Grammar schools have carved out a niche in our education system by focusing on academically-abled children. Many of the country’s celebrities, politicians, and top business people are products of grammar schools.
At the moment, there are 164 grammar schools in England that produce more than half the total number of A grades in A-Levels. Although these are considered the cream of secondary state schools, some are better than others. In this guide, we look at some of the best grammar schools in London.
Queen Elizabeth’s School, Barnet
This is undoubtedly the best grammar school in London. It is over 450 years old and through that time, it has built a reputation as the best secondary school aiming for academic excellence.
The school, also known as QE Boys, provides a state school experience unlike any other for both pupils and parents. With approximately 83% of all grades awarded at the previous GCSE the highest grades, it is easy to see why QE Boys is considered the best grammar school in London.
The school performance equally well at the A-Level, with more than half the grades awarded an A*.
Nonsuch High School (Girls)
Nonsuch is an all-girls grammar school in Sutton. Like QE Boys, Nonsuch has a stellar academic record in GCSE and A-Levels. Its Progress 8 score of 1.04 is just as impressive as the academic outcome.
The Progress 8 score indicates that the student will make significant progress by attending Nonsuch. Getting into Nonsuch is quite competitive, and parents should know the school has a two-part 11+ procedure for getting into the school.
The candidate has to pass the Selective Eligibility Test (SET) first. Successful candidates will be invited to the school to sit a second test set by the school, after which successful applicants are selected.
The Henrietta Barnet School
HBS as it is also known as a grammar school situated in the Hampstead Garden Suburb. It is a non-denomination school for girls that was founded in 1911 and became an academy in 2012.
HBS isn’t a fee-paid school which makes its exclusivity all the more enviable. HBS has high expectations for joining students, and the competition for joining the school is high.
In 2019, the school received over 3000 applications. Only a small portion of these would get accepted.
The school defends its stature with 87% of all GCSE results being grade 8 or 9 in 2020 and 50% of A-Levels being A*. In 2022, the school has only 104 entry places, but you can expect thousands of students to compete for those 104 places.
Michael’s Catholic School
St. Michael’s Catholic school for girls was founded in 1908 in North Finchley. It is a voluntary aided three-form entry secondary school that sits under the Congregation of the Sisters of the Poor Child Jesus. The school also admits boys in 6th Form.
It is a Catholic-based school that imposes a strong catholic ethos in addition to the high standard of learning and broad curriculum.
The school holds its 11+ exams earlier than other schools and is often scheduled on the 10th of September every year. In the coming year (2022), the school only has 128 places available and the competition to secure a spot is extremely high.
Wallington High School for Girls
Wallington and Nonsuch High School are sister schools. They use the same 11+ entry system. The school is located in Sutton and offers a comprehensive curriculum that supports students to achieve the highest results possible.
The school was established in 1888 by a group of nuns. Currently, the school accommodates approximately 2310 students and has a Sixth Form college.
Although the school hasn’t published the number of grades awarded for the past two years, it has a record of excellent performance over the years.
The Latymer School
The Latymer School is a selective, mixed institution in Enfield that was founded in 1624. It is ranked among the top 10 best grammar schools in London. Most of the students that attend these schools secure places in some of the country’s most prestigious universities.
It has a rigorous 11+ exam that is staggered over three consecutive days. Despite its exclusivity, the school preserves 20 spots for exceptional musically talented students.
The Tiffin Girls School
In 2020, 85% of all GCSE grades at The Tiffin Girls School were either 8 or 9. More than 35% of the grades at the A-Levels were A*. It is easy to see why this grammar school is considered one of the best in London and the larger country with such a performance.
Competition to secure a spot in this school is enormous. The spots are available in Year 7. With only 180 spots open for 2022, the competition is on for the best female students in London to earn their place.
The Tiffin School
This is a sister school to the Tiffin School for girls. The Tiffin School is located in Kingston-upon-Thames. It is a selective all-boys grammar school known for its outstanding performance and is considered one of the best in London. It performs just as well as the girls’ school, but the GCSE and A-Level results aren’t as strong as the girls’ school.
Wallington County Grammar School
There is the Wallington High School for Girls and the Wallington County Grammar School for boys. The original WCGS, as it is known, was founded in 1927 with 71 students. It is currently situated on Corydon Road in Sutton, where it has been since 1935.
Like other prestigious and exclusive grammar schools in London, the spots to get into WCGS are highly coveted, and the competition is exceptionally high.
Newstead Wood School
Closing out the list for the best ten grammar schools in London is Newstead Wood School. It is a selective all-girls school with limited slots for potential students.
The school was founded in 1957 by the Kent Education Committee and became part of Bromley in 1965. Besides its remarkable performance, the school also has a record of providing good value.
These are the most desirable and highly coveted grammar schools to get into in London. And while the number of applications and open spots paints a grim picture, the brightest students often find overcome all the entry requirements to join these schools. Having a tutor at hand could help your child better prepare for the 11+ exams that most of these schools require.