Advocating for Your Gifted Child

  • Start with the assumption that you are an equal partner in your child’s education. You are your child’s first teacher and you know your child better than anyone else.
  • Learn about the needs of gifted children, an appropriate education for gifted children, and your rights as the parent of a gifted child under North Carolina General Statutes, Article 9B, Academically or Intellectually Gifted Students, section 115C-150, enacted August 3, 1996.
  • Each school system in North Carolina has its own locally-developed plan for identifying and providing appropriate educational services to each academically or intellectually gifted child. The plans must meet the framework required in Article 9B.
  • Participate. Volunteer to serve on your school system’s gifted program evaluation team or your local School Improvement Team. Prepare for and attend teacher conferences, parent group meetings (PAGE, PTA), school functions, and school board meetings.
  • Improve your skills in communication, documentation, letter writing, and record keeping.
  • To address concerns about your child’s needs, follow the school system organization chart, beginning with your child’s teacher(s), principal, then system administrators. Allow sufficient time at each level for changes to be made before going to the next person.
  • Be pleasant and positive (and persistent when necessary).
  • The federal P.L. 94-142, Individuals with Disabilities Education Act [IDEA], does not apply to gifted children.

(Adapted from “Five Steps to Becoming Your Child’s Best Advocate,” in the March 1988 ECAC Newsline.)

For more information about gifted laws in North Carolina, visit the Resources page on the NCAGT website.