- The National Leadership Academies surveyed nearly 3,000 high-achieving high school students and their parents during summer academies in 2016, finding these students feel isolated and bored in school.
- According to the survey, 52.5% of parents said they were at least somewhat concerned their children were not getting the support they need in school, and about 60% of students said they wished they had more opportunity.
- What’s more, nearly half of student respondents said they struggle with feeling down, nervous or anxious and almost 20% said they don’t feel connected to “people like them.”
The standardized testing pressure of No Child Left Behind encouraged schools and teachers to focus on students who arrived to class likely to score just below the proficiency cut-offs. These students were the ones who could most impact overall school scores with teacher attention. This tendency has created a great deal of pushback from advocates for the lowest-performing students as well as the highest-performing ones.
As classrooms become more diverse on a range of metrics, personalized learning strategies have begun to increase the capacity of teachers to actually meet student needs and offer challenges at the appropriate level. The most advanced students in these classrooms are free to move ahead at their own pace, just like students at other levels.