Gifted and Talented Students
in Georgia

* some information may be different and additional resources available in other states.

Resources for
Parents and Teachers


Compare GA Schools
GA Governor's Honors
Georgia DOE
Hoagies Gifted Ed.
National Assoc. Gifted











Within any school, home, or workplace, people have different abilities and ways of learning. This page is designed to assist you in answering, or locating, answers to many questions we have about our gifted, talented, and exceptional children and their education.

Gifted children do not all have gifted parents, use what you know about your child to advocate and fight for the right to an education suited for his abilities.

 Essential Questions

So you believe your child is gifted and talented and needs to be challenged. What are some things you want to know, need to know, and how can you find the answers?

Is there a definition of gifted that I can use to say that is my child?

bulletGeorgia does not have a set definition of what it is to be gifted, but the department of education does have guidelines to follow when determining eligibility of a student for gifted programs.
bulletDefinitions include components of creativity, social skills, intelligence, achievement, or any combination of these.
bulletA list of characteristics may be found here.

Who can nominate a child for testing into the gifted programs?

bulletAnyone who has personal knowledge of a child and his abilities or performance in a specific subject area can nominate a student for entrance into the gifted program.
bulletTeachers are usually the ones who see the potential and realize the benefits that participating within the program can off. However, parents can suggest and or nominate, and in rare cases a student can nominate himself.

How does Georgia decide who is gifted?

bulletFor an in depth look at the guidelines for determining whether a child is gifted, they can be found at GA Dept. of Ed (search for Gifted Resource Manual). (A basic pamphlet is available here.)
bullet Creativity – must be at least 90th percentile on a recognized test or evaluation of a product
bullet Students must meet the following requirements: An intelligence test scoring at the 96th percentile as well as one of the following, OR 3 out of 4 of the following evaluation of a product.
bullet  Motivation – Evaluation by persons who observe the student, an approved rating scale that shows characteristics of motivation, or a combined GPA of 3.5 or greater
bullet  Intelligence or cognitive abilities test – 96th percentile
bullet  Math and or reading – 90th percentile on a standardized test (Iowa Test Basic Skills (ITBS), Criterion Referenced Competency Test (CRCT Practice))

What tests are designed to show a child's gifts and talents?

bullet  There are many tests available to test intelligence and cognitive abilities. Even though each district chooses the tests it believes will demonstrate the child’s abilities, all tests are normed for validity.
bullet  This page has a listing of possible tests and links to them. Tests

What issues might a gifted child, identified or not, face?

bullet We all want what is best for our children, but sometimes we have to let them practice and fail before they find their own strengths and the determination to continue. To know when to stand back is the trick. Some issues a child might face are changing friendships, lack of confidence, interest doesn't match people's ideas of appropriateness for the male/female choice (boy wanting to be a dancer), and being told to be think but then not being allowed to express what they believe.
bullet Friendships
bullet When these children explore their interests, old friends feel threatened and jealous which can cause painful and ugly stories to begin as well as a feeling of loneliness because the children don't know how to handle all things regardless of their abilities in other areas.
bulletNew friends might be older because of similar interests, but how old is too old will be up to individuals and circumstances.
bulletOutwardly a gifted child may appear confident and ready for new challenges, but if they begin to lose interest it might be time to see what is happening in the classroom, other students reactions can create a place of learning that is uncomfortable.
bulletIdeas about male and female roles
bulletNot all girls want to cook, and not all boys want to be mechanics, how we react to those children with interests outside of what we believe is normal can greatly affect their confidence and freedom to explore. We want to encourage all children to enjoy what they do and support them in becoming successful people who believe in themselves.
bulletArguments and Opinions
bullet One of the most difficult things for children and adults is to know when to stop and listen to others. An old saying, "Children should be seen and not heard," is still practiced, but we need to allow our children a chance to explore their opinions and defend their positions in order to learn from them, share ideas, and still teach them from our experiences.

Finally, remember, these are still children and they will surprise you with their escapades that we often think they have outgrown just because they are advanced in some way. They still need to play and interact with children their age and enjoy the moments you help wisely provide.

How can you help your child to improve, stay motivated, and feel confident in themselves and their abilities?

bullet  How confident do you feel about your ability to help your child understand and achieve?
bullet  Educate yourself and ask teachers and others involved in the gifted program to help you understand ways you can learn and participate within the process with your child.
bullet  Talk to your child as you would regularly about what is happening at school.
bullet Provide opportunities for your child to learn a thing at their pace – if resources (computer or otherwise) are an issue, research your town.
bullet Libraries, schools and teachers, and local businesses, are a good source of information.
bullet  Newspapers and magazines can be invaluable tools to use when wanting information about a child’s interests.  

What options are there for the education of your child?

Different school systems provide numerous programs, you will need to check and see what is available where you live. If a program you like is not available, talk to the schools and school board to decide how to make changes or investigate other options. Some options are:

bulletStudents meet as a group and receive instruction in a subject at a faster pace, or a rate that is appropriate to the individual.
bulletStudents are introduced to new ideas that relate to regular coursework but extends knowledge and gives a wider view of the world.
bulletGrade skipping
bulletWhen a student has evidence of being beyond the current grade level, the option may be to skip ahead to the grade level which suits the ability.
bulletPrivate School
bulletKnow your child and his needs. Investigate school and what they offer. Base decisions on this and not the fact it is a private school, that may not be the best environment.
bulletHome School
bulletThis option allows you to include as part of the curriculum challenging subject matter at a rate which is comfortable and of interest to the child.

There are many other options which involve parts of the above. You, the parent, are the only one who can make the final decision about what is best considering time, costs, and family.

Is my child’s teacher qualified to teach the gifted?

bullet Any teacher can have gifted students in the classroom, but to teach a gifted class the educator must have the required endorsement to show they have been trained to respond to those individual needs.

 We have to move to a new district or state; will my child still be served?

bulletDistricts and states do not reciprocate and automatically enroll a student into their gifted programs.
bulletTesting and eligibility guidelines in effect are used to determine whether the student is accepted.

My child was served in the gifted program until we moved, now we are moving back, will the old documentation be acceptable?

bullet  Unfortunately this is not acceptable. Your child will need to be retested and eligibility determined.

What programs are available for my child to participate in and interact with other gifted students?

bullet  There are programs designed for children that are invitation only, fee based, and fully funded.
bullet  Governor’s Honors – Invitation but free upon acceptance
bullet Duke TIP – ACT and SAT testing at an earlier age
bulletThere are fees associated with this program. But waivers are also available, check the instructions and website for more guidelines.

My child has been labeled as gifted and will be working with the gifted program, what costs will I incur?

bulletThe public schools in Georgia have a state funded gifted education. This means that classroom activities, just as in regular classrooms are taught at no extra charge. However, just as with a normal classroom, there may be fees for activities requiring travel, and supplies to complete projects.

What are some federal guidelines that I can use to ensure my child's school is offering all it should?

bullet The federal government does not provide funding or guidelines to states, neither does it require a state to provide services for gifted education. It does offer a general definition -

...who give evidence of high achievement capability in areas such as intellectual, creative, artistic, or leadership capacity, or in specific academic fields, and who need services or activities not ordinarily provided by the school in order to fully develop those capabilities. 

No Child Left Behind Act, P.L. 107-110 (Title IX, Part A, Definitions (22) (2002); 20 U.S.C. Sec. 7802 (22) (2004))




Information listed is to be used as a general guideline. The author is not affiliated nor associated with any of the organizations linked. All work on this page is original and is for informational purposes only.