(45 Posts)
maman2012 Tue 21-May-13 14:40:17

Hi there
Does anyone know how to Apply for scholarship for my daughter who' s in year 5.
What are the criteria and the chances to get it?
Many thanks smile

Scholarship for which school?
I assume you are talking about a scolarship for a private school, if so, if really depends on the school in question but the standard is likely to be high.

Also lots of schools now offer nominal scholarships i.e. a small reduction in fees (or no reduction) and instead offer more means tested bursaries i.e. fee reductions based on your financial situation.

HabbaDabba Tue 21-May-13 15:23:49

Are you talking about academic, music, art or sports?

As Chazs has said, a lot of schools, usually the 'posh' ones offer a nominal scholarship which is worth £100 for example. Away from schools like Eton, scholarships tend to be 5%-10% remission off fees. I know a few DCs that were offered 20%-30% but I've been told that this isn't that common. One child was awarded a 50% sports scholarship but he is an international level runner.

So if it's sports then your DC should be county class at least. Music - grade 5 at least and usually in two instruments. Academic - usually only a couple are awarded each year. 700-1000 sit the test . Is yours likely to be in the top 1-3? I can't comment on Art.

The above is obviously just general observations based on personal experience. No doubt there will be schools where the requirements are less/more demanding.

Basically, bursaries is where the serious fee reductions take place.

Hope that helps

scaevola Tue 21-May-13 15:30:57

How you apply should be clear from the Admissions section of the website. Many schools assess for academic scholarships from the main entrance exam, though some have separate papers (but I can only think of boys schools) that do this).

There are usually additional forms for other scholarships, plus other requirements such as a portfolio for an art scholarship, assessment day for sports, auditions for music or drama etc.

maman2012 Tue 21-May-13 22:05:54

Thank you for your replies.
Well, My daughter has been tutored for 1,5 years in 11+ and she is not doing well in Maths. So when I had a meeting with her head of the tuition centre she goes to, he suggested to have a plan B should she fail the 11+ exam by applying to Private schools which I cannot afford and when I asked him about scholarship he answered that all depends on how well she does on the private school exam but I have heard in the past that there are more elements that qualify a child for the scholarship.

musu Tue 21-May-13 22:27:13

I know dcs who have failed to pass 11+ and got scholarships to independent schools however they weren't academic scholarships.

If she is struggling with maths then I assume an academic scholarship is unlikely. However schools may also offer scholarships in music, art, drama, sport.

Is your dd talented in anything, eg if she plays county level sport then she may stand a good chance of getting a sports scholarship.

Lonecatwithkitten Tue 21-May-13 22:32:31

You really need to identify which a schools you are considering and then study their scholarship criteria as everyone is different. Some you apply eg drama, music some on the basis of the exam results and others particular "all rounders" are at the heads discretion.
Please what I am about to say in the spirit it is offered, if your DD does not pass the 11+, but then a private school does offer her a scholarship is this really a school that is worth spending some if your money on. As even with a scholarship and a bursary there will be other costs such as uniform.

HabbaDabba Tue 21-May-13 22:35:52

maman - if your DD looks as if she is going to fail the 11+ then I don't think that she is going to get offered an academic scholarship at a private school. In any case, if you can't afford the fees then whether it's £13k a year or £15k isn't going to make much of a difference to you.

You have a better shot at getting a bursary which is means tested but they tend to be awarded to pupils who score very the entrance exams but can't afford to attend without financial help.

Sorry maman but I don't think that going private on a scholarship/bursary is a realistic Plan B, not if it's the back up plan just in case your DD fails the 11+.

Lonecatwithkitten Tue 21-May-13 22:50:29

Ah Habba you put that much better than me.

scaevola Tue 21-May-13 22:51:21

A scholarship might not bring any remission of fees.

What you need is a bursary, which is means tested and can be a substantial discount. Firstly, you need to work out what you think you can afford in fees and what %age award you would need at your candidate schools. Then check to see if there is any published information which shows whether they offer bursaries that size. Also you will need to talk to the bursar, and be quite specific about the level of award you would need and ask if they have made any at size in recent years.

