How to skip a grade: What are the requirements? (2023)

You think your child might be a good candidate for grade skipping, but you have questions. What’s the process like? What are the requirements? Is it even possible?

The answer to all of these questions, unfortunately, is: It varies. There’s no standard set of guidelines dictating when or how a child should skip a grade. Schools and school districts often have a lot of leeway when it comes to accelerating students, and what happens in one school might not even be considered in another.

Even so, if you’re thinking about having your child skip a grade, there are some things you can generally expect to do — including pulling together information, talking to teachers, looking into your school’s specific policies and getting buy-in from the principal or other gatekeepers.

How do you skip a grade?

How a child skips a grade can look different from one school to the next, but many students will follow the same general process, says Ann Lupkowski-Shoplik, an administrator with the Acceleration Institute at the University of Iowa. Here are the steps many parents follow.

Gather some intel

Why do you think your child should skip a grade? Write down your thoughts on what you’ve noticed about your child, including test scores, behaviors and what they’ve told you about their experience at school and what they’d like to do. Having all this info in one place can come in handy when it comes time to talk with your child’s teachers or school administrators.

It can also be helpful to gather information from other parents or organizations with experience in grade skipping. If you know families whose children skipped a grade, ask them about the decision-making process and what they wish they’d known or done differently. And check out resources from groups like the Acceleration Institute that have expertise in how skipping grades can impact gifted children.

Look into your school’s policies (and politics) on grade skipping


Find out what you can about the school’s existing policies. Some districts have strict guidelines in place that outline the steps a student must take in order to skip a grade. For example, a district might allow grade skipping but only after first grade. Or they might only accelerate students who score above a certain percentage on standardized tests.

You can generally find these policies in the school’s student manual or on the district’s website, but they aren’t always written down. Some schools have a more informal policy that’s at the discretion of the school’s principal, Lupkowski-Shoplik says. Sometimes these administrators have misconceptions or doubts about the process that influence whether they’ll even consider allowing kids to skip grades, she says.

Emily Popek, a communications specialist in Oneonta, New York, says her family considered talking to her daughter’s school about grade acceleration when she was in first grade but was worried about how it might be perceived.

“I’ve read and heard so much about how teachers are tired of parents telling them how to do their jobs, and I do not want to be that person,” Popek says. “I got the sense that skipping grades is sort of the nuclear option and that to advocate for that without trying other things first might be kind of jumping the gun.”

If you aren’t sure what the school’s policies are on grade skipping, your child’s teacher or school administrators should be able to explain them.

Talk to your child’s teachers

More often than not, grade skipping starts with a parent or teacher raising concerns that the child might need more advanced coursework, says Laura Schonberg, director of the highly capable services (aka “gifted”) program in Mount Vernon, Washington.

“The conversation usually starts in one of two ways,” she says. “Either the parent’s saying ‘My kid is always bored’ … or a teacher saying, ‘Oh my gosh, this kid is scoring off the charts and already knows all this stuff.’”

(Video) Boy Skips Grade Levels

If you think your child needs more of a challenge than their current grade can offer, talking to their teacher can help confirm your suspicions or provide more insight into what they’re seeing in the classroom, Schonberg says. They can also tell you whether they think your child is ready to skip a grade or if there are alternatives to grade skipping that might be a better fit.

Get buy-in from leadership

Next, the teacher, family and school administrators will likely meet to talk about possible solutions. If the consensus lands on skipping a grade, a request is made to the school’s gatekeeper (typically the principal) to make the final decision.

While some schools might structure this decision-making process with rubrics or specific criteria, other schools might be more informal.

Emily Hubbard, a writer and marketing assistant in St. Louis says her son was moved up informally when he was in first grade. He was finishing work faster than the other students and was “completely checked out,” Hubbard says. At first, the teachers gave him second-grade materials to keep him engaged, but they eventually moved him up unofficially to the second-grade classroom. The next year, his teachers asked Hubbard to make it official.

“The process was super easy,” she says. “I just wrote a letter to the principal saying something like, ‘Please officially move Jonas up to third grade. We think it’s where he should be.’ And they did it.”

