There are approximately 1500 independent senior schools in the UK, covering the age ranges 11 or 13 to 18.
It tends to be the heritage boarding schools which start at 13. Senior schools can be day only, flexi boarding, weekly boarding and full boarding only. The majority (but not all) will have a 6th form catering for 16+ age groups.
Although most senior schools have a sixth form, they are not to be confused with private sixth form colleges which cater just for the older ages, albeit some of those are now catering for under 16s. (see our companion site www.sixth-form.com for sixth form colleges).
In this section we cover aspects of choosing a senior school for your child.
A. Best Senior School League Tables – transfer to this section to view the top senior schools tables listed separately by all senior schools (day & boarding) plus also boys, girls and co-educational boarding. These measure schools by A level and Pre-U performance. For schools which do not meet the 100 threshold, their grades (but not a ranking) may be stated in the Find a school section if we obtained them. If the senior school offers the International Baccalaureate Diploma it is in a separate league table. Scottish schools are also listed separately.
B. Find a senior school – if you are looking at the top senior school league tables, then just clicking your cursor on a school name will take you to the school’s details. If you want to find a school by area then follow this link and enter “senior school 11 to 18” in the search engine.
C. Entrance procedures – The usual entry points to senior schools are 11, 13 or 16. However some schools may permit entry at 12 and 14 as well, subject to spaces. It is rare to get in at ages 15 or 17 because that is half way through the GCSE or sixth form curriculum. Most senior schools are selective i.e. there are admissions tests - see the separate section on Entrance Procedures.
If you have a problem we can often help – phone +44 (0) 1622 813870.
D. Expert assistance in finding a senior school – click here to go to the enquiry form to enter your requirements.
E. eGuide on Senior Schools - we have written an eGuide on how to choose an Independent |Senior School, including factors other than academic performance. We also have a 30 point questionnaire to help you evaluate your shortlist, which is given to our bespoke advice clients for no extra charge.