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Grade Skipper

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In most school systems around the world, kids are grouped together by age from pre-school to graduation. However, there are some children (usually the Child Prodigy or Teen Genius) that, for various reasons, have skipped entire years of material. As a result, some characters will be a child in high school classes, or a (younger) teenager at a university. This is convenient for putting a Kid-Appeal Character into the main cast of a work set in school.

While missing a single year often just emphasizes the student's intelligence, widening the gap often causes social differences or difficulties for the characters. Often, the Grade Skipper is one of the most awkward characters on the show when they show up, especially if they're the protagonist. Some of them wander into Cloud Cuckoolander territory; most are also the Innocent Prodigy. If they're not into their early teens yet, expect them to be the Tagalong Kid that doesn't understand romance or dirty jokes.

Sometimes, one of the more intelligent characters might be skipped ahead as a one-episode plot. Generally, if this happens, either the skipped character will feel isolated enough to rejoin the main cast, or some improbable turn of events will completely undo the process.

Just like Held Back in School, there is a more extreme version where a character skips multiple years all at once; a 10-year-old being accepted to a top college. Or one character starts school several years ahead, ending up with an 8-year-old taking Chemistry in high school with 16-year-olds.

If parental meddling was the reason for their skipping, then it's likely that these characters go to a private school or an Elaborate University High. It's common for these characters to continue on to Ivy League schools or top colleges, but it's also fairly common for them to be rejected.

This can also take place in non-academic environments, as long as a young character is placed into a group of traditionally older people due to skill.

Though it may seem unusual, this is often Truth in Television, as this is a fairly common practice in some parts of the world. Fiction usually takes it to extremes, though: children skipped more than two grades ahead are extremely rare; and most of them will not be accepted instantly to a top college, even if they were skipped more than twice, because of the somewhat-arbitrary standards of admission to American universities. There's also the issues that can arise from being in a class of say 5th graders at a much younger age, particularly socially. In the real world, it's more typical for gifted kids to be placed in gifted programs or advanced classes, and in other countries, entire public-funded schools exist just for kids who prove gifted and/or more studious.

Subtrope of Improbable Age. Contrast reverse phenomenon Held Back in School and Compulsory School Age, when characters don't skip grades even though they logically should.


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     Anime & Manga 
  • Chiyo Mihama from Azumanga Daioh is a Child Prodigy who skipped ahead 5 grades to 10th grade, the first year of high school in Japan. Despite Chiyo's high intelligence and how she consistently scores the highest grades in her class, the series mines a lot of humor out of how a ten-year-old girl isn't well-suited for high school; she struggles to keep up in gym class and the sports festival since she's much younger and smaller than her peers, and anything to do with romance or sexuality flies right over her head.
  • Multiple characters in Hayate the Combat Butler.
  • This is used as a vital plot point in Kaguya-sama: Love Is War. Shirogane gets accepted into Stanford a year early, which puts pressure on both him and Kaguya to finally confess rather than waste any more time with their Duel of Seduction. The initial plan was for her to come with him (taking advantage of the fact that being elected twice entitles him to two letters of recommendation from the school board), but she's forced to withdraw her application for plot reasons and they settle for a Long-Distance Relationship until she can join him at the start of the following school year.
  • Neon Genesis Evangelion: Asuka is a college graduate at the age of 14. Even so, she has to go Back to School in Japan, which bores her out of her skull not just because she's already learned everything, but also because the curriculum is based on the official version of the facts surrounding the Second Impact, which she knows are a load of bull.
  • Extra exaggerated in Negima! Magister Negi Magi where the teacher is a ten-year-old boy teaching fourteen-year-old girls in middle school.
  • Mihari Oyama from ONIMAI: I'm Now Your Sister! should be in high school with her same-aged friend Kaede, but she's enough of a Teen Genius that she already goes to university.
  • Pani Poni Dash!: Rebecca "Becky" Miyamoto is an 11-year-old homeroom teacher who already graduated from MIT.
  • Clemont from Pokťmon the Series: XY is roughly the same age as Ash, yet is shown to have been a part of an Electric-type based university where all the other students were adults. Flashback show he was even younger when he started.
  • Recorder and Randsell is a discussed aversion. Atsumi Miyagawa, due to being much shorter and petite than average, looks like a grade-schooler that did this, despite her reminding her friend that Japan doesn't allow grade-skipping.
  • In Rosario + Vampire we have Yukari. She's 11 and skipped several grades. Despite this, she is obsessed with having a threesome with Moka and Tskune.
  • A non-academic example: Limone from Simoun is the youngest member of Chor Tempest (a squadron of teenage priestesses-turned-fighter pilots) by the virtue of having completed her flight training ahead of everyone else in her class.
  • Sonoko is a second-year middle schooler in the second season of Yuki Yuna is a Hero. At the end of Washio Sumi Is a Hero, she had to drop out of school in her final year of primary school, so she's been skipped ahead three years. Sonoko doesn't have any difficulty with the schooling because she's smart for her age.

