Admissions Policy


    Name of Policy

    Policy on Admissions (including EYFS)

    ISI Regulation
    3: Welfare, Health and Safety of Pupils

    Reviewed by

    GDST Council

    SMT LinkJane Lunnon

    Date of school review:

    7th September  2019

    Date of next school review

    7th September  2020

    POLICY ON ADMISSIONS

    This policy applies to Junior School, Senior School and EYFS

    The WHS Admissions Policy reflects the GDST Admissions Policy and should be read in conjunction with it, as well as with the Trust's Equal Opportunities Policy. Both are located on the GDST Hub information site here.

    Admissions

    Wimbledon High School admits girls who fulfil the academic requirements of the School and will benefit from the opportunities offered and contribute fully to the life of the school. Any girl between the ages of 4+ (EYFS) and 16+ is eligible for entry provided she meets the academic requirements of GDST and WHS and provided that there is a vacancy. In exceptional circumstances (such as the closure of another school) girls may be admitted to the beginning of Year 13 without entrance tests.

    Girls are currently admitted at 4+, 11+ and 16+. Admissions processes for the four points of entry take place in the Autumn and Spring Terms in the year prior to proposed entry. The selection procedures are adjusted according to the age of the applicants to ensure a balance of comfort, fairness and rigour.

    Admissions: GDST Council Policy

    The admissions policy of the Council of the Girls’ Day School Trust (the “GDST”) is that:

    • The GDST is committed to equal opportunities in education. Admissions to GDST schools will adhere to the GDST’s Equal Opportunities Policy
    • The GDST is firmly committed to offering a single-sex education for girls. In our experience, students in girls’ schools are less constrained in their choice of subjects, show a greater propensity to take risks and innovate, perform better in examinations, have more opportunities to show leadership, and are less likely to conform to gender stereotypes. For these reasons, GDST parents and students choose a predominately single-sex environment over other available options
    • GDST schools are broadly selective. Places are offered to prospective pupils on the basis of their potential to thrive in the educational environment provided
    • Admission is usually dependent on achieving an acceptable standard in an assessment or examination appropriate to the age group and academic pace of the school. Such examinations and assessments are expected to be free of bias, and due consideration will be given to individual needs and prior educational experience in making any decision on the offer of a place
    • The final decision regarding admissions rests with the Head, who reserves the right to decline to offer a place on grounds other than academic potential (e.g. a pupil’s record at a previous school)
    • Within these guidelines schools may determine their own admissions policies, which will set out their individual selection criteria
    • Each GDST school sets out in its registration the age range of students it is legally allowed to make provision for. Major age range changes are subject to approval by Council. Admission will last until the student completes year 13 unless the parent contract comes to an end sooner.
    • In all circumstances, including where a receipt is required for visa purposes, a parent contract (form F7) must be fully completed and submitted to the Fees Department, together with confirmation of the deposit payment (form F30), before the pupil can join the school.

    This policy shall apply to all GDST schools, save for Academies sponsored by the GDST.

    Admissions Tests at WHS

    These are carried out in controlled conditions for entry a  11+ and 16+. Places are offered on the basis of rank order following a range of assessments.

    The ranked results of 4+ (EYFS) applicants are reviewed in the light of criteria not applied at any other level, because objective criteria are not sufficiently sensitive in the absence of written tests.

    Occasional Vacancy entrance

    If a vacancy arises in any year group between the “normal” points of entry listed above, applicants may sit an entrance test. This will take the form of written tests where the standard of comparison is with the appropriate cohort within the school.

    Overseas candidates

    Applicants from overseas are required to sit our entrance papers under supervised conditions either under an appropriate body (such as the British Council) or their current school. The same standard of ability is applied whatever the previous system under which the candidate has been educated.

    The examinations

    All examinations are set in English and are designed to be culturally neutral or accessible to applicants from different cultures. We aim to give girls from all educational backgrounds and experiences, the chance to shine in the assessment process. We use assessed group tasks, alongside written assessment tasks, to help us maximize access to all pupils regardless of their school experience to date.

