Places can be taken more than a year in advance of entry, but that doesn’t mean that there isn’t space after that time. As a rule of thumb it is helpful for parents to start talking to us two years before their child is due to join.

2021 Entry

The admissions process for 2021 entry has been adapted to accommodate the COVID-19 restrictions which has impacted on our ability to hold group tasters and events. Any pupils interested in joining the senior school in September 2021 will be invited into school on an individual basis. During the visit pupils will have a tour of the campus and an interview with the Head, or a member of the Senior Leadership Team. Pupils who are interested in boarding will be able to meet the relevant Houseparent. All of these sessions would be subject to appropriate social distancing regulations and our COVID safe policies applied throughout.

Once a visit is booked we will request a reference from your current school. We always value references from schools and they will play an even more important role this year as our usual Taster Days cannot happen, however we are very aware that children have had a different experience of school in the last few months in both an academic and pastoral sense. We will be giving schools the opportunity to include any information relating to the events of the past year that they feel are relevant, so do please liaise with them if there’s anything you think we need to know.

All pupils joining the senior school will also be asked to complete a short assessment in English and Maths, this provides us with important information about each child’s core skills and supports our preparation for their academic programme. This assessment can be completed at home if necessary.

Offers are typically made by way of a letter to parents. Offers may be open for acceptance for a limited time only. You will be asked to secure your place by completing the Acceptance Form and paying a deposit (which is returned against your final school bill). A New Pupil’s Pack will then be shared with you ahead of your child’s start date. We hope to be able to welcome all of new starters onto site towards the end of the summer term for some form of induction event but this will be subject to changes in government guidelines.

JOINING YEAR 7

All pupils who have expressed interest in joining Leweston in Year 7 are invited for an activity day when they are in Year 5. This usually takes place in June and is a great opportunity to experience a fun day at the school and meet some of the other pupils who will be in their year group in the future. Your child will then be invited to the Year 7 Assessment Day which takes place in the Spring Term of Year 6. This event allows the pupils to get to know each other and the school. The day incorporates a range of fun activities with tours of the school. In the morning all those attending will also sit the school assessment which provides us with important information about each child’s core skills and supports our preparation for their academic programme. If your child is interested in boarding it may be possible to stay for a boarding taster.

At this point a reference is requested from your current school. After the Assessment Day places will be offered. All entrants are also welcome to join us for a personal taster to experience a typical Year 7 timetable. We are happy to assess your child at other times during the year and places will be offered subject to availability.

Joining Year 8

Candidates interested in Years 8 will be invited to spend a day at the school with the year group they will be joining. They will participate in a normal timetable of lessons and be accompanied throughout by a nominated pupil guardian. Pupils will sit an age appropriate school assessment. They will also attend a short informal interview with the Head. After the day feedback will be given and places will be offered.

Joining Year 7 - Frequently Asked Questions

HOW CAN I FIND OUT MORE ABOUT THE SCHOOL?

We encourage everyone to visit as it is important to get to know us and see the school in action. This can be either an individual family visit or at one of our Open Days. Open Doors provide the opportunity to meet the Head, staff and pupils. An important advantage of these events is that all the facilities can be viewed at your leisure; you can visit lessons as they happen and ask questions of teachers and pupils.

However you make contact, all parents should have a private appointment with the Head to discuss their son or daughter in more detail. If this cannot be arranged in person the Head is available by telephone or online.

HOW FAR IN ADVANCE DO I NEED TO REGISTER? 

We recommend visiting the school, either for an Open Day, or at a time to suit you, at least two years ahead of entry and registering after you have had the opportunity to have a good look round and meet staff and pupils. Registering secures your child’s place in their entry year group. This will be held until the admissions process is complete and an offer accepted.

Places in popular year groups such as Years 3, 5, 7 and 9 can be confirmed more than a year in advance, but there may be space available after that time.

HOW MANY PUPILS JOIN IN Year 7?

Year 7 is typically 36 pupils divided into two classes of 18. The majority of these pupils join from our Prep but there is a substantial intake from other schools. In years of significant interest Year 7 may be extended to three classes and could reach 54.

DO YOU TAKE PUPILS INTO YEAR 8? 

Pupils are welcomed into Year 8 so long as there are places available however it is often subject to a waiting list.

CAN I REGISTER MY CHILD IF THEIR AGE FALLS OUTSIDE THE CORRECT BAND?