Lupkowski-Shoplik says buy-in from school leadership is crucial. As gatekeepers, administrators often have the final say in whether a child skips a grade. If they are reluctant to move forward, it likely won’t happen. In those situations, Lupkowski-Shoplik says it can be helpful to find out what their biggest concerns are and then send them information that addresses those concerns. For example, if a principal is worried that grade skipping will hurt a child socially, parents or teachers could give them resources like the Acceleration Institute’s report A Nation Empowered, which includes success stories about accelerated students, as well as research showing the social impact of grade skipping is minimal.

Fulfill any remaining requirements

(Video) how to graduate high school EARLY...

Your school’s administrators might require your child to check certain boxes before getting final approval to skip a grade, such as sitting for exams or conducting a formal assessment. Because these requirements vary so widely from one school to the next, check with your school to confirm what (if any) the final steps might be.

When is the best time to skip grades?

Many children who skip a grade do so in elementary school, Schonberg says. That’s partially because there are fewer options for advanced students compared to secondary school, and the academic gap can look a lot bigger during the earlier grades.

“If I’m a second-grader doing algebra, that is really obvious,” Schonberg says.

But elementary age isn’t the only time a child might benefit from a whole-grade acceleration. Skipping a grade can take place at any point from early childhood to college. The Acceleration Institute lists several ways a child might skip a whole grade, including:

  • Whole-grade acceleration: Skipping any grade during the course of elementary, middle or high school.

  • Early admission to kindergarten: Entering kindergarten before turning the minimum age set by their school district or state.

  • Early admission to first grade: Skipping kindergarten and going right into first grade

  • Telescoping curriculum: Finishing a curriculum in a shorter-than-expected period of time, such as completing three years of middle school in just two years, or a full grade year in just a semester.

    (Video) When a kid thinks he’s to smart for his grade :

  • Early entrance into middle school, high school or college: Starting the next level of schooling a full year (or more) earlier than expected.

  • Early graduation from high school or college: Finishing high school or college earlier than expected.

Are there alternatives to skipping a grade?

If skipping a whole grade isn’t right for the student, there are other things parents or educators can do to meet their academic needs. According to the Acceleration Institute, some of those processes include:

  • Subject-matter acceleration: A student might go to a higher grade classroom to participate in activities surrounding a specific content area (e.g., reading or math). This is a fairly typical way to challenge students who are gifted in a particular area but might be on-track with their peers in others, Schonberg says.

  • Curriculum compacting: This entails condensing an area of schoolwork into a shorter period of time, such as a year’s worth of reading units into just a few months.

  • Continuous progress: This means giving a child more advanced work as soon as they master something, allowing them to progress faster (chronologically) than their peers.

  • Self-paced instruction: Similar to continuous progress, this allows a child to be completely in charge of their own pace. Lupkowski-Shoplik says parents and administrators should be careful with this option because “it can easily turn into handing a student a book and sticking [them] in the back of the room without interaction or supervision.” She says unless a child is highly motivated, it can result in the student not moving forward at an appropriate pace or with a good understanding of the material.

  • Distance learning or online learning courses: By enrolling in courses outside the normal schoolwork, typically online, the child can participate in an advanced program at home, in the evenings or as an alternative to traditional classes during school hours.

    (Video) Can you skip 8th grade and go to 9th?

  • Extracurricular programs: Participating in after-school or summer programs allows for more challenging work or a faster-paced learning environment.

Ramsey Hootman, a novelist in El Cerrito, California, says she considered having her son skip a grade but ran into obstacles in his school district. To challenge her son academically, she’s relied on gifted summer camps, where he is challenged in math and science, the areas he likes most, Hootman says.

When in doubt, consult the team

Whether you and your child decide to accelerate or pursue other options, remember that you are your child’s advocate — but you are also part of a team. Teachers and administrators can help you and your child navigate complicated policies and advise you on what they think would be the best fit for your child. If you aren’t sure what the next steps are, don’t be afraid to speak up.


What qualifies a student to skip a grade? ›

Grade skipping is usually done when a student is sufficiently advanced in all school subjects, so that they can move forward in all subjects or graduate, rather than in only one or two areas.

What are good reasons to skip a grade? ›

4 reasons why it's beneficial to skip a grade in school
  • Improved academic performance.
  • Greater options for high school course selection.
  • Higher rate of college acceptance.
  • Greater chance of earning scholarships.
Feb 20, 2023

How do you write a request to skip a grade? ›

A Written Request

Put your request for skipping a grade in writing to the school principal and keep a copy. A written request is more likely to be carefully addressed than an oral one. Identify the student and the grade level you wish the student to skip. State your reasons for making the request.

