Annual symposium coming in June

Published 7:01 am Sunday, April 2, 2017

By John Alberts

Executive Director of Educational Services

John F. Kenney once said, “A rising tide lifts all boats.” Gifted education can be that rising tide, and Austin Public Schools provides an annual professional development opportunity that helps parents, teachers, and administrators learn the newest practices in the field of gifted education that ultimately can be used to help all students succeed.

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On June 12-15, Austin Public Schools, in conjunction with the Minnesota Department of Education and the Hormel Foundation, will host the ninth annual Hormel Foundation Gifted and Talented Symposium at Austin High School.

Experts in the field of gifted and talented education from across the country and world share the latest research and practices in the field. In the past, there have been 300-plus attendees from as far away and Turkey, Hong Kong, and Kenya.

Thanks to the generosity of the Hormel Foundation, Austin residents and school staff can attend the symposium at no cost. This year’s keynote presentations include “Time to Differentiate,” by Susan Johnson of Baylor University; “The Nine Essential Habits that Unlock the Power of Empathy,” by Michelle Borba, author and educational psychologist; and “Cross-Cultural Communication,” by Michael Oleska.

Additionally, Mary Slade of Winthrop University, will be giving the keynote, “Practicing What I Teach: Lessons Learned,” at the Wednesday night banquet at the Historic Hormel Home.

In addition to adult learning, the Northwestern Center for Talent Development is bringing its AWE (Accelerated Weekend Experience) program open to students in grades 3-4, 5-6, and 7-8.

For more information on the symposium or the camps and to register, visit