We would normally expect a child to be in their appropriate age group however we are happy to consider children who are either one year above or below the appropriate age band.

WHAT IS THE RATIO OF BOYS TO GIRLS? 

Since going co-educational in September 2018 approximately one third of the senior school are now  boys, with numbers rising every year. In 2019 we opened Antony House, for boy boarders and currently have 14 boarders ranging from Years 5 to 13.

HOW AND WHY DO YOU ASSESS PROSPECTIVE PUPILS?

Leweston welcomes pupils from a wide range of independent and maintained schools. Our assessments are designed to evaluate core skills in Maths and English and we consider that pupils may have studied different curriculums or be at different stages when assessment takes place.

Whilst Leweston is a non-selective school assessment helps us get to know the pupils before they join us and understand their current level in key areas. There is nothing to prepare or practise for and whilst the assessment is conducted under exam conditions it is always done in a friendly and calm manner.

If you have any questions about assessment or need to make us aware of any individual needs your child has please contact the Admissions Team. Extra time or other special arrangements can be made as long as we have advance warning of the requirement.

DO YOU REQUIRE COMMON ENTRANCE?

Leweston does not require Common Entrance but we are happy to mark any papers your son or daughter is planning to take. The Deputy Head and Admissions Team will work alongside your current school to support this.

WILL YOU REQUEST A REFERENCE FROM MY CURRENT SCHOOL?

We will liaise closely with your current school during the admissions process and require your current Headteacher to provide a confidential report before a place is offered. Towards the end of the summer term before your son or daughter joins us we will also request your child’s school file and last set of school reports.

WHEN WILL WE KNOW IF WE HAVE A PLACE?

A formal offer of a place will be made following either an Assessment Day or individual taster. Interest in Leweston is strong and there are times when we have more applicants than places available. If this happens you may be put on a waiting list until a place becomes available or we have a sufficient number of pupils to open a supplementary class. The Admissions Team will remain in close contact with you during this time.

HOW DO WE ACCEPT A PLACE?

To accept an offer, you should return a signed copy of the acceptance form to the Admissions Team. A deposit of £500 per child will be required to secure a place. This deposit is returned to you at the end of your child’s career at the school but is non-refundable should you decide not to take up your place.

Places should be accepted by the first Monday in March in the year preceding entry to support the development of the curriculum and plan class sizes. Places accepted after this date will be subject to availability.

CAN WE APPLY FOR A SCHOLARSHIP?

Leweston has a long tradition of offering scholarships to recognise and encourage pupils with talent and potential. Scholarships are typically offered at 11+, 13+ and for Sixth Form. Each September the Scholarship Guidelines for the following year of entry are published on the school website. All scholarship candidates must be registered to pursue an application.

Scholarship awards vary with the highest award being for academic excellence. Scholarships are not means tested and awards represent the honour rather than a significant monetary value. If you require further financial assistance you may also apply for a bursary.

The scholarship application deadline is usually the first Friday in January. Once all application forms are received the admissions team will devise personalised timetables for all of the candidates. Assessment days are usually held towards the end of January/beginning of February.

Further information is available from the Admissions Team.

IS THERE ANY FINANCIAL SUPPORT AVAILABLE FOR FAMILIES WHO NEED HELP WITH FEES?

Leweston offers a limited number of means tested bursaries every year allow pupils who need financial support.  All bursaries are subject to annual review and pupils must be registered to make an application. More information is available on the Bursaries page.

HOW MANY BOARDERS ARE THERE?

Leweston currently has 66 pupils who board on either a full, weekly or flexi basis. This range of options is designed to suit different family requirements and it is possible for pupils to start boarding on a flexi basis before moving to one of the other options.

DO THE BOARDERS AND DAY PUPILS INTEGRATE WELL?

Yes: the nature of boarding at Leweston means that all of the boarding houses are in the main school building. These means there is no need for boarders to travel back to house during the school day. Pupils spend all day together in lessons, lunch, co-curricular activities and in their common room. In addition, day pupils are welcome to join in with weekend activities and boarders may be invited out for weekends with day pupils.

HOW DO YOU SUPPORT NEW PUPILS?

Every new pupil is assigned a guardian from the year group they are joining, to help them learn how the school works. New pupils are also assigned a peer mentor, a Sixth Form student who has trained to support younger pupils. They will meet regularly over their first term in school but often these relationships last longer and the mentor will continue to be a trusted friend.