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WELCOME TO NOTTINGHAM GIRLS’ HIGH SCHOOL

Part of the GDST Network www.gdst.net

9 Arboretum Street, Nottingham NG1 4JB T: 0115 935 4444 E: admissions@not.gdst.net nottinghamgirlshigh.gdst.net

GDST Schools Where girls can

PROSPECTUS

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WELCOME TO NOTTINGHAM GIRLS’ HIGH SCHOOL

Part of the GDST Network www.gdst.net

9 Arboretum Street, Nottingham NG1 4JB T: 0115 935 4444 E: admissions@not.gdst.net nottinghamgirlshigh.gdst.net

GDST Schools Where girls can

PROSPECTUS

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CONTENTS 03 04 05 06 07 08 11 12

14

GDST Our values Our heritage Why choose us? Empowered learning Pastoral care Beyond the classroom

INFANT & JUNIOR SCHOOL

18 19

Unrivalled teaching & facilities Clubs & activities

20

SENIOR SCHOOL

26

SIXTH FORM

23 24

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WELCOME

Curriculum Sports/Houses/Careers

28 30 31

Curriculum Learning & personal support Working towards successful careers

32

HOW TO APPLY

33

OPEN EVENTS

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“AT NOTTINGHAM GIRLS’ HIGH SCHOOL, WE BELIEVE IN THE POWER OF GIRLS. AS WE EQUIP THEM WITH ACADEMIC EXCELLENCE AND OUTSTANDING SUPPORT, THEY THRIVE TO BECOME EXTRAORDINARY.”

Miss Julie Keller Head

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Welcome to Nottingham Girls’ High School. We’re very proud of all that we do here and the difference we’ve made for over 100 years. Our school is a friendly place where girls feel secure and supported – the perfect environment for learning. We’re here to encourage the next generation of girls to think creatively, set themselves high standards and work hard to achieve their goals. This is reflected throughout our outstanding curriculum and first-class pastoral support. From the very beginning of your daughter’s journey here right through to the Sixth Form and beyond, her teachers, our support staff, our current and former pupils and the GDST itself will be around to help her. She’ll always have a friendly face to turn to. We like to keep close links between home and school too, so we’ll be working with you throughout your daughter’s time here. This way we can ensure your daughter makes the most of her talents and opportunities. Get in touch and we’ll arrange a time for you to visit us. I look forward to welcoming you personally.

Miss Julie Keller Head

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GDST SCHOOLS WHERE GIRLS CAN When a girl joins a Girls’ Day School Trust (GDST) school, like Nottingham Girls’ High School, she becomes part of an exclusive community dedicated to empowering young women with the four Cs of a GDST education – courage, confidence, composure and commitment – ready for whatever future she chooses. A community that encompasses not just our own school but also our 25 sister schools and academies across England and Wales. A community where girls can join nearly 70,000 women in the GDST Alumnae Network, which provides a range of resources and social and professional contacts to help every girl as she makes her way in the world. The Girls’ Day School Trust is the UK’s largest group of independent girls’ schools, a national leader in girls’ education. GDST schools and academies share an ethos and a proud heritage of girls-only education and are members of a unique network. Our students outperform their peers in public exams, but we strongly believe there’s so much more to a truly broad and balanced education than just stellar exam results. At our schools, girls can compete and collaborate with their peers in other GDST schools, taking part in Trust-wide events, rallies, performances and activities ranging from art, sport, music and creative writing through to foreign languages, debating, enterprise and digital technology, and even a nationwide bake-off. Choosing a GDST school offers the peace of mind that comes from knowing your daughter’s school is part of an organisation with an unparalleled track record of achievement and stability. A charitable organisation, based on enduring values and with over 140 years’ expertise in girls’ education, that always strives to put the needs and wellbeing of our girls first. Truly a place “where girls can”.

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OUR VALUES As part of the Girls’ Day School Trust, we’re here to empower and enable the next generations of women, to equip them with the ability to lead and make a difference in the world. GIRLS FIRST We put our girls first in everything we do. Their interests, happiness and wellbeing are always a first priority. Each girl has her own strengths, challenges and ambitions. That’s why we tailor our approach to the girls’ specific needs and interests.

