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Will My Child Pass The 11 Plus?

Will My Child Pass The 11 Plus?

If you’re hoping to get your child into a grammar or selective independent school, there’s probably one big question at the top of your mind: will your child pass the 11 Plus?

While none of us have a crystal ball, we can help to give you a clearer idea. Here, we’ll look at what percentage of pupils pass the 11 Plus exams, what the pass mark is and more.

Psst! An experienced 11 Plus tutor can help your child to prepare for their exam, increasing their confidence and likelihood of success.

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What percentage of pupils pass the 11 Plus?

Around 30% of pupils pass the 11 Plus each year.

But this is just a rough guide – the pass rate can change year on year, and will also vary depending on your location and the exam board administering your child’s test.

A higher proportion of pupils will typically pass the exam in areas where there are lots of grammar schools, as there will be more spaces available. For instance, around 11 authorities – including Kent – are classed as ‘highly selective.’ This means that more than 25% of pupils attend grammar schools.

On the other hand, areas with a high population and fewer grammar schools – like London – can be very competitive. In some areas of London, there are more than 30 pupils competing for one place!

What is the pass mark for the 11 Plus?

The average pass mark for the 11 Plus is usually around 80%.

That said, there’s actually no set pass mark. Rather, each school will decide its own pass mark every year.

Usually, they’ll rank each student from best to worst, and allocate places starting with the highest-scoring student. In this way, the final student to be offered a place will determine the pass mark for that school that year.

With this in mind, you’ll often find that even schools in the same trust or county have different pass marks for the same exam. So, your child may pass the exam for one school but not another.

Just bear in mind that schools may also use other factors to determine who gets in alongside the 11 Plus exam results – such as where your child lives and whether they already have a sibling at the school.

Young girl studies to pass her 11 Plus

What score do you need to pass the 11 Plus?

As a rough guide, you’re looking at a minimum score of around 110 in all papers to pass the 11 Plus.

But this is just a rough estimate, as the score that’s needed to pass the 11 Plus will again change from school to school.

Most schools use standardised – also known as age-adjusted – scoring. This is a complex statistical process that aims to remove all variables from test scores to make the exam an even playing field. 

In essence, your child’s score will be adjusted slightly to reflect any age advantage, as there can be almost a year between the oldest and youngest applicants. 

Similarly, although exam boards try to maintain the difficulty level of their papers each year, this isn’t an exact science. So, if all pupils do significantly better or worse than in previous years, standardised scoring will ensure that there aren’t more pupils being offered a place than there are places.

Could your child pass the 11 Plus?

The 11 Plus exams are extensive and challenging. However, your child’s success in them isn’t completely out of your control.

Thoroughly preparing your child for the 11 Plus will give them the best possible chance of passing.

  • Start early – practice makes perfect. Most experts recommend starting 11 Plus preparation in Year 4 or at the latest, the beginning of Year 5.

  • Cover the whole syllabus – find out exactly what your child’s exam board will cover, and go through the syllabus strategically with them.

  • Use past papers introducing your child to practice papers will get them used to the exam format and answering questions in timed conditions.

11 Plus tuition can also vastly improve your child’s chances of passing the 11 Plus. They’ll have in-depth knowledge about each exam board, the competitiveness in your area and the format of the exam.

Better still, they’ll be able to assess your child’s strengths and weaknesses, and come up with a tailored learning plan to make sure they’re thoroughly prepared ahead of the big day.

Head over to our guide on how to pass the 11 Plus to learn more.

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Will my child pass the 11 Plus?

As you can see, it’s impossible to know for sure whether your child will pass the 11 Plus. 

It all depends on factors including:

  • Their performance on the day

  • How many pupils take the exam in your area

  • How many places are available in your area

  • Their performance in comparison to other pupils

The best way to establish how likely your child is to pass is to look at previous years’ pass marks for your child’s chosen school. Often, you can find these on the school’s website.

Although the pass mark will change year to year, looking at previous pass marks can give you a rough idea of how competitive the 11 Plus is for your area.

You can then compare them with your child’s scores on practice papers to see whether they’re close to hitting the typical pass marks for their chosen school.

A knowledgeable 11 Plus tutor from your area will also be able to help you understand whether your child is likely to pass the 11 Plus. They’ll have experience helping other children to get into your child’s chosen school, and will be able to thoroughly assess your child to see what improvements they need to make to gain entry.

Find a tutor to help your child pass the 11 Plus

The 11 Plus exams are extensive and hard. After all, they’re designed to help schools identify the children who are performing at the top of their age group.

However, there are ways to increase the likelihood that your child will pass the 11 Plus.

A dedicated 11 Plus tutor will be able to take the pressure off yourself and your child, with one-to-one, targeted 11 Plus prep.

From week-by-week plans, to practice exams, our handpicked tutors will support your child every step of the way, with a personalised teaching plan to help them get into their first-choice school.

Just click the button below to register and find a tutor who can guide your child to exam success.

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FAQs

How hard is it to pass 11 Plus?

The 11 Plus is designed to be hard, as its purpose is to help schools to identify children who are performing at the top of their age group.

That said, how hard it is to pass the 11 Plus will depend on the density of grammar schools in your area – areas where there are many children competing for just a few places will be the most competitive.

Can an average student pass the 11 Plus?

That depends on how much work they’re willing to put in, as well as how competitive the schools are in your area.

With the right preparation, an average child may well be able to pass the 11 Plus, especially in areas that have a high density of grammar schools.

What is the minimum score for the 11+ exam?

The minimum score for the 11+ exam can vary depending on the school and the year.

However, as a rough guide, you’re likely to need at least a score of around 110 in all papers.

How do I know if my child will pass the 11+?

It’s impossible to know for sure if your child will pass the 11+. But you can get a rough idea by looking at the pass marks for your child’s top-choice school from previous years, and comparing this to your child’s scores in practice papers.

A tutor will also be able to give you a realistic view of how likely your child will be to pass the 11+ exam in your area.

What are the odds of passing the 11 Plus exam?

The average odds of passing the 11 Plus exam are around 30%. But this can vary widely depending on your location and the school you’re applying to.

As an example, in some areas that have a high density of grammar schools – like Kent – 25% of students attend grammar schools. On the other hand, some parts of London see 30 students competing for just one space.

How can I help my child pass the 11+?

You can help your child to pass the 11+ by making sure they’re fully prepared. 

Start preparing them early, make sure that you cover every element of the syllabus strategically and consider hiring a tutor to help your child pass.

A tutor will use their experience and knowledge to create a tailored learning plan for your child. They’ll also be able to support your child in areas where you’re not as confident, maximising their chances of success.

Head over to our article on when to start tutoring for the 11 Plus to learn more.

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Imogen Beech

Imogen Beech

13th Jun 2024