Best Grammar Schools In UK – A Comprehensive Guide For 2024

Welcome to our comprehensive guide to the best grammar schools in the UK for the year 2024. In this article, we will explore the top-performing grammar schools across the country, providing you with valuable insights to help you make informed decisions about your child’s education. Whether you are seeking an academically rigorous environment, a nurturing atmosphere, or a school with a specific focus, our guide will showcase the finest institutions that meet your criteria. 

Best Grammar Schools In UK

Table of Contents

What is a Grammar School?

A grammar school is a type of secondary school that admits students based on their academic ability. These schools have a long-standing tradition and are known for providing a more academically focused education. Grammar schools select their students through an entrance examination, often taken in the year before students would start secondary education. The aim is to admit students who demonstrate high academic potential. Once admitted, students receive a comprehensive education that typically emphasises traditional academic subjects such as mathematics, sciences, and humanities.

Grammar schools are usually publicly funded and do not charge tuition fees, making them accessible to students from various backgrounds. Grammar schools in the UK have faced its fair share of criticism. Many believe that very few children from low-income backgrounds get a spot in these institutions. Nevertheless, schools are continually reviewing their entry procedure to ensure they attract the most able children, rather than those best prepared to pass entrance exams.

UK Grammar School Admission Process

Grammar schools select their candidates based on the strength of their performance in the 11+ examination. Tests usually include some or all of mathematics, English, verbal reasoning and non-verbal reasoning. However, the exact entry requirements and competition for places vary, and they can change year on year. As no schools are permitted to interview the potential candidates and their parents, performance in this test will be the main admissions criteria.

A few schools do test for entry at 13+, and some also conduct tests at 16+. Ultimately, admissions is possible at other times if places are available and the child meets the academic criteria.

However, there are a number of students that do not receive offers every year for various reasons. If your child narrowly missed the required mark or has not performed as expected in the tests, or if they passed the test but did not receive an offer, there is still hope. You can actually challenge this decision through an appeal. Check out this step-by-step guide to learn more about the process. 

Best Grammar Schools in the UK

1. Wilson's School Review

With a success rate of 4 to 1, bright pupils from 75 feeder schools work hard for their place in Wilson’s School. A total of 180 places are offered each year, where Sutton children will have a slight advantage when there is a tie break. Students will have to continue their hard work as there is no automatic entry into sixth form, although most of them do make it. Upon completion, the majority of graduates move on to prestigious universities and apprenticeships. 

2. Queen Elizabeth's School, Barnet Review

Queen Elizabeth’s School, located in Barnet, United Kingdom, is a renowned grammar school with a rich history and a strong tradition of academic excellence. Founded in 1573, the school has a longstanding commitment to providing high-quality education to boys, preparing them for success in higher education and beyond.

3. The Henrietta Barnett School Review

The Henrietta Barnett School, located in Hampstead Garden Suburb, London, is a highly regarded girls’ grammar school in the United Kingdom. Established in 1911, the school is named after Henrietta Barnett, a social reformer and philanthropist, and has a longstanding reputation for academic excellence.

As a selective grammar school, The Henrietta Barnett School admits students based on academic merit. It offers a rigorous and comprehensive curriculum designed to challenge and inspire students, fostering a love for learning and critical thinking skills.

4. Pate's Grammar School Review

Pate’s Grammar School epitomises excellence in education, boasting a rich history spanning over four centuries. Its unwavering commitment to academic excellence is reflected in its top-tier performance at A Level and GCSE, alongside a vibrant culture that values engagement and participation across all disciplines. Pate’s offers students a holistic educational experience through their state-of-the-art campus, facilities, and expansive sports fields. With a strong tradition upheld while embracing innovation, Pate’s stands poised to continue its legacy of nurturing talent and curiosity, fostering lasting connections through its active alumni community. As the school looks forward to a promising future, its dedication to building on past successes signals an exciting journey ahead.

5. St Olave's and St Saviour's Grammar School Review

St Olave’s and St Saviour’s Grammar School, commonly known as St Olave’s, is a distinguished grammar school in Orpington, Greater London, United Kingdom. It is the result of a merger between St Olave’s Grammar School and St Saviour’s and St Olave’s Grammar School, bringing together two institutions with rich histories. Besides the well-known academic achievements, their sport, music, drama, DofE, clubs and societies are also very strong. 

6. Colchester Royal Grammar School Review

With roots dating back to 1206 and adorned with Royal Charters from monarchs past, Colchester Royal Grammar School blends tradition with modernity, ensuring a dynamic learning environment. From its outstanding music and drama facilities to a comprehensive sports programme, CRGS offers a well-rounded education that nurtures the talents of every student. More than just academics, the school prides itself on fostering a diverse and inclusive atmosphere where students can thrive and grow into confident, well-rounded individuals. With accolades from the Telegraph and the Good Schools Guide, CRGS stands as a testament to its commitment to preparing students for bright futures. Whether you’re considering joining at 11+ or 16+, you need to experience the CRGS spirit firsthand at one of their Open Evenings and discover the magic of life at Colchester Royal Grammar School.