NETWORKED Your daughter will benefit from our connections with the schools within the Girls’ Day School Trust. We engage in charity projects and work with businesses and organisations to show our girls the importance of community.

BOLD Our girls take risks. They develop the confidence to push themselves beyond their boundaries. With us, they have the freedom to make mistakes. They’re taught not to be dissuaded by setbacks but to learn from them.

PRINCIPLED We encourage our girls to set the bar high for themselves. They aim to always do the right thing, to be open, honest and accountable. This moral framework, developed in school, will shape them and stay with them for the rest of their lives.

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OUR HERITAGE

1875

The Girls’ Public Day Trust founded our Nottingham Girls’ High School on 14 September.

In 2015, we celebrated our 140th anniversary.

We had only 34 pupils when we first opened our doors on Oxford Street. That increased to 394 as we relocated to Arboretum Street and expanded into the neighbouring Radnor House.

And with festivities, we recounted our impressive history of hope, ambition and successes. Let’s step back in time. Before the 1870s, education for girls in Nottingham was fixed by social class and not many working-class girls had access to post-primary schooling. After years of hard work by the feminist reformers, girls’ education was formed.

1955

We celebrated our 80th birthday and our pupil numbers reached 800. 1975

We celebrated our centenary.

1995

We introduced our House system, named after our first four Headmistresses: Bolton, Hastings, Luxton and Skeel. 2002

The official opening of the Lewenz Dining Hall took place in June. 2015

We celebrated our 140th anniversary with events taking place throughout the year. Over 140 years of history, our school has been overseen by 13 Headmistresses and one acting Headmistress. Today, our Head is Julie Keller.

1922

Alumna Mary Browning became the first woman in England to obtain a Doctorate in Physics at London University. 1926

The first whole school ‘Panorama’ photograph was taken. 1973

The Milford building was officially opened by HRH the Duchess of Gloucester. 1978

HRH the Duke of Edinburgh opened the Edinburgh Library. 1998

Bowering Sports Hall opened. 2009

Our brand-new Sixth Form Centre opened. 2016

Our brand-new state-ofthe-art Performing Arts Centre, the SPACE, opened.

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WHY CHOOSE US?

Choosing the right school for your daughter is one of the most important decisions you’ll make as a parent. You’ll want to see her leave home enthusiastic in the morning and return energised at the end of the day. So do we. That’s why we focus so much on giving your daughter outstanding support. As she thrives in classes and exams, we’ll make sure she has a great time doing it too. We passionately believe in a girls-only education. In such a mutually supportive environment, your daughter can belong yet remain an individual, be challenged but not distracted, and most importantly be who she wants to be. Our curriculum is second to none, but education for life is about so much more. We emphasise qualities that lead to a fulfilling life. Qualities like confidence, consideration for others, leadership, teamwork, self-discipline and resourcefulness. We see that our approach works both in our exam results – being among the best in the country – and in our girls. They’re happy, curious and enthusiastic, ready to take in new concepts in class and to explore the world outside. We believe that with the right combination of intellectual challenge and pastoral support, girls will truly thrive and succeed beyond expectation.

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EMPOWERED LEARNING Girls learn differently from boys. That’s why we believe in a girls-only education, where we can ensure the best teaching environment in which girls thrive and succeed. This approach is at the heart of everything we do, from the way our teachers teach to how our girls learn. Setting goals, providing feedback, encouraging discussion, making the classroom a friendly and supportive environment where mistakes are embraced – all of this makes up a recipe for success, where girls feel comfortable and happy. A happy girl is a successful girl after all. Learning isn’t only about stretching the mind. We provide the most exciting, creative and challenging opportunities for our girls to take risks and grow their confidence and self-awareness in the wider world. They constantly take pride in achieving things they never thought possible. Leadership skills are particularly important. Our girls get a chance to lead throughout their time here, in roles from Form Representative to Head Girl. This helps build confidence and skills that will last long after their school years.

