Gifted and Academically Talented Education


Good curriculum and instruction for all learners is a cornerstone of all teaching and learning at St Peters. All students need content that is relevant, meaningful and purposeful in classrooms that are respectful and responsive to their needs.


Gifted and Academically Talented (GATE) students require identification, understanding and appropriate educational provisions to develop their talents and achieve at a level appropriate to their potential. St Peters Lutheran College is committed to providing a supportive, inclusive, and engaging environment for all our students, where 'every child learns every day'.

The definition of Gifted and Talented that is most widely used is that of Françoys Gagné (2003). His definition reflects the distinction between potential and performance:

Gifted students are those whose potential is distinctly above average in one or more of the following domains: intellectual, creative, social and physical, to a degree that places an individual at least among the top 10% of age peers.

Talented students are those whose skills are distinctly above average in one or more areas of human performance, to a degree that places an individual at least among the top 10% of age peers, who are or have been active in that field or fields.

However, we also recognise the work of Joseph Renzulli who focuses on the development of high potential into high performance. He advocates that successful students require creativity, task commitment and the ability to manage themselves and work with others to be successful. At St Peters, we strive to develop our gifted students into empathetic leaders who work to use their talents to create a better world.

This aligns with the St Peters Plus Ultra 2025 vision for an education that seeks to form able, learned, wise, honourable and well-educated young people who respond to challenges and make a difference in the world by leading and serving the communities in which they live.


Our Years 2 – 10 enrichment groupings are designed to provide GATE students with unique and exciting opportunities to explore new ideas, develop new skills and build deeper understandings of the world around them. Our classes are designed to supplement and enhance the curriculum taught in mainstream classrooms, providing all students with a diverse range of challenging learning experiences that will help them to grow both academically and personally.

Students are selected by the GATE team, using a range of evaluation tools and in consultation with classroom teachers and curriculum leaders. Evaluation tools may include standardised assessments, off-level testing, academic competition results and school-based subject assessment results. At times, individual psychometric testing may be involved. Students will be invited to enrol in these classes, and do not have the opportunity to self-nominate.

Primary Years

In the Primary Years, it is envisaged that most students will have their learning needs met by the depth and complexity offered by the IB Primary Years Program (PYP). Within the PYP inquiry-based framework, most students will be appropriately extended through quality differentiation within the classroom. Some students may be withdrawn to work with the Primary Years GATE Teacher for English and Maths enrichment.

In Year 2, the Primary Years GATE Teacher works in in-class rotations to observe and get to know students beyond the data. Students new to the Primary Years are given some time to settle and show their abilities before being considered for enrichment groups.

Enrichment groups are selected by the GATE Teacher and year level teaching team each semester, and students are chosen based on the teaching/learning focus of the group. Membership of these groups is fluid and students regularly move in and out of the groups.

Year 7

The Year 7 Bonhoeffer Program was established in 2019 to best meet the needs of students with high academic potential who are transitioning into high school. Students are grouped into one Year 7 form class and participate in all subjects (except languages) together. However, at times, Bonhoeffer class teachers may choose to team teach with a mainstream class teacher to allow for wider differentiation of learning as well as to widen the social contacts between classes.

In recognition of the unique opportunity for reinvention that beginning high school poses, entry into the program is intentionally based on academic potential, as opposed to performance or achievement. By focusing on potential, it is anticipated that students who are underachieving (as a result of, for example, perfectionism, motivation or twice-exceptionality) will be given a chance to shine along with those who are already exhibiting exceptional academic performance.

Please note: Students must participate in the Academic Scholarship testing the previous February to be considered for the Bonhoeffer class.

Years 8 – 10 Evidence-based Model

Subject-specific enrichment classes in key learning areas offer opportunities for advanced learners to explore subjects in greater depth, pursue their interests and passions and develop skills and knowledge beyond the standard curriculum. Enrichment classes are led by teachers with a passion for their subject coupled with a desire to nurture discipline-specific knowledge and skills in like-minded students.

Enrichment classes are offered in:

  • Year 8: English, SOSE, Science, Mathematics
  • Year 9: English, Science, Mathematics
  • Year 10: English, Science, Mathematics

Euler - Telescoped Mathematics Class Years 8 – 10

The Euler Program is an accelerated maths enrichment program aimed at talented mathematicians who have been identified as benefiting from a faster pace of delivery and greater depth of content. In this telescoped program, students complete three years of the mathematics curriculum (Years 8–10) in the first two years and a specialised enrichment program in Year 10.

To read more about Euler Program vs Enrichment Classes, click here.

Years 11 & 12

Students self-select subjects and levels of study based on their knowledge of their own abilities as well as their understanding of prerequisites for future study.

Enrichment classes may not suit every student at every stage of their learning journey. Membership in all enrichment classes is regularly reviewed, and students move in and out based on performance and perceived student needs. Students in enrichment classes must have a high level of maturity and commitment and be capable of independent learning. It is recognised that student performance and focus may fluctuate during adolescence, or families may decide that their GATE child is best suited to the mainstream class environment. Many of our students find that they are appropriately extended through quality differentiation within the classroom. Students new to the College are generally placed into mainstream classes to give them time to settle in and display their abilities within the St Peters context.


St Peters regularly participates in cocurricular experiences and competitions including:

  • Future Problem Solving
  • Ethics Olympiad
  • DaVinci Decathlon
  • State and Australasian Philosothons
  • ICAS Competitions – English, Mathematics, Science
  • Australasian Problem-Solving Mathematical Olympiads competition
  • Australian Intermediate Mathematics Olympiad
  • Readers Cup
  • Various writing competitions
  • STEM competitions
  • Robotics competitions
  • Minecraft competitions
  • eSports competitions
  • Coding challenges