7. The Tiffin Girls' School Review

The Tiffin Girls’ School stands proudly as one of the premier grammar schools in the UK, located in the vibrant educational landscape of Kingston upon Thames. Renowned for its commitment to academic excellence, Tiffin Girls’ has consistently demonstrated outstanding achievements in both traditional and contemporary subjects. The school’s rich history, coupled with a forward-thinking approach to education, has established it as a beacon of scholastic brilliance. With a dedicated faculty, state-of-the-art facilities, and a nurturing environment, Tiffin Girls’ School continues to shape the minds of its students, preparing them for success in their academic pursuits and beyond.

8. Reading School Review

Reading School has shaped the lives of countless young men for over 900 years! While the Year 13 students consistently achieve stellar results in A-Levels and GCSEs, they believe education transcends mere grades. It’s about fostering hope, nurturing character, and making a positive impact on society. At the heart of Reading’s ethos is a commitment to prioritising people over statistics. They strive to cultivate resilience, humility, and integrity in every student, equipping them not just for academic success, but for a life of purpose and service.

9. King Edward VI School, Stratford Review

Despite its modest size, King Edward VI School offers a vibrant and supportive environment where students are encouraged to thrive academically and beyond. Led by dedicated specialist teachers, the curriculum seamlessly blends traditional teaching methods with innovative approaches. This ensures a well-rounded education that prepares students for success in an ever-changing world. Beyond the classroom, K.E.S. also boasts an impressive array of extra-curricular activities, from sports to music and drama, providing students with ample opportunities to explore their passions and develop new skills. With state-of-the-art facilities and expert coaching, students regularly achieve success in national and international competitions, showcasing their talents on a global scale.

10. Altrincham Grammar School for Boys Review

Here in the Altrincham Grammar School for Boys, you’ll discover a community dedicated to providing an exceptional education for boys aged 11 to 18. With a focus on academic excellence alongside a rich tapestry of extracurricular activities, AGSB aims to nurture well-rounded individuals equipped with the skills to thrive in society. In addition, pastoral care is at the forefront, ensuring that every boy feels supported and valued in the friendly, family-like environment. 

UK Grammar Schools Ranking

Here are the best grammar schools in the UK as we enter 2024. We also have the latest list of the best UK state schools if you’re interested. 