     Asian Animation 
  • Flower Fairy: Xiaoai is introduced to An'an's 5th grade class in Season 3, and a number of students notice she looks rather young to be in their class. This is because she's a Child Prodigy and skipped several grades as a result.

     Comic Books 
  • The Huntress: Presumably the case with Helena Wayne, since it's mentioned that she graduated from Harvard Law at 21.
  • Power Pack: Katie Power is stated to have skipped several grades in the 2000 miniseries, which takes place a couple of years after the original series and depicts the team as teens. (Conversely, aside from the occasional bit of unusually-well-articulated-for-a-five-year-old dialogue, the original series never gave any impression of her being much, if at all, advanced for her age.)

     Fan Works 
  • It's mentioned in Fresh Blood that Stormer skipped a grade in secondary school. She performed fine grade-wise but her already poor social skills became even more stunted due to her peers being older kids.
  • Subverted in My Sister Leni. Rita tries to get her Brainy Baby daughter enrolled as a senior in high school, but she is declined because of developmental reasons. Lisa has social difficulties that can't be developed properly if she went to school amongst teenagers.
  • Velma in now that i can see your face (i can stand up to anything.) skipped ahead a grade in middle school to begin high school one year early. As a result, virtually everyone at Coolsville High has heard of her.
  • A minor character in the Sonic the Hedgehog fic The Promise is a Teen Genius who began university at fourteen. At age eighteen he's since graduated and works on ARK as a scientist.
  • In Speed and Purpose, Teen Genius Porker Lewis is seventeen and has already been at university for three years.

     Films — Animated 
  • Hiro from Big Hero 6 has already finished high school by age 14. In the film, he gets applied to college.
  • The Iron Giant: During a caffeine-fueled rant, Hogarth complains about having to skip a grade and how the other kids bully him because they think he has a swelled head because of it.
    Hogarth Hughes: [talking very fast, on caffeine] So she moved me up a grade 'cause I wasn't fitting in, so now I'm even more not fitting in. I was getting good grades, you know, like all A's. So my mom says, "You need stimulation," and I go, "No, I'm stimulated enough right now."
    Dean McCoppin: That's for sure.
    Hogarth Hughes: So she says, "Uh-uh, you don't have a challenge, you need a challenge." So now I'm challenged, alright. I'm challenged to hold on to my lunch money! Because of all the big mooses who wanna pound me, 'cause they think I'm a shrimpy dork who thinks he's smarter than them. But I don't think I'm smarter, I just do the stupid homework! If everyone else just did the stupid homework, they could move up a grade and get pounded, too. Is there any more coffee?
  • Implied in The Peanuts Movie: for pragmatism, all of the main characters are in the same class, except for Sally. This would probably be the easiest explanation for how Linus is in the same grade as his older sister, Lucy.