Then you need to find out how they select which pupils are offered bursaries. Some require scholarship level academic performance. Others may seek a strong performance plus other qualities they like to see in their pupils. Interview and reference can be very important in this, and also the co-curricular 'CV'.

For a bursary, you will need to fill in a detailed financial form, and it's normal for this to be redone annually and the level of award adjusted if your circumstances change. Awards (whether scholarship or bursary) are not usually tied to a particular level of academic performance once at the school, but are usually dependent on good conduct and good effort.

HabbaDabba Tue 21-May-13 23:28:24

maman - on a side note, if your DD has been professionally tutored for 1.5 years and she is struggling then I would question whether a selective school is the best fit for your DD. I would also question whether the tuition centre is any good.

musu Tue 21-May-13 23:36:42

Not all independent schools that offer scholarships are academically selective.

HabbaDabba Wed 22-May-13 00:07:19

What do you call a boomerang that doesnt come back?

A stick.

What do you call a scholarship which is not based on academic selection?

Sorry musu. Too many glasses of wine.
A bursary.

musu Wed 22-May-13 00:11:48


are three types of scholarship not based on academic selection.


HabbaDabba Wed 22-May-13 00:22:59

But the OP has given no indication that her DD particularly excels in either of these areas.

Copthallresident Wed 22-May-13 08:09:17

^What do you call a scholarship which is not based on academic selection?

Sorry musu. Too many glasses of wine.
A bursary.^

Habba Where I wonder are these schools who have such limitless bursary funds that they are doling them out without selecting academically.hmm

OP I don't know where you live but we are in an area with very selective state grammars (2000 applicants for 150 places) and a wide range of indies. My daughter did get a place at the grammar but did not get a scholarship at her very selective indie, where you effectively have to be scholarship material 9and often with another outstanding talent) to get a bursary because competition is fierce. The girls who didn't get into the grammar would not have got a scholarship /bursery at any but the least selective indies and those are all schools that offer something distinctive such as a caring ethos that serves that niche of parents who do not want a very academic school, or for whatever reason for their DC to attend one of the outstanding comps who achieve very similar, if not better, academic results.

I would challenge your tutor centre Head to explain specifically what Plan B he has in mind (if it is anymore than covering their back and keeping you coming) and then approach the schools to clarify their requirements. They are mostly keen to identify bright/talented bursary candidates, often it is a part of their founding ethos, so will be helpful.

LIZS Wed 22-May-13 08:09:32

he suggested to have a plan B should she fail the 11+ exam by applying to Private schools which I cannot afford Sorry alarm bells are ringing. Very often they are not worth more than a token amount unless combined with an academic award or bursary. Bursaries are not fixed for the duration of the schools so may get reassessed annually and are awarded on a priority basis from a finite fund and hotly contested. Agree with those who suggest that if she doesn't "pass" 11+ she unlikely to be in the top 5/10% sitting a competitive entrance test for a private school. Even if she did by some quirk there is then pressure to maintain that level across the board which may not be ideal. You need to be visiting local schools now as many have closing dates early in Autumn followed by tests/interviews either before Christmas or early in the New Year.

HabbaDabba Wed 22-May-13 08:59:50

Copthall - I don't know why I'm bothering to explain a 'joke' but an academic scholarship is awarded to the top one or two performers. That doesn't sound like the OP's DD. However, in a lot of cases, a bursary winner "merely" need to score higher than the other kids eligible for a bursary.

wordfactory Wed 22-May-13 09:18:47

I think it depends OP.

If your DD is struggling with maths for a super selective, then yes, she may well still be in with a shout for a place and bursary at a less selective private.

musu Wed 22-May-13 09:23:25

Our local non-selective gives a number of non-academic bursaries each year which in turn give access to bursaries. Many schools do the same. Also the entrance test pass mark may be lower than the official pass mark if a child has something else to offer, eg music, sport etc. This is certainly the position of the head of Wellington College.

