Tonbridge Grammar School

19-4-2021 15:42| Publisher: admin| Views: 646| Comments: 0

Description: Tonbridge Grammar SchoolSchool introductionTonbridge Grammar School is a grammar school in Tonbridge, Kent. The school was previously exclusively a girls’ school, but has had a coeducational sixth fo ...

Tonbridge Grammar School


School introduction


Tonbridge Grammar School is a grammar school in Tonbridge, Kent. The school was previously exclusively a girls’ school, but has had a coeducational sixth form since 2002. It now has around 1050 students aged 11 to 18.

Since 2012 the school has exclusively been an International Baccalaureate (IB) school – this means pupils follow the IB curriculum and sit IB exams. The school does not offer A-levels, but pupils do sit GCSE exams. Tonbridge Grammar School has been named the best IB state school in the UK on several occasions. As part of the International Baccalaureate curriculum, all students must study at least one language, one science subject, maths and a social science subject all the way to Sixth Form.

Tonbridge Grammar School specialises in languages, maths and computing.

The school has a number of new and recently refurbished buildings, including a “tech block” and a futuristic Sixth Form Centre that opened in 2015. The school also has new all-weather sport pitches and a state-of-the-art recording studio that supports both learning and extracurricular activities.

School performance

Tonbridge Grammar School has an Outstanding Ofsted rating.

In 2020, a third of the school’s GCSE entries were awarded a grade 9.

In the IB Examinations at the end of sixth form the average points scored by students at Tonbridge Grammar School tend to be between 36 and 37, with global averages between 29 and 30 points.

97% of 2020 school leavers went straight on to university, with 64% of them gaining places at Russell Group universities.

Admissions information

To apply to Tonbridge Grammar School you must include it on the Common Application Form for your local authority, which must be submitted in October or November the year before entry. Do not apply through Kent County Council unless you live in Kent. Parents must also register their child for the Kent 11+ Test. Registration for this test closes in the summer the year before admission, and the test is usually held in September.

The school has around 180 places available for Year 7 entry each year. Up to 135 of these places are reserved for applicants living locally in Tonbridge & Malling, Tunbridge Wells, and Sevenoaks. In 2020 there were a total of 778 applicants. To gain a place at the school, applicants must sit and pass the Kent 11+ test. Places are allocated based on 11+ results, such that the 135 local children with the best results gain a place and the remaining places go to the highest-scoring children from outside the local area. In case of tied scores preference will be given to the girl who lives closer to the school.

Boys and girls can also apply to join the sixth form at the age of 16. Each year, a minimum of 40 places are offered to external applicants. To be admitted applicants will need at least a grade 6 at GCSE in maths, English, a science and a language. Priority is given to applicants living closer to the school and to those with siblings already at the school. Applications open in October and close in early December. Like all other students in the sixth form, these students will be enrolled in the IB Diploma Programme and will not sit A-levels.

Admissions timeline


Summer of Year 5

Parents must register their child for the Kent 11+ Test.

September of Year 6

Applicants sit the Kent 11+ Test.

October/November of Year 6

Applicants must include Tonbridge Grammar School on the Common Application Form, and submit it to their home local authority

March of Year 6

Successful applicants are offered places at the school. Unsuccessful applicants can request to be placed in a waiting list maintained by Kent County Council.


The 11+ examination

Tonbridge Grammar School uses the Kent Procedure for Entry to Secondary Education (PESE) 11+ Test, administered by Kent County Council.

This test consists of two papers: the first tests English and maths, and the second tests reasoning. Each paper takes one hour. The English section involves comprehension questions as well as questions that test literacy skills. The reasoning paper involves a non-verbal reasoning section and a verbal reasoning section of roughly the same length. In addition to these two papers there is also a 40-minute writing exercise which isn’t marked but may be used in the headteacher assessment stage of the process.

Parents must register for the test on the website of Kent county council in the summer before entry, and the test is usually taken in September.

Sample test papers

Kent County Council have produced a familiarisation paper that introduces the test and the correct way to answer the multiple choice questions. It also contains example questions.

The Kent Test uses the GL Assessment 11+ exam. You can find sample test papers and familiarisation materials for the GL Assessment here.

Think Academy UK has compiled a guide to the GL Assessment, which includes a great range of free resources and sample test papers.

Additional information

-        Location: Tonbridge Grammar School is located in the southern part of the market town of Tonbridge, Kent, 29 miles southeast of London. The school sports fields are next to the school.

-        Boarding: Tonbridge Grammar School does not offer boarding, but it does operate a system of six houses. All students belong to a house, and represent in at events and in competitions. Students are placed in a house based on the geographical area they live in.


Frequently asked questions

Can I visit Tonbridge Grammar School?

Due to the pandemic it is not currently possible to visit the school, and for the foreseeable future all Open Day events will be held online.  You can access the most recent Year 7 Open Day here.

How do I apply?

You must submit an application directly to your local authority. Do not send your application to Kent County Council unless you live in Kent. You must also register for the Kent 11+ Test.

My child is doing an 11+ test for another school that does not use the Kent Test. Will they still have to do the Kent test?

Yes. All applicants must register for and complete the Kent test.

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