Easy vs. Challenging: What Will It Be for the Gifted Child?

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A lot of teachers are hesitant to give their top students more challenging work for fear of promoting elitism.

We recently heard of a boy in the UK who was already doing degree-level Maths at age of 10, not to mention excelling in English and Physics. His teachers considered him to be extraordinarily gifted so they gave him more challenging work. Actually, this is what all schools should do to help their gifted and talented pupils realize their potentials.

In reality, a lot of teachers are hesitant to give their top students more challenging work for fear of promoting elitism. So, they just give them the same work that they give the rest of the class. And sometimes, bright students are even appointed to become mentors for their less advanced peers, some sort of like an unpaid tutor.

While it's true that homogeneity can prevent gifted kids from feeling superior, I don't think that it's wise to sacrifice the academic growth of advanced students just for the sake of fairness.

What do you think is the best way to help gifted and talented kids pursue excellence in their academic performance? Will having a "gifted programme" in schools be beneficial for them? Or will it be better for parents to just shoulder the entire burden of developing the potentials of their gifted children?