The neurodevelopmental outcome and school performance of 50 appropriate for gestational age (AGA) and 33 small for gestational age (SGA) very-low-birth-weight (VLBW) infants, compared to a control group (41 Term infants) were assessed at 8 years of age. The incidence of major handicaps among AGA and SGA/VLBW infants respectively, was 16% and 6%. No major handicap was found in the control group. The incidence of neurodevelopmental abnormalities (NDA) among AGA's (40%) and SGA's (57.6%) compared with the control group (31.7%) was found to be significantly higher. School failure occurred more frequently among VLBW infants (22.9%) and was related in children with NDA--and more particularly among AGA's--to the presence of language disorders or associated NDA. Evaluation of the consequences of NDA and school problems for later academic and professional achievement now requires further follow-up studies.