Skip to content ↓

    FAQ Test

    Basic details of the School?

    We are a co-educational school (close to 50:50 Boy:Girl) of some 950 pupils aged 4-18 years. There are 650 pupils in the Senior School (ages 11-18). The Senior and Preparatory Schools are at either end of Kimbolton village and share a 120 acre site which extends the length of the village.

    We are predominantly a day school with around 60 boarders (in the Senior School only) who live in two delightfully appointed Georgian houses on the scenic Kimbolton High Street.  Boarding is a popular choice and the boarders thoroughly enjoy the family feel of their House and more generally in the School itself.  An optional outing is arranged for them each weekend.  Occasional, part-time and flexi-boarding are available when space allows.

    Why two Headmasters?

    Mr Jonathan Belbin is Headmaster of the whole school from ages 4–18. Mr Richard Wells is delegated day-to-day running of the Preparatory School (ages 4–11) and joins the School’s Senior Management Team, under the leadership of Mr Belbin, for weekly meetings.

    How do I get a Prospectus?

    Either click here to fill in the Prospectus Request Form or telephone the Registrar, Mrs Jane Simpson on : 01480 862209. We also have a separate, detailed 6th Form Prospectus for those interested in 16+ entry.

    At what age do pupils enter the school?

    Pupils enter the Preparatory School (Reception to Year 6) and Senior School thereafter.

    The main points of entry are:

    • Reception (aged 4+) - 2 class entry
    • Year 3 (aged 7+) - 3 classes
    • Year 7 (aged 11+) - 4 form entry
      (current Kimbolton Preparatory School pupils also have to sit and pass the exam and are included in this entry figure).
    • Year 9 (aged 13+) - c.15 places
    • Year 12 (aged 16+) – c.15 places

    Entrance is subject to achieving the necessary entry requirement of grades and passes at GCSE.  For more about the Sixth Form, click here.

    In addition, re-locations out of the area lead to some places becoming available outside the main entry points. Please contact the Registrar on 01480 862209 or click here to send an email regarding further information.

    How do I register?

    A Registration Form is included in the Prospectus which should be returned to the Registrar, Mrs Jane Simpson.

    When should I register?

    That is up to you.

    Most parents like to come to the school and meet the Headmaster at a preliminary visit before formally registering. Some pupils are registered at birth, but at the very latest, we must receive your registration by the end of the Autumn Term in the year preceding the proposed September entry.

    If you intend to apply for assistance with fees, you will need to register by the end of October and complete the bursary application form by the end of November for entry the following Autumn Term.  We will advise you as to the outcome of your application when we inform you of the results of the Entrance Examination.

    The Entrance Examinations and interviews take place early in the Spring Term. The exception to this will be for pupils who are looking to enter the school at non-fixed entry points, such as relocation to the area at Year 8 (aged 12). These cases are looked at individually depending upon the availability of places. There is a non-refundable £80 charge for registration.

    How do I get to see the School?

    We have a formal Open Day on the first Saturday of October every year. The Preparatory School is open during the morning and the Senior School in the afternoon. No appointment needs to be made. You will be shown around the School(s) by a pupil and have the opportunity of meeting teachers, viewing the facilities and even becoming involved in the odd science experiment or CCF ambush!

    Whilst Open Day is always a special occasion, we would also suggest that you come and visit on a normal working day. Please make an appointment with the Registrar, Mrs Simpson (01480 862209) and she will arrange for you to meet the Headmaster, followed by a pupil-led tour of the Senior School. You will also meet the Preparatory School Headmaster and tour the Preparatory School if you are interested in pre-11 year old entry.

    Potential candidates for the Sixth Form are invited to a Prospective Sixth Form Morning on a Saturday in mid-November.  You will hear about the many opportunities that the Kimbolton Sixth Form has to offer and will be shown round by a current Sixth Form student.  Please contact the Registrar (01480 862209) for more details.

    In the meantime, take a look at our News which gives a termly flavour of Kimbolton School life.

    How are pupils selected?

    Places at the School are not allocated on a first come first served basis. Entrance Tests take place on the first Saturday in February for entry the following September.

    Tests are sat in Maths, English and Verbal Reasoning at both 11+ and 13+.  In addition, all candidates are given a brief interview (informal chat) with the Heads of English and Maths and the Deputy Head, in the month preceding the exam.  This ensures that we get a fully rounded view of the capabilities of each candidate.  A confidential report is also sought from the candidate’s current school.

    Candidates at 13+ entry who attend preparatory schools teaching Common Entrance will have a place reserved for them in the Autumn prior to the year of entry. On successfully passing Common Entrance, the child’s place will be confirmed.

    Sixth Form entrants have to gain a minimum of five GCSE passes at Grade B or higher.

    At the Preparatory School, tests are sat in Maths, English and Reasoning (7–11 years).  Children also spend some time visiting a class with their prospective peer group and may stay for lunch.

    When places become available in Year One and Year Two, children visit during a working day and join a class where reading and numeracy skills are assessed.

    For entry into the Reception Year (4+) parents and children are invited to the School during a working day to see it in operation and for the children to acclimatise themselves prior to the assessment in February. Staff from the Preparatory School will also visit your child either at home or at their nursery school or playgroup. The assessment includes activities and skills expected of this age group and is loosely based upon the six early learning goals at Foundation Stage.

