no longer any coursework pedagogical difference given to IP and "GEP"-marked students even as early as sec 1 even though they may still be grouped in certain classes.

I wanted to conclude that IP actually replaced GEP almost entirely. The only statements that confuse me in those three speeches is that they said MOE will still continue to assist these schools in developing methodology that is catered to the gifted. But apparently what they meant is that, MOE has assisted these schools in developing their IP using GEP pedagogy and these pedagogy which is embodied within IP is now available to all students in these IP schools. Am I right?

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Postby INNOVATE » Thu Jan 06, 2011 5:32 pm

WeiHan wrote:That means, in reality, there is no longer any coursework pedagogical difference given to IP and "GEP"-marked students even as early as sec 1 even though they may still be grouped in certain classes.

I wanted to conclude that IP actually replaced GEP almost entirely. The only statements that confuse me in those three speeches is that they said MOE will still continue to assist these schools in developing methodology that is catered to the gifted. But apparently what they meant is that, MOE has assisted these schools in developing their IP using GEP pedagogy and these pedagogy which is embodied within IP is now available to all students in these IP schools. Am I right?



More or less you are there. In RI, the top PSLE scorers are placed in the same classes as gep pupils. The same practice applies in yr 5, those with 8-9 A1s 0-level, are placed together with those with high gpa 3.8 and above-yr4. You will see a fair number from Cath high and St. Nicks there.

Each instituition with the strong support from MOE can develop their top students effectively. Scrapping gep at sec level is definitely the natural choice.

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Postby autolycus » Fri Jan 07, 2011 1:10 am

The reasoning is actually very simple, more obvious in the last 20 years than before that.

Since the 1990s, research has shown that there is very little we know about intelligence, in terms of two main things: 1) we can't define it well, except as the capacity certain humans have to do things that other humans think are smart; and 2) when we do define it, we still don't know how it works.

Here, for example, is a reasonably up-to-date laymen's article on intelligence. It gives you a taste of the problems involved.

Hence when we chuck GEP students (those who did well in so-called generalised aptitude or 'IQ' tests) together with top PSLE students (those who did well in tests that we use as a benchmark for 'what other humans in Singapore think is smart'), we aren't doing anything very scandalous. We're just doing the same old 'lump all the good stuff together' thing that our grandmothers used when making soup.

What the DSA/IP combination does is that it broadens the range of 'good stuff'. So we can hope the soup tastes better. We hope.

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Postby WeiHan » Fri Jan 07, 2011 1:19 am

Whether how we define intelligence or understand how it works is another issue. Some people believe that the GEP style of teaching can benefits almost anyone. The reason why it was only offered to a small group is elitism (probably bcos of lack of resources also).

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Postby autolycus » Fri Jan 07, 2011 1:27 am

WeiHan wrote:Whether how we define intelligence or understand how it works is another issue. Some people believe that the GEP style of teaching can benefits almost anyone. The reason why it was only offered to a small group is elitism (probably bcos of lack of resources also).

It is the same issue. Because intelligence works in roughly parallel ways across a wide range of activities and capacities, the general underpinnings of the GEP will work for all students. That is the idea behind the IPs in schools which used to be GE centres — the mainstream classes were able to improve by teachers adopting GE practices.

The initial offering was small because our 1980s paradigms of intelligence were narrower in focus. Because they were narrower, intellectual giftedness was more 'elite'.

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