Frequently Asked Questions

These are some questions that we are commonly asked. If you have a different question, or would like to know more about any of the following, please don’t hesitate to contact us on or 0800 769 243. 


I think my child is gifted. How can I have them assessed?

The New Zealand Centre for Gifted Education does not assess specifically for giftedness, however, there are a number of psychologists or other professionals around New Zealand who do. They usually conduct a series of tests, analyse the results then present a report including their analysis and recommendations for the child. You can find a list of psychologists or other professionals with a special interest and experience in working with gifted children on the New Zealand Association for Gifted Children website.


My child has been identified as gifted. How can I get them the help that they need?

Gifted children have a range of different needs including cognitive, social and emotional. Some of these needs are best met at home, some are best met at school and some are best met outside of home and school, or a combination of all three.

In relation to educational provisions, the New Zealand Ministry of Education recommends a continuum of provision for gifted learners, including provisions within the child’s regular classroom and special programmes, both within and outside of school. If you haven’t already, it’s a good idea to begin by talking to your child’s teacher about their needs and your concerns. There is a lot that a school can do towards catering for a gifted child.

If you feel that your child needs more than what your school (or yourself if you’re a home-schooling parent) can provide, you may look at an outside programme. Please refer to Our Services [link] to find out about the programmes that we offer. You can find information about other programmes here on the New Zealand Association for Gifted Children website or on the TKI website.

If your child has social and emotional needs that are proving challenging, one of the following avenues may be helpful:

  • Look into options for programmes where your child can meet with like-minded gifted peers – see Our Services or find an Explorers Club near you. (Sometimes when a gifted child’s cognitive needs are not being met, this can be demonstrated through concerning social and emotional behaviours.)
  • Join our Resource Base, a comprehensive library with a wide range of books on social and emotional needs.
  • Check out the Discussion Forum on the New Zealand Association for Gifted Children website.
  • Consider speaking to a psychologist about your child’s behaviours and needs. A list of psychologists or other professionals with a special interest in or experienced in dealing with gifted children can be found on the New Zealand Association for Gifted Children website
  • Call us on 0800 769 243(excludes mobiles) or (04) 576 9243 to chat through the issue further.


I know I need to talk to my child’s teacher because I don’t think their needs are being met, but I’m worried about their teacher’s reaction. How should I go about this?

In New Zealand, our gifted children spend most of their learning time in a regular classroom, so it’s very important that what goes on in that classroom is right for your child. In general, teachers are hard-working people with your child’s best interests at heart. They also have a huge job to do … meeting the diverse needs of all of the children in their class!

If you have concerns, do speak with your child’s teacher. Contrary to popular belief, many parents have positive experiences in talking and working with their child’s teacher to better meet their needs. The following links provide sound advice and ideas for how to get the most out of a meeting with a teacher about concerns related to giftedness.

TKI: Gifted Online – for Parents and Whanau This is an online New Zealand resource with a lot of sound, localised support for parents. You may find some of the downloadable resources from this page quite useful.

About Parenting: Tips for Talking with Your Gifted Child's Teacher  This page is slightly American in flavour, but still offers a number of sound tips for New Zealand parents to successfully talk with their child’s teacher.

Uniquely Gifted: Ten Tips for Talking to Teachers  If your child is older and able to articulate their concerns in a constructive way, it may be more fruitful for them to talk to their teacher themselves. On this page, two gifted education experts, Jim Delisle and Judy Galbraith provide tips for how best to go about this.


What programmes does the New Zealand Centre for Gifted Education (NZCGE) offer for gifted learners?


What is the NZCGE curriculum?

The NZCGE Curriculum was developed here in NZ by a team of our most experienced specialist educators and draws on NZ and international research, together with recommendations for best practice in gifted education. Our curriculum development process was guided by Associate Professor Tracy Riley, who is an internationally recognised expert in gifted education and consults with the Ministry of Education on gifted education. The process included consultation with personnel at both the Ministry of Education and the NZ Council for Educational Research. Our curriculum has strong links to, and supports the development of, the Key Competencies in the NZ Curriculum.

All NZCGE programmes deliver the NZCGE Curriculum, which focuses on six learning strands: content strands of conceptual development, talent development and personal development, and process strands developing students’ skills in research, complex thinking and communication. Progress in the learning strands is demonstrated in two ways: increasing breadth, depth, sophistication and complexity in students’ understanding and products of learning, and increasing self-directedness in the pursuit and application of their learning.