What is the best grade to skip? ›

Students most often skip only one grade. For example, you may choose for your child to skip first grade and go straight from kindergarten to second. It's also common for a child to skip second grade, moving from first into third. This single-year skipping keeps the student from feeling too distanced from their peers.

How many grade can you skip? ›

American schools may oppose grade skipping, or limit it to one or at the most two grades, regardless of the student's academic and social situation. There is no research that supports these limits, and the decision to limit grade skipping is mostly based on the intuition of school personnel.

Should I let my child skip a grade? ›

For many gifted children, grade acceleration is beneficial. Students are placed in classes where they are truly challenged and with peers more on their intellectual level. But, for some children, skipping a grade can be harmful to their social and emotional development.

How rare is it for a kid to skip a grade? ›

Research shows that about 1 percent of students grade-skip. Students can skip grades at any level, and they can even skip multiple grades. Grade-skipping has led to many concerns.

Who is the youngest high school graduate? ›

There is only one known person to ever finish high school before the age of nine. Michael Kearney holds the Guinness World Record for being the youngest person to complete secondary education at the age of six.

How smart do u have to be to skip a grade? ›

What does your IQ have to be to skip a grade? To advance successfully, some educators indicate that children should have a measured IQ in at least the 98th+ percentiles (IQ measurements vary depending on the test, but 125-130 is a minimum) and should already work at the average level of the desired grade placement.

How do you skip a class without being absent? ›

Here are some ideas you can use:
  1. Look antsy and say you have "bathroom problems."
  2. If you're female, say you are having a bad period or "female problems."
  3. Look upset and ask if you can talk to the school counselor.
  4. Deliberately leave a bag or other item in another room.

How do you skip a class in school without getting caught? ›

Avoiding Capture

Avoid highly populated areas or spaces that are out in the open. Utilize bathrooms. If you're not planning on skipping the entire day, consider hanging out in a restroom. As long as you don't draw attention to yourself, you should be able to stay there for a period or two without notice.

Can I skip 8th grade? ›

Is it possible to skip 8th grade and go to 9th grade? Yes, but skipping grades at this time is a terrible idea. It is better to be the top of your class throughout high school in order to keep the most doors open for college.

What is the lowest grade to fail? ›

You'll usually need to receive a letter grade between A and D to pass a class, often the numerical equivalent of 65 percent or higher. Receiving an F—which stands for “fail”—indicates that you did not pass the class.

What is the most failing grade? ›

In primary and secondary schools, a D is usually the lowest passing grade. However, there are some schools that consider a C the lowest passing grade, so the general standard is that anything below a 60% or 70% is failing, depending on the grading scale.

What is the least grade to pass? ›

At most schools, a D is the lowest passing grade. That means students who earn a D or higher receive credit for the course. However, some schools set special policies around D grades.

What grade can you get held back in? ›

In the United States, grade retention can be used in kindergarten through to twelfth grade; however, students in grades seven through twelve are usually only retained in the specific failed subject due to each subject having its own specific classroom rather than staying in one classroom with all subjects taught for ...

Can I skip a grade mid year? ›

Skipping a grade can take place at any point from early childhood to college. The Acceleration Institute lists several ways a child might skip a whole grade, including: Whole-grade acceleration: Skipping any grade during the course of elementary, middle or high school.

Is it possible to skip 9th grade? ›

If you're a top performer and can test out of all the ninth grade required classes or take them in some other fashion that is preapproved by the school district on paper, you MIGHT be able to skip the ninth grade.

How many kids skip a grade each year? ›

Research shows that about 1 percent of students grade-skip. Students can skip grades at any level, and they can even skip multiple grades. Grade-skipping has led to many concerns.

Is my first grader gifted? ›

Signs of Giftedness in Children Include:

an insatiable curiosity, as demonstrated by endless questions and inquiries. ability to comprehend material several grade levels above their age peers. surprising emotional depth and sensitivity at a young age. enthusiastic about unique interests and topics.

Do colleges care if you skipped a grade? ›

Do colleges care that you skipped a grade in high school? No, they don't. All they care is to see that you are ready for college. If you are on track to graduate high school a year earlier and you want to apply to colleges in the US, then you should submit your application in the fall before your planned graduation.

Do grades show how smart you are? ›

Your grades do not define your intellectual abilities. While good grades do look impressive on paper and can yield numerous benefits, they do not accurately represent one's intellectual abilities.

