Bright British teens head for the States

THREE of the country's brightest teenagers, selected by the first gifted academy, will be taught in the United States rather than in England this summer.

The high-flyers will be flown out to attend summer school at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. The American institution is a partner in the Government-backed pound;60 million academy, based at Warwick University.

Despite being aged 14 or under, two of the children already have a "selection of AS and A-level qualifications". The third was singled out on the basis of a near perfect score in the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT), the US college entrance exam.

A spokesman for the academy said: "The academy only had five months to establish the summer school and it was felt that sending the three brightest to the US was the best strategy. The results of these children suggested that they might benefit from the experience."

They bring the total number of children selected by the academy to 103. All of those chosen from the 520 applications are in the top 1 per cent, according to a university spokesman. Johns Hopkins centre for talented youth was founded in 1979 and has a long history of catering for child prodigies.

Children are selected from a state-wide "talent search". Nearly 100,000 teenagers sit the SAT test. About 10,000 from the top 1 per cent are selected to attend summer schools in 19 sites across America.

A Warwick University spokesman said: "This is our first year. We decided to kick-start what will hopefully become an exchange scheme with these three students."

No American children will attend the English academy this year, however.

Pupils at Warwick can study maths, chemistry, creative writing, drama, engineering, environmental science, logic and languages.

As well as the summer school, the academy will run weekend sessions for the top 5 per cent and provide online tuition.

Around 1,000 youngsters a year are expected to take part.

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