Absentee Children: Parental Malfunctioning as Related to the Excessive Absenteeism of "The Gifted Child" as Indicated in Ten Cases From Casework Unit V, Bureau of Attendance, Board of Education, New York City, New York, 1960-1965
Society is a dynamic, complex configuration of changing peoples and patterns. The change from an agrarian economy to a highly urban industrialized society, for better or worse, has placed new demands upon the individual and society as a whole. Our society, in order to maintain its current pace, demands better utilization of its greatest natural resource, its gifted individuals. There are currently over four million individuals who are unemployed in the United States, but there are several million positions which are unfilled because there are inadequately trained, skilled and professional people available. In our modern era the demand for the uneducated, unprofessional worker is diminishing as automation and technological advances increasingly demand highly talented manpower. The concept of better utilization and identification of our gifted people is not a new concept. William James speaking at Stanford University in 1906 said, “The world....is only beginning to see that the wealth of a nation consists more than in anything else in the number of superior men it harbors." This was stated almost sixty years ago, prior to the current nuclear age, our race for space, and the multitude of special projects which require superior individuals with special training. We are witnessing a revolution in society toward men and women of high ability and advanced training. For the first time in history such individuals are in wide demand. Throughout the ages human societies have been extravagantly wasteful of talent. We can no longer afford this luxury. As stated by Alfred North Whitehead, ”In the conditions of modern life the rule is absolute, the race that does not value trained intelligence is doomed." Society, and our country, for very selfish reasons can not allow gifted individuals to be wasted or to waste themselves.
Gross, Nathan, "Absentee Children: Parental Malfunctioning as Related to the Excessive Absenteeism of "The Gifted Child" as Indicated in Ten Cases From Casework Unit V, Bureau of Attendance, Board of Education, New York City, New York, 1960-1965" (1966). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI30308707.