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PASTORAL CARE The girls’ happiness and wellbeing are most important to us. Creating a happy, caring and supportive environment is key to encouraging girls to be confident, develop their unique talents and fulfil their potential. With our support, the girls feel secure to try new things, make mistakes and bounce back. That’s why we put such emphasis on our pastoral care, to make sure all of our girls always have someone to turn to for help and advice. We pride ourselves on knowing the individual needs of our girls and helping them develop into strong and confident young women. Every aspect of school life is designed to give girls a fun and exciting education, while they build on happiness and work towards success. This will help give every pupil – every remarkable, bright, funny, kind and individual young girl – the self-assurance and social awareness that will help her excel on her chosen path.

All of our teachers monitor the academic and social development of every girl in their form with full support from the pastoral team. Working closely with you to make sure your daughter is happy and doing her best is our top priority. From our House system to our busy programme of trips and excursions, so many aspects of life here at the school will provide your daughter with a more enriching and enjoyable experience. Our current pupils tell us they love it here. Our alumnae say they couldn’t have had a better start to their lives and careers. And that really is the most fulfilling part of what we do.

Our pastoral care promotes responsible behaviour and respect, for ourselves and for each other, where the girls’ welfare and security always come first. We believe in taking a positive approach, using praise and rewards to motivate and encourage our girls.

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BEYOND THE CLASSROOM Our girls’ learning continues beyond their classrooms with our diverse programme of clubs, sports and after-school activities. From netball and contemporary dance to science and debating, there’s something for everyone to love. We encourage girls of all ages to embrace the great outdoors with a variety of activities including den building, bushcraft and the climbing wall. Taking part in outdoor activities helps build character, stamina and resilience while promoting leadership and teamwork skills. It’s also a lot of fun! There are many adventures away from school too, including a thriving Duke of Edinburgh’s award scheme, an Exploration Society and overseas expeditions. These trips and excursions will open your daughter’s mind and expand her horizons as she develops her physical and intellectual skills in different environments. From local streets to international shores, it’s a big world out there and our girls thrive on exploring it. Strong connections with local businesses and organisations give us even more opportunities to take our girls into the wider world.

Our links with a local farm, for example, allow hands-on learning around food production and sustainability. We believe it’s important for our girls to understand the community outside the privileged world of the school. Charity work helps teach our girls respect for others and encourages them to adopt a role in the wider community. Experiential learning really helps our young girls become independent with important life skills like cooperation and communication. It is where concepts taught in the classroom come to life, giving them a deeper and richer understanding. Most importantly, it helps our girls understand and appreciate different cultures and environments, essential to building a connected community.

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INFANT & JUNIOR

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INFANT & JUNIOR SCHOOL Those first years at school are so important. It’s a time of adventure and discovery. We’ll see your daughter forge friendships, try new things and grow more confident every day. This is when we lay a strong foundation for her lifelong passion for learning. Every girl has immense curiosity and enthusiasm. Our job is to encourage it. In these vital years, we’ll be developing each girl’s unique strengths and giving her every opportunity to challenge herself. Our Infant and Junior School is a colourful and supportive environment with bright classrooms and spacious learning areas, designed to inspire and bring out the best in every girl from Reception to Year 6. It’s about making learning fun, exciting and meaningful. Our innovative and creative curriculum takes teaching and learning into the outdoors as often as using our fantastic indoor facilities. Taking the girls beyond the classroom allows their minds the freedom to explore and grow.

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“LAYING STRONG FOUNDATIONS FOR FUTURE SUCCESS IS WHAT THE JUNIOR SCHOOL PRIDES ITSELF ON. ENABLING A CLOSE WORKING PARTNERSHIP BETWEEN PARENTS AND TEACHERS LEADS TO CONFIDENT AND INQUISITIVE INDIVIDUALS. OUR EXCELLENT KNOWLEDGE OF THE GIRLS AND THEIR INTERESTS AND INDIVIDUAL NEEDS ENSURES THAT GIRLS FEEL HAPPY AND SECURE AT SCHOOL – THE PERFECT PLATFORM FOR ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT AND SUCCESS.”

