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Education in England

The state-funded education system is divided into Key Stages based upon age: Early Years Foundation Stage (ages 3–4); primary education (ages 5 to 10), subdivided into Key Stage 1 (KS1) Infants (ages 5 to 6) and Key Stage 2 (KS2) Juniors (ages 7 to 10); secondary education (ages 11 to 15), subdivided into Key Stage 3 (KS3; ages 11 to 13) and Key Stage 4 (KS4; ages 14 to 15); Key Stage 5 is post-16 education (ages 16 to 17).

KEY STAGE 1 (KS1)

At the end of Year 2, children will sit their SATs (Standardised Assessment Tasks), which are national tests. These tests assess the academic ability of children in the key subjects of maths and English.

KEY STAGE 2 (KS2)

At the end of Year 6, children take their SATs, the test assess children’s abilities in reading, maths, spelling, punctuation and grammar. KS2 tests are set and marked externally. The tests are taken in May.

KEY STAGE 3 (KS3)

Key Stage 3 covers the first three years of secondary education. The curriculum at this stage involves core statutory subjects, where religious education and sex education must be included.

KEY STAGE 4 (KS4)

KS4 level is the final stage of the school curriculum. The assessment for KS4 involves children sitting GCSE (General Certificate of Secondary Education) examinations, or other national qualifications.

KEY STAGE 5 (KS5)

If children leave school at age 16, they must (a) stay in full-time education at a college, (b) start an apprenticeship, (c) spend 20 hours a week working or volunteering, while in part-time education or training, until 18.

The standards by which subjects are taught in primary and secondary schools.

Useful Links

Educational resources for parents to support their children’s learning at home or school.

Rainbow Trust Charity

This is a charity supporting families with seriously ill children.

Television ministry that is “Helping Families Thrive”.

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