     Films — Live-Action 
  • In Almost Famous, William's mom lied about his age — not just to the school but to him — to get him ahead in school.
  • Mentioned offhandedly in Ginger Snaps to explain while Brigitte and Ginger are in the same grade, despite being barely fifteen and sixteen respectively; Brigitte skipped a grade ahead.
  • In the 1983 Gary Coleman Made-for-TV Movie The Kid With The 200 IQ, Coleman plays a 12-year-old who goes to college studying astronomy and has a hard time fitting in.
  • Kim Possible:
    • Like in the cartoon, Wade earned a college degree in spite of being a kid.
    • Invoked as a cover-up for child!Drakken during The Stinger when he starts attending Middleton High.
  • Marvel Cinematic Universe: Tony Stark graduated summa cum laude from MIT when he was 17.note  He already finished college where most are only about to finish high school.
  • Invoked in Problem Child 2; Junior is skipped ahead to the sixth grade so that Principal Peabody will be rid of him in a year instead of three years.
  • Must have happened to Mitch in Real Genius, since he's in college at only 15 years old (when most US students are at about grade 9 or 10 and don't usually start college until they're 18, after completing grade 12).
  • In Revenge of the Nerds, one of the protagonists is a 10-year-old Child Prodigy who got to skip the remainder of grade school, middle school, and high school to go right to college and pursue an engineering degree.
  • X-Men Film Series: Henry "Hank" McCoy, a.k.a. Beast, graduated from Harvard at 15. Most are just high school freshmen or sophomores at that age.
  • Trina from 40 Carats is only seventeen, but she's already done with school.

  • The Babysitters Club:
    • Charlotte, one of the charges of the titular club, is skipped from 2nd-grade to 3rd-grade early on in the series, but unlike most examples, it was done just as much for social reasons as it was for academic reasons. Prior to being grade-skipped, Charlotte got bullied a lot by her 2nd-grade classmates for being so much smarter than the rest of them—but once she was skipped to 3rd-grade and put into a class with kids who were much closer to her (intellectually-speaking), Charlotte didn't stand out as much she did when she was still in the 2nd-grade. As a result, Charlotte has a much easier time fitting in and making new friends.
    • Kristy's little sister, Karen, also skipped a grade early on in the series, but it happened offscreen. The Little Sister series shows at one point that this means she isn't as caught up on 2nd grade math, and cheats off a friend to get good scores on quizzes — while Cheaters Never Prosper, her teacher does understand the struggle of the schoolwork having surpassed her current ability level.
  • In Cynthia Voigtís Bad Girls series, Hadrian Klenk has skipped kindergarten and second grade.
  • Cheaper by the Dozen has a chapter titled "Skipping Through School".
  • In "Clubland Heroes", the Child Prodigy Richard Cleaver is an extreme case: he graduated from Oxford with a double first at the age of ten.
  • Arby the Black and Nerdy kid from Michael Crichton's The Lost World (1995) is supposed to be in 5th grade but was bumped up to 7th.
  • This happens in the epilogue of Matilda: Matilda's Psychic Powers disappear once she gets put in an advanced class, and are explained as a reaction of her brain having very little to work with.
  • Ponyboy from The Outsiders is 14, but he skipped a grade so he's already in high school. When they meet, Cherry is confused about how a kid as smart as him could be a Greaser Delinquent, which offends Ponyboy.
  • In Louis Sachar's novel Someday Angeline, eight-year-old "Angeline was put in the sixth grade. They put her there, because, well, they had to put her somewhere and they didnít know where else to put her."
  • In The Unicorn Club (a spin-off of Sweet Valley High), Grace Oliver has skipped eighth grade.
  • Fireheart and Graystripe of Warrior Cats, in a manner of speaking. Apprentices usually become warriors in the order they were apprenticed, and an apprenticeship is stated to normally last 6 moons. Fireheart and Graystripe were made warriors before the older Dustpelt and Sandstorm, and if you carefully keep track of every mention of time passing in the book, they were only apprentices for a little over two moons (making them only 7-8 moons old instead of the standard 12-13 moons).
  • Cesar Ruiz from There's More Than One Way Home is a year younger than everyone else in fourth grade. He could have skipped another grade, too, but his mother doesn't want him to miss his friends.
  • Ernest from Eye of a Fly skipped a grade in elementary school and was in a program that let him finish junior high in two years instead of three, allowing him to start college two years early.
  • Emmy from Language Arts graduated from high school summa cum laude at age sixteen.
  • Quentin, Alice and Penny of The Magicians, are all found to be academic high-flyers not long after being enrolled at Brakebills - no easy task, considering the student body is composed almost entirely of Teen Geniuses - and are examined to see if they have the aptitude to skip the first year. Quentin and Alice both pass with flying colours, but personal problems leave Penny too distracted to deal with the exam.
  • The Scholomance:
    • Defied. While it's possible to graduate early, simply by being in the senior dorms when graduation starts, no one dares as senior year is when your powers begin to bloom and you get your best classes, along with time to practice with the school's obstacle courses to help you survive your run through the Graduation Hall on Graduation Day. Not to mention, being fully-trained is also important to survive life outside the school, which is why kids are sent to the Scholomance in the first place.
    • Played straight in The Last Graduate. As the plan to decrease the mal population in order to "protect" the world's wizarding children involves the school's destruction, that means everyone, not just the seniors, is required to graduate that year. The younger students are even allowed to go first, because they're the least likely to survive the incoming incursion of mals in case things go wrong.
  • Nathaniel from Mindblind graduated high school at eleven and college at fourteen.

