This article about gifted education was produced in partnership with The Hechinger Report, a nonprofit, independent news organization focused on inequality and innovation in education. This is part 1 of the series “Gifted Education’s Race Problem.”
BUFFALO, N.Y. — On a crisp day in early March, two elementary school gifted and talented classes worked on activities in two schools, 3 miles and a world apart.
In airy PS 64 Frederick Law Olmsted, in affluent, white north Buffalo, 22 would-be Arctic explorers wrestled with how to build a shelter if their team leader had frostbite and snow blindness. Unusually for Buffalo’s public schools — where 20 percent of students are white and 46 percent are Black — about half of the fourth grade class was white.
In PS 61 Arthur O. Eve, on the city’s majority-Black East Side, 13 first graders, all of them Black, Latino or Asian American, folded paper