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Private schools in Kent

By Atom | May 15, 2024, 9:53 AM

Private schools in Kent

Are you considering a private secondary school in Kent? You have plenty of options, with more than 20 schools to choose from.

We've collated everything you need to know about local private schools. Learn about:

  • Boys, girls, and co-educational schools

  • The selection process for each school

  • Recent exam results

  • What financial assistance is available

What are the best private schools in Kent?

The following 5 indepenedent schools are ranked the best in Kent in 2024 based on exam results:

  1. Tonbridge School

  2. Sevenoaks School

  3. Benenden School

  4. Walthamstow Hall Senior School

  5. The King's School, Canterbury

Find out more about the top private schools in the UK.

How much do private schools cost in Kent?

The fees vary for each school. However, private schools in Kent generally cost more than the national average.

The cheapest private senior school in Kent is Gad's Hill School, which costs up to £6,432 per term. The most expensive school is Tonbridge School, which costs £9,709 per term for day pupils, and £15,595 per term for boarding.

We’ve included the school fees for all the private secondary schools in Kent below.

What’s included in the school fees?

Independent school fees always include the cost of teaching. School lunch and exams (e.g. GCSEs, A levels and the IB Diploma) are often charged separately. If your child goes to a boarding school, the fees usually include the full cost of boarding (lodging, meals etc.).

Before you register your child for a school, it's best to check exactly what's included in the fees. You will need to pay a non-refundable registration fee on application (often £100–£300) and a deposit when you accept an offer of a place.

Help with school fees in Kent

Most private schools in Kent offer financial assistance. The most common type of assistance is a bursary, which is means-tested. Lots of schools also offer scholarships, but these are based on talent and are not means-tested.

A bursary is a means-tested grant given to a child whose family cannot afford the school fees. Eligible children need to meet the school's entrance criteria.

Bursaries are usually offered on a sliding scale, so children from lower-income families receive more assistance. In some cases, particularly low-income families might receive 100% off school fees. They may also receive money to go towards school uniform, lunch, transport and extracurricular activities.

If you think your child is eligible for a bursary, you'll need to complete a bursary application for your target school. This will ask you for detailed evidence of your finances. You might also have a home visit from the school's bursary team to assess your financial circumstances.

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Private boys' schools in Kent

Day and boarding school in Tonbridge for boys aged 13–18.

  • Address: Tonbridge School, High Street, Tonbridge, Kent, TN9 1JP

  • Number of students: approx. 800

  • Fees per term (2023–2024): £12,490 (day pupils), £16,648 (boarding pupils)

  • Means-tested bursaries: up to 110% (full fee cover plus additional support for school uniform, school lunch etc.)

  • Other financial assistance: 10% discount for the third son and a one-third discount for parents of limited means who live within 10 miles of the Tonbridge Parish Church

  • 13+ scholarships: academic, art, drama, sport, and design, technology and engineering

  • A level results (2023): 97.3% A*–B

  • GCSE results (2023): 93.5% 9–7

  • 13+ exam: ISEB Common Pre-Test and English writing and maths tests

  • 13+ registration deadline: 1st September in Year 6

Private girls' schools in Kent

Day and boarding school in Cranbrook for girls aged 11–18.

  • Address: Benenden School, Cranbrook Road, Cranbrook, Kent, TN17 4AA

  • Number of students: 550+

  • Fees per term (2023–2024): £11,860 (day pupils), £15,800 (boarding pupils)

  • Means-tested bursaries: up to 100%

  • Other financial assistance: no

  • 11+ scholarships: academic, music and sport

  • A level results (2023): 82.7% A*–B

  • GCSE results (2023): 81.6% 9–7

  • 11+ exam: ISEB Common Pre-Test and English and maths tests

  • 11+ registration deadline: end of Year 5

Private co-educational schools in Kent

Day and boarding school in Ashford for boys and girls aged 11–18.

  • Address: Ashford School, East Hill, Ashford, Kent, TN24 8PB

  • Number of students: 1,000+

  • Fees per term (2024–2025): £7,265 (day pupils), £10,750–14,895 (boarding pupils)

  • Means-tested bursaries: yes

  • Other financial assistance: Clergy bursaries, sibling discount (5% for the second sibling and 10% for third and subsequent siblings), 20% boarding discount for children of MOD parents receiving CEA, and discount for children of FCO parents receiving CEA

  • 11+ scholarships: academic, art, drama, music, and sport

  • A level results (2023): 63.3% A*–B

  • GCSE results (2023): 52.2% 9–7

  • 11+ exam: Atom Assessments

Personalised exam prep for Kent private schools

Considering an independent senior school in Kent? Atom Home has everything you need to prepare for success in entrance exams.

  • Stay on track with weekly learning plans for your target schools

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  • See how your child compares to other children applying to the same school

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See why 91% of Atom kids got into their top-choice school in 2024. Begin your child's journey today.

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Georgie's performance compared to other Atom users applying to St Catherine's School

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