How to join Senior School

Senior School

There is no particular ‘type’ of girl at Withington. What we are looking for is a genuine enthusiasm for learning and a curiosity about the world.

Year 7 (age 11) is our main point of entry for the Senior School.

If you are looking for a place in Years 8, 9 and 10, the process is slightly different. Please contact our Admissions team for more information about available spaces.

1. Register Your Details

Register your daughter’s details with us to ensure that you are kept up to date with relevant admissions information, including opportunities to visit.

Register Your Details

2. Visit Us

We strongly recommend that you visit us as a family to learn more about a Withington education. We offer personal tours and host Whole School Open Events in the Autumn term for prospective Senior School girls and their families. Our Year 7 Taster Days are open to girls in Year 5 and Year 6.  

Visit Us

3. Apply

Applications for September 2025 will open by September 2024. In the meantime, please register your details to be kept up-to-date and to receive invitations to Open Events and Taster Days.

To apply for a place in Year 7 for September 2025 entry, you will need to complete the online application, submit the required paperwork and pay the £50 registration fee by the closing date.

We ask that you inform us of any disability or special educational need your daughter may have. This enables us to ensure that the application procedure is accessible for your daughter and that we can cater adequately for her should an offer of a place be made.

There is the opportunity to apply for financial assistance when applying to join Year 7.

Register Your Details
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If you are applying for financial assistance you must indicate your interest in a bursary at the time of completing the application. You will then receive a link to a confidential online bursary application form. This is processed and managed by Bursary Assessment Associates.

We are unable to accept applications for bursary funding made at a later stage due to the allocation of funds.

For all key dates please see our admissions timetable.

4. Assessment

Entry to the Senior School is by examination and interview. Examinations are held in January of each year and those girls who have done well will be invited for interview.

The whole aim of the assessments is to test your daughter’s ability to think for herself. It is not necessary, or even helpful, for her to be heavily tutored, as this will not help us to discover her true potential.

Past Papers
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Your daughter will take the following papers:

  • English (60 minutes)
  • Maths (45 minutes)
  • Verbal Reasoning (50 minutes)
  • Non-Verbal Reasoning (20 minutes).

We encourage girls to have a go, even when they are unsure. We are trying to discover how they think, so even an answer with the wrong conclusion can be helpful.

Whilst this is a unique experience for her, we have a wealth of experience in running our entrance examination day. We try to make sure the girls are as relaxed as possible and we hope they will enjoy the challenge and the experience.

Girls who have done well in the entrance examination will be invited to an interview with two senior members of staff. This is very friendly and your daughter may be asked about her responses in the examination papers or more general questions about her interests.

At the end of the interview, parents are invited to join the conversation. This is not part of the selection procedure but an opportunity for you to ask any questions.

5. Offers & Acceptance

We are part of a group of schools who all send their offers out on the same day. We contact all candidates who have been interviewed by email and letter. These will:

  • Contain an offer of a place, or
  • Contain an offer of a place on the reserve list, or
  • Indicate that we are unable to offer a place.
Admissions Timetables
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You will usually have around two weeks to accept or decline our offer of a place. If you accept, a deposit of £250 is needed to secure your daughter’s place.

In advance of accepting our offer, you are welcome to come and have another look around and meet key staff at a special event for offer holders.

If your daughter is placed on the reserve list, please notify us if you would like to remain on the reserve list or if you are accepting a firm offer from another school.

We will only make offers to those who have confirmed that they are still interested in a place.

6. Joining Withington

We know that moving to Senior School is a big step, so we aim to make this transition as smooth as possible. Your daughter may feel a little nervous about her new adventure but be assured that there are lots of people here to help and she will feel at home in no time.  

Transition to Senior School
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At the Induction Day in June, your daughter will meet her Form tutor and get to know the girls in her form. The year group is divided into three roughly equally sized form groups (with no setting or streaming), in which they will be taught a variety of subjects. She will also be allocated her House.

In the afternoon, parents are invited to meet other parents as well as school staff, including your daughter’s Form Tutor and Head of Year. There will also be the opportunity to purchase school uniform from the PTA-run Sustainable Uniform Store (SUS).

In September, your daughter will spend the first few days exploring the Senior School and getting to know Withington. She will also take part in our annual residential for Year 7 at Ghyll Head in the Lake District. This is a long-standing school tradition during which friendships and memories are made that we know from experience last a lifetime.

Frequently Asked Questions

When should we apply by?

All our key dates for each point of entry are listed on our Admissions timetable.

What is your Admissions policy?

Please find the link to our Admissions Policy below.

More FAQs
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