School Name



UK Senior Schools


Senior school

Pupil type

Girls only







Pupil age range




Inspiring leaders who care

Day fees  


Boarding fees 







62 per cent of pupils’ results at GCSE grade 7–9

57 percent of results at A-level are A* or A

Spear’s Review

Benenden aims to guide its pupils into becoming ambitious, confident and caring young women. Academic results are outstanding, supporting their approach of creating a less pressured atmosphere than traditional London day schools.

Their strategy sets out five pillars of child development with an emphasis on responsibility, creativity and innovation. Boarding is full-time, with long breaks at home to encourage independence with an underpinning of security.

School Profile 

Through its philosophy of A Complete Education, Benenden School has been inspiring future thinkers and leaders to shape a better world for more than 100 years. 

Benenden is one of the leading boarding schools in Britain. Founded in 1923, it is situated in 250 acres of attractive parkland in Kent, just an hour from London. There are 560 girls in the School, aged 11-18. 

While instilling within students the values to which the School holds firm – confidence, compassion, courtesy and courage – Benenden prepares them to be professional young women in whatever field of work they choose to pursue in later life. Above all, Benenden is a home where students benefit from outstanding facilities and extensive grounds for them to enjoy, together with the intimacy and care that come from being a community of no more than 560. 

Motivational teaching through a dynamic and challenging curriculum is central to Benenden’s educational offering. All students are expected to engage in the extensive subjects on offer. They can expect to leave not only with excellent results at A Level, but very importantly with an understanding of the world in which we live, skills in critical thinking, practical skills such as financial management, a flavour of the world of entrepreneurship and business as well as the knowledge of professional skills which will support them in the world of work beyond university. 

Furthermore, Benenden prides itself on its extensive and imaginative co-curricular programme which offers every opportunity for students to learn, develop interests, excel in areas beyond the classroom and very importantly, have a great deal of fun! 

With a flexible boarding provision encompassing full and weekly boarding, and welcoming day students into its Boarding House community, Benenden ensures that all students benefit from the round-the-clock care an exceptional boarding school offers.

Head teacher

Samantha Price was educated at Malvern Girls’ College and Edinburgh University, where she read history of art (with modules of European history). Having graduated, she joined the Tate Britain and was responsible for marketing for members and patrons. She started her teaching career in 1999 as a history of art and history teacher at Reading Blue Coat School, where she stayed for a number of years. She then joined King’s Canterbury as a housemistress, history and history of art teacher. Her next post was as deputy head at Hereford Cathedral School and from there she became head of Godolphin in 2010. Price joined Benenden as headmistress in January 2014. She chairs the Girls’ Schools Association (GSA) Inclusion Committee, served as its president for 2021-22 and is vice-president for 2022-23.


According to the school:

Benenden greatly values its relationship with parents, from parents’ first exploratory contact with the school, throughout their daughter’s school career and often beyond. A personal visit, where parents speak with members of staff and with students, helps parents to appreciate the school’s unique character. Prospective pupils and parents are encouraged to visit Benenden as soon as they feel ready to begin looking at senior schools and as many times as they like during the admissions process.

Normal entry is in September at 11+, 12+ or 13+, as a result of the ISEB Common Pre-test or through Benenden’s own entrance or scholarship examinations. In addition, there is also a small 14+ and 16+ competitive entry into Year 10 and the Sixth Form. Benenden enjoys a thriving programme for scholars including academic awards and scholarships for accomplished musicians, artists, actresses, designers and sportswomen.

Feeder schools

Saint Ronan’s, Dulwich Prep Cranbrook, Thomas’s Schools, London.

University and college places

7.95 per cent to Oxford and Cambridge.

3.41 per cent to Ivy League.


Gatwick Airport; 1 hour  


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Rank: Top Flight

Top Flight 2024, UK Senior Schools


01580 240592


Benenden School, Cranbrook, TN17 4AA, United Kingdom

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