11 Plus Schools

Essex 11 Plus

For Entry in 2022

The Schools Admissions Code, that came into effect in 2012, stated that by law, schools must take all reasonable steps to inform parents of the outcome of tests before the closing deadline for the Common Application form (CAF) on October 31st.

Essex and Southend grammar school admissions are managed by the Consortium of Selective Schools in Essex (CSSE), Telephone: 01245 348257. The office is open 9am to 4.30pm Monday to Friday, term time only.

The schools have one common selection test except from Chelmsford County High School for Girls, who have opted to administer their own tests from 2013. All selective places are awarded on the basis of a pupil’s ability, as defined by their test score.
Also The King John School, which is partially selective school, administers its own admission’s test.

Beyond that, places are allocated according to the criteria of the individual schools, all of which vary. All the links below take you to the Admissions Policies of the schools in the Consortium.

If you wish your child to take the 11+ test, you need to complete not only the CAF but also a Supplementary Information Form in order to register for the selective test. The form can be completed on-line on the CSSE website or can be obtained from the CSSE or any school that offers selective places. For Chelmsford County High; the form can be downloaded from the school’s website.

N.B. If you are applying for both a selective and non-selective place at the same school it counts as a single preference on the CAF (Common Application Form), not two preferences.

Chelmsford County High School for Girls

Chelmsford County High School is part of a group of Grammar schools who will be using a common admissions test on the same date. The other schools in this group are Woodford County High School for Girls, Ilford County High School for Boys, the Slough Consortium of Grammar schools, Reading School and Kendrick. There are other schools in the wider geographical area that will use the same test. Applicants to these schools may only take the test once. The raw marks will be shared with the schools. If a child is found to have taken the test twice, the raw scores for the first attempt will be used.

Applicants who wish to attend a test for another school on the same day will not be permitted to sit the test at CCHS on an alternative date. This will not be classed as an exceptional circumstance.

Admissions Information for September 2022 entry

Help to boost your child’s exam performance and confidence. Book our CEM style mock exams


Places 150 in Year 7
Closing date for applications LA forms: 31st October 2021
Test Registration closing date: Wed 23rd June 2021 at 4pm
Registration opens Fri 30th April 2021
Open Evening TBC
11+ test dates Saturday 11th September 2021
Test Types Two 60 minute papers, each one comprising a mixture of questions testing:
Verbal ability (tests vocabulary, comprehension, verbal reasoning)
Numerical reasoning (tests the ability to solve mathematical problems)
Non-verbal reasoning (tests the ability to see how objects relate to each other)
The verbal reasoning does not consist of the usual verbal reasoning questions, but comprises of an English component consisting of comprehension and literacy.
Familiarisation Test
Pass Mark The first 80% of places will be allocated in order of rank by the academic score to girls living within 12.5 miles radius of the school. The next 20% of places will be allocated from the ranked list irrespective of distance.
Test Format Multiple Choice
Examiner CEM 11 Plus – University of Durham
11+ Test Results Posted Mid October 2021
Appeals Information about how to appeal against a refusal of a school place will be sent to you by your Local
Authority when you receive your secondary school offer in March 2020. For entry in September 2016, 843 sat the test, 706 indicated CCHS as a preference, 16 appeals were heard and none were successful.
For entry in September 2015, 808 sat the test, 589 indicated CCHS as their preference, only one appeal was heard which was unsuccessful.
Allocations 1st March 2022
Admissions Chelmsford County High School
Broomfield Road
Tel: 01245 352592
Admissions Policy 2022
Essex Council
Tel: 0845 603 2200
Email: admissions@essex.gov.uk
Practice Materials CEM Practice Materials

NEW CEM Practice Materials now available on our online shop

The Consortium of Selective Schools in Essex (CSSE)

In 2014, the CSSE announced that there will be changes in their testing arrangements. The papers are more in line with KS2 Level 5 in English and Maths. There will be not be a Verbal Reasoning paper on its own; but the English paper will incorporate an element of verbal reasoning.