SanityClause Wed 22-May-13 09:39:46

It's not fair to say if a child doesn't pass the 11+ that they wouldn't get an academic scholarship.

Some 11+ tests are used to rank candidates. The people who get one point lower than those who squeeze in, are just unlucky really.

DD1 is at a superselective like that. She was offered a scholarship at her old school. One of her best friends was offered the same scholarship, but did not get into the grammar.

But most scholarships are tiny, as people have said up thread. You need to ask about bursaries. And bursaries usually have to be applied for each year, so you need to be on the ball to have all your financial information ready.

Different schools calculate bursaries differently. For example, at DS's school, they would take assets into account. That is, if you live in an expensive house, they would expect you to sell it or release equity in it, rather than grant you a bursary. I know that others don't do this, and take only income into consideration.

(I know this because I know someone who plays this bursary game every year, and has had to do so since her husband died when her children were in junior school. She has had to tout her children round to the various schools, comparing offers of scholarships and bursaries to work out what the best deal is. It may not be something you fancy doing. I wouldn't like it, but if DH died, I would obviously have to consider what was best for my children, just as she has had to.)

maman2012 Wed 22-May-13 14:56:26

Thank you all for your messages, really appreciate your advice and input.
I guess we will sit the Exams due in Sept and wait & see.
My daughter plays piano grade 2, some Tennis and loves Art & Drama.
My plan B would be a secondary state school in Ealing and plenty of home tuition to get her through GCSE.
Thank you all and wish her lucksmile

Lonecatwithkitten Wed 22-May-13 15:13:30

I have a few friends who teach in the secondary schools in Ealing - they are wonderful educators so choose wisely and she should do well.

maman2012 Wed 22-May-13 22:20:51

Really hope we end up getting Elena Wilkinson and not Acton High schoolsad
Would you know by any chance of a tutor for English subject for my other child in year 9? Thank you

Lonecatwithkitten Wed 22-May-13 22:26:08

Sorry no science and music.

HabbaDabba Wed 22-May-13 22:34:14

maman - go to

It does exactly what it says on the tin. The forums are divided into regions so you stand a greater chance of connecting with someone who is familiar with the school and/or a tutor.

SanityClause Wed 22-May-13 22:36:48

At DD2's school, she would need to be approx grade 5 in two instruments to get a music scholarship.

She would need to be playing tennis at county level to get a sports scholarship.

There are no art or drama scholarships at 11+ at the school.

The music and sports scholarships are 10%. Academic can vary at the Head's discretion. The saving in tuition is barely likely to cover music lessons or coaching fees.

Is the head of the tutor college trying to get you to have more lessons? Perhaps you could do some tests with her at home, to see for yourself what standard she is.

maman2012 Thu 23-May-13 09:50:05

Thank you x

Copthallresident Thu 23-May-13 10:41:00

musu habba the situation with the London day schools which the OP faces is very different to the situation with Boarding Schools where you can indeed tout your bright / talented child around and play them off against each other for the best deal, even the most prestigious schools will do a deal, and especially the ones that are less in demand and not especially selective. However in London the pupils who are on bursaries at the indies are very bright and often talented too, and the competition for bursaries is far more intense than for ordinary places. DDs' school even goes around the local primaries to identify the very brightest and provide mentoring and enrichment activities to enable them to succeed in the entrance exam so that the opportunities don 't just go to those whose parents have spent years helping them prepare (though exams at places like Godolphin and Latymer are very much aimed at identifying ability rather than just acquired knowledge) There are generally far more than 1or 2 scholars but once again competition is very intense because of the status not the modest reduction in fees. DD may be bright enough to get in top 2% of grammar school entrants that are offered places and score in excess of the 97th percentile but it wasn't good enough to be in the top 10% of those who succeeded in her indie entrance exam and get one of the 10 scholarships. I know a few bursary pupils who are all very talented and clever and are very high achievers in spite of the odds being stacked against them in terms of their home environment . OP perhaps does not appreciate this, which is why your "joke" habba seems in very poor taste and not terribly helpful.