    If the candidate has a specific learning difficulty (certified by an Educational Psychologist) and meets the JCQ requirements for the award of extra time in public exams, she will be allowed the appropriate amount of extra time in her written entrance tests.

    Siblings

    The school does not have a sibling policy. However, if two candidates are equal in all other ways, preference will be given to the sister of a girl already in the school.

    Ethnic balance

    The written papers determine those who qualify for entry at all entry points except for 4+. The ethnic background of applicants (those who accept places) is recorded for monitoring purposes.

    Entry to the Senior School from WHS Junior School

    Pupils have the right of entry from Year 6 to Year 7 unless we have reason to believe that they are unlikely to succeed or flourish in the Senior School. All pupils in Year 6 are nevertheless required to sit the same 11+ entrance tests as all external candidates. This is in order to develop a consistent and complete benchmark for the year group, and to ensure that all entrants to Year 7 have experienced the same process.

    On the basis of information gathered in Year 5 and before, parents will be informed in the Spring Term of that year of the suitability of their daughter for entry to the Senior School. If we feel that the pupil may be below the qualifying standard of external candidates we will suggest that parents look for alternative senior schools. If we are confident that she will meet this qualifying standard or exceed it, we will assure parents of her place in the Senior School.

    Entry to Sixth Form from Year 11

    Entry to Sixth Form from Year 11 is automatic unless the student’s GCSE performance is poor due to laziness, absenteeism or failure to meet deadlines and to abide by the school’s expectations in terms of work rate and effort. Students whose performance is adversely affected by illness, bereavement or other family problems, will be treated sympathetically.

    Transfer from other GDST schools

    Applicants from other GDST schools will be treated in the same way as all other applicants and will be required to sit the same tests and interviews. All other things being equal, if there is competition between an external candidate and a candidate from another Trust school, preference will be given to the candidate from the Trust school.

    Bursaries and Scholarships

    WHS follows the GDST policy in awarding and allocating bursaries and scholarships.  The GDST policy is as follows:

    The GDST is committed to:

    1. Broadening access to the brightest but most financially disadvantaged girls
    2. Attracting the most talented girls (academic, music, sport)
    3. Giving Heads flexibility in the allocation of scholarships and financial assistance

    Bursaries

    Bursaries are awarded by the GDST, following application by parents and assessment of financial need.

    The GDST offers bursaries to provide a life-changing opportunity for bright but financially disadvantaged girls who would otherwise never have a chance of receiving an independent education. Bursaries are not intended to give a helping hand to parents who are in the market for independent education but struggling slightly with fees.

    • Schools will target an amount equal to 5% of gross fee income
    • This target should ideally be phased in by 2020
    • The minimum bursary award for new entrants is 50% effective from September 2012.
    • Bursaries will continue to be available only in the Senior school and are generally awarded in Years 7 and 12 only.
    • Bursaries are awarded in rank order of performance in entrance examinations (subject to the discretion of Heads where exam performance may not reflect a girl’s true potential)
    • Schools should seek out the most deserving bursary candidates – especially those in more affluent areas – and target making most of the awards at 90-100% of fees
    • Schools will provide appropriate support to girls in receipt of bursaries of 95% or more, e.g. incidental expenses including lunches, uniforms, curriculum trips and travel to and from school.

    Scholarships

    Scholarships are a form of discount offered by GDST schools to attract the very best girls (academic, sport, music) irrespective of their means. The achievements of these girls do much to enhance the life and reputation of the school.

    • Every school may allocate up to 2% of fee income on scholarships and financial assistance
    • Within that limit, the number and value of scholarships is within the discretion of Heads
    • Scholarships may be awarded at any amount up to 50% of fees (GSA/HMC limit)
    • Heads can provide emergency assistance from within their 2% Scholarship allocation to families suffering unexpected financial hardship.

    Implementation

    • Existing Bursary and Scholarship allocations will be taken into account in terms of the new allocations that the school can afford to make
    • The School will be responsible for managing its own budget for total bursaries and scholarships expenditure throughout the life of the award.​