     Live-Action TV 
  • Abbott Elementary: The episode "Class Transfer" concerns second grader Courtney, who is switched from Melissa's class to Janine's in the hopes of putting a stop to her troublemaking behavior. Janine has an even harder time than Melissa does, with Courtney back-sassing them and disrupting the class at every turn. However, as she looks closer at the situation, Janine notices that Courtney's grades are stellar, and she's clearly incredibly intelligent for her age. She and Melissa come to the conclusion that Courtney is acting out largely because she's bored, being far ahead of her classmates and finding the lessons repetitive and overly simple. She ends up being bumped up to third grade, with the hopes that she'll be challenged and intellectually stimulated enough to be kept busy and out of trouble.
  • This is the main premise of the Disney Channel-series, A.N.T. Farm—the "ANT" in "A.N.T. Farm" stands for "Advanced Natural Talents," a special program for gifted middle school-aged children to start high school (or skip to a specific grade in high school) at a younger-than-average age. In the case of the show's lead character, Chyna Parks (a music prodigy), she ends up starting high school at the age of 11, which is the age when most kids are just starting middle school. Chyna must have skipped middle school altogethernote  to go straight to high school.
  • The Big Bang Theory:
    • In the episode "The Jerusalem Duality", a 15-year-old physicist who defected from North Korea joins the research staff at the university and turns out to be smarter than Sheldon in the field.
    • It's been mentioned numerous times on the show that Sheldon was also much younger than traditional age when he went to college. Apparently he did not go to High School at all - a university in Texas took a strong interest in the boy genius and offered to take him straight away, age eleven-twelve. Sheldon himself remarks that he found the obligatory Spring Break to be somewhat tedious and was glad he got it out of the way - aged thirteen. He also completed his first doctorate at the age of 16. Young Sheldon would retcon the above by showing that Sheldon did go to high age nine, and was in the same classes as his older brother, Georgie. He would start college at age eleven.
  • In an episode of Chopped where all the contestants were college students, one of the contestants was a girl from the University of Washington in Seattle—at the time, the girl was 18-years-old but was already a senior in college. After Ted and the judges express confusion upon hearing this, the claims that she skipped a few grades and started college when she was only 15-years-old.note 
  • In an episode of Cory in the House, a new girl who transfers to Cory's school in Washington DC and strikes up a relationship with his friend, Newt, turns out to be a Child Prodigy who has technically already finished school all the way up through graduating medical school—she explains that the main reason she wanted to enroll was so she could experience going to school with kids her own age. And on kind of a lesser note, even though she has valid MD, she's legally not allowed to perform surgery (or any other kind of medical procedures) on anyone until after she turns 18.
  • Though not shown, Reid on Criminal Minds is said to have skipped a few grades (he started high school when he was only 12).
  • Degrassi:
    • Liberty supposedly skipped a grade, but this was seemingly retconned out in later seasons.
    • Maya Matlin is a 13-year-old high school freshman when first introduced, implying that she's skipped a grade.
  • Doogie Howser, M.D. attained his medical license at age 14, having breezed through Princeton University at age 10.
  • In Eureka this is apparently pretty commonplace seeing as it's a town full of geniuses. More than one of Zoe's high school classmates appear to be younger than 12.
  • When Paris and Rory make it to college in Gilmore Girls, one of their roommates is sixteen. On her next birthday. Whereas Paris and Rory, both brilliant, driven students in a special advanced high school, were admitted at the typical age of eighteen. You'd think the show would be going somewhere with this, but she only has a handful of lines that tend to play up her naivety and never gets to demonstrate any particular degree of intelligence.
  • In Hannah Montana, Rico skips a few grades and ends up starting high school at the same time as Miley and her two BFFs.
  • The Inbetweeners has Suzie, who, as we discover after Neil picks her as his date on a charity Blind Date event, is doing her A-Levels four years early.
  • Just Legal features a lawyer who, because of grade-skipping, couldn't get a job in any big firm because they believed he wouldn't be taken seriously in court. He ends up with a washed-up veteran attorney simply because no one else would take either of them. For bonus points, he's called "Skip" because he skipped so many grades.
  • In Legends of Tomorrow, Martin Stein reveals to Ray Palmer that he skipped 10th and 11th grade.
  • One episode of Lizzie McGuire had the Title Character's friend, Gordo, being skipped from middle to high school. He returns to his old school by the end of the episode due to missing his friends.
  • Mr. Young: By the time Adam Young was old enough to be a High School student, he was a teacher.
  • MythBusters Jr: Team member Cannan is 12 years old, and a sophomore in college.
  • The Nanny: When Niles learned Valerie's age, Fran tried to prevent him from using this to figure out hers by claiming she had skipped a few grades. When it didn't work, Fran said Valerie was Held Back in School. That Niles could believe.
  • Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide had Cookie being considered to skip ahead to high school. However, he wanted to go to 8th grade alongside his friends, so he started purposely failing his classes so he wouldn't have to skip. When the guidance counselor confronts him about it, he tells her the truth and she tells him all he had to do was tell her he didn't want to skip.
  • Charlie and his brother Don on NUMB3RS graduated high school on the same day, despite the fact that Don is five years older than Charlie. This one is particularly egregious because, even apart from the extreme unlikelihood of a child skipping five grades, Charlie was only a Child Prodigy in math and there's no indication he was advanced at all in other subjects, so while he would have had no trouble keeping up with high school math and might have been able to handle some of the sciences (particularly math-based science like physics), that grade level would have put him way out of his depth in the rest of his classes, but the series only ever talks about him having social, not academic, problems from being in high school at such a young age. (Although this could explain why his spelling is so bad.)
  • In Power Rangers Turbo, twelve-year-old Justin is discovered to be a child prodigy, enabling him to enter high school just as his fellow rangers graduate.
  • On Scorpion, Toby and Sylvester both skipped a few grades when they were in school. Zig-zagged with boy genius, Ralph, who has not skipped any grades yet, but is taking college-level courses at Caltech at the same time he's going to junior high.
  • The main premise of the series Smart Guy is that the lead character, a ten-year-old named T.J. Henderson (we never find out what the "T" or the "J" stand for), is discovered to be a Child Prodigy and is skipped 4th-grade (the second-to-last year of elementary school) to 10th-grade (the second year of high school). He not only ends up at the same school as his two older siblings—a brother named Marcus and a sister named Tasha—but he ends up being put in the same grade as his brother, Marcus. A lot of the show is T.J. dealing the issues that come with being so much younger than the rest of the kids at his school.