Mrs Laura Fowler

Head of Junior School

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UNRIVALLED TEACHING AND FACILITIES If you haven’t visited our Junior School yet, we’d love to show you around. It’s bright, colourful and full of smiling faces, a really happy place where girls feel instantly at home. Our state-of-the-art facilities include special rooms for music, two ICT suites, a Junior Hall and a lovely big library. We also have, at our disposal, the use of some of the exciting resources at the Senior School. The Food Room and other D&T facilities, Art Studios and Science Labs are often used to enrich our lessons and give the girls a glimpse of Senior School life. Outdoors, girls enjoy our three playgrounds, split by age group with one just for Reception. We have a wooden amphitheatre too, perfect for outdoor performances. Our outstanding reputation and facilities mean we attract the most talented teachers with expertise across all subject areas.

SUPPORTING INDIVIDUAL PROGRESS Our small classes and high ratio of teaching staff to pupils mean we can give all of our girls the individual attention and extra help they need to thrive. We’ll closely monitor your daughter’s progress with a range of informal assessments and keep you updated with reports and biannual meetings. We hold regular parent seminars and workshops where you can hear all about school developments and share your views.

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LOVING EVERY MINUTE Our Junior School always strikes our visitors as a genuinely happy place. Our girls love being here, and you can see it. They enjoy their work, show incredible progress and make friends for life. The statistics back it up too. Around 98% of girls in the Junior School move to the Senior School, with a large proportion staying on to the Sixth Form.

CLUBS AND ACTIVITIES Our diverse programme of clubs ranges from chess to debating, steel pans to string orchestra and football to cross-country. There’s really something for everyone. Clubs are run by our talented teachers and specialist coaches from outside of school, offering a wide range of activities including fencing, martial arts, tennis, cricket and ballet.

THE NEXT STEP Once our girls reach Year 5, they get to meet their future teachers and familiarise themselves with the Senior School layout, classrooms and facilities. Then in Year 6, each girl is paired with a ‘Big Sister’ from the Sixth Form who helps them to feel really at ease in the Senior environment, increasing the time they spend there so that they feel at home by the end of the school year.

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SENIOR

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SENIOR SCHOOL Our Senior School is where girls really come into their own. We see them find their unique voices, discover their true passions and make decisions to shape their future careers. It’s an exciting time. Just walk through our corridors and past our classrooms, you’ll feel the buzz and the energy. We provide the ideal environment for our girls to flourish and grow. Our spaces, facilities, teachers and the girls themselves create a vibrant, creative and inspiring community. Our lessons are designed to be as enjoyable as they are memorable, where success and happiness go hand in hand. In these classes, your daughter will discover and unlock her talents, develop and refine her skills, and continue to grow in confidence, ready for the next step of her education.

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With a wide range of subjects providing a strong foundation for further study, our curriculum is designed to equip girls to think for themselves, to nurture independence and to encourage them to be active learners with teamwork and leadership skills.

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YEARS 7 – 9 In Years 7 to 9, the curriculum is broad and balanced. Our girls study a core of six subjects: English Language, English Literature, Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry and Biology. Geography, History and Religious Studies are taught as separate humanities. All of our girls study French and Latin in Year 7 and add either German or Spanish in Year 8. In Year 9, they continue with two languages. A variety of creative and practical subjects including Art, Music, Design Technology, Physical Education and PSHE (Personal, Social and Health Education) are taught to all girls. For Years 7 to 9, most subjects are taught in form groups with smaller groups in lessons like Design Technology. Sets are only used with Mathematics.

YEARS 10 – 11 In Years 10 and 11, all of our girls study a core of Mathematics, English, English Literature, Biology, Chemistry and Physics with an addition of a modern foreign language. They choose at least one of the humanities subjects, including Geography, History and Religious Studies, and continue with their PSHE lessons once a week. They can also take on another language, another humanity and two more subjects including Art, Computer Science, Drama, Economics, Food Preparation and Nutrition, Music, Physical Education and Product Design. We provide career guidance to all our girls to help them make informed decisions at each stage of their education.

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SPORTS Sport here is all about participation and having a good time. All of our girls can enjoy hockey, netball and cross-country running midweek and at weekends, and choose from tennis, rounders and athletics fixtures during the summer term. We also have clubs and teams for swimming, badminton, archery, volleyball, cricket, rowing and table tennis. During National School Sport Week, our girls get to try new activities like judo, boxing, yoga, aerobics, indoor climbing, zumba and street cheer dance (an energetic fusion of street dance and cheerleading!). All girls are encouraged to take part in our sports events within their House teams with the highlight being the full House sports day for Years 7 to 10 at the end of the school year. Our school teams represent us in local and county leagues and tournaments too, where we do really well.

