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Plymouth High School for Girls 11 plus guide

By Atom | Jun 20, 2023, 4:21 PM

Plymouth High School for Girls, Devon

Are you considering Plymouth High School for Girls for your daughter? We've collated all the information you need to know about 2024 entry to Year 7. Keep reading to learn about key dates, the admissions process, and how to prepare for the 11 plus exam.

About Plymouth High School for Girls

Plymouth High School for Girls is a grammar school for girls aged 11 to 18, with a mixed sixth form, in west Devon. It was founded in 1874 as a result of the growing pressure at the time to improve women’s rights and provide an education for girls.

Plymouth High School for Girls aims to create an environment in which pupils embrace personal development, happiness and academic achievement. There are plenty of opportunities to develop life skills beyond the classroom; in addition to a wide range of extracurricular clubs, there's a pupil-led climate awareness group, access to the national public-speaking legal competition 'Bar Mock', and hands-on engineering opportunities involving the school's own Formula 24 racing car, Hummingbird.

  • Address: Plymouth High School for Girls, St Lawrence Road, Plymouth, PL4 6HT

  • Local authority: Plymouth City Council

  • School type: girls' grammar with mixed sixth form

  • Headteacher: Simon Underdown

  • Number of pupils: 750+

  • National rank (Sunday Times Parent Power): 226

  • A level results: 64% A*–B

  • GCSE results: 59% A*/A/9/8/7

Key info for Year 7 admissions

  • Admissions contact: [email protected], 03333 602230

  • Number of places in Year 7: 120

  • Open day date: Thursday 29th June 2023

  • 11 plus registration opens: 24th April 2023

  • 11 plus registration closes: 17th August 2023

  • Exam date: 16th and 23rd September 2023

  • Exam type: GL Assessment – Plymouth schools

  • Common application form (CAF) deadline: 31st October 2023

  • National school offer day: 1st March 2024

Plymouth High School for Girls term dates

The 2023–2024 term dates at Plymouth High School for Girls are:

  • Autumn term: 4th September – 19th December 2023

  • Half term: 20th–27th October 2023

  • Spring term: 2nd January – 28th March 2024

  • Half term: 12th–19th February 2024

  • Summer term: 15th April – 19th July 2024

  • Half term: 27th–31st May 2024

How to apply to Plymouth High School for Girls

If you would like your daughter to be considered for a place in Year 7 at Plymouth High School for Girls, you will need to apply for them to take the 11 plus exam and apply for a school place separately. There are two forms and two different processes to complete.

1. Register for the 11 plus

Before registering, speak to your child’s teacher to see if the 11 plus and grammar school is right for them. The 11 plus exam is a challenging exam, designed to select the children working within the top 25% of their year group.

The registration form for the 11 plus at Plymouth High School for Girls will be available to complete on the school website from 24th April 2023. This will close at 9am on 17th August 2023.

2. Apply for a school place

Plymouth High School for Girls will email you a letter indicating your child's 11 plus results on 16th October 2023. This letter will outline whether your child is eligible for a place at the school.

If you would then like to apply for a place at the school, you will need to name Plymouth High School for Girls on your common application form. You must complete the form for your home local authority:

Before completing your common application form, make sure to check the school's oversubscription criteria first. In the likely event that more children achieve the qualifying score than there are places available, the school will need to apply oversubscription criteria to prioritise places.

The application form must be submitted to your home local council by 31st October 2023.

What's on the Plymouth High School for Girls 11 plus exam?

Plymouth High School for Girls (PHSG) and Devonport High School for Girls (DHSG) both set the same 11 plus exam on the same dates. If you are considering a place at either school for your daughter, she will only need to take the exam once and can take it at either school.

Children will take two multiple-choice papers set by GL Assessment on consecutive Saturdays in September:

  • Saturday 16th September 2023: English comprehension

  • Saturday 23rd September 2023: maths

PHSG and DHSG will be holding optional 11 plus mock tests on 1st July 2023. There are only 170 places available and registration is essential. If you would like your daughter to attend the practice test, you can register online from 3pm on 17th April 2023. Registration will close when all 170 places are filled, or at 11am on 24th May 2023 (whichever is soonest). Note that a £40 payment applies for the cost of taking this practice test (the main 11 plus exam is free).

