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The English education system has an excellent reputation with students from the UK and around the world attending classes here.

The two systems are: State schools and independent schools (public or private schools). State schools obtain State funds and are regulated by a local education authority.

The education system is divided into:

  • Nursery (between 0 and 3 years) and kindergarten (between 3 and 4 years)
  • Primary education (between 4 and 11 years old)
  • Secondary education (between 11 and 18 years old)
  • Further education (after 18 years)


Children aged 0 to 3 can attend the nursery. Being private they are very expensive and depending on the location the price paid per day is between 50 pounds and 120 pounds and is paid for 12 months (even if the child is on vacation or sick). Once you have booked the desired days of the week, you can only change them later in certain situations in exchange for a fee. The child can be withdrawn from the nursery with one to three months’ notice.


Children aged 3 to 4 benefit from 570 hours of free kindergarten. It is done 15 hours a week for 38 weeks.

Primary education

Students aged 4 to 11 start primary education which includes stages one and two of the UK education system. All schools in England must follow the National Curriculum, which consists of twelve subjects. The basic subjects are English, mathematics and science and are compulsory for all students.

If the child’s education has not been completed in English up to that time, it is necessary to demonstrate an adequate level of proficiency in English. The level of English for this type of education must be: Good.

Secondary education

Students aged 11 to 18 start secondary education which includes stages three and four and ends with the GCSE (General Certificate of Secondary Education) exams. At the beginning of the fourth stage, students choose several subjects from which they will take these exams.

Primary and secondary education is compulsory in the UK, and after the age of 18, the education is optional.

Further education

Once a student has completed secondary education and passed the fourth level exams, they can start working, prepare for higher education or complete vocational courses. Those who want to enroll in universities or colleges must study for another two years. This optional education is called ″continuing education″. The main exams that influence the entry into higher education are level A exams.

If you want to find out what it is like to cycle in London, check out our article on this topic: How to cycle in London.

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