As with all curricula, our curriculum is open to development and ever evolving.


Where are NZCGE programmes offered in classrooms?

MindPlus classes are located in: 

  • Auckland (Verran Primary School, Birkdale (North Shore), Bruce McLaren Intermediate, Henderson (West Auckland), Edendale Primary School, Sandringham (Central), Riverina Primary School, Pakuranga (Auckland East)
  • Tauranga (Gate Pa School)
  • Rotorua (Kaitao Intermediate School)
  • Manawatu (WhatBox)
  • Lower Hutt (Rata Street School)
  • Wellington (Cardinal McKeefry School, Wilton and Evans Bay Intermediate, Kilbirnie)
  • Lincoln (Lincoln Primary School)
  • Christchurch (Riccarton High School)
  • Mid-Canterbury  (Ashburton Christian School)
  • Wakatipu (KingsView School)

Small Poppies has classes at 3 locations in Auckland and 3 locations in Christchurch 

Gifted Online has no physical classes, meaning even those students in the most remote areas can access our programmes (subject to internet connection) 


How do I enrol my child in MindPlus? 

MindPlus has three part online referral process which consists of:

  1. completion of a Parent Questionnaire 
  2. completion of a Teacher Questionnaire 
  3. participation by the child in an entry selection workshop.

Information from these three sources is taken into account to determine if what MindPlus offers will be of benefit to the child.

Other forms to be completed at the time of the referral are: 

  • Student Referral Form 
  • Principal Approval Form 

All forms can be obtained by email


Are there places currently available for the MindPlus programme?

We have a limited number of MindPlus classes and a limited number of spaces in each class. However, classes are not always full and we do have wait lists. Your child can enroll in Gifted Online while waiting for a place in the MindPlus programme. Please contact us on or 0800 769 243 to find out about the availability for programme access in your area.


Does my child’s school have to give permission for them to attend MindPlus/Gifted Online or Small Poppies? 

Yes, the child is considered legally still at school, so permission is required for them to leave school and attend an NZCGE programme, unless it is offered outside of school hours.


Does my child’s school have to pay for my child to attend MindPlus?

Schools who send/allow students to attend MindPlus are called contributing schools. All contributing schools are invited to opt into a tier level of support from NZCGE to better enable them to grow their own capacity to deliver provisions within their own setting. Tier 1 is a koha level with minimal support, through to tier 4 which is $1000 and increased support. More information on this can be found in the annual Information Pack.


Where can I go if I do want an educational assessment for my child?

ASSESSMENTS AND COUNSELLING SERVICES FOR GIFTED CHILDREN. The following assessors and psychologists are able to carry out educational assessments for giftedness.   Inclusion on this list does not imply NZCGE’s endorsement.

Auckland Area

North Shore, Rodney, Whangaparaoa

  • Indigo Assessment and Counselling Services

Registered Psychologists:

Lynn Berresford
Emrie De Vaal
Heather Vickery

Anne Dawson

Elaine West

Stewart D’Silva

Marta Turner

Dr Judy Selvaraj

Prakash Grover  (South Auckland)

09 444 685

Central Auckland

027 767 7437 (text only)

South Auckland

  • Prakash Grover

Registered Psychologist

09 273 3577

021 293 6758

  • Chris Herbert

Registered NZCER Level C and SPELD Assessor
09 834 7356

021 0261 6300

Counselling Services


  • Joanne Blackett (West Auckland)

021 646 112


  • Dr Anna Martin (East Auckland)

021 248 3414

  • Dr Melanie (Mel) Wong (East Auckland and Skype or Zoom)


Greater Waikato Region

  • Caitlin Easter

Registered Clinical Psychologist

The Psychology Centre

07 846 6907   

  • Tanya Breen

Registered Clinical Psychologist

07 849 4240

027 356 1600

  • Joanne Weller

Registered NZCER Level C and SPELD Assessor
09 834 7356

07 859 2685

  • Rachel Rachmani

Registered Educational Psychologist

Te Awamutu

027 439 0527  

  • Laura Taylor

Registered Psychologist

022 500 2115

  • Jana Stewart

Registered Psychologist

022 500 2116

  • Laurette Longmann

Registered Clinical Psychologist

(07) 838 3696


  • Shirley Taylor
    Registered Educational Psychologist
    021 177 1010

  • Lynne Goodbrand (Kapiti Coast)

