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Privateschools.co

for advice on the best UK boarding schools for your child

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Hurtwood House - a top co-ed boarding school

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Cardiff Sixth Form College - Top Independent School and Top 6th Form College

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Hurtwood House

Sevenoaks - a top IB School

Sevenoaks - a top IB School

Tonbridge School - a top boys' boarding school

Tonbridge School - a top boys' boarding school

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Brighton College - a top co-ed boarding school

wycombe abbey

Woldingham School

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The Cheltenham Ladies' College - a top girls' boarding school

Scholarships

A scholarship is a discount on school fees usually awarded on merit. Most schools do not exceed the 10% to 15% discount range and even then, that percentage usually only applies to the tuition element of fees and not to boarding fees or extras. Indeed, in some schools like Harrow or Eton, a "scholar" is sometimes a child recognised as talented, but with little or no fee reduction – it’s just an honour to be called a scholar, with certain privileges and respect.

You may also see the term "exhibition" in connection with scholarships. What is the difference? Very little, but exhibitions tend to be for lower values for pupils who show promise, but whose scholarship test scores may not have been high enough.

There are a very few much larger scholarships up to 50%, sometimes named after an eminent school benefactor, such as these examples:

  1. The Peter Beckwith Scholarships at Harrow School fund up to 100% of fees.
  2. Eton has the Andrew Lloyd Webber Music Foundation Scholarship up to 100% of fees

Then there is a slight blurring of lines in some schools, where – after having secured a scholarship, a family is allowed to apply for an additional bursary, maybe giving up to a further 50% discount.

Note – a scholarship is not necessarily for ever. Here is a typical set of terms and conditions to maintain a scholarship discount.

  1. You must maintain a high academic standard
  2. You must attend academic scholarship forums at least twice per term
  3. Your academic performance will be reviewed annually
  4. You must play a leading part in extra curricular activities of an academic nature
  5. You must have an excellent behavioural and attendance record.

Whereas it’s difficult for an international parent to be eligible for a bursary, there is usually no difference between UK and International parents for scholarships.

"So, how do you win a scholarship?"

Nearly all schools set specific dates for scholarship tests and auditions. These are often set in the January preceding the September entry. However, top academic schools may set them in the preceding October or November. Beware – in order to apply for these scholarship dates, you may have to apply several months before those test dates.

Nearly all schools have a variety of scholarship categories which are typically listed on their website, for which your child will have to pass a test, an audition or produce a portfolio. For example:-

  1. General academic studies – tested by exam papers tougher than the normal entrance tests.
  2. Science scholarships – tests in 2 or 3 science papers
  3. Art scholarship – written tests supported by a portfolio of current work
  4. Performing Arts Scholarships – in drama usually done on the basis of an audition and references
  5. Music scholarships – based on auditions and interviews – sometimes requiring a second audition. These discounts are not generally huge in size – often to reflect the extra cost of music activities. The scholarship might be in the form of free lessons in several extra music instruments. Note – it is different with special music schools of which there are 4 – Chethams, Purcell, Yehudi Menuhin, and St Marys, Edinburgh where the child only gets admission on an audition.
  6. Choral scholarships – these are given by the 45 choir schools, usually part of a church, such as Wells Cathedral School or Westminster Cathedral School. 9 out of 10 choristers qualify for financial help. Choristers have to pass voice trials usually only for children in years 3 to 6. The school may term them as bursaries even though they are won on merit. See also www.choirschools.org.uk which describes bursaries available to choristers

We do not publish lists of schools with scholarships, but we do have access to comprehensive lists of differing scholarships for the parents who wish to become bespoke clients for school search. Phone us on +44 (0)1622 813870.

Call +44 (0) 1622 813870 Enquiry Form info@educationadvisers.co.uk