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Grammar school 11+ tests in Dorset

Dorset 11+ guide for parents
We have the facts you need to know about taking grammar school entrance tests in the Dorset area.
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In addition, Poole High School has an Expressly Academic stream, and admits 10% of pupils per year on the basis of the school's entrance test results.

What do the tests involve?

There is one set of selection tests for Poole Grammar School, Bournemouth School, Bournemouth School for Girls and Parkstone Grammar School (the ‘Consortium’). 

Children sit Verbal Reasoning, Mathematics and English papers; the total score for the three tests determines whether the pupil is of the required standard. The scores for the entrance tests are adjusted (or “standardised”) according to age.

What version of the test is used?

The schools use GL Assessment papers.

How do you arrange for your child to take the test?

If you want your child to be considered for a grammar school place, you must register your child for testing via your preferred school's website. Detailed arrangements for testing your child will be sent to you directly from the school once you’ve registered. Once your child has taken the test and received their results, you must then complete your Local Authority's school application form, listing your chosen grammar school as one of your preferences. You can find key admissions dates and details for the Bournemouth schools and for the Poole schools on the council website.

Where are the tests held?

Your child will take the test at the school with which you registered them.

What is the pass mark?

Each of the schools has its own admission criteria. Some have a 'qualifying score,' and all children who achieve that mark or higher are eligible to apply for a place, although if the school is oversubscribed, their admission is not guaranteed. Others admit the top scoring pupils each year: for example, Bournemouth School offers places to the 120 top boys, while Poole Grammar typically admits the top 16 per cent. The cut-off scores vary between schools and from year to year, depending on the overall standard and the number of children taking the test. Marks are standardised so that children who are older in the year group are not at an advantage over younger children. You can find out more about how many places are available, and how they are allocated, on each school's website.

How can I help prepare my child?

GL Assessment practice papers, preparation materials and support books are available to buy online.

Please note that while we always strive to ensure the information we provide about individual schools is accurate, admissions arrangements for Year 7 entry change regularly and it is essential to check for up-to-date advice on schools' own websites.