educational system in england
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In this text you will find general information on the education system in the UK. As there are separate education systems in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, the actual ages etc. might vary a little.
School in the UK is compulsory between the ages of five and sixteen. Children younger than five can go to a toddler group (accompanied by a parent), playgroup or nursery school.
All maintained schools (most state schools) in England follow the National Curriculum, which lays out learning targets, essential and optional subjects, and an assessment strategy for school years 1-11. This includes four National Curriculum Tests (NCTs), which are more commonly known by their former name, SATs (Standard Attainment Tests).
The four divisions are called Key Stages – Key Stage 1 SATs are administered at the end of year 2 and Key Stage 2 SATs at the end of year 6. Students in Key Stage 3 are not given a series of exams, but are continually assessed by their teachers throughout years 7-9. Key Stage 4 ends with students taking General Certificate of Secondary Education exams (GCSEs).