Why do kids skip school? ›

They might do this for a few reasons: They want to do something they couldn't otherwise do at school, they give in to peer pressure, or they simply don't want to sit through classes and do homework. Technology is an issue that we, as crisis counselors, have heard more and more about over the last few years.

Can my child move up a year in school? ›

It's Normal for Primary Classes Include Students with a Wide Range of Abilities. In the average primary classroom, there is usually an ability spread of around 5 years. Some children are working up to 2 years above what's expected in the national curriculum and others up to 2 years below the average.

How old is the oldest graduate? ›

Nola Ochs (née Hill) (November 22, 1911 – December 9, 2016) was an American woman, from Jetmore, Kansas who in 2007, at age 95, graduated from college and was certified by Guinness World Records as the oldest person in the world to become a college graduate, until Shigemi Hirata in 2016. Jetmore, Kansas, U.S.

Who is the oldest graduate? ›

In fact, in 2016, Japan's Shigemi Hirata set a Guinness world record by attaining a bachelor's of art from the Kyoto University of Art and Design at age 96. The prior holder was Nola Ochs, who was 95 when she received her diploma from Fort Hays State University in Kansas in 2007.

What are the hardest school years? ›

While each year of high school will have its own stressors, many will say junior year is the most challenging. Junior year can be the hardest for several reasons, but with the right prep and expectations, high school students can make the hardest year just a little easier.

Can I skip 11th grade? ›

Can a student skip 11th grade? Although skipping a grade is not a common practice, school administrators may be willing to allow this option for gifted students. You'll need to make sure that you are academically prepared for such a jump.

Can I just skip a class? ›

In general, it's not terrible to miss a single class — as long as you're not skipping the midterm or final. But skipping can become a problem if it's chronic. Missing multiple classes often means a lower grade. In classes that include attendance or participation in final grades, skipping means missing points.

How can I skip school without faking sick? ›

Tell your parents that the teacher won't be in that day.

Tell your parents that there's no homework assignment or new lesson for that class. Let your folks know that it would be better for you to stay at home and study previous lessons from earlier classes. Don't do this if your parents know your teacher personally.

How do you lie to skip school? ›

And now without a further ado, let's see the good excuses not to go to school for strict parents, starting with number 11:
  1. Left your homework/project at home. ...
  2. You had a bad toothache. ...
  3. Found a little animal, and tried to help it. ...
  4. Something bad happened, you were in tears so couldn't go to class.
Jan 21, 2021

Can you get kicked out of school for skipping class? ›

Discipline for 'Truant' Students

Students who are considered truant will be subject to discipline by the school district, which can include being barred from participating in sports or other activities, suspension, or even expulsion from the school.

Can you be 14 in the 8th grade? ›

The eighth grade is the ninth school year (not including pre-school), the second, third, fourth, or final year of middle school, or the second and/or final year of junior high school, and comes after 7th grade. Usually, students are 13-14 years old in this stage of education.

Can a homeschooled child skip a grade? ›

academic classifications. Homeschoolers don't need to skip or repeat grades: grade level is almost always more flexible with homeschooling than it is with public school. There may be some exceptions because of particular states' laws or because you are choosing to homeschool through a charter school.

Is 8th grade necessary? ›

8th grade is so important because students at that grade are learning more about themselves. It's the grade at which a child gains or loses confidence and motivation. Students who find success in 8th are more likely to experience more success in later grades.

Is 60% a fail? ›

Is a D Considered Passing? A letter grade of a D is technically considered passing because it not a failure. A D is any percentage between 60-69%, whereas a failure occurs below 60%.

Is C grade pass or fail? ›

C - this is a grade that rests right in the middle. C is anywhere between 70% and 79% D - this is still a passing grade, and it's between 59% and 69% F - this is a failing grade.

Is there such thing as an A ++ grade? ›

For example, an A/A- is numerically (95+91.25)/2=93.125, which is an A slightly lower than 95/A. A frequent complaint is that you "lose 5 points" for a 95=A. But I treat 100 as more like an A++. So the few students who achieved a perfect score in all 7 quizzes deserve 100.

Is a C+ failing? ›

A+, A, A- indicates excellent performance. B+, B, B- indicates good performance. C+, C, C- indicates satisfactory performance. D+, D, D- indicates less than satisfactory performance.

