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Grammar Schools in Medway Council: Complete Guide 

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

About Medway Council Grammar Schools

Making the right choice between different grammar schools can be a tough decision for parents. Whilst all grammar schools offer great starts for children, it is often challenging to find comprehensive information concerning the schools available and the best options for your children.

This guide aims to provide clear and concise information regarding the grammar schools in the Medway Council area. Grammar schools in Medway use their own 11+ exam. However, if you are interested in the grammar schools in Kent, outside of Medway, you can find out more information about the Kent Test here

There are six grammar schools in Medway that use the 11+ as their entrance exam: Chatham Grammar School, Fort Pitt Grammar School, Holcombe Grammar School, Rainham Mark Grammar School, Rochester Grammar School, and Sir Joseph Williamson’s Mathematical School. 

In the coming sections of this article, the below listed key terms mean the following:

  • CAF: Common Application Form, the form you must submit to your local authority listing the schools of your choice in order of preference 
  • PAN: Published Admission Number, the number of places available for Year 7 entry in 2024 at 11 plus (11+) level
  • EHCP: Education, Health and Care Plan, a legal document that describes a person’s special educational needs
  • Pupil Premium: a grant that improves educational outcomes for disadvantaged pupils
  • PLAC: (previously) looked after children

Key information for 2024 entry into Medway Grammar Schools at 11 plus (11+)

Important dates:

  • Registration deadline & portal: 30 June 2023, Medway Council
  • Exam dates: 12-13 September 2023 (16-17 September for children who do not attend a Medway primary school) 
  • Academic test results: 3 October 2023
  • CAF deadline: 31 October 2023
  • National school offer day: 1 March 2024

Admissions information:

  • Scoring: scores are age-standardised and ranked- the 180 candidates with the highest scores are automatically considered the priority group for their chosen school
  • Eligibility criteria: Year 6, within the cut-off distance
  • Priority criteria: (dependent on the school) 
  • Appeals: reviewed by an independent panel
  • Contact details: 01634 333 333, [email protected], www.medway.gov.uk

Exam format for the Medway 11 plus (11+) entrance exam

The grammar schools in Medway use their own 11+ exam called the Medway Test. This test consists of three papers:

  • Extended writing (40 minutes)
  • Verbal reasoning (1 hour)
  • Maths and non-verbal reasoning (1 hour)

For the extended writing paper, your child will be given a prompt and they must demonstrate their creative writing skills. This prompt can range from a number of different genres and styles, such as fiction (writing or continuing a story), writing about an image, a newspaper article, a journal entry, a persuasive letter or recounting an experience. 

Your child must show their knowledge of a range of writing features, in line with the spelling, punctuation, and grammar National Curriculum expectations for Year 6

The maths and non-verbal reasoning paper is supplied by GL Assessment. The maths questions, in these entrance exams, are based on the Key Stage 2 National Curriculum objectives for Years 5 and 6. Non-verbal reasoning tests your child’s visual problem-solving abilities through sequential pattern recognition as well as logical and spatial thinking. These questions are in multiple-choice format.

The verbal reasoning paper is also supplied by GL Assessment. Verbal reasoning assesses your child’s language-based problem-solving abilities by testing their vocabulary, spelling, arithmetic, and pattern recognition skills.

The Medway Test is designed to select the top 23% highest-academically performing children in their year group (up to another 2% can be selected through the review process). The pass mark is determined once the tests have be marked and the scores are ranked. 

Chatham Grammar School

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Image property of Chatham Grammar, www.chathamgrammar.org.uk

School type: girls’ grammar (becoming mixed from 2024 onwards)

Number of pupils: 900+

Ages: 11-18

PAN: 150

Headteacher: Wendy Walters

Address: Rainham Road, Chatham, Kent, ME5 7EH

Catchment area: this school does not have a defined catchment area

Priority criteria in rank order: PLAC; children with a sibling attending a UKAT academy; children of permanent staff members at any UKAT academy; children who live closest to the school

2022 Results: GCSE: 45% of students achieved grades 9-7, A Level: 57% of students achieved grades A*-B

Ofsted ranking: Good

School’s contact details: 01634 851262, [email protected], www.chathamgrammar.org.uk

Fort Pitt Grammar School

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Image property of Tes, www.tes.com