RankSchoolTownA-level (% A*)A-level (% A*/A)GCSE (% A*/A/ 9/8/7)
1Wilson’s SchoolWallington43.982.595
2Queen Elizabeth’s School, BarnetBarnet58.289.193.3
3The Henrietta Barnett SchoolLondon37.875.397.6
4Pate’s Grammar SchoolCheltenham31.370.490.7
5St Olave’s Grammar SchoolOrpington4277.291.4
6Colchester Royal Grammar SchoolColchester35.476.885
7The Tiffin Girls’ SchoolKingston upon Thames34.371.694.4
8Reading SchoolReading34.473.188.3
9King Edward VI School, StratfordStratford-upon-Avon3371.684.4
10Altrincham Grammar School for GirlsAltrincham20.759.691.2
11King Edward VI Grammar School, ChelmsfordChelmsford26.661.287.3
12Chelmsford County High School for GirlsChelmsford2158.888.3
13Colyton Grammar SchoolColyton36.765.983.3
14King Edward VI Camp Hill School for BoysBirmingham29.764.989.3
15Kendrick SchoolReading32.262.491.2
16Tonbridge Grammar SchoolTonbridge23.263.978.7
17Lumen Christi CollegeDerry2662.579.4
18Tiffin SchoolKingston upon Thames28.765.281.5
19Dartford Grammar SchoolDartford18.460.376.3
20King Edward VI Camp Hill School for GirlsBirmingham24.460.785.9
21Altrincham Grammar School for BoysAltrincham27.664.282.5
22Friends’ School LisburnLisburn23.365.177
23The Latymer SchoolLondon28.361.786.5
24Our Lady and St Patrick’s College, KnockBelfast2863.872.1
25The Liverpool Blue Coat SchoolLiverpool29.364.978.3
26St Mary’s Grammar School, MagherafeltMagherafelt20.762.173.3
27St Dominic’s Grammar School for GirlsBelfast21.659.172.2
28Colchester County High School for GirlsColchester18.552.386.9
29Sutton Coldfield Grammar School for GirlsSutton Coldfield17.255.882.9
30Stratford Girls’ Grammar SchoolStratford-upon-Avon-5287
31Strathearn SchoolBelfast21.658.376.4
32Sullivan Upper SchoolHolywood27.161.480.9
33Nonsuch High School for GirlsCheam19.354.386.4
34St Michael’s Catholic Grammar School, FinchleyLondon24.957.383.3
35Dr Challoner’s Grammar SchoolAmersham31.96376
36Newstead Wood SchoolOrpington16.147.284.9
37Beaconsfield High SchoolBeaconsfield20.554.276.1
38Dr Challoner’s High SchoolLittle Chalfont18.955.477.6
39St Louis Grammar SchoolBallymena--68.1
40Banbridge AcademyBanbridge2759.870
41Chesham Grammar SchoolChesham1648.574.9
42Rainey Endowed School, MagherafeltMagherafelt19.754.568.6
43Sutton Grammar SchoolSutton23.257.776.4
44Sir William Borlase’s Grammar SchoolMarlow20.153.676.4
45The Judd SchoolTonbridge21.854.474.3
46Rugby High SchoolRugby11.445.678.9
47King Edward VI Five Ways SchoolBirmingham235774
48Wallington High School for GirlsWallington17.750.381.7
49Sale Grammar SchoolSale19.955.568.3
50Bexley Grammar SchoolWelling1345.670.1
51Langley Grammar SchoolLangley2253.276.9
52The Rochester Grammar SchoolRochester13.255.362.4
53Bishop Vesey’s Grammar SchoolSutton Coldfield23.35670.1
54The Royal Grammar School, High WycombeHigh Wycombe24.255.174.7
55Aylesbury High SchoolAylesbury16.247.976.5
56Wycombe High SchoolHigh Wycombe16.451.668.7
57Belfast Royal AcademyBelfast18.353.163.5
58Wallington County Grammar SchoolWallington16.651.470.2
59Westcliff High School for BoysWestcliff-on-Sea15.14779.1
60Sir Thomas Rich’s SchoolGloucester21.452.972.2
61Newport Girls’ High SchoolNewport21.247.882
62Ripon Grammar SchoolRipon18.65558.9
63Woodford County High SchoolWoodford Green172780
64Aquinas Diocesan Grammar SchoolBelfast31.257.467.8
65Dalriada SchoolBallymoney14.749.663.8
66Loreto Grammar SchoolAltrincham15.345.171.6
67Aylesbury Grammar SchoolAylesbury20.351.968
68Tunbridge Wells Girls’ Grammar SchoolTunbridge Wells15.144.966.1
69Ballymena AcademyBallymena20.153.156.1
70Royal Latin SchoolBuckingham184867
71Sir Henry Floyd Grammar SchoolAylesbury17.246.668
72Heckmondwike Grammar SchoolHeckmondwike--74
73Omagh AcademyOmagh17.746.864.8
74Bishop Wordsworth’s SchoolSalisbury21.348.863.6
75The Skinners’ School, Tunbridge WellsTunbridge Wells19.944.660.8
76Ballyclare High SchoolBallyclare18.350.753
77Royal School ArmaghArmagh-51.561.5
78Lancaster Girls’ Grammar SchoolLancaster16.841.463.9
79Dane Court Grammar SchoolBroadstairs1348.255.2
80Herschel Grammar SchoolSlough164174
81Southend High School For BoysSouthend-on-Sea15.742.370.4
82John Hampden Grammar SchoolHigh Wycombe10.240.364.1
83The Wallace High SchoolLisburn14.64354.1
84Dartford Grammar School for GirlsDartford83373
85Upton Court Grammar SchoolSlough15.441.367.4
86Chislehurst and Sidcup Grammar SchoolSidcup1339.465.4
87Denmark Road High SchoolGloucester11.235.473.4
88Westcliff High School for GirlsWestcliff-on-Sea11.936.675
89Torquay Girls’ Grammar SchoolTorquay11.339.561.3
90Methodist College BelfastBelfast18.85058.2
91Enniskillen Royal Grammar School (previously Portora Royal School)Enniskillen12.941.553.4
92Bournemouth School for GirlsBournemouth15.543.859.5
93Lawrence Sheriff SchoolRugby11.736.765.2
94Alcester Grammar SchoolAlcester13.137.762.6
95Ilford County High SchoolIlford13.435.975.3
96Urmston GrammarManchester--68
97Devonport High School for GirlsPlymouth15.137.869.2
98The King’s School, GranthamGrantham19.340.256.8
99Queen Mary’s High School, WalsallWalsall9.732.671.3
100Lancaster Royal Grammar SchoolLancaster17.247.761
101Wolverhampton Girls’ High SchoolWolverhampton12.435.776.5
102Townley Grammar SchoolBexleyheath10.238.368.5
103Stroud High SchoolStroud12.636.367.3
104Parkstone Grammar SchoolPoole13.737.658.9
105Weald of Kent Grammar SchoolTonbridge14.937.760.2
106Southend High School for GirlsSouthend-on-Sea9.831.268.5
107Invicta Grammar SchoolMaidstone--48
108South Wilts Grammar School for GirlsSalisbury1031.269.1
109Queen Mary’s Grammar School, WalsallWalsall12.735.168.8
110The Crypt SchoolGloucester11.340.159.3
111Highworth Grammar SchoolAshford--57.3
112St Ambrose CollegeAltrincham--66
113Haberdashers’ AdamsNewport15.640.663.9
114St Bernard’s Catholic Grammar SchoolSlough11.630.175.8
115Kesteven and Grantham Girls’ SchoolGrantham10.334.553.7
116Sir Joseph Williamson’s Mathematical SchoolRochester1541.557
117Glenlola Collegiate SchoolBangor9.134.854.6
118Caistor Grammar SchoolCaistor10.137.555.5
119Kesteven and Sleaford High SchoolSleaford12.641.347
120Churston Ferrers Grammar SchoolBrixham16.43756.5
121West Kirby Grammar SchoolWest Kirby9.633.551.8
122Limavady Grammar SchoolLimavady7.736.252.3
123Bourne Grammar SchoolBourne9.236.155.4
124Bacup and Rawtenstall Grammar SchoolRossendale--60.9
125Burnham Grammar SchoolBurnham-3156
126Calday Grange Grammar SchoolWest Kirby--48.2
127Clitheroe Royal Grammar SchoolClitheroe9.13059.3
128Wirral Grammar School for GirlsBebington9.129.259.5
129Devonport High School for BoysPlymouth--54.4
130Highsted Grammar SchoolSittingbourne--28.6
131Beths Grammar SchoolBexley926.863
132Marling SchoolStroud-3154
133Torquay Boys’ Grammar SchoolTorquay--47.8
134Cranbrook SchoolCranbrook--46.3
135Rainham Mark Grammar SchoolGillingham10.335.639.6
136Maidstone Grammar SchoolMaidstone8.329.843.1
137Spalding High SchoolSpalding--45
138Queen Elizabeth’s High School, GainsboroughGainsborough4.229.241.5
139The Langton Grammar School for BoysCanterbury-3056
140Tunbridge Wells Grammar School for BoysTunbridge Wells931.633.8
141The Folkestone School for GirlsFolkestone-3046.8
142Queen Elizabeth’s Grammar School, FavershamFaversham1028.436
143The Crossley Heath SchoolHalifax10.824.154
144King Edward VI Handsworth Grammar School for BoysBirmingham7.321.958.2
145North Halifax Grammar SchoolHalifax8.627.150.1
146Plymouth High School for GirlsPlymouth6.323.447.7
147Maidstone Grammar School for GirlsMaidstone-2641.6
148Sir Roger Manwood’s SchoolSandwich--36.6
149Barton Court Grammar SchoolCanterbury6.325.735.9
150Oakwood Park Grammar SchoolMaidstone6.523.346
151St Joseph’s College, Stoke-on-TrentStoke-on-Trent5.820.345.3
152Gravesend Grammar SchoolGravesend5.42046.3
153Borden Grammar SchoolSittingbourne--36
154Chatham and Clarendon Grammar SchoolRamsgate-2337
155Mayfield Grammar SchoolGravesend517.544.3
156Holcombe Grammar SchoolChatham4.621.926.5

