We regularly welcome international students* from a variety of countries to join our school community. International families choose Downsend because of our commitment to academic excellence, character development, global perspectives, and British values, as well as our excellent exam results and strong focus on wellbeing. All students – British, EU and international – are charged the same fees, regardless of nationality or immigration status.
*International students are those with nationalities other than UK or Irish who are subject to immigration control
Students who are non-native English speakers will be asked to meet online with a member of our parent company, Cognita’s, international team, who will informally assess their English language level. The international team will then advise the school whether the student would benefit from additional support with their English prior to enrolment and/or during the first year of their studies.
Downsend and Cognita work with a range of international student recruitment agencies, education consultants and relocation agents. Agents and consultants are invited to contact the international admissions team at Cognita about representation.
English as an Additional Language
Students who need support with English as an Additional Language prior to enrolment and/or during the first year of their studies may be referred to Cognita’s English language school, Ardmore. Ardmore have over 35 years’ experience supporting young English learners and have recently developed an online platform – Ardmore X – to support teacher-led and independent study. Ardmore can support international students prepare for life at school in the UK in the weeks and months prior to the start of term. They can also support students throughout their first few terms with us, scheduling online English lessons outside of the standard school day.
International students who receive an offer to study at Downsend will be asked to accept their place by completing and returning an acceptance form and paying a deposit equal to one term’s fees. The international deposit will be returned at the end of a student’s time at the school, providing appropriate notice has been given and all fees have been settled.
Downsend’s parent company, Cognita, has a licence to sponsor Child Student visas. Please contact Cognita’s international team if you would like to discuss visa sponsorship. The team will be glad to support you throughout your application and subsequent studies. Families are asked to settle the academic year’s fees in full and pay a £500 administration fee for each Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) in advance of sponsorship.
The international team can support parents of students aged 4 to 11 years old who wish to join their children in the UK under the Parent of a Child Student visa route.
We also welcome international students who are dependents of their parents’ investor, skilled worker, and diplomatic visas, as well as those who come to the UK under many other immigration routes.
If you are unsure whether your child needs a Child Student visa, we recommend taking the UK Visas questionnaire to establish the most suitable immigration route for your family.