Many children attend nursery schools before they start formal schooling. Some parents elect to send their children to private nursery school or kindergartens. In England and Wales, children attend so called reception classes, which are for those who are under 5. From 5 to 7 children go to infant school.
At the age of 7, they move to junior school. When a child reaches age of 11, he starts to attend secondary school.
There are several types of secondary schools – grammar and comprehensive. Most of the pupils go to the second one. They usually stay there till the age of 16 or 18. These schools provide a wide range of secondary education. At the age of 16 they pass O level exam and after that they can continue in studying. The final exam is called school leaving examination.
Grammar schools offer mainly academic education.
A small minority of children attend secondary modern school where is more general and technical education.
About 93 % of pupils receive their education at schools supported by public funds.
City Technology Colleges are non-fee-paying independent schools, which have mainly technological and business slant /zaměření/. In England and Wales there are now 15 colleges of this type.
Specialist schools only operate in England and they give emphasis on technology, languages, arts and sports. There are over 250 of these schools and they charge no fees.
Parents of pupils attending independent schools pay for their education, but some pupils gain scholarship, then the expanses are covered by school. Eton is independent school, founded in 1440 and is called public school because scholars could can come there from any part in England.
Many public schools used to stress a classical education, but now the curriculum /studij. Plán/ is closely allied to state education.
The english universities can be divided into 3 groups – Oxford and Cambridge
- Redbrick Universities , founded in 19th century
- New Universities opened after 1960 - Kent,
The oldest university is Oxford, it is dated from 12th century and is organised as a federation of colleges. They are governed by their own teaching stuff called Fellows. The head of university is Vice-Chancellor. And each student goes to his tutor who directs him during studies. Today Oxford is made up of 35 colleges. The best known college is The Christ College. Each has its own chapel, dining room, library…
Scholars leaving Oxford set up the first academic community in Cambridge. It is also organised as a federation of colleges, the oldest is Peterhouse and the largest is Trinity.
In Scotland there are many of long established universities – University at Edinburgh, Aberdeen, Glasgow… The University of Wales was founded in 1893.