Junior School


In the January before starting at the school, Reception children are invited to attend a play afternoon to help familiarise them with the school and to meet other children and members of staff in an informal, fun activity session.

Each child is then invited to attend a further session on a separate occasion when they will spend some time with a  senior member of the Infant School staff playing games to assess skills such as sorting, sequencing, ordering and matching.

5+, 6+, 7+, 8+, 9+, 10+

At any point during the year a potential pupil can be assessed for entry, and we also hold assessments on the same day as the main 11+ for the Senior School. 

During these children are asked to complete assessments in maths, English and reasoning, identical to those taken annually by all Junior School pupils (excluding Reception) in September.  From these we are able to compare results against the average for the year group your child would be entering to determine whether a place is offered. 

Before joining the Junior School your child would also be invited to spend some time with their prospective classmates.

It’s our aim to make the whole assessment procedure and positive experience for all pupils and we hope that they enjoy their time with us.

Senior School

Entry into Year 7 (Internal)

Since September 2015 pupils from The Portsmouth Grammar Junior School have been offered places at the Senior School based on continuous assessment (their progress and attainment over their time at the Junior School) and therefore do not sit the 11+ assessment. Internal pupils do still take part in the interview process and further details of this and the video are found below.

Entry into Year 7 (11+, External)

We believe strongly in the importance of recognising each child’s academic potential and seek to gain as much insight as possible into their enthusiasm and curiosity, as well their particular strengths and interests.

To help us in this, we invite each child to an interview and encourage them to bring an item of special interest to talk about.  You can find out more about the PGS Interview Experience by watching the video below:

Then on a Saturday morning early in the spring term we invite girls and boys to sit assessments in Non Verbal Reasoning, a Reading Comprehension, Mathematics and English.  We also request a reference from the child’s current school.

All candidates are automatically considered for scholarships and other academic awards.  Means-tested bursaries are also available, subject to application in advance.

Extra time is available for children with a recognised need subject to the following criteria:

Criteria for awarding extra time in Entrance Assessments 

Entry into Year 9 (13+)

We use the 11+ Entrance Assessments as a pre-test for girls and boys wishing to join the school at 13+.  Conditional places will be offered based on the 11+ results and confirmed following our own 13+ Entrance Assessment in January.   We believe that this helps families to plan ahead successfully for a change in their child’s school at 13+.

Those children who have missed taking our 11+ Assessments will be asked to take our 13+ Assessments as a pre-test. All places are dependent on satisfactory performance in the 13+ Assessments in January of the year of entry.

The 13+ Entrance Assessments involve an interview, a current school reference and written papers in English, Mathematics, Non-Verbal Reasoning and a Modern Language.

All candidates are automatically considered for scholarships and other academic awards; these may be awarded following the 13+ Assessments.  Children may also apply for scholarships in Art, Drama, Music and Sport.  Some means-tested bursaries may also be available, subject to application in advance of assessment.

Criteria for awarding extra time in Entrance Assessments

Entry into Sixth Form (16+)

Girls and boys wishing to apply to join the Sixth Form are invited to attend an interview during which we like to explore their current interests, emerging subject choices at either A level or the IB diploma, and university and career aspirations.  Candidates are asked to take a short Non Verbal Reasoning test. 

Interviews are held in November in the year preceding entry to the Sixth Form and are also available in February and March prior to GCSE.

Offers of places in the Sixth Form are conditional on performance at GCSE with the recommendation of achieving A grades in the subjects most relevant to candidates’ subjects choices at A level or Higher Level IB.

All candidates are automatically considered for scholarships in light of their GCSE results.  They may also apply for scholarships in Art, Drama, Music and Sport.  Means-tested bursaries are also available, subject to application in advance.