By Tiombe Bisa Kendrick-Dunn.
Mental health professionals (psychologists, counselors, social workers, and psychiatrists) work in both public and private settings. These professional’s graduate education includes an abundance of knowledge relating to pathology and related treatments, but lacks the same for gifted and talented individuals. As a society, we must advocate strongly for a major revision and paradigm shift in how programs responsible for training mental health professionals teach the classification and treatment of these individuals. Unless a major shift occurs, they will continue to be misdiagnosed and at high risk for inappropriate treatment, which can cause irreparable harm. The mental health of each gifted and talented individual is extremely important and all mental health professionals must be cognizant of this fact!
Tiombe Bisa Kendrick-Dunn, SSP, NCSP is a nationally certified school psychologist and is licensed to practice school psychology in the state of Florida. She has been employed with the Miami-Dade County Public School District as a school psychologist since 2005. Ms. Kendrick-Dunn is the current Board President of SENG.
Ms. Kendrick-Dunn has a very strong passion for addressing the needs of gifted students from culturally and linguistically diverse populations and has been instrumental in significantly increasing the numbers of culturally diverse students participating in the Gifted Program at her schools. In addition, she has many helped parents find services outside the school district to help address the needs of their gifted children. In 2006, Ms. Kendrick-Dunn was a member of Miami-Dade Public Schools Gifted Task Force Committee and was also awarded the Mary Frasier Scholarship sponsored by the National Association of Gifted Children (NAGC). In 2007, she was both appointed to the NAGC Diversity/Equity Committee and was awarded a grant by the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) Children Fund Inc to establish a resource center specifically designed for gifted students from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds. Ms. Kendrick-Dunn completed her undergraduate work at Miami Dade College and Florida State University and her graduate work at Barry University. Ms. Kendrick-Dunn has presented at numerous professional conventions on the topic of gifted children.