    To view our Admissions Policy, click here.

    What are the chances of my child obtaining a place?

    This will, of course, differ from year to year. Candidates have to attain a certain base standard. For those who fail to do so, Kimbolton School will not be the right academic environment for them and it would be unfair, from both your and the School’s viewpoint, to offer a place at that time.  Usually we would expect to be oversubscribed at each entry point but we are not a highly selective institution and most pupils who apply gain a place.

    Can I see copies of past Entrance Examination papers?

    We do not publish papers as such – to do so would restrict our question choices in future years. The aim of the Entrance Examination is to find out what a candidate knows, rather than what they don’t know. For pupils studying the National Curriculum at their current school, the exams will have a familiar tone and approach. Verbal Reasoning papers can be purchased at large newsagents or bookshops.

    To find out more information either telephone the Registrar, Mrs Jane Simpson on : 01480 862209 or click here to send an email direct to Registrar

    Is there any financial assistance/scholarships?

    In the Senior School (aged 11 and upwards) – yes.

    There are a number of academic scholarships available at 11+ and 13+. These are awarded to pupils who excel in the Entrance Examination (or at Common Entrance).

    In addition, William Ingram Scholarships are awarded for 13+ entrants who excel at Music, Art or Games and Leadership.

    Means-tested bursaries are also available.  These have been increased in number over the past few years and the School Governors are committed to maintaining this trend in the future.

    Two Sir Brian Corby bursaries of up to 100% of fees are available each year for pupils joining the Lower Sixth from state schools.  For more information about joining the Sixth Form, click here.

    For further details of these awards and bursaries and how to apply, please telephone the Registrar, Mrs Jane Simpson on 01480 862209 or click here to send an email to her.

    To view the current fees and charges please click here.

    Are pupils setted, streamed or taught in mixed ability classes?

    Mixed ability. All pupils have passed an Entrance Exam to gain a place at Kimbolton School and therefore a degree of selection has already occurred. We set in Maths and Modern Foreign Languages only (MFL Senior School only). From Reception to Year 9 (ages 4-13) pupils are taught in their form group for most lessons, although in creative subjects post 11+ (e.g. DT, Art, Textiles, Home Economics), pupils are divided into smaller groups. At GCSE and A level, pupils are placed in groups depending upon their option choices.

    Class sizes?

    Around 18 to a form in the Preparatory School; maximum 23 in Years 7 and 8; 20 in Year 9 and c. 16-17 in Years 10 and 11 depending upon option choices. The average Sixth Form set size is between 10 and 12.

    How does the GCSE and A Level option system operate in the Senior School?

    All subjects are compulsory in the first three years (ages 11-13). Thereafter, at GCSE, all pupils take Maths, English Language and English Literature, ICT (eDCC Certification), a Science course (either Dual Award or the three separate sciences), a Modern Foreign Language (French or Spanish or both) and a free selection of creative and humanity subjects.

    In the Sixth Form, a wide selection of options are available with no timetabling restrictions imposed. Most pupils take four AS levels in the Lower Sixth Form followed by three A2s. Please click here to request a specific GCSE or Sixth Form prospectus or contact the Registrar, Mrs Simpson on 01480 862209.

    What is the provision for gifted and talented pupils?

    At Kimbolton we recognise and understand the needs of high achievers and the resulting pressures that they may be under. We take an individual approach to supporting and developing talent and use our strong pastoral and academic support structures to provide the environment that will help them to succeed.

    Pupils with recognised gifts in particular or all subject areas are extended in their learning through subject specific provisions within the curriculum and through opportunities to explore topics beyond the curriculum in after School clubs and societies. There is an enrichment programme for those pupils who have been awarded Scholarships in the 1st and 2nd years which include trips to places of interest and a variety of extension projects throughout the year.

    Children who have recognised talents in music, the arts or sport are given the support they need to develop their skills through the use of the School facilities, the technical expertise of our staff, help with time management and timetable issues and the provision to enable them to develop their skills with their teachers and coaches outside of Kimbolton.

    What is the provision for Special Needs?

    All pupils have to attain a certain academic level to be offered a place at the School. Thereafter, for those with specific learning difficulties (of which the most common is dyslexia), we have a Special Needs Co-ordinator (SENCo), Mrs Elizabeth Forbes, who provides a one-to-one teaching service for those who require it. This personalised teaching is designed to meet the needs of the individual and there is an additional charge. Pupils with Special Needs have their own IEP (Individual Education Plan) which all teaching staff use to help and inform.

    What transport do you provide at the beginning and end of the school day?

    There is an extensive bus network organised by the School and used exclusively by Kimbolton School pupils.  Please click here to access our location page which includes further details on our buses.

    Either telephone the Registrar, Mrs Jane Simpson on : 01480 862209 or click here to send an email direct to Registrar.

    My question has not been asked?

    Probably because it is not a FAQ!

    Please contact the Registrar, Mrs Simpson on 01480 862209 or click here to email your question and she will endeavour to answer your query.

    If we receive a few more of that same question, we will add it to our FAQ list above.