Re: “Expand, don’t end, gifted programs”:

As someone who was born and raised in Seattle and attended public schools both in gifted programs and otherwise, I strongly disagree.

I am of mixed racial heritage and experienced that the other (mostly white) kids in the “gifted” programs developed a superiority complex that they were better than the “regular program” kids, who were mostly black and Latino. I did not benefit academically from gifted programs. I benefitted from Running Start, which is a program that should be expanded, but the gifted programs do nothing but enforce a false sense of white superiority without adding educational value for children.

My parents were upper-middle class and able to afford private testing to say I was “smart enough” to get in after I flunked the regular tests. Gifted programs are just where rich parents pay other people to tell their kids they are smart. I agree that we should abolish the gifted programs and find a new way.

Arianna Riley, Seattle