Our Admissions Process

We aim to make our Admissions process as smooth as possible for our prospective families. Our experienced Admissions Team is here to help answer any questions you may have and to support you as you start your St Leonards journey.

Applications are accepted throughout the year depending on availability, however early application is encouraged for main entry points:

  • Year 1

  • Year 7

  • Year 8

  • Pre-IB

  • Year 12

The Application Journey
  • Step 1 – Visit Us

    Your first step will be to contact the Admissions Team to arrange a visit to St Leonards to tour the campus and facilities. This can either be during one of our Open Mornings (held in May and October) or at a time to suit you and your family. We welcome individual visits throughout the year.

    During your visit, you and your child will meet key members of staff and current pupils, including our Head, Mr Simon Brian or our Head of Junior School, Mrs Claire Robertson. For Senior School applicants this includes their ‘informal interview’. This gives an opportunity to ask any questions you or your child may have about joining one of Scotland’s leading independent schools.

  • Step 2 – Make your Application

    We would encourage you to complete our online application for admission following your visit, and pay the application fee of £100. The application reserves a space for your child while we complete the admissions process. This advances the process but does not yet guarantee a place at St Leonards. Please note there is high demand and some year groups have waiting lists in place.

    At this stage, you will be required to provide copies of the last two school or progress reports for your child, along with a short, written personal statement detailing their interests, hobbies and any future aspirations.

  • Step 3 – Entrance Tests & Tasters

    We would then be delighted to welcome your child for a taster day with us. This allows them to get a sense of what life is like at St Leonards and experience the day with their peers. We offer overnight tasters for those interested in boarding on a flexi, weekly or full-time basis. 

    Prospective pupils in Years 1-3 will be invited in for a Taster session in the Junior School, there will be no formal assessment. For entry to Years 4-6, children will be invited for a Taster and to complete the Cognitive Abilities Test Fourth Edition (CAT4) during this visit. For entry to Years 7-13, all prospective pupils must complete the CAT4 assessment and will be invited for a Taster day or overnight stay for a boarding place.

    The process is very similar for international families, we will liaise with you to arrange alternative CAT4 assessment supervision. 

    Those seeking entry to Years 12 and 13 (Sixth Form) for whom English is not their first language are expected to have obtained a standard of English equivalent to the B2 First for Schools or IELTS 5.5 – 6.

    What is the CAT4?

    The CAT4 is an entrance test which assesses reasoning with words; reasoning with numbers; reasoning with shapes and designs; thinking with and mentally manipulating precise shapes. It is not possible to revise or prepare for the CAT4 assessment. We use this to assess a prospective student’s core abilities relating to learning.

  • Step 4 – Offers & Decisions

    The final stage is for the School to make an offer of a place at St Leonards, based on the process outlined above. Each application is reviewed individually and successful applicants will receive an offer via email. At this stage, either an offer will be made or, in some situations, an application declined if it is decided that the School is either not able to support a child’s requirements or the child would not flourish in our school environment.

    When an offer is made, a deadline by which the family must accept or decline the offer is given. Once accepted, we will be in touch with joining information and details of events and inductions.

    Should you require any further information before making your decision or wish to discuss the offer further, please do not hesitate to contact us.

  • Step 5 – A Warm Welcome

    Once you have accepted your offer to join the St Leonards community, we will look forward to welcoming new pupils on their agreed arrival dates, whether it is at the start of a new term or at another point by arrangement.

Support For Learning

Should your child require any support, please let us know when you enquire and answer the relevant questions on the online application. We will liaise with you and our Head of Learning Support to ascertain the level of support your child requires in order for us to check that we can meet your child’s needs and fully support them. Any supporting documentation such as Educational Psychologist’s Report is requested for our team to review alongside your child’s application. 

An International Outlook

International Applicants

As an all-through IB school we are committed to adopting a global outlook to all aspects of our School life and community.  We welcome the diversity of cultures and nationalities amongst our students, teachers and all staff and embrace and support all students equally.

Working with individual families as well as educational partners around the world, we are always pleased to welcome students from international destinations and would normally include over 36 different nationalities within the School roll each year.

Our Admissions Team are able to guide and support families through the application process, but can also recommend excellent country representatives globally, who will be able to assist and guide parents on our behalf and with face to face meetings, prior to a visit to the School.  Please do contact us if you would like a recommendation for support in your own country as part of the familiarisation in learning more about our School.


For non-British passport holders, a visa will be required in order to study with us. The majority of pupils in this situation will require a Child Student Visa. As a sponsor school, we can provide a CAS (Confirmation for Acceptance for Studies) to enable a visa application. Due to the increased complexity of UKVI compliance, all visa applications will be managed through our immigration firm, Sable.

Alternatively, if a child is accompanying a parent to the UK on a parental visa we will require evidence of this for our records to comply with UKVI requirements. There are also living arrangement rules set out by UKVI to consider for international pupils, please contact us for more information. 

If you require a visa for your child we will explain this process to you during the admissions journey.  

English Language Support

For those who are non-native English speakers we ask that they complete our English Language assessment. We have excellent English language support available to assist your child with their learning. Support, in addition to timetabled lessons, may incur an additional cost.

Contact our Admissions team
Our Admissions Team are always here to help