EU programme for education, training, youth and sport



National Associations


NACE specialises in working with schools and teachers to improve learning for able learners.

Founded in 1983, NACE is recognised nationally and internationally as the UK’s leading independent education organisation in the field of education for able learners.

Through its valuable network of members NACE provides high quality guidance, support and training, enabling teachers to attain the best from able learners in the everyday classroom, whilst enabling all learners to flourish and achieve.

NACE National Office

The Core Business Centre 

Milton Hill 



OX13 6AB

Tel: 01235 828280   Fax: 01235 828281

Twitter: @naceuk   For all general enquiries: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


The Sutton Trust is an educational charity in the United Kingdom which aims to improve social mobilityand address educational disadvantage.The charity was set up by educational philanthropist Sir Peter Lampl in 1997 and since then has undertaken over 150 research studies and funded a wide range of practical programmes to support young people in early years, primary and secondary school, and in accessing higher education and the professions.

The Sutton Trust

9th Floor

Millbank Tower

21-24 Millbank



Research and Analysis

OFSTED SCHOOL SURVEY REPORTS: The most able students: examining failure to achieve

Ofsted survey report investigating why many of the most able students from non-selective schools fail to achieve their potential.

The most able students (full report)  PDF, 466KB, 35 pages

The most able students (report summary) PDF, 169KB, 5 pages

This Ofsted survey report investigates why many of the brightest students who go to non-selective maintained secondary schools or academies fail to achieve their potential compared with students who attend many of our grammar schools and independent schools. It also looks at how these students make decisions about university applications and what support they need to be successful.

The findings are presented in two parts. The first considers published evidence of the achievement and progress of the most able students in the state non-selective secondary school sector. The second part summarises the evidence from the field visits to 41 non-selective secondary schools. During these visits the following aspects were evaluated: achievementleadershiptransition between schoolsthe quality of teaching, learning and assessment, the curriculum, extension activities, support and guidance  Published: 2013

EVIDENCE FOR POLICY AND PRACTICE INFORMATION AND CO-ORDINATING CENTRE  (EPPI-Centre)                                                                           A systematic review of interventions aimed at improving the educational achievement of pupils identifed as gifted and talented

The Evidence for Policy and Practice Information and Co-ordinating Centre (EPPI-Centre) is part of the Social Science Research Unit at the UCL Institute of Education. 

The main aim of this review was to focus on studies that investigated effective outcomes from methods of classroom-based teaching and practice for gifted and talented pupils. This review was guided by the Classroom Quality Standards; progressive and focused statements of quality provision for gifted and talented pupils, creating a self-assessment framework. The aim of this review was to inform future policy decisions and guide subsequent provision and research. Even though the review’s primary concern was to inform English policy makers, worldwide studies were included if they were written in the English language. This allowed the review team to consider research fndings from a wider pool. The review included studies involving pupils in primary, middle, secondary and special needs schools, aged from 5 to 16. The review was carried out in two stages. The frst stage analysed a wide pool of studies using a systematic review map, and the second stage took on a narrower focus and analysed the data using an in-depth narrative thematic approach.  Published 2008

DEPARTMENT FOR CHILDREN SCHOOLS AND FAMILIES (DCSF) Identifying gifted and talented learners – getting started

This guidance booklet starts from the principle that there is no single perfect instrument for identification – institutions are advised to use a ‘best fit’ model that draws on a range of evidence including qualitative and quantitative elements; argues that identification and provision are inseparable, because identification includes spotting potential through participation in learning opportunities; and envisages a continuous cyclical process of identification and review rather than a one-off process Revised May 2008

THE SUTTON TRUST: Educating the Highly Able Published 2012

How schools support our most able students is of vital interest to us all. Ensuring that the brightest pupils fulfil their potential goes straight to the heart of social mobility, of basic fairness and economic efficiency. Yet, as this report outlines, the policy and provision for the highly able is littered by a hotch-potch of abandoned initiatives and unclear priorities. Teachers complain that the highly able have become a neglected group.

The authors argue convincingly that the term „gifted and talented‟ that has underpinned many schemes is a flawed description. Better to talk about the „highly able‟ in our schools – and what support they need.

THE SUTTON TRUST: Missing Talent Published 2015

Every year there are high achievers at primary school, pupils scoring in the top 10% nationally in their Key Stage 2 (KS2) tests, yet who five years later receive a set of GCSE results that place them outside the top 25% of pupils. There are about 7,000 such pupils each year, 15% of all those we term as highly able. We call these pupils our ‘missing talent’ and in this research brief we explore who they are, their routes of study at secondary school and how we might best raise their aspirations and achievements by the age of 16.

Influential Authors


Mindset: How You Can Fulfill Your Potential. Constable & RobinsonLimited Published 2012

 An authoritative practical guide on how to achieve the mindset for success, both personal and professional.

Carol S. Dweck (born October 17, 1946) is the Lewis and Virginia Eaton Professor of Psychology at Stanford University.[1] She graduated from Barnard College in 1967 and earned a Ph.D. from Yale University in 1972. She taught at Columbia University, Harvard University, and the University of Illinois before joining the Stanford faculty in 2004. Dweck has primary research interests in motivation, personality, and development. She teaches courses in Personality and Social Development as well as Motivation. Her key contribution to social psychology relates to implicit theories of intelligence, per her 2006 book Mindset: The New Psychology of Success. 

Barry Hymer

Growth Mindset Pocketbook Management Pocketbooks Published 2014

Create motivated learners who embrace challenge, learn from setbacks and know that they can 'grow' their intelligence.

Gifted and Talented Pocketbook Management Pocketbooks Published 2009

Cutting edge approaches to a gifted education where all pupils are stretched, challenged and engaged.

The Routledge International Companion to Gifted Education (Routledge Internatl Companion) Published 2008

A guide to the new ideas and controversies that are informing gifted education discussion and policy-making around the world. It highlights strategies to support giftedness in children, providing ideas that work and weeding out those that don't. It is suitable for students and researchers alike.

Gifts, Talents and Education: A Living Theory Approach Wiley- Blackwell   Published 2008

The book explains recent key developments in multimedia representations of social and emotional aspects of learning.  These permit the multi–sensory gifts and talents of individual learners to be recognised and developed within a process that enhances the emotionally literate space of enquiring classrooms.

Barry Hymer is Professor of Psychology in Education at the University of Cumbria. He served on the NACE Committee and gave evidence to the House of Commons Inquiry into the needs of able children. He has a background in teaching and educational psychology and foreground in learning – connecting research literature to what he sees in classrooms with outstanding teachers.