How are the Rankings Measured?

This league table was completed based on the 2023 A-Levels results and the 2023 GCSE results. With that being said, the ranking acts merely as a point of reference. School selection should not be done solely based on academic results. There is much more to education than that. 

Frequently Asked Questions about UK Grammar Schools

To apply for a grammar school, you typically need to register your child for the school’s entrance examination, which is usually taken in the year before they would start secondary education. Each grammar school has its own admission process, so it’s important to check the specific requirements and deadlines of the schools you are interested in.

Grammar schools are designed for academically able students, but the level of required ability can vary between schools. Some grammar schools have more stringent entrance requirements than others.

Yes, grammar schools in the UK are state-funded and, like other state schools, do not charge tuition fees. However, there may be additional costs for uniforms, textbooks, and extracurricular activities.

Grammar schools have a track record of sending a higher proportion of their students to top universities compared to non-selective schools. However, it’s important to note that admission to top universities is competitive, and other factors such as academic performance, extracurricular involvement, and personal statements also play a significant role in the university application process.

Grammar schools can be either single-sex or co-educational. The admission policies regarding gender vary between schools, so it’s necessary to research the specific schools you are interested in to determine their gender policies.

Apply To The Top Schools In The UK Today

Speak to us today for free application assistance and education advice. Our expert consultants are more than happy to help.

Subscribe For Our FREE Insider UK Study Advice

Apply To The School Of Your Choice Today!

Speak to us today for free application assistance and education advice. Our expert consultants are more than happy to help!

Scroll to Top