  • The Twilight Zone (1985): In "A Message from Charity", Peter Wood tells Charity Payne that he skipped two grades when he was younger.
  • In the second season of Welcome Freshmen, this was the justification used as to why Merv was Put on a Bus - he cleared all of high school in a single year and went to college, with the resulting joke that he was still stuck being a freshman (just in college this time).
  • Janice in Head of the Class is in the gifted class in high school at the age of 11.

     Newspaper Comics 


     Video Games 
  • Out of The ClueFinders, it's stated in Leslie's bio that she's in the 6th grade, but is only 10 because she skipped a grade. Out of the other ClueFinders, Owen is 11, Joni and Santiago are both 12 and in the 7th grade. None of the games show the characters in school, so it's really only a minor detail.

     Visual Novels 
  • It's not said what grades she skipped, but Makise Kurisu from Steins;Gate has a Master's degree at age 18.

     Web Original 
  • In the prequel comic to Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog, we find out that Dr. Horrible was in sixth grade when he was eight, implying a skip of 2-3 grades. He ends up being picked on by a more normally-aged bully for both being smart and for still playing with action figures.
  • In Precocious, Bud's older sister Casey likes to rub in his face that she skipped a grade, and claims that because his (elite) school has a combined fourth and fifth grade class it's like he was held back.
  • Ruby Rose in RWBY gets to attend Beacon Academy two years early due to the fact that Professor Ozpin is impressed with Ruby's weapon skills and most likely because she has super rare superpowers, but he'd never tell her that. However, she quickly becomes a panicked wreck when she goes to attend due to the fact that she feels way out of her league, being a fifteen-year-old girl attending a school usually geared for young adults. It's later mentioned that there's a combat test for entering the academy; while most people train for years to be ready, you're allowed to take the test without any prior schooling. Ruby clearly comes in under that loophole, as does Blake (though Blake waited until she was the appropriate age).

