Admissions - Sydenham High School

Prep School Admissions

  • Application and assessment process

    Assessments for 4+ (Reception entry)

    Once you have applied for a place at our Prep School, your daughter will be invited to an Assessment Day on Thursday 30 November or Thursday 4 January.

    Your daughter will be asked to take part in a playgroup session with the class teachers lasting approximately one hour. We will assess numeracy skills, early phonics awareness, handwriting, conversation skills and interaction with other pupils. We also request a report from your daughter’s nursery, and meet with parents to learn more about your daughter and her interests.

    We select girls who we believe have the aptitude and potential to benefit from a Sydenham High School education.

     

    Offers

    The results of the 4+ assessment process will be sent out via email on Friday 5 January 2024.

    The deadline for response to all 4+ offers is Friday 26 January 2024. Please note that places are secured by paying the deposit of £1250 and completing the requisite paperwork. Early completion is advised.

     

    Assessments for 7+ (Year 3 entry)

    7+ applicants will be invited to an Assessment Day on either Monday 4 or Tuesday 5 December 2023.

    Applicants are required to sit three forty-minute assessment papers: maths, reading and writing, followed by a team-building and collaboration exercise. Please note: we do not assess verbal or non-verbal reasoning. Offers will be made to applicants whose performance in the assessments indicates an ability to cope proficiently with the level, challenge and pace of our Prep School curriculum.

    Offers

    The results of the 7+ assessment process will be sent out via email week commencing Monday 11 December 2023.

    The deadline for response to all 7+ offers is Friday 9 January 2024. Please note that places are secured by paying the deposit of £1250 and completing the requisite paperwork. Early completion is advised.

  • Key dates for 2024

    Tuesday 31 October, 1.45-3pm7+ (Year 3) Entry Prep School Taster DayRegister here
    Wednesday 1 November, 9-10am4+ (Reception) Entry Prep School Taster DayRegister here
    Wednesday 8 November, 9.30-10.30amPrep School Open Morning

    Starting school focus

    Register here
    Thursday 30 November & Thursday 4 January4+ Assessments
    Monday 4 & Tuesday 5 December7+ Assessments
    Friday 17 November4+ Application deadlineApply online here  *
    Friday 24 November7+ Application deadlineApply online here  *
    Monday 11 December7+ Offers made
    Friday 5 January4+ Offers made
    Friday 26 January 4+ Acceptance deadline
    Friday 9 February7+ Acceptance deadline

    * Please note that there is an application fee of £100 for UK students & £125 for overseas students. This fee applies to all stages.

Senior School Admissions

  • Key dates for 2024

    Thursday 28 September, 9.30-11amSenior School Open Morning
    Thursday 2 NovemberYear 7 Senior School Taster Day (for current Year 6 pupils)Register your daughter here
    Monday 6 NovemberYear 7 Senior School Taster Day (for current Year 6 pupils)Register your daughter here
    Wednesday 9 November, 9.30-11amSenior School Open MorningRegister now
    Dates TBCYear 7 Senior School Taster Day (for current Year 5 pupils)Register here
    Monday 13 November11+ Application deadline 

    including scholarship & bursary applications

    Apply online here  *
    Friday 1 DecemberSports Scholarship AssessmentFind out more here
    Wednesday 6 DecemberArt Scholarship deadlineFind out more here
    Thursday 7 DecemberMusic Scholarship deadlineFind out more here
    Friday 8 DecemberDrama Scholarship deadlineFind out more here
    Thursday 4 January 202411+ (Year 7) entrance exam
    Saturday 13 January 202411+ (Year 7) entrance interviews
    Monday 5 February11+ offers sent out
    Monday 4 March11+ acceptance deadline

    * Please note that there is an application fee of £100 for UK students & £125 for overseas students. This fee applies to all stages.

  • Assessment process 11+

    Applicants to our Senior School  for Year 7 entry will be assessed on their ability in Mathematics, English and Verbal Reasoning.

    Sample papers are available for Maths and English.

     

    We will also interview every applicant, which is our chance to get to know a little more about your daughter.