HabbaDabba Thu 23-May-13 10:48:25

Copthall - read the post. The 'joke' wasn't directed at her comments.

Copthallresident Thu 23-May-13 11:56:41

No It was directed at bursary pupils versus scholarship pupils as if they were not worthy of as much respect. Cheap shot.

Also misleading in OPs case as it is entirely untrue in the schools she could apply to

HabbaDabba Thu 23-May-13 12:04:35

Do you deliberately set out to look for things to be offended by?

Copthallresident Thu 23-May-13 12:13:42

No I deliberately set out to ensure that if people make glib statements that they understand the implications.....

HabbaDabba Thu 23-May-13 12:20:43


musu Thu 23-May-13 14:17:29

When I posted I was referring to scholarships available in non-selective day schools. The post about Wellington College was simply to show that even though some schools may try to give the impression of being highly selective, the truth maybe very different in reality (as is the case with WC).

hardboiled Fri 24-May-13 15:58:27

Copthallresident, you are 100% right when it comes to London.

OP, how about Twyford?

middleclassonbursary Sun 26-May-13 07:11:50

"the situation with the London day schools which the OP faces is very different to the situation with Boarding Schools where you can indeed tout your bright / talented child around and play them off against each other for the best deal, even the most prestigious schools will do a deal,"
I tend to mostly agree with copthall although IME very generous bursaries (65% + for boarding) into anywhere boarding or day London or out ion the sticks are becoming increasingly difficult to find however talented you DC's are. Even those with large bursary pots who had ambitions of "giving the best possible education to talented boys, irrespective of their family’s financial circumstances" are struggling to achieve this. The reality is that most genuinely nice children who are hard workers but who are rocket scientists, county tennis players, or grade 8 on some impossible instrument are ultimately and sadly unlikely to get a substantial bursary into anywhere.

middleclassonbursary Sun 26-May-13 07:12:46

Obviously meant it say not rocket scientists.

Copthallresident Mon 27-May-13 06:56:39

middleclass why do you think that is? Fewer parents able to afford fees and prepared to do everything in their power to prepare DCs ? That is why I really approved of DDs school's outreach programme, going out to find the most deserving pupils. Expats are still touting around the boarding schools though, scholarships if not bursaries still seem to be negotiable .

sona03 Wed 19-Jun-13 23:44:18

Hi my daughter is in year 5 and has got a level 6c in maths and level 6 in English . I would like to know the bursary does it cover the whole fees as I am unemployed

bico Thu 20-Jun-13 06:49:50

sona it totally depends on the school. Some may cover full fees plus uniform costs and cover costs of trips too. You need to contact the bursar of the school you are interested in and see what's available.

meditrina Thu 20-Jun-13 07:13:08

Bursaries are entirely at the discretion of the school. Some may make 100% awards, including curriculum trips and a uniform allowance, but awards of that scale are rare as hen's teeth.

Sme schools prefer to use their available funds to support say 3 pupils at 30% each; others may find that all their funds for a particular year are taken up by new support to existing pupils.

You need to talk to the bursars of the schools you are interested in. Ask what the highest level of award they have actually given out in recent years.

sona03 Thu 20-Jun-13 08:01:23

Thanks bico and meditrina :-)

Midlifecrisisarefun Sat 22-Jun-13 18:17:33

I've not read all posts, cooking tea! But, DS2 and DD both got bursaries for senior indie schools, both 'failed' the 11+ for state grammar!
DD was given a free place and left at 16 with 8 A to C grades. I personally believe it increased her grades on what she would have had at comp. DSs both had places at nearly full fee remission less than the child benefit
All my DC had places based on 'potential' and 'would benefit but parents cannot afford the fees'
OP Ring the school you are thinking of and have a chat..

Midlifecrisisarefun Sat 22-Jun-13 18:23:34

I missed DS1 out..he had scholarship at prep level, bursary at senior! blush

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