National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC) is an advocacy group that strives to raise awareness of gifted children and their needs. NAGC supports and publishes research about what techniques work in gifted education. Parent memberships start at $30. The site’s information and resources page features position papers on educational issues that may be useful in advocacy activities.
The Duke University Talent Identification Program, usually referred to simply as Duke TIP, conducts searches for academically gifted students and offers them weekend programs (held locally at UGA), residential summer programs, online classes and other resources. TIP gives students the chance to take standardized tests intended for students above their grade level, which can reveal just how advanced they are. Registration opens for the 4th/5th Grade Talent Search on Dec. 1 of each year; the 7th Grade Talent Search enrollment opens in August of each year.
Georgia Association for Gifted Children (GAGC) puts on an annual conference with some topics of interest to parents, although much of its programming is geared at teachers. You can join the organization for a fee. GAGC’s resources page has links to many enrichment opportunities and information sources. Several metro area counties have local chapters of GAGC. These chapters are:
- Cobb County chapter of GAGC
- Fulton County Supporters of the Gifted
- Gwinnett Alliance for Gifted Education
Davidson Institute for Talent Development serves profoundly gifted children — the brightest of the bright. Qualified students ages 5-16 can apply to become Davidson Young Scholars, which provides direct access to a counselor who can help with school advocacy and talent development. The institute also offers scholarships and has a summer program for teens.
Supporting Emotional Needs of the Gifted is focused on emotional issues of particular concern to the gifted, such as peer relationships, motivation, discipline and stress management. Offers webinars, parent support groups, and a free e-mail newsletter.
Information and articles
Articles that can help you evaluate and select a school:
- Finding the best school for your gifted child, from the Davidson Institute. This brief article gives a list of questions to ask potential schools.
- Choosing the Right School for Your Gifted Child, published by Duke TIP in its gifted newsletter. Provides a list of questions to ask and for each one, tells you what answers would indicate a good gifted learning environment.
- How to Evaluate and Choose a School, published by the Clearinghouse on Early Education and Parenting. This longer article is not targeted at the gifted, but has links to lots of data sources that may help you compare schools — for example, where you can look up per-pupil spending for specific districts, or how to find school report cards (AYP).
Hoagies’ Gifted Education Page is a vast repository of information about gifted children. You can find scholarly articles about gifted education, book recommendations and lots more.
The Digest of Gifted Research is published by Duke TIP (Talent Identification Program). Formerly known as the Duke Gifted Letter, the digest offers research-based information about raising and educating gifted children.
Institute for Research and Policy on Acceleration at the University of Iowa has information pertaining specifically to the use of acceleration as an educational tool for gifted children.
The Association for the Gifted (TAG), a division of the Council for Exceptional Children, is an advocacy group for gifted education. Membership is intended for professional educators, not parents, but the web site has some worthwhile information.
Teen Ink has a comprehensive list of summer programs held at sites across America and beyond.
Gifted Education Press Quarterly produces a free newsletter with scholarly articles about gifted children. You can sign up to subscribe by e-mail or simply read the articles online.
The spring 2010 issue of the Illinois Association for Gifted Children Journal contains more than a dozen articles about how parents and teachers can serve as advocates for the needs of gifted children.
A Nation Deceived, published in 2004 by the John Templeton Foundation, is a thorough review of types of acceleration and their impact — both academic and social — on children. Volume I of the report is an overview of the history of acceleration, types of acceleration, and myths about the effects (especially social) of acceleration. Parents considering acceleration for their children may find it a helpful read. Volume II is a series of scholarly articles from experts in the field. Parents trying to convince administrators to consider acceleration may find this report useful in that effort.
Dr. Spomenka Newman, Ph.D., is a licensed psychologist specializing in the needs of gifted children. Her practice offers assessment, therapy, and educational advocacy.
Susan Colgate helps high-school students navigate the college selection and application process. She works with students in developing their extra-curricular interests, identifying colleges of interest, preparing college applications and essays, and finding potential sources of financial aid. Susan was formerly the director of the Advanced Academy at the University of West Georgia.
The Psychological Center at Emory University offers IQ testing and other ability and achievement assessments. Testing can be done by graduate students in psychology for very reasonable fees. You may also request testing be done by a licensed psychologist on staff, but rates will be higher.