    • We will ask your daughter to speak about something she is proud of and would like to talk about. Interviews last around 15 minutes.
    • In addition, we request a reference from all candidates’ current schools.
    • Pupils from our Prep School follow the same entry procedure as external applicants.

    Offers

    Please note that places are secured by paying the deposit of £1250 and completing the requisite paperwork. Early completion is advised.

    Scholarships & Bursaries

    Please note that bursary applications are via an online site which is separate to the application form. You should tick that you wish to apply for a bursary in your application and then submit all requested financial documents through the Bursary+ site.

    Scholarship applications are made within the online application form and evidence (including references) should be emailed to . Full details of requirements can be found  on our Scholarships & Bursaries page.

  • Assessment process for interim & occasional places

    Applicants to our Senior School for interim places will be assessed on their ability in Mathematics, English and Science.

     

    We will also interview every applicant, which is our chance to get to know a little more about your daughter.

    • Interviews last around 15 minutes.
    • In addition, we request a reference from all candidates’ current schools.

    Offers

    Please note that places are secured by paying the deposit of £1250 and completing the requisite paperwork. Early completion is advised.

  • Frequently Asked Questions

    This page contains our most frequently asked questions about Senior School and will be updated to be as useful and relevant as possible. Our Admissions team are also available via .

     

    How many applications do you have for year 7 places?

    We have around 4 applications per place and we have 4 classes of 24. We operate a waiting list and places do become available over the summer through relocations and other moves so please do stay in touch with our Registrar if you are not allocated a place initially.

     

    How difficult will the entry exams will be for 11+; do we need a tutor?

    No, you do not need a tutor. We firmly believe in assessing what your daughter knows at the point of entry and do not encourage tutors as it may foster a reliance on extra support. If tutors are required to pass an entrance exam, arguably that is not the right school for your daughter – mitigating circumstances aside.

     

    Is it the same entrance exam for all GDST schools?

    No, we all have our own procedures. We are not using the ISEB – we only test in Maths, English and verbal reasoning.

     

    Is there any financial assistance available?

    We offer means-tested bursaries up to 100% and scholarships which have a smaller financial award of around 10%. More details can be found here. Please note that we are not able to offer these to every applicant who applies for one.

     

    What is the mix of state and independent school feeder schools?

    In year 7 we have a mix of girls from both maintained and independent schools, with the average over the last five years being a 67:33 split. Around 85% of our Prep School pupils transition to Senior School.

     

    Is there a school transport service?

    We are well connected by TfL rail and bus routes and we encourage walking or cycling to school wherever possible. However, we serve pupils from a wide catchment area and in order to offer parents the most flexibility we can, we currently operate 6 minibus routes. The exact routes are coordinated each summer for the following year, depending on the needs of the pupils and to minimise travel time. Full details of our minibus service can be found here.

     

    How important is pupil wellbeing?

    We are incredibly aware of the mental health of all pupils and know that this is not a static thing. We are small enough to know every girl and see when there are shifts in mood and behaviour. Tutors and co-tutors are matched carefully to year groups and pupils know that there is always someone to talk to, be that their tutor, Head of Year, Deputy Head Pastoral, a School Counsellor or a member of the Young Leadership Team or School Council. We are part of the Positive Project, where pupils are empowered to become their best selves. Positive psychology is embedded throughout the school. We are a Girls on Board school, and pupils are taught about the complexities and dynamics of girl friendships and strategies to resolve any issues themselves, empowering girls to make their own solutions where possible. We firmly believe that it is okay not to be okay and the importance of kindness to oneself as well as others.

     

    What is your mobile phone policy?

    Mobile phones are allowed but must be switched off and out of sight during the school day. During lockdown, the use of devices increased but school is a safe space and with social media concerns and general level of distraction, we are clear that phones used during the day will be confiscated.

     

    How long is the school day?

    Girls are welcome on site from 7.30am but the school day begins at 8.25am and ends at 3.45pm, with clubs running from 4-5pm (except Homework Club which runs until 5.25pm). Currently we have staggered finish times to avoid clusters of pupils, with year 7 exiting the main gate at 3.50pm.