School type: girls’ grammar (becoming mixed for 2024 onwards)

Number of pupils: 900+

Ages: 11-18

PAN: 150

Headteacher: Nicky Archer

Address: Fort Pitt Hill, Chatham, Kent ME4 6TJ

Catchment area: this school does not have a defined catchment area

Priority criteria in rank order: PLAC; children with a sibling at the school; children of permanent staff members; children who live within 2 miles of the school; children who live in one of the school’s named parishes; all other eligible children, ranked in order of who lives closest to the school

Ofsted ranking: Outstanding

School’s contact details: 01634 842 359, [email protected], www.fortpitt.co.uk

Holcombe Grammar School

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Image property of Tes, www.tes.com

School type: boys’ grammar (becoming mixed for 2024 onwards)

Number of pupils: 1,000+

Ages: 11-18

PAN: 150

Headteacher: Lee Preston

Address: Letchworth Avenue, Chatham, Kent, ME4 6JB

Catchment area: this school does not have a defined catchment area

Priority criteria in rank order: PLAC; children who have a sibling at the school; children who attend any primary school in the Thinking Schools’ Academy Trust; children of permanent staff members; children with valid medical reasons to attend; children who live closest to the school

Ofsted ranking: Good

School’s contact details: +44 333 360 2130, [email protected], www.holcombegrammar.org.uk

Rainham Mark Grammar School

RMGS 16 NEW
Image property of Scope Architecture, www.scopearchitecture.co.uk

School type: mixed grammar

Number of pupils: 1,550+

Ages: 11-18

PAN: 235

The Sunday Times Parent Power National Rank: 202

Headteacher: Lisa Barker

Address: Pump Lane, Rainham, Gillingham, Kent ME8 7AJ

Catchment area: this school does not have a defined catchment area

Priority criteria in rank order: PLAC; children who are eligible for free school meals; children who have a sibling at the school; children who have a valid medical reason for attending the school; children of permanent staff members; children who live the closest to the school

2022 Results: GCSE: 55.3% of students achieved grades 9-7, A Level: 69.8% of students achieved grades A*-B

Ofsted ranking: Good

School’s contact details: 01634 364 151, [email protected], www.rainhammark.com

Rochester Grammar School

Image property of Rochester Grammar School, www.rochestergrammar.org.uk

School type: girls’ grammar (mixed sixth form)

Number of pupils: 1,200+

Ages: 11-18

PAN: 205

The Sunday Times Parent Power National Rank: 64

Headteacher: Clare Brinklow

Address: Maidstone Road, Rochester, ME1 3BY

Catchment area: this school does not have a defined catchment area

Priority criteria in rank order: PLAC; children eligible for Pupil Premium; children who have a sibling at the school; children who attend a primary school in the Thinking Schools Academy Trust; children of permanent staff members; children with a valid medical reason to attend; children who live closest to the school

2022 Results: GCSE: 63.7% of students achieved grades 9-7, A Level: 90.1% of students achieved grades A*-B

Ofsted ranking: Good

School’s contact details: 0333 360 2120, [email protected], www.rochestergrammar.org.uk

Sir Joseph Williamson’s Mathematical School

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Image property of Sir Joseph Williamson's Mathematical School, www.sjwms.org.uk

School type: boys’ grammar

Number of pupils: 1,200+

Ages: 11-18

PAN: 203

The Sunday Times Parent Power National Rank: 129

Headteacher: Eliot Hodges

Address: Maidstone Road, Rochester, ME1 3EL

Catchment area: there is no defined catchment area for this school

Priority criteria in rank order: PLAC; children who have a sibling at the school; children who have a valid medical reason for attending; children of permanent staff members; children who live the closest to the school

2022 Results: GCSE: 56.2% of students achieved grades 9-7, A Level: 80% of students achieved grades A*-B

Ofsted ranking: Outstanding

School’s contact details: 01634 844 008, [email protected], www.sjwms.org.uk

Examberry Papers

The most effective way to prepare for Medway Council’s 11+ entrance exam is to use practice tests written by experts.

Each of our practice tests:

For 11+ Medway Test preparation, we recommend the following packs:

The Medway Test 11+ Practice Papers

Key Recommendations

Further Recommendations

Creative Writing Course

Find out more about Examberry’s in-person creative writing tuition courses for 11+ preparation: please click here.

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