Frequently Asked Questions

How are pupils placed in the Grammar Stream at Swindon Academy?

  • We strongly advise any parents who are interested in the Grammar Stream to select Swindon Academy as their first choice on the Swindon Borough Council School Admissions Form and return it to Swindon Borough Council no later than 31st October 2021.
  • Offer letters are sent to parents by the Swindon Borough Council School Admissions Team on 1st March 2022. 
  • Parent must accept the offer no later than 15th March 2022.
  • Once you have accepted the place, your child will be invited to sit the Entrance Exam.  The date of the Entrance Exam will be confirmed shortly.  By holding an Entrance Exam, we ensure that pupils have the ability to cope with the demands of the Grammar Stream curriculum.
  • Parents will be notified within a few school days if their son/daughter has a place in the Grammar Stream or the main academy. 

How is the Grammar Stream different to other classes in the Academy?

Pupils who accept their place at Swindon Academy in March will be offered the opportunity to take the Entrance Exam to check their aptitude for a place in the Grammar Stream.  Those pupils whose test results suggest that they will be able to cope with the demands of the curriculum will be offered a place in the Grammar Stream.

The Grammar Stream will have a highly academic curriculum from the start of Year 7.  Pupils in the Grammar Stream will have all of their lessons together providing an ethos of high challenge and academic rigor.

Among other subjects, pupils will study separate sciences, computer science and also Latin and the Classics (subject to availability at Marlborough College).  There will also be additional expectations for preparation and homework.

How do I find out more?

To find out more about the Grammar Stream, please register your interest and you will be invited to any virtual Information Events that we are able to hold.

We are planning on holding a Parents' Information Event at Swindon Academy in September and a Parents' Information Morning at Marlborough College in October.  You can find out more details here.

Why are you asking pupils to take an additional test?

  • Whilst we will have reading, writing and maths SATs data for children who are offered a place at the academy, this often does not arrive in school until July and this is too late for deciding places in the Grammar Stream.
  • We need to ensure that pupils placed the Grammar Stream are able to cope with the highly academic curriculum.  It is important to us that children are taught at the right level for them and we would not wish to place a child under strain by teaching them at a higher learning level than they are capable of.  Pupils will therefore take a verbal reasoning and a non-verbal reasoning test.

When will I be informed if my child has passed the entrance exam?

The entrance exam usually takes place between the end of March - the end of April, on a Saturday.  The date will be confirmed shortly.  Parents will be informed if your child has a place in the Grammar Stream within a few school days.

What happens if my child doesn’t get a place in the Grammar Stream?

As you will have already completed your school choices on the Swindon Borough Council Admissions Form and selected Swindon Academy, your son/daughter will be offered a place in mainstream education at Swindon Academy by the local authority.  The academy has a strong record of school improvement, and is one of the top performing schools in North Swindon.  We are confident that your child will thrive and achieve well with the mainstream academy.

If you did not wish to accept a place at the Academy, you will need to notify Swindon Borough Council’s Admissions Team who will work with you to allocate your son/daughter a place at another secondary school in Swindon. 

How will Marlborough College add value to the Grammar Stream?

The Grammar Stream is overseen by a Steering Group, made up of senior staff from Swindon Academy and senior staff from Marlborough College.   The Steering Group oversees curriculum plans for the Grammar Stream and monitors the progress of its students.

Our partnership with Marlborough College also provides regular opportunities for pupils to take part in projects there, especially in KS4 and in to the Sixth Form.

In addition, a member of staff from Marlborough College has been appointed as the Partnership Manager, working at both Swindon Academy and Marlborough College.

Will my child have to wear a uniform?

Yes, they will wear a Swindon Academy uniform which is available for purchase at Monkhouse Schoolwear Specialists in Sanford Street, Swindon.  Each child will be allocated to one of our four Colleges, the College they are assigned will determine the colour of their school tie.  Students are notified of their College at the Transition Day in June/early July.

Is there a charge for the Grammar Stream?

No – the Grammar Stream is free to any child who has accepted a place at Swindon Academy, passed the entrance exam and is resident in Swindon, Wiltshire.



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