03 Sep Giftedness and Meritocracy – Curse or Blessing? A Qualitative Case Study in an Austrian Primary School
Giftedness and Meritocracy – Curse or Blessing? A Qualitative Case Study in an Austrian Primary School
Dynamic flash presentation276Salma Baghajati, London Metropolitan University , United Kingdom
Central AmericaSat 09:00 - 10:30
Balanced research and practice
Despite increased discussions in academic discourse about the causes of inequality, especially through meritocracy, these debates rarely reach teachers in gifted education. In my qualitative case study, I explored gifted interventions from a teachers’ and students’ perspective to analyse the impact of the meritocratic approach in gifted education on disadvantaged students. I found that the absence of a common definition of giftedness among the teachers led to equating giftedness with high performance. Moreover, the school's emphasis on academic subjects in gifted education led many children to define their giftedness based on their academic achievement. Since disadvantaged students achieve lower, the main benefiters of gifted education are white-middle-class students. The aim of my research is to provide potential solutions for both the Austrian policy makers and practitioners on how to effectively enable talent development and personal growth for all students independent of their background by connecting research and practice.