Does skipping a grade help gifted students, or harm them?

It helps. It is pointless to teach a student material he or she already knows. We should advance gifted children to whatever grade matches their abilities.
44% (711 votes)
It can do both. Although it is preferable to keep students in their current grade, in rare cases, it is best to advance them.
36% (581 votes)
It hurts. Grade skipping puts social and emotional pressure on kids who may lack the maturity of their older classmates. We should keep gifted students with their peers but provide them with enrichment inside and outside the classroom.
17% (275 votes)
None of the above. (Comment below.)
3% (53 votes)
Total votes: 1620

Comments (106)

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Alicia (not verified)

I completely agree.

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I completely agree.

Alicia (not verified)

In the long run...

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I skipped kindergarten, a decision made by my parents. I physically had the characteristics of the grade I moved into; intellectually, I was as bright or brighter than the grade above me. Although elementary school and junior high was somewhat of a struggle, as the first bonds of friendship formed in kindergarten held up for many years, I found myself in highschool.

Because of the adaptation skills I learned moving from kindergarten into first grade, I have learned to adapt more easily in life. As a fifteen-year-old I had the maturity level of my 18 and 19-year-old friends. I could socially adapt more easily, and it made me a stronger, more self-sufficient person. So many doors and opportunities have opened up to me. I couldn't be more grateful for having moved up a grade.

I am one of those rare cases. Sure, case-by-case analysis must be applied. However, true brilliance and competence to cope must be analyzed by the parents.

jadem (not verified)

I am a 15 year old girl in

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I am a 15 year old girl in the 11th grade and i skipped 1st grade. and on the first day off second grade i cried and cried and thought it was horrible, but i ended up loving the fact that my mom decided to let my pricipal skip me to the next grade, so it does help.

Nadia (not verified)

Been there, done that, and it was way helpful.

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I skipped thee third grade and it was a great decision. You won't end up in the same predicament as in the first place unless you're a super genius. I used to be able to spend a total of 10 minutes on an assignment and still get A+s and a 98 percentile. I skipped a grade and now I work hard and get As and Bs and I couldn't be happier.

If your kid can skip a grade and is emotionally stable and mature enough, then let him/her.

But if your kid is not psychologically ready for it, then they will most likely resort to excessive cursing and low-cut shirts and general immaturity to be just like their older peers. I've seen it happen--correction: I'm currently witnessing it in my classmates. So make sure your kid is ready before you skip a grade!

Ray Givler (not verified)

grade skipping - does anyone read research?

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A poll doesn't really matter. Research matters. The truth is that grade skipping works. Check out:
Skip as early as possible. Waiting until later grades makes it more difficult.

Bernice (below), you are gifted but don't realize it. Girls dumb themselves down as early as age four to fit in socially.

Rebecca (below) is the exception - most grade skipped kids are better off both academically AND socially. Read the research.

Spike (below), read the research. As early as 1971, it was widely known that NOT challening gifted kids causes emotional problems. Check this link (bottom bullet of page 11 in .pdf):

Bob, you just don't know what you are talking about.

Sadly, this site provides little guidance for gifted education. It would be nice if philanthropists like Mr. Lucas could step up where the federal government fails ($10 million for gifted ed vs. $10 BILLION for learning disabled).

Bernice Cutler (not verified)

Forced to deal with education now

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I am the product of lack of challenge. I skipped 8th grade, but by then, I had learned that I didn't need to put in any effort. I am not a genius or "gifted" just moderately smart and a very fast learner. The trouble is, once the slack habits are developed, it's almost impossible to reverse them. I could have won scholarships, but I preferred to do no work and focus on my social life. Since I was getting A's and B's, no one complained or bothered me about lack of effort. Now that I have a son in first grade, complaining about how spelling is boring and they draw too many pictures instead of learning things, I know that I need to address it fast. Many of these suggestions are great, but I can't wait a generation for public education to change. I need good ideas for how to work with the system we have now. Incidentally, I avoided teaching my son to read or do math prior to kindergarten so he would have some challenge. It worked for that year...what now?

Mommyx4 (not verified)

My child is being asked to

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My child is being asked to promote by his teacher, not by us as his parents. I've always known he was bright, and advanced for his age, but I never saw this coming. He is 6 weeks into the 4th grade and the teacher is asking us to consider moving him into the 5th. He already attends a private school which is a minimum of 6 months ahead of public school. Because we plan to home school in High School we are having trouble seeing why this might be a problem. Socially his is fine, knows all of the children in the 5th grade and would integrate well. What a decision!

Rebecca (not verified)

I was one of those student

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I was one of those student who was skipped a grade. I skipped the 7th grade. The social/emotional part of the equation began to catch up with me in high school towards the end. I was only 16 when I graduated and 17 when I began college. That's when not only the social/emotional portion played a factor, but the academics caught up with me as well. I was only 20 years old when I graduated college. I was not emotionally ready to tackle the world at this point. If I could so it over again, I would not want to skip the grade. Even though I would have needed enrichment to match my level of acheivemnt, it would have been better for me in the long run. I will do anything I can as a teacher now to provide that enrichment to gifted students. I have always cautioned parents against skipping a grade. I have lived the long term consequences, both positive and negative. I feel I can speak with authority on this one.

R S (not verified)

I was in a new public school

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I was in a new public school system last year. At the beginning of the year, the teachers and other staff remarked at his nice behavior and his academic capability. I thought that sounded nice, and all was good. For the rest of the year though, when he needed academic challenge, he was asked to escort disruptive children to the office. Apparently the children would sit out on a bench together and do nothing but socialize until there was time for them to be seen in a big school.

My son learned how to talk back, he got bored and angry, and started trying to avoid school. He couldn't sleep at night becuase of the mounting stress. He learned falsely, when you speak up for yourself in a nice way, no one listens. Is it a wonder he began acting out?

I had to pull him out finally and have been in the process of recovering from his frustrations since then. You have to feel really sad and let down when your child is telling you he is bored and the school is asking you to hire a psychologist to tell him that he needs to just deal with it. I'm sure that we wouldn't want anyone in the work field to be told to lower their level of work, because that's how it is. It's not good for anyone.

It was very frustrating. This year, I've decided I would like him to skip a grade. Before I worried about social preparedness and other things...but that experience was so stressful and I know he is so capable. The more settled he is, the more I am able to work and care for our family's needs and when there is time, I enjoy volunteering in the school to bring enrichment to other children too. It's important for the schools to be at their best, so we as parents can do our work with focus.

I think, if the school has the resources to allow the children to progress and thrive in a healthy, positive way, everyone wins. I have faith that our children can still be close to their peers in other ways. Besides that, at work, do we all work with people of the same age only? I think it is good for kids to learn to work across age and peer groups. It is important.

Phil Crane (not verified)

Press Forward

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IMO, I think most parents do not think of their children as smart or see their potential to be smart. Parents we meet DO NOT expect enough of their children. If the child cannot do the then encourage them to be the best where they are in life. My wife and I have ADHD. Yet she has a Masters and I have a JD. So if we had listen to all the experts or compared too much of ourselves to others...we would not be here. Our kids are super smart and when they complete high school.. they can become dumb again if they want least by then it will be an educated decision.


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