It was with great sadness that Potential Plus UK heard of the passing of Professor Joan Freeman, July 2nd, 2023. Many of our members will have come into contact with her in her work as a Chartered Psychologist specialising in children with high learning potential. A pioneer in the field of gifted education, she was the Founding President of the European Council for High Ability (ECHA) and received both a Fellowship and a Lifetime Achievement award from the British Psychological Society, and a Lifetime Achievement Award from Mensa International.

Her research and advocacy have had a profound impact on the lives of children with high learning potential and their families around the world. Over 35 years she published 17 books, three major government reports, hundreds of academic and popular publications, and addressed conferences around the world.  She was a tireless advocate for gifted education, and her work helped to ensure that gifted children have the opportunities they need to reach their full potential. See her website for more information about her work.

Professor Freeman’s life was a testament to her commitment to helping gifted children succeed. She was a true champion of gifted education, and her work will continue to make a difference in the lives of gifted children for generations to come.

“This is my message for gifted people all over the world, that you must do what you feel to be right. If something really engages you and you want to discover more… do it yourself, for yourself… it must be the whole of yourself which goes into what you’re really going to make very much your own thing.”  This was very much the message of her own life. Hear the whole message below (

Professor Joan Freeman's Message to You (2011)