Back to blog

Sevenoaks School: parents’ guide to entry at Year 7 and Year 9

School guide

Jan 31, 2023, 2:15 PM

Sevenoaks School: a parents’ guide to entry at Year 7 and Year 9

Contents

Sevenoaks School was founded in 1432 and provides co-educational independent day and boarding education for children aged 11 to 18. The school occupies a 100-acre campus in Sevenoaks, in the heart of the Kent countryside and only 30 minutes from central London and Gatwick international airport. The school has a global outlook and its student body is a cosmopolitan mix of approximately 46 nationalities.

The school has an impressive collection of accolades, including Sunday Times ‘Independent School of the Year’ in 2008 and 2018, ‘Top Independent IB Boarding School’ (2018) and ‘Top Fully Co-Educational IB School in the UK’ (Best Schools) and recognition as the second highest-achieving large-cohort IB school in the world in both 2018 and 2019.

Sevenoaks School welcomes pupils who are looking for a ‘rigorous, rewarding and supportive education’. With the adoption of the International Baccalaureate (IB) in the sixth form in 1978 (the first traditional British school to do so), students can expect to develop intellectual curiosity, creativity and compassion – as well as skills for life. In 2022, the average IB Diploma score was 40.1 points (8 points above the global average), with 61% of the cohort achieving 40 points or more. Meanwhile, 93.8% of all GCSE results in 2021 were graded A*/A/9/8/7. These results put Sevenoaks School within the top 10 private schools in England.

Students at Sevenoaks School have the opportunity to explore numerous activities and interests, including music, sport, art, drama, CCF, DofE, clubs and expeditions, among superb facilities including The Space (performing arts) and The Sennocke Centre for sport. All pupils take part in service activities as part of the school’s approach to service and social impact, which includes visiting the elderly, helping people with disabilities and working with primary schools, and engaging in environmental projects.

Key information for Sevenoaks School

  • Headmaster: Mr Jesse Elzinga

  • Address: Sevenoaks School, High Street, Sevenoaks, Kent, TN13 1HU

  • County: Kent

  • Admissions contact: Arabella Stuart – [email protected], 01732 467703

  • Age range and gender: 11–18, boys and girls

  • Number of pupils: 1,165

  • Number of places in Year 7 and Year 9: 80 in Year 7, 85–90 in Year 9

  • Ratio of applicants to places: 3:1 for both Year 7 and Year 9

  • Open day date: Saturday 17th September 2022. Book a space online.

  • Overview of selection procedure for 11 plus: School’s own exam, reference and group interview

  • Overview of selection procedure for 13 plus: School’s own exam, reference and group interview

  • Registration opens: Currently open – apply here for 11 plus entry in 2023 or here for 13 plus entry in 2024 or beyond

  • Registration closes: 1st September 2022 (Year 7 entry) & 1st October two years before entry (Year 9 entry)

  • Assessment date for 11 plus: Wednesday 4th January 2023

  • Assessment date for 13 plus: April two years before entry

  • Scholarship assessment date for 11 plus: Wednesday 4th January 2023 (11 plus exam for Academic Scholarships)

  • Scholarship assessment date for 13 plus: Spring in the year of entry

Sevenoaks School fees and financial assistance

The current day fees at Sevenoaks School are £8,907 per term (£26,721 per year). The current boarding fees are £14,307 (£42,921).

Sevenoaks School has an established history of providing financial assistance to children who would not normally be able to benefit from the school’s education. There are currently more than 60 pupils at the school receiving financial assistance with their fees and all awards are means-tested. Priority is given to families living within a reasonable daily commute to the school, meaning that financial assistance is only given to day pupils. Eligible families can receive up to 110% of the day fees, which includes funds to cover trips, uniforms and other extras alongside daily tuition.

Sevenoaks School does offer scholarships at 11 plus and 13 plus entry, but they will no longer carry a financial award from 2022 and will be honour-based only. The exception is Music Scholarships (13 plus entry only), as Music Scholars will still receive free tuition on one instrument.