Learn more about the Plymouth High School for Girls 11 plus and get free preparation resources in our local guide:

Devon 11 plus

What's the pass mark for Plymouth High School for Girls?

Your child's raw scores in the GL Assessment English comprehension and maths tests will be standardised according to their age in years and months. This is to ensure that children born later in the school year aren't disadvantaged by being younger. An average of the two papers will then give your child's rank.

The pass mark – known at Plymouth High School for Girls as the 'cut-off score' – will only be determined after children take the test. The cut-off score is the score attained by the last child allocated to the school under oversubscription criteria 3. We've outlined more information about this below.

Achieving the qualifying score doesn't guarantee a place at the school of your choice, as grammar schools are usually oversubscribed with qualified candidates. We always recommend researching the admissions policies for your target schools, looking at their oversubscription criteria and their catchment area.

Plymouth High School for Girls admissions criteria

Plymouth High School for Girls has a planned admission number (PAN) of 120. Children who have an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) which names Plymouth High School for Girls will be admitted first (subject to them achieving the cut-off score or above for this year of entry).

Children will then be prioritised according to the following oversubscription criteria:

  1. Looked After and Previously Looked After Children who achieve a score equal to or higher than the adjusted cut-off score for the school. These children are ranked by order of highest score in the 11 plus.

  2. Up to 12 places are allocated to children who achieve a score equal to or higher than the lowest cut-off score for the school and who qualify for free school meals or the pupil premium.

  3. All other children will then be ranked by order of highest score.

There is no catchment area for Plymouth High School for Girls – all candidates are considered equally and purely on the basis of their results in the 11 plus exam. The only time your child's address may be used is if there's a tie for the last place, at which point the school may allocate the place to the child who lives closest to the school.

How to help your child prepare for the 11 plus

Here are our top tips on how to best prepare your child for the Plymouth High School for Girls 11 plus.

Cover all the content

The 11 plus assesses a large breadth and depth of learning objectives across the Key Stage 2 national curriculum and beyond.

We recommend that your child starts revising content at least one year before the test. Setting aside study periods using a 'little and often' approach will give them time to build the skills and knowledge they need. When preparing, avoid falling into the trap of over-focusing on either the topics your child enjoys or the topics they find hardest.

Atom Nucleus is an 11 plus online course that tailors your child's personalised learning journey to cover all elements of the Plymouth High School for Girls 11 plus at the right pace for them.

No surprises

Your child will encounter lots of unfamiliar types of questions in the 11 plus exam. Building exam technique with 11 plus test papers will help your child to feel fully confident with the styles of questions they'll encounter in the exam, reducing the potential for stress on the day.

Celebrate their progress

Setting regular goals and celebrating achievements will help keep motivation high. Atom Nucleus offers data-driven insights into your child’s progress towards mastering the 11 plus curriculum, making it easy to see where they need to focus next.

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Personalised 11 plus prep for your child

Wondering how to make sure your child covers the depth and breadth of the entire 11 plus curriculum, stays on track with their progress, and gets help when they're stuck? Online learning is a particularly efficient, cost-effective (and fun) way to do this!

Atom Nucleus is the award-winning online 11 plus practice platform that gives your child everything they need to prepare for grammar school exams.

Children work independently through over 90,000 interactive practice questions in English, maths and reasoning. Teacher-created helpsheets and videos help them discover new concepts and consolidate their learning.

Atom's algorithm keeps children on their ideal learning path, tailored to their unique learning style and pace to keep them challenged and motivated.

Plymouth 11 plus practice papers

Atom Nucleus gives children access to online 11 plus practice papers. Our online tests are designed to mirror the format and style of the real Plymouth 11 plus, so your child will go into the exam knowing exactly what to expect.

And what's more, everything is automatically marked for you.

Try Atom Nucleus free for 5 days

Begin your child's journey to Plymouth High School for Girls today. Use the full features of Atom Nucleus free for 5 days – cancel anytime.

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Personalised 11 plus support for you

We know how keen you are for your child to do well in the 11 plus, to give them every chance of securing a place at their school of choice. Our dedicated team of Education Experts are on hand to support you and your family every step of the way:

Ask us anything

We're happy to help with any questions you may have about admissions processes and helping your child prepare for entry to Devon grammar schools.

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