There will be two papers, English and Maths, each 1 hour long and worth 60 marks.
The English paper will comprise:
- Comprehension, grammar and vocabulary questions
- Two pieces of creative writing
- Applied reasoning (literacy/verbal)

The Maths paper will comprise:
- Questions consistent with KS2 National Curriculum
- Applied reasoning (maths/non-verbal reasoning)

Details can be found on the CSSE website here

Admissions Information for September 2022 entry

Closing date for applications LA forms: 31st October 2021
Test Registration closing date: Wed 1st July 2020
CSSE SIF registration will open for 2021 entry from 18th May 2021
11+ test Date Sat 18th September 2021
Test Types Maths and English, 60 mins each (English includes creative writing). Maths is standard format, English contains a mixture of multiple choice and standard format questions.
Test Format Maths – standard
English – Mixture of multiple choice/standard
Examiner Papers are written by teachers from the schools (Actual Past exam papers for Maths and English can be purchased from the Consortium website)
11+ Test Results sent on Thursday 14th October
Allocations 2nd March 2022
Admissions Essex Consortium
Tel: 01245 348257
CSSE 11+ Guide 2022
Essex Council
Tel: 0845 603 2200
Email: admissions@essex.gov.uk
Appropriate Practice Materials Maths
Free familiarisation papers

More information and advice can also be found in the Essex section of the 11+ Forum

Historical Pass Marks as at entry 2017 see Here

Further information is also given below.

School information

Note that King Edward VI and the Royal Grammar School, are both co-educational in the 6th form.
*Enquiry Visit – a re-visit to discuss your application.

School Admissions Gender Places Open Evening
King Edward VI Grammar School
Broomfield Road,
(01245) 353510
Admissions Policy 2022 Boys 150 places in Year 7 Tours: 6/7th – 8/9th July 2021
Colchester County High School For Girls
Norman Way,
01206 576973
Admissions Policy 2022 Girls 192 places in Year 7 Tours: 5th – 9th July 2021
Colchester Royal Grammar School
6 Lexden Road,
01206 509100
Admissions Policy 2022 Boys 128 places in Year 7 29th June 2021

The King John School, Benfleet

The King John School is a partially selective mixed school, but not part of the CSSE. The school has 320 places in Year 7. Children who live in catchment for the school, or who have brothers or sisters already attending the school, do not need to take the entrance test and are given priority. Up to 15% are selected by general ability. In the event of two or more children with tie scores, priority is given to the child living closest to the school.

Admissions Information for September 2022 entry

Places 320 places
Open Day Saturday 12th September 2020, 9.00am – 1.00pm
Closing Date Test Registration – Monday 13th September 2021
(registration opens TBC)
CAF form – 31st October 2021
Test Dates Sat 2nd October 2021
Test Type Verbal Reasoning (multiple choice) 50 minutes
Test Format Multiple Choice
Examiner GL Assessment (NFER)
Results Posted by 15th October 2021
Allocation 2nd March 2022
Admissions The King John School
Admissions Policy 2022
Appropriate Practice Materials Verbal Reasoning

Southend Schools

The 11+ test for Southend schools are administered by CSSE (The Consortium of Selective Schools in Essex), see details above for the 11+ test.

See also Southend Borough Council website for details.

There are four fully selective grammar schools in Southend – the Southend and Westcliff High Schools for Girls and Boys. In addition there are two partially selective schools – Cecil Jones College and Shoeburyness High School, and two “bilateral” schools where a grammar stream runs alongside non-selective streams – St. Bernard’s High School and St. Thomas More High School.

All Southend schools are co-educational in the 6th form.

The Southend and Westcliff Grammar Schools are having to make changes to their admission arrangements because it is no longer a legal requirement to give priority to children attending Southend Primary Schools. These new arrangements will affect children applying for admission in September 2013 and subsequent years.