Sevenoaks School term dates

The term dates at Sevenoaks School for 2022–23 are:

  • Autumn term (Michaelmas): 2nd September – 13th December 2022

  • Half term: 14th–30th October 2022

  • Spring term (Lent): 6th January – 24th March 2023

  • Half term: 10th–19th February 2023

  • Summer term: 19th April – 30th June 2023

  • Half term: 26th May – 4th June 2023

Admissions process for Year 7 entry to Sevenoaks School

If you would like to register your child for 11 plus entry at Sevenoaks School for admission in 2023, you should complete the online registration form and pay the non-refundable registration fee of £175 (day applicants) before 1st September 2022. During September, Sevenoaks School will send the families of applicants a confirmation form which will need to be completed if you wish your child to remain in the entry process. Sevenoaks School will then write to your child’s current school during the autumn of Year 6 to seek a reference.

All candidates who are registered for 11 plus entry will be invited to Sevenoaks School to sit the entrance exam on Wednesday 4th January 2023. Children will be automatically assessed for Academic Scholarships on the basis of their performance in the 11 plus test. All candidates will also take part in a group interview on the same day.

Offers of places (including Academic Scholarships) will be emailed to families of candidates in February 2023. As the school is always oversubscribed, some candidates who have passed the entrance tests will be placed on Sevenoaks School’s waiting list. Places often become available in early March once the local grammar school places have been announced. When a place becomes available, the school offers to the most suitable candidate.

Sevenoaks School 11 plus exam

The Sevenoaks School 11 plus exam will take place on Wednesday 4th January 2023 and will consist of a 40-minute group interview and three written papers:

11 plus English test at Sevenoaks School

The English paper is a 1-hour test with two sections: one on reading comprehension and one section on written composition (aka creative writing). Candidates will need to pay attention to their grammar, spelling and punctuation.

Past papers are available on Sevenoaks School’s website.

11 plus maths test at Sevenoaks School

The maths paper is a 1-hour non-calculator paper with approximately 20 questions. Children are assessed on their knowledge, understanding and application of general mathematics, which covers a wide range of topics including:

  • Addition, subtraction, multiplication and division of whole numbers, fractions and decimals

  • Directed numbers and number sequences

  • Simple percentages and ratio

  • Problem-solving with fractions and integers

  • Balance equations

  • Geometry, including angle properties, areas, volume of prisms and symmetry

  • Measurement, including averages and range, distance and time

Past papers are available on Sevenoaks School’s website.

11 plus verbal reasoning test at Sevenoaks School

The verbal reasoning test is a 1-hour paper which will assess each candidate’s ability to reason and solve problems with written information. Children will be tested on:

  • Reading fluency and comprehension

  • Vocabulary knowledge

  • Phonological awareness

  • Logic and problem-solving

  • Ability to discover and apply rules

  • Attention to detail

Read more detailed information about 11 plus verbal reasoning in our exam guide. Sevenoaks School does not provide sample papers, but there are unlimited online mock tests covering all 11 plus verbal reasoning question types available on Atom Nucleus.

Sign up today for your 5 day free trial and see how Atom Nucleus can help your child excel in the 11 plus.

5 day free trial for 11 plus

Admissions process for Year 9 entry to Sevenoaks School

If you would like to register your child for 13 plus entry to Sevenoaks School in 2024 or beyond, you will need to complete the online registration form by the 1st October two years before entry. If you are applying for 2024, you will need to complete this form by 1st October 2022. The £175 registration fee (day applicants; £350 for boarding applicants) is non-refundable and must be paid at the time of submitting the application.

When your child is in Year 7, Sevenoaks School will send you a confirmation form in December to confirm that you still wish to go ahead with the Year 9 application process. They will then write to your child’s current school in February to seek a reference for your child.

