Requirements to skip grade levels in school differ from state to state, but they often include IQ testing and an evaluation of the student's maturity level compared with older students. Independent educational programs, or IEPs, are required for students who skip grades, and the student is monitored closely by both parents and teachers. Often, the skipping student is assigned a classroom buddy as a way to monitor her peers' perception of the way she functions within the classroom.
While skipping a grade offers a student academic advantages and relief from the boredom of a curriculum she has already outgrown, it has its downsides. Students skipped ahead often cannot compete athletically with their older peers. Additionally, their social life may be challenged, as the student is younger than her new peers and may not fit in with them. They may be more inclined to forgo friendships with older children and concentrate on preserving friendships with those in their prior grade.
Many families find the social hindrances of skipping a grade a small price to pay for their child's continued development. The majority of students who skip a grade begin to flourish academically as they are presented more complex concepts that hold their interest.