Woldingham is committed to meeting the academic stretch of every student. We offer a range of programmes and initiatives to provide stretch for our academic scholars and high-achievers, which support them to grow, fulfil their academic potential and take up places at top universities. To watch our film Scholarships at Woldingham, click here.

Academic scholars

Academic scholars

Within the classroom, academic scholars are encouraged and stretched with differentiated activities. We expect academic scholars to continue to meet the highest academic standards and to take part in a variety of extra-curricular activities from the wide range available. These include subject specific clubs such as:

  • Hans Woyda Maths
  • Top of the Bench Chemistry
  • Teen Tech
  • Dissection
  • DT
  • Coding
  • Chess
  • Philosophy
  • Wildlife
  • Czech
  • Italian
  • French film and culture
  • Economics
  • Psychology
  • Poetry
  • Book club
  • Creative writing

There is also a range of broader academic pursuits such as STEM Live, ‘Thinking Big’ speakers’ programme, debating, Women of Woldingham feminist society and current affairs. Academic scholars are encouraged to enter essay competitions and take advantage of external and internal speakers and masterclasses.

Academic Scholarships at Woldingham

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Kritikos for academic scholars

Academic scholars in Years 7-11 follow Woldingham’s Kritikos programme to encourage critical flexibility and nurture independent and enquiring minds.

Kritikos comes from the ancient Greek idea of intellectual discernment. It is the ability to judge and evaluate rather than simply recite information.

The Kritikos programme comprises:

  • One-to-one meetings between each student and the Kritikos Coordinator. These sessions consist of a discussion of students’ interests within and beyond the curriculum and their wider reading.
  • Small group debates and discussions.
  • Staff or student led mini lectures.
  • A ‘Curiosity Project’ - a significant piece of independent research often inspired by a trip to a museum.
  • On-line Kritikos Review.

Girls who thrive academically in Year 8 are invited to complete an AQA Level 1 Project Qualification. This is like a mini EPQ research project, following the process of a logbook, presentation and essay.

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Kritikos for academic scholars
Academic enrichment programme

Academic enrichment programme

Woldingham’s academic enrichment programme continues throughout the school. Students are encouraged and equipped to pursue their intellectual curiosities independently, and love learning for learning’s sake. We have numerous lunchtime and after school clubs that fuel students' minds on topics including current affairs, French culture, coding and philosophy. Our programme includes:

Thinking Big Lecture Series

These regular, thought-provoking lectures are given by students, staff and guest speakers.


Guest speakers across the broad spectrum of STEM subjects give talks to students of all ages, staff and parents.

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External competitions, courses and scholarships

We encourage and support students to enter external competitions and to apply for competitive courses and scholarships across many disciplines. While the process of taking part is the key objective, Woldingham students regularly win prestigious awards, including:

  • Arkwright Engineering Scholarships
  • The Lancaster Writing Award
  • UK Mathematical Trust Challenges
  • The Starpack Awards (design and technology)
  • John Locke Essay Competition
External competitions, courses and scholarships