     

    What are your results like?

    We have a twin tracked approach of academic rigour and pastoral excellence to ensure that our pupils achieve their potential.Their results are, therefore, excellent. We are so proud of our year 11 and 13s, especially those who were disrupted by the pandemic, and our results at both GCSE and A Level are on an upward trajectory. Further details and statistics can be found here: GCSE Results and A Level Results & Destinations 

     

    What are the expectations for uniform? 

    First impressions count and we have regulations for Prep, Senior and Sixth which we expect pupils to adhere to. We have recently updated the requirements to bring Prep and Senior School inline and reduce the need to purchase different items for the transition to year 7. Full details can be found in the Uniform section.

Sixth Form Admissions

  • Key dates for 2024

    • The deadline for applications for 2024 entry is Friday 3 November 2023.
    • Scholarship & Bursary Examination:  Friday 10 November 2023
    • Offers made: Friday 1 December 2023
    • Deadline for acceptance: Friday 5 January 2024
    Applications are made online here.

     

    The application fee for students new to the school is £100 (£125 for overseas students).

    Scholarships & Bursaries

     

    Students who are new to the school must also register before they can complete a scholarship application form (via the online application form).

    We offer scholarships in

    • Art
    • Drama
    • Music
    • Rowing
    • Sport

    The deadline for  scholarship applications for 2024 entry is Friday 3 November 2023.

    • The scholarship examination is not subject-specific and requires no special preparation.
    • All applicants for Sixth Form Scholarships will also be interviewed by the Head of Sixth Form.
    • Applicants are able to enter for an Academic, Art, Drama, Music, Sport or Rowing scholarship.
    • All applicants will sit the scholarship assessment on 10 November.

     

    In addition, subject scholarship applicants will be interviewed by the Head of Department and also must complete the following:

    • Art – Portfolio, including current GCSE sketchbook
    • Drama – Performance of a monologue, and share a written theatre review
    • Music – Solo performance – accompaniment available if required, plus portfolio of enrichment, collaborative and performance experience
    • Rowing – Ergo session plus details of racing experience
    • Sport – Video footage representing current performance level, current achievements in their sport e.g. academy selection, and references from coaches.

    Candidates who wish to apply for a bursary in Sixth Form must indicate this on the application form and will be sent a link by our Registrar in late September in order to submit the bursary application by the deadline of Friday 3 November.

  • Sixth Form entry criteria

    Entry criteria

    • Sixth Form candidates should expect to achieve a minimum of seven GCSE passes at grades 9 to 5 in the summer before entry, including a minimum of a grade 5 in both English Language and Mathematics.
    • A minimum of a grade 6 is required for any subject to be studied at A Level. Some subjects, specifically Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Maths, will require a grade 7 at GCSE.
    • To study Physics or Chemistry, a grade 7 in Maths will also be required.
    • We will also consider equivalent international qualifications.
    Full details of entry requirements are in the Sixth Form Guide here.

     

    Admission is on the basis of an interview with the Head or the Head of Sixth Form and a good reference (with predicted GCSE grades) from the candidate’s current school. Occasionally, we may ask a girl to sit a short test in a particular subject or subjects.

     

    Assessments

    External candidates will be invited for a scholarship exam on Friday 10 November.

International students

  • Applying from overseas

    We have a number of international pupils in the school and we welcome applications from around the world.

     

    We hold a Tier 4 Sponsor License and may obtain study visas for the right candidates. Please indicate that a visa would be required at the time of application. Students making a visa application will be required to pay a term’s fees upon acceptance of a place.

     

    International applicants should provide as much detail as possible regarding courses completed and examinations to date. The application process will mirror that of domestic students but in instances where an international applicant is unable to attend in person we may be able to make arrangements for examinations to be taken elsewhere.

     

    If you are visiting the UK, please contact us to arrange a visit to the school at a mutually convenient time.

    The application fee for students residing overseas is £125. If you wish to apply, please click on the link at the top of the page.

    To discuss any of the above with us, please email   or call the Admissions department on 020 8557 7004.