Michael J. Petrilli & M. René Islas

Co-editors of The High Flyer

Michael J. Petrilli is president of the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, and M. René Islas is executive director of the National Association for Gifted Children. Their two organizations unite around common goals: to expand the public’s understanding of the needs of gifted and talented children, to increase public urgency to serve them, and to dispel common myths.

Together, they've launched a communications channel for gifted education. Designed to illuminate conversations on gifted and talented children and mobilize support for them to reach their potential, The High Flyer is a unique collaboration between the National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC) and the Thomas B. Fordham Institute.

It is virtually impossible for a student who lives in poverty, is an English learner, and belongs to a minority group to be identified and served in a gifted and talented program. Giftedness exists in all populations, and education is the great equalizer. We have a moral obligation to help children who come from disadvantaged backgrounds to grow, develop, and flourish.

The High Flyer and our other combined efforts are meant lead the conversation and signal that all gifted and talented students matter.