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Portland Place School: parents’ guide to Year 7 entry

School guide

Jan 31, 2023, 2:02 PM

Portland Place School: a parents’ guide to Year 7 entry


Portland Place School is a small independent school for boys and girls aged 10–16 in the City of Westminster. It offers a modern curriculum inside and outside the classroom and aims for pupils to become inquisitive, open-minded and creative learners. Portland Place School is a member of the Alpha Plus Group – a private education group which owns and manages 20 schools and colleges under a set of high aspirations named the Gold Standard.

Teaching groups at Portland Place School are small (16 pupils or less), enabling all pupils to play an active part in their learning and to enjoy open communication. Every Wednesday afternoon, all pupils engage in an Enrichment Programme instead of formal lessons, with a range of science, creative and STEM activities on offer. This gives pupils the opportunity to develop personal growth and accomplishment.

Portland Place School has strong links with DLD College (a sixth form college owned by the Alpha Plus Group) and all Portland Place pupils have preferential entry to its sixth form. However, there are many other well-regarded leavers’ destinations for Portland Place pupils, including St Paul’s School, UCS, Wetherby Senior School, Rugby School, the Fine Art College, and the Brit School. Pupils also explore vocational qualifications through a range of BTEC courses and apprenticeship programmes at companies including the BBC, Deloitte, Google, KPMG, The Guardian and Unilever.

In 2020, Portland Place School pioneered the first Hybrid School, offering a mix of online and on-site learning.

Key information for Portland Place School

  • Headmaster: Mr David Bradbury

  • Address: Portland Place School, 56–58 Portland Place, London W1B 1NJ

  • London Borough: City of Westminster

  • Admissions contact: [email protected], 020 7307 8700

  • Age range and gender: 10–16, co-educational

  • Number of pupils: 205

  • Number of places in Year 7: Maximum of 64

  • Ratio of applicants to places: Undisclosed

  • Open day date: Several throughout autumn 2022 – book online

  • Overview of selection procedure: Interview, baseline assessment test and school reference

  • Registration opens: Currently open – enquire online

  • Registration closes: Friday 25th November 2022, 5pm

  • Assessment date: Saturday 21st January 2023

Portland Place School fees and financial assistance

The tuition fees at Portland Place School are £7,845 per term (or £4,000 for the Hybrid School).

The school is committed to broadening access by offering eligible families means-tested financial support (bursaries). These carry a discount of between 10% and 50%, depending on the financial, compassionate or other circumstances of applicants. Bursaries are administered by The Gold Standard Charitable Trust.

Portland Place School also offers scholarships for Year 7 applicants:

  • Art Scholarships: worth up to 10% of school fees

  • Drama Scholarships: worth up to 10% of school fees

  • Music Scholarships: worth up to 10% of school fees

  • Sports Scholarships: worth up to 10% of school fees

Portland Place School term dates

The term dates at Portland Place School for 2022–23 are:

  • Autumn term: 2nd September – 16th December 2022

  • Half term: 17th–28th October 2022

  • Spring term: 10th January – 31st March 2023

  • Half term: 13th–17th February 2023

  • Summer term: 25th April – 7th July 2023

  • Half term: 29th May – 2nd June 2023

Admissions process for Year 7 entry to Portland Place School

If you are interested in Portland Place School for your child’s secondary education, you are invited to visit the school or meet the headmaster through either a formal tour or private tour.

Once you have decided to register your child for Portland Place School, you will need to submit an application on the school’s online portal before the deadline of 5pm on Friday 25th November 2022. Once you have registered your child, they will then be invited to a 20-minute interview with the headmaster, Mr David Bradbury, in November 2022.

All applicants are asked to take a baseline assessment test to understand their current academic level on Saturday 21st January 2023. Around the same time, Portland Place School will contact your child’s current school to ask for a confidential reference.

If your child is applying for a scholarship to Portland Place School, there will be extra steps in the admissions process:

  • Art Scholarships: Applicants will be asked to submit a portfolio of their work for assessment and a letter of expression of interest will need to be attached to their registration form. They will be invited to an Art Scholarship exam during the week commencing Monday 16th January 2023.

  • Drama Scholarships: Candidates will need to submit an expression of interest along with their registration form. They will then be invited to attend an audition and take part in collaborative work with current Portland Place students during timetabled drama lessons during the week commencing Monday 16th January 2023.

  • Music Scholarships: Applicants will need to submit a letter expressing their interest in a Music Scholarship at the same time as the registration form. They will then be asked to attend a musical audition during the week commencing Monday 16th January 2023.

  • Sports Scholarships: Eligible candidates are those who have experience playing one of the school’s major sports (netball, rugby, football, cricket or athletics). Candidates will need to attach a letter of expression of interest to their registration form. They will then be invited to participate in sports trials during the week commencing Monday 23rd January 2023, which will take place at Regents Park.

The outcome of your child’s application, including Scholarship applications, will be sent to you in mid-February 2023.

Portland Place School 11 plus exam

All candidates for Year 7 entry at Portland Place School will sit entry papers for English and Mathematics. These are designed for the candidates’ age group – i.e. they will be in line with the Key Stage 2 national curriculum.

You may find the following resources helpful:

How to help your child prepare for the selection process at Portland Place School

Preparation is key

Build foundational knowledge

For entry to Portland Place School, candidates are tested across the Key Stage 2 curriculum with questions on English and maths up to the end of Year 5.

Atom Nucleus can help your child consolidate everything they need to know for the exam. With over 90,000 teacher-created questions and helpful learning resources, one Atom subscription will give your child all the materials needed to get to grips with the curriculum before the exam day.

English learning journey on Atom Nucleus

Preparation is key

Familiarisation with the question formats and known styles ahead of the exam is essential to help your child build exam confidence.

An exam preparation subscription with Atom Nucleus enables your child to access quality, unlimited practice material with full score breakdowns to help your child feel confident by the time the exam day comes around. Best of all, your child can take unlimited practice tests that closely match 11 plus exams for one monthly cost.

11 plus maths mock test on Atom Learning

Access to immediate support

When working through challenging topics, your child will need immediate clarity with any misconceptions so that they feel truly secure in the exam.

Atom Nucleus includes video tutorials, help sheets and examples with every question to help your child build confidence and competence across all the areas assessed.

Maths learning journey on Atom Nucleus

Engage with their progress

Celebrate your child’s improvement in areas of challenge together. An accurate and ongoing assessment of their areas of strength and development is helpful.

As an Atom subscriber, you’ll have a parent dashboard which offers data-driven insights into your child’s progress. You can use this effectively to help your child set targets, see a detailed breakdown of their progress by subtopic and set custom practices to target those they find most challenging.

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Get started with Atom Learning

It’s our mission to help your child feel prepared and confident before the exam day. Begin your free 5-day free trial of Nucleus today to help your child succeed.

5 day free trial for 11 plus

We know how crucial this time is, so our team is on hand to support you and your family every step of the way. You can book a call with one of our Education Experts to ask any questions you might have about 11 plus entry to Portland Place School:

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If you’re looking for exclusive tips and resources to help your child master key subjects, excel in exams and build academic confidence, join Atom’s email list:

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