THE HOUSE SYSTEM Our House system is an important and exciting part of the school community. The girls belong to one of four Houses and will stay in that House as they move through Junior and Senior School. This system helps promote a sense of belonging and encourages our girls to support each other and make friends in different age groups. It provides them with positive role models and leadership opportunities.

PREPARING FOR SUCCESSFUL CAREERS Careers provision has been a strength at our school for many years. We provide career guidance and advice to all age groups with formal advice starting in Year 9. We want our girls to have as much information as possible on various careers opportunities through talks, careers evenings and visits. Before the girls choose their GCSE options in Year 9, we offer a programme to inform their decision-making process. Our Options Evening helps give both the girls and their parents information on individual subjects and the selection procedure. Year 9’s ‘Take your Daughter to Work’ day provides valuable insight into the world of work and the Business Enterprise day helps improve teamwork, decision making and presentation skills. Girls in Year 11 receive complete support when they decide on their A Level courses. They attend one-to-one interviews with our Senior Leadership Team to discuss their progress, interests and options. Every two years, representatives from top universities and a wide range of professional career areas, both local and national, join us at our careers fair. Girls and parents in Years 10 to 13 are welcome!

House competitions, from sports to performing arts, give our girls a chance to indulge in some friendly rivalry and they wear their House colours with pride.

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SIXTH FORM

READY TO TAKE ON THE WORLD

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SIXTH FORM For many Sixth Formers, this is the most exciting and rewarding time at NGHS. It’s the final stage of their journey here before they leave us as confident young women, ready to take on the world beyond. With university, adulthood and independent living ahead, your daughter’s final years in Sixth Form will prepare her for all that awaits her. We’ll give her the freedom to grow as an individual while providing the best support and guidance she can get. Our girls work hard to meet high academic standards, but we prepare them in other ways too. Leadership and entrepreneurial skills, creative and physical wellbeing, community service and citizenship encourage girls to reflect on their impact on others, the community and the environment. We give our girls a myriad of opportunities to gain these additional, valuable life skills through a whole range of enrichment clubs and activities, volunteering and charity opportunities, and through our links with national and global businesses. Alongside our first-class teaching across every subject area, your daughter will receive unparalleled pastoral support as she pursues her potential, prepares for university applications and launches onto her chosen path.

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Your daughter can choose from a wide range of A Level combinations. We won’t tie her down to conventional ideas of which subject goes with which. There’s no reason why Physics can’t be combined with Art if that’s what she wants. Our girls excel in small classes with plenty of opportunities for discussion, interaction and enquiry. Their intellectual curiosity is inspired even further through our Extended Project Qualification (EPQ), where they study a subject of their choice in depth to challenge the way they think, broaden their horizons and boost their confidence. This approach provides an invaluable foundation for study beyond the Sixth Form and is greatly prized by universities and the working world.

A LEVEL CHOICES Art, Biology, Business Studies, Chemistry, Classical Civilisation, Computer Science, Drama and Theatre Studies, Economics, English Language, English Literature, Combined English Language and Literature, French, Geography, German, Government and Politics, History, Latin, Mathematics and Further Mathematics, Music, Physics, Physical Education, Product Design, Psychology, Religious Studies and Spanish.

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LEARNING AND PERSONAL SUPPORT Whether it’s regarding her studies or life outside the classroom, your daughter will get the best support throughout her years with us. This includes: • Excellent tuition, guidance and resources • Useful feedback and full reports • Expert Sixth Form tutors to monitor her progress • Individual interviews • Help and advice with university and careers • Introduction to university life • Support with university application and interview • A personal, social and health education programme • Clubs and societies • Chances to develop her potential as a leader • Reference when she leaves school

SIXTH FORM CENTRE Housed in a separate building on the school site, with a direct link through to our brand-new Performing Arts Centre, the Sixth Form facility is a bright and modern space with dedicated teaching areas and recreational resources, plasma screen communication and superb music system. The teaching rooms are light and contemporary, fully equipped with the latest technology including interactive whiteboards and a multi-functional IT hub. And when girls need some down-time from all their hard work, they can relax in the comfortable, large common room with fully equipped self-service space for making drinks and snacks, or the decking and adjacent Performing Arts Centre outdoor area. We want our Sixth Form girls to feel a sense of independence, and we think the Sixth Form Centre along with the privilege of access to the Performing Arts Centre offers all that, and more.

