Bolton School Senior Boys

Entrance Testing for Autumn 2021 Entry

Dear parent(s) and guardian(s)

Following the government’s introduction of the national lockdown, we have been seeking clarification from the Department of Education about whether or not our Entrance Examination can go ahead. Yesterday, we were pleased to receive the following reply:

Tests can continue to operate for in-year admissions to selective schools. Where ever possible such tests should be delivered remotely. If for some reason this is not possible, admission authorities should follow the protective health measures set out within the guidance on assessment processes for selective school admissions and the actions for schools during the coronavirus outbreak. Where ever possible the use of public transport should be avoided.

Therefore, we are offering two routes for candidates to take in order to sit the Entrance Examination for School. The timing of your Entrance Examination will be the same whichever route you choose.

  1. Those boys who have access to the internet via a computer/ laptop and a second device (such as an ipad or phone) on which they can Zoom will be able to take the examination at home if they and their parents choose this route. The examination on line will be similar but not the same as the Entrance Examination in that it will test Non Verbal Reasoning, Verbal Reasoning, Spatial Awareness and Quantitative Skills. The access to Zoom is essential so that we can invigilate the boys as they take the examination on line and also so we can offer some advice on logging on to the tests. We would send instructions about how to access the material and how to ensure that the invigilator can see them.

  2. Those boys who do not have access to the internet via a computer/ laptop as well as a second device or those boys who want to sit the Entrance Examination in the manner in which they have practised it can do the normal Entrance Examination in school. There will be very small numbers (10 at a time to be invigilated in rooms in which there will only be the examiner and one other candidate). All the measures which were previously in place (such as the wearing of masks, the hand sanitisation on entry and the social distancing throughout) will remain in place. We believe this will be safe and it is in line with Government guidelines during lockdown. Your journey to school is classed as essential travel.  As before, anyone who has Covid symptoms or who has had a positive test and is self-isolating must not attend on site and another date will be found for them.

You will be sent examinations times early next week. You will be on one of four days from Thursday 14th January (the original Entrance Examination day) to Tuesday 19th January.

A link to a Google form has been emailed to those who have signed up to the Entrance Examination. Please complete this to indicate which route you want your son to take by 7pm on Sunday 10th January. If no response is received by this cut off point, we will assume that your son will be attending his allocated session in person at school. 

We hope that parents and boys will understand the reasons for these changes and for the delay in announcing them whilst we sought official guidance on what to do. We are sorry for any inconvenience caused and look forward to seeing your son in person or on Zoom in the weeks ahead.

Thank you for your attention in this matter.

Mr Philip Britton, Headmaster