     Western Animation 
  • One episode of The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron, Boy Genius had the Title Character choosing to go straight to college after feeling unchallenged by his elementary school's curriculum. However, once Jimmy gets to college, he's no longer the smartest kid around (as all his new schoolmates are just as smart as he is) and he ends up being even more hated by his college classmates than he was by his grade school classmates.
  • Anais from The Amazing World of Gumball is only four but is so intelligent that she's already a grade above her older brother (by eight years), Gumball. There are a handful of episodes that tackle what this means for her in regards to friends. Darwin's also in Gumball's class despite being two years younger, but that may not be because he's skipped grades (he's not a particularly good student). He may have just started early. Though in The Cringe he isn't seen with Gumball in flashbacks to elementary school. Regardless, it is still fairly impressive that he managed to keep up children who are 2 years more developed than him in class. Even if he pales in comparison to his sister.
  • Angela Anaconda: In one episode, thanks to Mrs. Brinks giving her higher grades than she deserves, Nanette skips a grade. She eventually returns because she didn't fit in with her new classmates.
  • In the pilot episode of Ben 10: Omniverse, Gwen Tennyson's only 16 and is already graduating high school and going off to college.
  • Big Hero 6: The Series:
  • In Captain Sturdy: Back in Action, Cyber Master explains to Captain Sturdy that Cerebro lacks social skills because his high intellect caused him to skip a few grades.
  • Dexter's Laboratory:
    • In one of the later episodes, Dexter was allowed to go off to college despite still being elementary school-aged—unlike Jimmy Neutron, Dexter was warmly accepted by his new schoolmates. The conflict came in them having a philosophy of "Party now, study later," while Dexter wanted to get a head start on his new schoolwork. His roommate points out that Dexter will likely burn himself out from all the heavy-duty studying and should party to get it out of his system...which ultimately turns out to be 100% true. By the end of the semester, a crazed/burnt-out Dexter trying to get all his schoolmates (who were now studying) to party ends up getting Dexter expelled and sent back to his old school.
    • In an earlier episode, Dexter was considered for grade-skipping but needed to improve his PE-grades. He cheated his way into victory, which ended up making him Dee Dee's classmate.
  • Skeeter from Doug was determined intelligent enough in one episode to be taken out of school and put in college. However, he ended up returning to Bluffington Elementary of his own volition because he didn't like his new classmates, saying they just spent all their time out of class smoking.
  • Elena of Avalor, Elena's younger sister, Isabel, is only around 11 or 12-years-old, but is smart enough to eventually start taking college-level classes.
  • The Fairly OddParents!: A.J. got into college in Fairy Idol and said he'd be back in two weeks.
  • In Hey Arnold!, Phoebe moves up to a higher grade for an episode, but the older students are kind of jerks, and she eventually realizes she'd rather go back to the 4th grade with her friends.
  • Inside Jobís Reagan Ridley jumped up so many grades after the fourth that she ended up graduating from MIT at 13 years old, and as much as a genius as she is itís definitely messed with her ability to relate to peers. In the season one finale, it turns out she tried to turn down skipping fourth grade so she could stay with Orrin Carthwait, her first real friend. Her father Rand wiped her memories of Orrin so she wouldnít be distracted from her academic pursuits, which he claims was for her own good but was really so he could use Reagan to advance his own agenda.
  • Jorel's Brother: Implied in Season 1. The main child characters, Jorel's Brother and Lara, are both only eight years old, yet their classroom consisted mostly of teenage-looking kids, and in some episodes, the subjects were way too advanced for elementary schoolers, but in others, it did seem like a regular third grade class. This was never brought up or noticed in any of the episodes, and in Season 2, all the teenager characters in the class were retconned to being little kids, and the fact they are on elementary school is addressed occasionally.