*Enquiry visit – a re-visit to dicuss your application

School Admissions Gender Places Open Evening
Southend High School for Boys
Prittlewell Chase
01702 606200
Admissions Policy 2022 Boys only 150 places in Year 7 24th June 2021
4:30pm – 8pm
Southend High School for Girls
Southchurch Boulevard
01702 588852
Admissions Policy 2022 Girls only 180 places in Year 7 Thurs 1st July 2021
Cecil Jones College
Eastern Avenue,
Southend on Sea,
01702 440000
Admissions Policy 2022 Mixed 200 places in Year 7, of which 20 are selected on general ability TBC
Shoeburyness High School
Caulfield Road,
01702 292286
Admissions Policy 2021 Mixed Partially selective, 310 places in Year 7 of which 31 are selected on general ability TBC
St. Bernards High School
Milton Road,
01702 343583
Admissions Policy 2022 Girls Catholic, 145 places in Year 7 of which 63 are selective 7th July 2021 6-9pm
St. Thomas More High School
Kenilworth Gardens
01702 344933
Admissions Policy 2021 Boys Catholic, 150 places in Year 7 of which 30 are selective 8th July 2021 5-8pm
Westcliff High School for Boys
01702 475443
Admissions Policy 2021 Boys only 154 places in Year 7 29th June 2021 5-9pm
Westcliff High School for Girls
Kenilworth Gardens,
01702 476 026
Admissions Policy 2021 Girls only 184 places in Year 7 6th July 2021 5.45-9pm

Essex 11+ – Further Information

With grateful thanks to our 11+ Forum member “Moved” for her contribution to this page.

The Essex 11+ test is taken in one of the local high schools. You can choose which school – it does not have to be your first choice, within the limit of girls at Girls Schools and boys at Boys Schools.

Nervous children may be better at St. Bernard’s and St. Thomas More as fewer children take the exam there.

Only Colchester Royal Grammar School has a 13+ entry system.

Format of the exam

The Headteachers of the schools believe that children should have a sound understanding of the National Curriculum Maths and English stage 2 level 4/5.
Be familiar with reading and comprehension , with a reading age greater than 11.
Understand the principles of spelling, punctuation and grammar.


The English papers are written by one of the teachers from the Essex High Schools. The previous two years’ English papers can be purchased from the Consortium of Selective Schools in Essex -CSSE but older papers are not available. Suitable practice material for the English paper can be hard to obtain and many local tutors write their own papers in the appropriate format.

The paper usually has about 30 marks allocated to comprehension skills. These are often subtle and quite difficult. The format is tick box style, with some written answers: for example,

  • Wording Matching “Find the word in the text that means …” (10+ marks)
  • Punctuating a piece of direct speech (6-8 marks)

The English paper is a comprehension, usually from a 19th century text. There are 50 marks. Past texts used for comprehension have been as follows:

  • 1997 The Road to Wigan Pier – George Orwell (old style paper) (pub. date 1937)
  • 1999 The Adventures of Tom Sawyer – Mark Twain (pub. date 1876)
  • 2000 Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte (pub. date 1847)
  • 2001 Kipps – H. G. Wells (pub. date 1905)
  • 2002 Far from the Madding Crowd – Thomas Hardy (pub. date 1874)
  • 2003 Tobermory – H. H. Munro (pub. date 1909?)
  • 2004 Silas Marner – George Eliot (pub. date 1861)
  • 2005 The Snow Geese – William Fiennes (pub. date 2002)
  • 2006 The Mill on the Floss – George Eliot (pub. date 1860)
  • 2007 Tess of the d’Urbervilles – Thomas Hardy (pub. date 1891)
  • 2008 The Destructors – Graham Greene (pub. date 1954)
  • 2009 Longitude – Dava Sobel (pub. date 1995)
  • 2010 Bleak House – Charles Dickens (pub. date 1852-1853)
  • 2010x Hard Times – Charles Dickens (pub. date 1854)
  • 2011 Captain Corelli’s Mandolin – Louis de Bernières (pub. date 1994)
  • 2011x Atonement – Ian McEwen (pub. date 2001)


The Maths papers are written by one of the teachers from the Essex High Schools. The previous two years’ Maths papers can be purchased from the Consortium of Selective Schools in Essex-CSSE but older papers are not available.

Maths needs the development of problem solving skills – Primary Maths Challenge style questions are helpful. The maths paper is tough, harder than the GL Assessment papers. It begins with arithmetic on the first page, there are questions involving area, bar charts, angles, percentages, ratio, BIDMAS, algebra, etc. Often the questions are not straightforward and the final question has been of the standard expected for the junior maths challenge (aimed at bright year 8 children).

Page updated on 7th July 2021