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WORKING TOWARDS SUCCESSFUL CAREERS Careers information and guidance is something we take very seriously. We encourage our girls to see their future career as something that’s linked to their education now. Lessons promote the transferable skills highly valued by employers and our girls build on these skills outside the classroom too. We’re always promoting successful women as role models with our former pupils returning to talk about their experiences. Being an all-girl school, our pupils feel free to take their career in any direction they choose. The number of our girls who take on traditionally male-dominated fields, from engineering and astrophysics to economy and law, is well above average. Inspiring female speakers frequent our careers events to share their experiences and offer advice and support. Our library, resources and experienced careers advisors are on hand to help girls of any age. Here are a few of the many opportunities we offer: • Careers evenings • Mock interviews • Careers experience courses • Nomura Investment Bank Scholarship • Careers fair • How to apply to Oxford and Cambridge • Centigrade • Oxbridge Co-ordinator • Deloitte Insight Day • UCAS conference • Deloitte Scholars’ Scheme • Work experience • HSBC internship • Minerva Career Start

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HOW TO APPLY We like to keep our application process straightforward. Simply find the application form online or in our pack, fill it in and return it to us with the registration fee. You’ll hear back from us shortly about the next steps. INFANT AND JUNIOR SCHOOL Reception (age 4+) Your daughter will join us for a short session in our Early Years unit to help us determine her readiness for school. It’s friendly and informal. We’ll be looking for good speaking and listening skills and making sure she can follow instructions. Offers of places will be made shortly afterwards, on a first come, first served basis. Years 1-6 Your daughter will join us for a ‘taster day’ which will include an assessment in English and Mathematics. There’s no need to prepare for this. She’ll have a fun day with one of our current classes and find out more about school life here.

SENIOR SCHOOL

SIXTH FORM

Years 7, 8, 9 and 10 Your daughter will sit an entrance exam and have an informal interview. We’ll also request a reference from her current school.

Your daughter will be invited to spend a day with us, to sample her preferred A Level classes and find out more about our school. The day will include a short informal interview, and we’ll also request a reference from her current school.

We’ll be testing her potential and understanding in English, Mathematics and Verbal Reasoning. There’s no need to prepare for our exams, as we’ll be looking for your daughter’s potential and understanding rather than particular areas of knowledge. Her interview and reference will also help us to assess whether our school is one in which she will thrive.

Conditional offers of places will be made from December onwards, on a first come, first served basis. Entry requirements Average of Grade B across eight GCSE subjects, including English and Mathematics. Grade A in some subjects to be taken at A level.

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OPEN EVENTS

BE EXTRAORDINARY

A prospectus can only tell you so much. Our open events will immerse you in the energy of our school, and the enthusiasm and curiosity of our girls. Join us at any of these events, as they take place throughout the year, or get in touch with our Admissions Team to arrange an individual visit to suit you on 0115 935 4444 or email admissions@not.gdst.net Here are a few of our events: Tots Have Fun (for girls aged 2-3 years) Reception ‘Stay and Play’ Whole-school open events Senior School ‘Taster Day’ for Year 5 girls Sixth Form Opportunities Evening Experience Days for all year groups Stay in the loop with details and dates of future events and book your place on our website at www.nottinghamgirlshigh.gdst.net

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WELCOME TO NOTTINGHAM GIRLS’ HIGH SCHOOL

Part of the GDST Network www.gdst.net

9 Arboretum Street, Nottingham NG1 4JB T: 0115 935 4444 E: admissions@not.gdst.net nottinghamgirlshigh.gdst.net

GDST Schools Where girls can

PROSPECTUS

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Nghs prospectus  

Junior, Senior and Sixth Form prospectus

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