Our VAGTC committee comprises passionate advocates, educators, and researchers dedicated to gifted education. Their varied backgrounds, from award-winning teaching to specialized research, provide a unique and holistic approach to nurturing gifted potential. Explore their profiles to discover the wealth of expertise driving our efforts for gifted education in Victoria.

Mrs Kathy Harrison


Master of Education (ICTE), Diploma of Education, Bachelor of Science.

Kathy is a curriculum writer for the Victorian High Ability Program and teacher of VHAP Mathematics through Virtual School Victoria. For 15 years, she was Coordinator of gifted education in the Compass Centre and Exemplary Teacher at Methodist Ladies’ College. 2018 recipient of the Australian Mathematics Trust Teaching Award. A passionate gifted student advocate, enthusiastic about social justice and a community volunteer, Kathy hopes to inspire a sense that through our advocacy and action, we can make a difference in the world. She has expertise in developing and presenting VAGTC seminars on a wide range of topics, local and international conference papers, and provides coaching and individual consultancy.

Dr Susan Nikakis

Vice President

Dr Susan Nikakis currently works for Melbourne Archdiocese Catholic Schools (MACS) where she recommends improvements such as pedagogical changes to cater for the education of gifted students. She supervises Doctoral students at the University of Melbourne and is the current Vice President of the Victorian Association for Gifted and Talented Children (VAGTC). Susan has written and edited four books centred on the education of gifted students. She has delivered papers and keynote addresses at both international and national conferences. She believes that catering for the learning needs of the gifted is a matter of justice

Victoria Poulos

Co-Vice President

Victoria has years of experience teaching and home-schooling gifted children backed with a Masters in Gifted Education. She is a passionate advocator for gifted children and previously ran a support group for families of gifted children. Victoria is an Australian ambassador for the ‘Asia-Pacific Federation of Giftedness’, as well as the ‘World Council for Gifted and Talented Children’. She is currently the Gifted and Talented Leader at Crest Education and a researcher in Giftedness for the UNSW and loves learning all she can in how to better support gifted children.

Claire Reid


Claire has a BA, BEd, and an MA (Gifted).  She has a long-term interest in the area of Gifted Education, and several years of experience writing programs, running events and teaching in the area. During her master’s thesis in 2015, she researched the positive social and emotional “flow on effects” of grouping gifted students together for academic purposes. She has a particular interest in supporting the “whole child” when it comes to educating gifted students. More recently she has worked teaching gifted English students right across Victoria in the Victorian High Ability Program. She was involved in writing the program.


Amy Horneman

Amy Horneman is an experienced gifted education practitioner and is passionate about mentoring gifted and highly able students through their schooling years; developing students in leadership; collaborating with key stakeholders to implement schoolwide provisions for gifted and highly able students; and fostering positive and effective home-school partnerships. Amy currently coordinates the gifted program at the Plenty and University campuses of Ivanhoe Grammar School, and was recently the gifted program coordinator at Scotch College, Melbourne. She is an active committee member (consultant, seminar writer and presenter) of the Victorian Association for Gifted and Talented Children. She holds a Bachelor of Arts/Education (Secondary) in English Literature and German Language, and a Master of Arts (Applied Linguistics). She has completed postgraduate studies in educational leadership and gifted education.

Bernadette Sheedy

Bernadette has been the gifted and talented coordinator at two secondary schools in Melbourne: St Monica’s College in Epping and Mount Scopus Memorial College in Burwood. She is currently the High Ability Learning Specialist at Box Hill High School and Coordinator of their  Gifted Academic Potential Program (GAPP). Bernadette is a member of the Boroondara Gifted Network and has contributed articles to IDIOM, the journal for VATE. She has presented at conferences and seminars for the VAGTC, the AAEGT, VATE and she facilitates seminars for the Teacher Learning Network. Bernadette completed the Certificate of Gifted Education (COGE) through the University of New South Wales, a Masters of Educational Leadership at Australian Catholic University and  is currently completing her PhD with a focus on gifted education at Deakin University.

Laura Wilcox

Laura’s has experience in mentoring gifted and talented secondary students in both school and external opportunities. She would bring her perspectives on fulfilling student potential including encouraging collaboration between likeminded students. She believes in triangulating data to identify gifted students. She has a BA (hons) from the University of Melbourne, a Post Grad specialising in Gifted education from Monash University and a Diploma in Prof Communications from the UNE.

Ruth Evans

Qualifications: B.A. (Hons.) – Monash Uni., Grad. Dip. Ed. (Primary) – La Trobe Uni., M.Ed.(Inclusive & Special / Gifted Ed.) – Monash Uni., Postgrad. Cert. Arts (Editing & Communications) – Uni. of Melbourne.

Ruth has worked at Mentone Grammar as an Enrichment Programs Facilitator since 2021. She enjoys teaching primary school students and coaching them in competitions, such as the Maths Talent Quest and the Science Talent Search. Ruth previously worked for G.A.T.E.WAYS and ran a consultancy in gifted education. She has also worked as an Early Childhood Early Intervention Coordinator, helping families to access the NDIS. Ruth has a special interest in gifted education as her twin daughters are twice exceptional. She loves cooking, gardening and reading in her spare time

Melanie Mulligan

Melanie first of all and most importantly a mum of 2 beautiful boys.  She is not a  teacher or a psychologist but with a gifted child she is slowly learning the basics of both.  Melanie  wants to be able to give back to the community and most of all help shape the future for these beautiful but at times misunderstood children.

As part of the VAGTC Membership, You are eligible for Free Membership at the Australian Association for the Education of the Gifted and Talented (AAEGT). To Receive this, you agree to pass on to them my email address, contact number, and postal address.