Gifted Education

It is the Mission of the Isle of Wight School Division to offer educational programs characterized by high academics that prepare students to exceed state and national accreditation standards. In support of this mission the Isle of Wight County Schools believes learning experiences for gifted students are an essential part of its curriculum. Differentiated programs offer opportunities through which the students are challenged to develop their unique talents and abilities to the fullest.


  • Enhance the essential skills and knowledge of the core content at an appropriate level for gifted learners
  • Develop critical and divergent thinking
  • Develop oral and written skills
  • Develop research skills and methods
  • Promote an understanding for real world problems
  • Broaden problem-solving strategies
  • Develop social and emotional skills
  • Develop metacognitive skills that foster independent and self-directed learning


The Gifted Identification Process:

Parents, teachers, administrators, and students may refer students for testing to determine if a child needs gifted services. Referral forms are available from the gifted resource teachers, high school guidance counselors, or through the following link:Gifted Referral Form. Referrals are accepted at any time

Any student in K-12 who is referred will be tested within ninety school days upon receipt of parental permission to test. Areas that will be reviewed include:

  • Assessment of student products, performance, portfolio
  • Appropriate rating scales, checklists, and questionnaires
  • Individual or group aptitude test(s)
  • Individual or group achievement test(s)
  • Record of previous achievements such as awards, honors and grades (The Governor’s School Program)


Students identified as gifted by other school divisions before enrolling in an Isle of Wight County School will be reevaluated according to the criteria as outlined in the local gifted plan.


Local Plan for Gifted Education:

The Isle of Wight County Schools Gifted Program is governed by the Local Plan for Gifted Education. This five-year plan is a legal document approved by the Virginia Department of Education. The Local Plan specifies the identification process, the delivery of services, curriculum development, professional development, and parent/community involvement.

Grades K-8:

The model for instruction in the SEARCH program allows for each identified gifted student to receive a combination of pull-out and/or push-in instruction with age-level gifted peers.  As a result of weekly push-in lessons in scientific investigation, all students in grades 1 & 2 will benefit from exposure to gifted instruction.  Students in grades 3-5 will receive services through a math/stem integrated pull-out model. Students in grades 6-8 will receive pull-out services as part of a community service project based learning experience.  

Grades 9-12:

Identified gifted students in grades 9-12 are offered a myriad of gifted instructional opportunities including: honors, advanced placement, virtual and dual credit classes.

Students may apply to the Governor's School for Science and Technology or audition for the Governor's School for the Arts. Students may apply for state-sponsored summer residential gifted programs.

On February 8, 2021, IWCS held a Virtual Open House for the Governor's School for Science and Technology.  The presentation is available for viewing at  Specific questions about the Pre-Admission Series process or Admissions process should be directed to your school counselor, or Vikki Wismer, Director of GSST, at [email protected] .

Referral forms are available from the gifted resource teachers in K-8 and from the guidance counselor in the high schools. Parents, teachers, administrators and students may submit referrals at any time. In addition, advertisements are published in the local newspaper and school newsletters in early spring. All referrals should be returned to the Director of Curriculum and Instruction.


A division-level team will review information placed on the Gifted Education Profile to determine eligibility. Decisions will be made within ninety school days upon receipt of parental permission to test. All parties including the teacher, administrator, and gifted education coordinator will be notified in writing of the students’ status following the Identification/Placement Committee meeting. Parents will be notified by letter of the decision of the Identification/Placement Committee.

The Advisory Committee:

The Isle of Wight County Gifted Advisory Committee is comprised of administrators, teachers, parents, and community members. Committee members serve two-year terms in an advisory capacity and make recommendations to the Isle of Wight County School Board. The committee meets a minimum of three times a year.

The Division is committed to providing, through early and ongoing identification, a continuum of quality programs for the gifted from kindergarten through grade 12. For additional information please contact Instructional Coordinators Stacey Rodgers (elementary gifted) or Tiffany Truitt (secondary gifted) by email or phone at 757.357.4393.