  • Kim Possible: Wade's five years younger than Kim and Ron, and according to an episode from the first season, he had already finished school up through getting a bachelor's degree by the time he was at least 10. Kim's brothers, Jim and Tim, are around the same age as Wade and in the final season (when Kim and her friends are seniors in high school), they start high school at the age of 12.
  • The Loud House: The four-year-old Lisa Loud in the earliest episodes had already finished school up through getting a PhD. Later episodes show her attending kindergarten with the rest of her agemates. In the episode "Making the Grade", Lisa goes to fifth grade, putting her in the same class as Lincoln. She ultimately goes back to kindergarten due to preferring nap time.
  • Gus from The Owl House skipped two grades due to his proficiency in illusion magic, meaning heís twelve and in high school. In the first season he looks it, but his (actor mandated) sudden puberty has him at least visually fitting in more with his peers in season two.
  • Downplayed in Recess which had an episode where Gretchen, who is a Child Prodigy, was set to be evaluated to go to a college-level elementary school meant for gifted children — given the kinds of ingenious things she'd done over the course of the series, it isn't implausible in context. A Surprisingly Realistic Outcome occurs as the thought of leaving the only friends she's ever had and everything she's ever known behind reduces her to a mixture of panic and defeated depression, remembering how lonely she used to be due to her intelligence. TJ comes up with one of his usual schemes to keep this from happening.
  • Rocket Power:
    • Sam's the same age as Otto and Twister but he's in the same grade as Otto's sister Regina (or "Reggie"), who's stated as being at least two years older than Otto.
    • Oliver van Rossum takes it even further. He's in high school and even helps his biology teacher. However, in later appearances, he is attending the same school as the main characters.
  • The Simpsons:
    • Lisa Simpson. She's certainly very smart for her age, but only "brilliant" by comparison with Springfield's stupid children and horrible school system. When she gets the opportunity to study at Waverly Hills, an elementary school with actual standards and quality, Lisa finds that she's only a B student, rather than the straight As she got at Springfield Elementary, which traumatizes her. In another episode, she gets to skip to the third grade early but finds it difficult (made more embarrassing for her because Bart was demoted a grade and found it easy).
      Principal Skinner: Lisa, you have a choice: you may continue to be challenged in third grade or return to second grade and be merely a big fish in a small pond.
    • "Lisa's Rival": The titular character is a girl who's a year younger than Lisa and is in the same class as her because of grade-skipping.
    • "Future-Drama": It seems Lisa will recover from the trauma of being in the same grade as Bart. She'll end up skipping two grades, making her graduate at the same time as her older brother.
  • South Park: In the twelfth episode of the fourth season, Trapper Keeper, Kyle's brother, Ike, is admitted into Kindergarten two years early due to his high intelligence (for his age).
  • Sam from Totally Spies! almost became this in "Spies in Space" — the BHHS-principal informed her that her grades were the best in the history of the school and that they had literally run out of things to teach her. The principal offered to have Sam graduate from school as soon as the upcoming week. While initially tempted to graduate early and start college (especially since she wouldn't have to deal with Mandy anymore), Sam ultimately decides that she'd rather finish out high school with her friends.
  • While the exact grade level he's in is never stated, Rafael from Transformers: Prime goes to the Jasper High School with his friends Jack and Miko...while being only 12 (and a quarter) years old.
  • We Bare Bears: Chloe Park, a 10-year-old Korean-American girl who already attends college.
  • In the first season of Young Justice, Dick Grayson's starting 9th-grade at the age of 13, meaning that he skipped ahead by at least one year at some point.

     Real Life 
  • Daniel Liu attended college-level organic chemistry classes at the age of 11.
  • Elijah Muhammad made history by being the youngest Black student to attend an Oklahoma college.