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Myth: G/T Students Can't Be In Special Education

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Myth: This Child Can’t be Gifted, He Has A Disability

Students who have outstanding gifts and talents, and the potential for high performance may also have a disability that affects their learning. These “twice-exceptional” or “2e” children are often denied access to gifted education services. Sometimes the gift and disability mask each other, and the child appears to be performing at an “average” level. Other times access to gifted services is denied due to institutional obstacles separating special education and gifted services. These children can surprise you with their ability to remember numbers, even as they struggle with their math or English homework.  Both the gift and disability need to be uncovered so the child can receive an education that not only enhances his/her abilities, but recognizes them for who they are. Following are a few resources to explore to learn more about twice-exceptional education.  


• Visit our "Twice Exceptional Main Page" for a detailed look at twice-exceptional education. This webpage also contains a number of links for an even more in-depth look at twice-exceptional students.

• Olenchak, F. R., & Reis, S. M. (2002). Gifted students with learning disabilities. In M. Neihart, S. M. Reis, N. Robinson, & S. Moon (Eds.), The Social and Emotional Development of Gifted Children (pp. 177-192).  Waco TX:  Prufrock Press.

• Ralabate, P. (Ed.). (2006). The twice-exceptional dilemma. National Education Association.

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