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Woldingham School: a parents' guide to Year 7 entry

School guide
Woldingham School: a parents' guide to Year 7 entry


Woldingham School is an independent day and boarding school for girls aged 11–18 in Woldingham, Surrey. The school is one of the oldest girls’ schools in the UK and the first to become part of the Sacred Heart Network, which has Catholic schools in more than 30 countries across the globe.

Pupils at Woldingham School live and learn on a 700-acre site in the Surrey countryside, only 25 minutes by train from Clapham Junction in London. Pupils have access to first-rate facilities for academic and extracurricular activities, including extensive outdoor courts and pitches, an indoor tennis dome and swimming pool, a 600-seater auditorium, science laboratories and art studios. Boarders live with others their age in buildings that are designed to be a home-from-home.

Teaching and learning at Woldingham are centred around the school’s WOLD model, which stands for willingness, opportunities, learning and determination. Pupils have an extensive range of subjects to choose from (27 for A levels) and there is a wide range of academic enrichment opportunities, including extra qualifications in areas such as mathematics, financial studies and sports leadership. Exam results are consistently strong; in 2022, 78% of GCSE grades were 9–7 (A*–A) and 55% of A level results were A*–A.

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Key information for Woldingham School

  • Head: Dr James Whitehead

  • Address: Woldingham School, Marden Park, Woldingham, Surrey, CR3 7YA

  • County: Surrey

  • Admissions contact: Mrs Linda Underwood – [email protected], 01883 654206

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

  • Number of pupils: 626

  • Open day date: Tuesday 24th January, Wednesday 15th March, Thursday 27th April, Wednesday 10th May, and Tuesday 23rd May 2023. Book a place online.

  • Overview of selection procedure for 2024 entry: ISEB Common Pre-Test, interview, and school reference

  • Registration closes for 2024 entry: 29th September 2023

  • Assessment date for 2024 entry: 30th October 2023

Woldingham School fees and financial assistance

The current day fees at Woldingham School for pupils in Years 7 and 8 are £7,720 per term. Boarding ranges from £11,390 per term (5 nights per week) to £12,975 per term (7 nights per week). The fees are higher for pupils in Years 9 and above.

In recognition of the school’s legacy as a Sacred Heart School, Woldingham is committed to broadening by offering means-tested financial support with the payment of day fees to eligible families. Bursary awards can be up to 100% of day fees, while some bursary support is dedicated to girls who apply from local state schools – including the ‘Local Girl’ scholarship (a means-tested award for a pupil at a local, maintained primary school).

11 plus candidates applying to Woldingham School may also apply for a scholarship (academic, art, drama, music, performing arts, and sport). These are not means-tested, but applicants will undergo separate assessments during the admissions process.

Woldingham School term dates

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

  • Autumn term: 7th September – 14th December 2022

  • Half term: 14th–30th October 2022

  • Spring term: 5th January – 24th March 2023

  • Half term: 10th–19th February 2023

  • Summer term: 18th April – 7th July 2023

  • Half term: 27th May – 4th June 2023

The term dates at Woldingham School for 2023–24 are:

  • Autumn term: 6th September – 13th December 2023

  • Half term: 13th–29th October 2023

  • Spring term: 4th January – 22nd March 2024

  • Half term: 9th–18th February 2024

  • Summer term: 16th April – 5th July 2024

  • Half term: 25th May – 2nd June 2024

Admissions process for Year 7 entry to Woldingham School

If your daughter is due to turn 11 years old between 1st September 2023 and 31st August 2024, she is eligible for a place in Year 7 at Woldingham School in September 2024. To apply, you will need to submit the online registration form and pay a non-refundable registration fee of £150 before 29th September 2023. Applications for co-curricular scholarships (art, drama, music, performing arts, and sport) must be returned to the admissions department by 13th October 2023.

All children will take the ISEB Common Pre-Test as part of the admissions process (see below for more details about what this involves). This can either be taken at your daughter’s current school, if her school is registered as a testing centre, or at Woldingham School on 30th October 2023. Your child will additionally have an interview with a member of staff at Woldingham, and a reference from your daughter’s current school will be sought. All children will automatically be considered for an academic scholarship based on their performance in the assessment test.

You will receive a decision letter, by email, regarding your daughter’s application by 4th December 2023. If your child is applying for a co-curricular scholarship, she may be invited back to Woldingham School for a final audition during the week commencing 15th January 2024 and decision letters will be emailed by 5th February 2024.

You will have until 4th March 2024 to decide whether to accept your daughter’s place.

Woldingham School 11 plus exam

All applicants for 11 plus entry to Woldingham School will take the ISEB Common Pre-Test during the autumn term of Year 6. This is an online adaptive exam – the questions become more challenging depending on how your child is performing.

You will need to register your daughter separately for the ISEB Common Pre-Test via the ISEB website. You only need to register your child once, regardless of how many schools you are applying for.

The ISEB Common Pre-Test takes about 2 hours and 15 minutes to complete. Questions span four subjects:

  • English: pupils have 40 minutes to work through 50 questions. The content covers reading comprehension and SPaG (spelling, punctuation and grammar).

  • Maths: 40 minutes are available to work through 30 questions. Pupils are tested on Key Stage 2 maths, which includes number and place value, calculations, fractions, decimals and percentages, measurement, geometry, and statistics.

  • Verbal reasoning: pupils have 30 minutes to work through 25 questions. Candidates are tested on their logic and comprehension, including problem-solving techniques, trial and error skills, the ability to work logically, the ability to recognise suitable solutions, and knowledge of vocabulary and definitions.

  • Non-verbal reasoning: 36 minutes are available to work through 30 questions. Pupils will be asked to analyse 2D figures and diagrams and look for patterns, and manipulate 3D figures and diagrams to visualise them in different ways.

Atom’s complete guide to the ISEB Common Pre-Test

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

Build foundational knowledge

The 11+ exam at Woldingham School will assess your daughter’s knowledge and understanding of the Key Stage 2 curriculum and beyond, with test questions covering English, maths, verbal reasoning and non-verbal reasoning.

Your child can consolidate everything they need to know with Atom Nucleus. They'll have access to over 90,000 interactive teacher-created questions and learning resources in all subjects.

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.

Your daughter can take mock tests for the ISEB Common Pre-Test as many times as they like without repeatedly seeing the same questions. Meanwhile, you’ll be able to see their results instantly, including their performance compared to peers and suggested areas for improvement.

Atom Learning has adaptive mock tests available for the ISEB Common Pre-test.

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.

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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.

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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 Woldingham School:

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