Registered Clinical Psychologist

Kapiti Psychological Associates

021 0299 3427

  • Dr Rachel Irwin

Registered Clinical Psychologist

027 472 2960

  • Sally Britton (Lower Hutt)

Registered NZCER Level C and SPELD Assessor

 04 5694687

  • Judy McCorkindale

Registered NZCER Level C and SPELD Assessor

04 388 7847


  • Justine Wilson
    Registered Psychologist, Counsellor

03 420 1212

  • Sushila Deo
    Registered Psychologist

021 133 9269

  • Prue Urlwin
    Registered Psychologist

03 366 8055

  • Rebecca Dowling

Registered Psychologist

03 281 8397

  • Katrina Evans

Registered NZCER Level C and SPELD Assessor

03 352 7108

Counsellors, paediatricians, psychiatrists recommended by parents of gifted children:


Katie Tuck, Paediatrician

Unit 4, 71 Hingaia Road, Karaka, Auckland 2580

09 267 3335

Jamie Speeden, Paediatric Psychiatrist

Totally Psyched:

51 Hurstmere Road, Takapuna

Auckland, New Zealand

09 320 3086

Updated March 2020


How do I enrol my child in Gifted Online?

Gifted Online consists of two online options:

  1. GO MindPlus             
  2. GO Badges (History, Science, Maths, Design, Writing, Creative Thinkers- more badges will be added over the year)

 To enrol please contact us on 0800 769 243 or email us for a referral pack which consists of: 


GO MindPlus:

  • completion of a Parent Questionnaire 
  • completion of a Teacher Questionnaire 

These two parts will help determine if what Gifted Online offers will be of benefit to the child. 

  • Student Referral Form 
  • Principal Support Form 

GO Badges:

Entry to GO Badges is by self-selection and the following forms are required:

  • Student Referral Form 
  • Principal Support Form 

Contact the NZCGE office for appropriate forms, email


How do I enrol my child on Small Poppies?

Entry to Small Poppies consists of: 

  • completion of a Student Referral Form 
  • completion of a Parent Questionnaire 
  • completion of a Principal Approval Form if the child attends school 
  • attendance at a Poppy Peek, which is an observational session with the Small Poppies teacher. 

All forms can be obtained by email


What will it cost to send my child to an NZCGE programme?

A series of Terms and Conditions are shared with families before their children start the programme. These Terms and Conditions are reviewed each year. Listed below are Costs as at January 2020


All programmes  
Referral Administration Fee $30.00 inc GST
MindPlus Entry Identification Workshop Free
Weekly Attendance Fee $75.00 inc GST
Voluntary Donation $15.00 per term (no GST and is tax deductable)
Gifted Online  
Weekly Attendance Fee $35.00 inc GST - GO MindPlus
Badge Fee (Based on 8 lessons, self paced timing) $150.00 inc GST - GO Badge
Small Poppies  
Poppy Peek Free
Weekly Attendance Fee $40.00 inc GST


NZCGE also has a Financial Assistance programme for MindPlus, providing partial subsidies when funding allows. This form will only be required if your child obtains a class placement at the conclusion of the entry selection workshop. Those who wish to receive financial assistance will be required to complete a separate application and acceptance form.


NZCGE Privacy Statement


What we collect:

We collect personal information from you, including: your name and contact information, your child or student's name, information about them as a learner, their medical information relevant to our setting, their strengths and needs.

Why we collect information:

We collect your personal information in order to provide appropriately for students, and to be able to contact whānau as needed.

Who sees this information and why:

Besides our staff, we share this information with selected staff at your child's school, as needed, in order to give feedback about their progress and achievement and to improve our provisions for learners. We will ask your permission to share any information beyond this.

Providing some information is optional:

If you choose not to provide relevant information about your child or student, we may find it more difficult to provide a programme that meets their needs.

How we keep your information safe:

We keep your information safe by storing it in a restricted access way. We keep your information for the length of time your child/student is with us, and for seven years after this time, at which point we securely destroy it by securely erasing all information.

Your information:

You have the right to ask for a copy of any personal information we hold about you, and to ask for it to be corrected if you think it is wrong. If you’d like to ask for a copy of your information, or to have it corrected, please contact us at or 04 5769 243.


Further questions
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