I was in the school office the other day as was our lead STAR tutor. (Star Tutoring is a special reading program to help kids, who are behind get up to grade level.)
I asked if she knew these brothers. Yes, she did. Then I explained that they were the first kids in the school to complete a reading program that is supposed to take 9 months. She shook her head the whole time I was talking and summed up, "Those boys are not capable of what you just explained to me."
My question to her was, "What do I do?"
She and the assistant secretary (another STAR tutor) thought I should call the boys' mother and explain the program. They gave me her number and I called.
I began with apologizing about how confusing the program was this year. That is true. My sister is helping me this year and she incorrectly explained the program in 5 of the 9 classes. (I did the explaining in the other 4.) This has required emails to the teachers and notes home to the parents to clear up--and still a lot of people are confused.
I was going to explain the program, how it's supposed to take all school year, how only books read this school year count, etc. But she stopped me after the apology and told me that when her boys had read 10 books, they went to pick up the prize and were denied by someone who didn't understand the changes made in the program.
So the boys took their lists home and "read a book a day" until they finished. These include the entire Harry Potter series--all 7 books. Emma reads over 200 words per minute and she has never read a Harry Potter book in 1 day. But the mom's math didn't add up either.
She said, "When they brought the lists home, we had about 2 weeks until the prize redemption day, so we read a book a day until they finished."
But when they brought the lists home they had only read 10 books, by her admission. So in 14 days, these boys read over twenty 4th - 8th grade level books. There is not another child in the school who has done that. I think only 1 has even reached 20 books, and only a handful have read over 10. So we have confirmed that these boys are THE most advanced readers in the entire school.
BTW, their mother won't let them be in resource, even though they qualify. She has requested that nothing special be done to help them. My suspicion is that her own bad experience in resource serves as a guide for that decision.
So after being told all that on the phone by the mother, there was nothing for me to do, but compliment her boys on the astounding feat and get off the phone. I have to admit that I have thought of one more angle. Since I don't want such advanced readers to be bored, I've thought of talking with their mother and suggesting that they do it again. That should be easy for them, especially when most of the kids have only red 2-3 books so far.
I'll let you know if I get any results.