Preparation at 11+

At Herries it is a large part of our role to prepare our pupils for their next schools and especially for the exams they are required to sit to gain a place at these schools.

Entrance exams that our pupils are required to sit generally fall into one of three categories:

  • Transfer Tests (formerly known as 11+) - to gain a place in one of the Buckinghamshire Grammar Schools
  • The Independent Schools Examination Board Common Entrance exams - to gain a place at an Independent School which uses this exam as its entrance criteria
  • An independent school’s own entrance exam, set by the destination school and taken on the premises at the destination school.


Herries’ Preparation at 11+ Programme

Transfer Tests

As Herries is a 'Partner School' those pupils wishing to sit the Secondary School Transfer Test do so at school. There are two tests: one which contains verbal reasoning and another with non-verbal reasoning and quantitative reasoning questions. The tests are taken early in the Autumn Term. Pupils need to gain a standardised score of at least 121 to gain a place in one of the Buckinghamshire Grammar Schools such as Sir William Borlase, the Royal Grammar School, High Wycombe or Wycombe High School. These Grammar Schools are held in high esteem and GCSE and A-level results are amongst some of the best in the country.

Herries’ ISEB Common Entrance Preparation Programme

This exam consists of three papers which pupils will sit in the January of Year 6: English which is split into two separate tests to assess comprehension and creative writing skills; Maths and Science. The broad and balanced curriculum which is taught throughout the school ensures that pupils are familiar with the content of each of these papers. The second half term of the Year 6 Autumn Term is used to give pupils the opportunity to complete practice papers for these exams so that they can sit the papers in January feeling confident in both their knowledge and ability to complete the papers.

Preparation for exams set internally by Independent Senior schools

Wherever possible we obtain copies of previous years’ papers to help pupils become familiar with these tests. However they usually involve content and skills already taught throughout a pupils’ learning at Herries and especially for the other types of exam explained above.

Practice Interviews with the Headteacher

In many cases destination schools include an interview as part of their selection criteria. The Headteacher will conduct ‘mock’ interviews with pupils to ensure that they are well prepared so that they may present themselves at their best.

Parental Involvement

At Herries we involve parents at every step of the way. Early in Year 5 we invite parents to an information evening where we explain the options with regards to next schools. We explain how to register pupils for their destination schools of choice so that all the options can be kept open. We ask parents to keep us advised of possible choices so that we can ensure that each pupils is prepared for their chosen path. Again, small class sizes allow us to maintain a very personal approach so that parents can be carefully listened to and advised.

Success Rates

At Herries we pride ourselves in being able to achieve places for our pupils at secondary and senior schools across Buckinghamshire and Berkshire and beyond. Our pupils leave us knowing that they have been able to show themselves at their best and to take a place at their next school where they will be happy and successful.