I never took advanced placement classes in school. No honors English. No AP Biology. I was definitely not a candidate for skipping a grade. In fact, in some cases, I kind of went in the other direction. But the conventional wisdom goes like this:
“Whoa, Johnny’s doing really well in Freshman Algebra. He’s acing all his tests, 104% on everything he does. He understands the theories easily, absorbs information like a sponge. He’s way ahead of any other kid in his class.”
The conventional solution for Johnny’s terrible predicament goes like this:
“Since Johnny’s doing so incredibly well, sailing through his present level, it obviously means he’s not being ‘challenged’ by the work. Learning what’s expected of him and getting straight A’s must be boring to poor Johnny. Let’s pull Johnny out of that tedious, ol’, age-appropriate, Freshman class and stick him into a more ‘advanced,’ more ‘stimulating’ Sophomore class.”
In other words: let’s take Johnny out of an environment where he’s far superior to everyone around him, a situation where he can excel, and artificially introduce him into a new environment where he’s just average again.
Congratulations Johnny, you’ve just been rewarded! (Said the kid in remedial reading.)