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Cultural considerations

Students from diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds are often not identified for gifted education programmes, for a range of reasons. Teachers nominating and identifying gifted and talented students should be aware of special abilities and attributes prized by other cultures, and the ways in which the school culture affects the identification process. It also needs to be acknowledged that, while there are many different cultural groups in New Zealand, the literature to support identifying giftedness for students is limited. It is the school’s responsibility to consult their school communities to ensure that any identification processes are culturally appropriate and inclusive for all of their students.

It also needs to be acknowledged that there are many other cultural groups in New Zealand. The literature to support identifying giftedness in these students is limited. It is the school’s responsibility to consult their school communities including the different cultural groups.

Culture is like an iceberg - 9/10ths of it lie beneath the surface. This hidden area underlies our behavior, influences our perceptions and is outside our immediate frame of reference - until we plunge beneath the surface - or perhaps like the Titanic, encounter it unexpectedly. (Ruhly, S. 1976)

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