All candidates who are registered for 13 plus entry will take the school’s own entrance exam in the April of Year 7. This takes place in Sevenoaks, Hong Kong, Shanghai and Dubai. Pupils will also take part in a group interview.

Unconditional offers will be made in June of Year 7. The following year, pupils will either take the Academic Scholarship exam (May) or the Common Entrance exam (June). The results of these are used for setting purposes and candidates are advised to aim for an average of 70% or above in their core subjects.

In addition to the Academic Scholarships, candidates may apply for a co-curricular scholarship in Art, Drama, Music or Sport. The registration deadline for these is 1st January in the year of entry (Year 8), with assessments taking place immediately before or after the Academic Scholarship assessment in May.

Sevenoaks School 13 plus exam

Candidates who are registered for 13 plus entry to Sevenoaks School will take written papers in English, maths and verbal reasoning in the April of Year 7.

13 plus English test at Sevenoaks School

The English paper is a 1 hour test with two sections: one on reading comprehension and one section on written composition (aka creative writing). Candidates will need to pay attention to their grammar, spelling and punctuation. They will be tested on their ability to read carefully, understand and respond to the comprehension extract in detail, and develop their answers in length. In the second section (creative writing), candidates will be tested on their imagination evident in their response and their ability to use language fluently.

Past papers are available on Sevenoaks School’s website.

13 plus maths test at Sevenoaks School

The maths paper is a 1-hour non-calculator paper with approximately 20 questions. Candidates are assessed on their knowledge, understanding and application of general mathematics covered in Year 7, which covers a wide range of topics including:

  • Addition, subtraction, multiplication and division of whole numbers, fractions and decimals

  • Simple percentages

  • Ratio and proportional reasoning

  • Number sequences (including the nth term)

  • Use of indices

  • Simple algebraic expressions and linear equations

  • Geometry, including area and perimeter, volume of prisms and angle properties

  • Shape, including transformations, symmetry and classifying shapes

  • Simple probability

  • Averages

  • Graphs and charts (including pie charts)

  • Measurement, including distance, speed and time

Past papers are available on Sevenoaks School’s website.

13 plus verbal reasoning test at Sevenoaks School

The verbal reasoning test is a 1-hour paper which will assess each candidate’s ability to reason and solve problems with written information. Students will be tested on:

  • Reading fluency and comprehension

  • Vocabulary knowledge

  • Phonological awareness

  • Logic and problem-solving

  • Ability to discover and apply rules

  • Attention to detail

Read more detailed information about verbal reasoning in our exam guide. Sevenoaks School does not provide sample papers, but there are unlimited online mock tests covering all verbal reasoning question types available on Atom Nucleus.

Sign up today for your 5 day free trial and see how Atom Nucleus can help your child excel in the entrance exam.

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

Build foundational knowledge

Both the 11 plus and 13 plus exams for entry to Sevenoaks School assess candidates’ knowledge and understanding of Key Stage 2 or early Key Stage 3 English and maths – in addition to verbal reasoning, which is not normally covered in the curriculum. Your child can consolidate everything they know with Atom Nucleus, with over 90,000 teacher-created questions and helpful learning resources that span English, maths and verbal reasoning from Year 3 to early Year 7.

Verbal reasoning 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.

Verbal reasoning mock test on Atom Nucleus

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 every topic. 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.

Parent Portal.gif


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: See what Atom can do for your child. Register today

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 or 13 plus entry to Sevenoaks School:

Book a call

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:

Get expert tips and resources direct to your inbox for Key Stage 2 education and entrance exam prep

Applying to a UK school from overseas?

This comprehensive guide covers all you need to know about:

  • Choosing a British school for your child

  • The application process

  • Visa requirements and practical considerations

  • Preparing for entrance assessments

Read next
Moving to the UK for school: applying to UK schools from overseas

Atom

Learning

Follow Atom Learning

Atom Learning Ltd. is registered and incorporated in England and Wales. Company Registration Number: 10867907 VAT number: 316903508 Copyright Atom Learning Ltd. All rights reserved.