What GPA is failing a class? ›

At most colleges, a final grade below 60% qualifies as a failing grade. Depending on your college's GPA scale, that can mean anything below a 1.0 or 0.7 GPA counts as a failed class.

What GPA is a failing grade? ›

Essentially, the highest GPA you can earn is a 4.0, which indicates an A average in all of your classes. A 3.0 would indicate a B average, a 2.0 a C average, a 1.0 a D, and a 0.0 an F. This scale does not take the levels of your courses into account.

What is grade p? ›

Under such registration, the only final grades available to the student are P (pass) or F (fail). To receive the grade of P, the student must be doing work comparable to a C or better. If a course is taken under the Pass/Fail option, the grade of P or F will be permanently recorded.

Is 70 a failing grade? ›

The normal grading range is from 55 to 100. The number grades correspond to letter grades as reflected in the chart below. The minimum passing grade is 70 (C). Any grades between 55 and 69 (D and F) are considered failing grades for which unit credit is not earned.

Is 75 a fail grade? ›

This system uses a grade between 0.00 to 4.00 wherein 4.00 is the highest and 0.00 being a failing mark.
Grade point scale (4.00–1.00)
Grade Point EquivalenceEquivalenceDescription
0.00Below 70%Fail
4 more rows

What IQ do you need to skip a grade? ›

What does your IQ have to be to skip a grade? To advance successfully, some educators indicate that children should have a measured IQ in at least the 98th+ percentiles (IQ measurements vary depending on the test, but 125-130 is a minimum) and should already work at the average level of the desired grade placement.

Can you skip a grade in the beginning of the year? ›

Skipping a grade can take place at any point from early childhood to college. The Acceleration Institute lists several ways a child might skip a whole grade, including: Whole-grade acceleration: Skipping any grade during the course of elementary, middle or high school.

What are the requirements to skip a grade in Florida? ›

Public and private school students: Require approval from their school of record. Homeschool and FLVS Full Time students: Require approval from both parent and FLVS Instructional Leader for that grade level. FLVS follows an acceleration policy to ensure it is in the best interest of the student.

What are the requirements to skip a grade in Texas? ›

A student in grades 1-5 must be accelerated one grade if the student scores 80% or higher on each CBE including language arts, mathematics, science, and social studies for the grade level the student wishes to advance past.

What should be the IQ of a 13 year old? ›

IQ Test Averages for Kids
Age of ChildAverage IQ
12 years oldBetween 40 and 65
13 years oldBetween 40 and 65
14 years oldBetween 60 and 80
15 years oldBetween 70 and 90
14 more rows

What is the lowest IQ score? ›

A Breakdown of IQ Scores
  • 1 to 24: Profound mental disability.
  • 25 to 39: Severe mental disability.
  • 40 to 54: Moderate mental disability.
  • 55 to 69: Mild mental disability.
  • 70 to 84: Borderline mental disability.
  • 85 to 114: Average intelligence.
  • 115 to 129: Above average or bright.
  • 130 to 144: Moderately gifted.
Oct 19, 2022

How rare is an IQ of 140? ›

The first genius had an IQ 140 that equates to around one in every 250 persons.

Can I skip grade 8? ›

You will not be able to skip a grade without the approval of your parents (or legal guardian) and the school. Speak to your current teachers to find out if they think you're ready to move up.

What grade is a 13 year old in? ›

Grade 8

Can you fail 8th grade in Florida? ›

Promotion to High School: If an eighth grade student fails one (1) or more core courses, the student will be retained or will be administratively promoted upon passing the course(s) in the extended learning/course recovery program.

Can I skip 10th grade? ›

Although skipping a grade is not a common practice, school administrators may be willing to allow this option for gifted students. You'll need to make sure that you are academically prepared for such a jump. You will also need to consider social ramifications to going up a grade, which do impact your education.

Is skipping school a crime in Texas? ›

Children are required to attend school regularly from ages 6-18 in the State of Texas. Parents can receive a citation for Contributing to Non-attendance. If convicted, parents can be ordered to pay a fine of up to $500 for each of their child's unexcused absences.

Can I hold my child back a grade in Texas? ›

The Texas Legislature has given parents new rights to make this decision for the upcoming school year. The decision as to whether your child needs to repeat a grade, from Pre-K – 3rd grade in the upcoming school year is your decision to make as a parent.


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