Tuesday, 17 May 2022
    011220, Education

    School that gets the gifted

    Eleven-year-old Chris Reiser is into movies; not just watching them, but editing them on Premiere Pro, The Age reports.

    Chris – who has autism spectrum disorder – thinks more in images than in words. Sometimes the images in his head are so vivid he feels as though he is living inside a movie, which makes him “freak out”.

    “Sometimes I get so caught up in life I feel like my life’s a movie because all these things are going on and it’s just … crazy,” he says.

    Chris is also advanced for his age in mathematics and a gifted storyteller, according to the principal of his new school where he will start next year.

    But his anxiety about school is so all-consuming that he often cannot bear to go.

    “I just freak out sometimes before I go to school, because I have this feeling inside of me,” he says.

    The long time he spent learning remotely at home this year only intensified that feeling, to the point that Chris simply couldn’t go back. For a second time, his parents have pulled him out.

    His father Ian insists both schools gave Chris incredible support but were just not sufficiently resourced to give him the kind of help he needs.

    Next year, Chris will start year 7 at his third school, Tombolo Academy in bayside Hampton.

    It will be Australia’s first school solely for “twice-exceptional children”; those who are simultaneously gifted and have a disability.

    He will be one of a small initial intake of 23 students in years 7 and 8 at the independent school, which will open in February after gaining approval from the Victorian Regulations and Qualifications Authority in September.


    They’re gifted and now they have a school that really gets them (The Age)


    Tombolo Academy