The School Education in Great Britain (Школьное образование в Великобритании) — страница 2

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terms of about 13 weeks each. Two-thirds of state schools are wholly owned and maintained by LEAs. The remainder are voluntary schools, mostly belonging to the Church of England or the Roman Catholic Church. They are also financed by LEAs. Every state school has its own governing body (a board of governors), consisting of teachers, parents, local politicians, businessmen and members of the local community. Boards of governors are responsible for their school’s main policies, including the recruitment of the staff. A great role is played by the Parent Teacher Association (PTA). Practically all parents are automatically members of the PTA and are invited to take part in its many activities. Parental involvement through the PTA and other links between parents and schools is

growing . The PTA forms both a special focus for parents and much valued additional resources for the school. Schools place great value on the PTA as a further means of listening to parents and developing the partnership between home and school. A Parent’s Charter published by the Government in 1991 is designed to enable parents to take more informed decisions about their children’s education. Compulsory education begins at the age of 5 in England, Wales and Scotland, and at the age of 4 in Northern Ireland. All pupils must stay at school until the age of 16. About 9 per cent of pupils in state schools remain at school voluntarily until the age of 18. Education within the state school system comprises either two tiers (stages) – primary and secondary, or three tiers –

first schools, middle schools and upper schools. Nearly all state secondary schools are comprehensive, they embrace pupils from 11 to 18. The word “comprehensive” expresses the idea that the schools in question take all children in a given area without, selection. NURSERY EDUCATION. Education for the under-fives, mainly from 3 to 5, is not compulsory and can be provided in nursery schools and nursery classes attached to primary schools. Although they are called schools, they give little formal education. The children spend most of their time in some sort of play activity, as far as possible of an educational kind. In any case, there are not enough of them to take all children of that age group. A large proportion of children at this beginning stage is in the private sector

where fees are payable. Many children attend pre-school playgroups, mostly organized by parents, where children can go for a morning or afternoon a couple of times a week. PRIMARY EDUCATION. The primary school usually takes children from 5 to 11. Over half of the primary schools take the complete age group from 5 to 11. The remaining schools take the pupils aged 5 to 7 – infant schools, and 8 to 11 – junior schools. However, some LEAs have introduced first school, taking children aged 5 to 8, 9 to 10. The first school is followed by the middle school which embraces children from 8 to 14. Next comes the upper school (the third tier) which keeps middle school leavers until the age of 18. This three-stage system (first, middle and upper) is becoming more and more popular in a

growing number of areas. The usual age for transfer from primary to secondary school is 11. SECONDARY EDUCATION. Secondary education is compulsory up to the age of 16, and pupils may stay on at school voluntarily until they are 18. Secondary schools are much larger than primary schools and most children (over 80 per cent) go to comprehensive schools. There are three categories of comprehensive schools: 1)    schools which take pupils from 11 to 18, 2)    schools which embrace middle school leavers from 12, 13or 14 to 18, and 3)    schools which take the age group from 11 to 16. The pupils in the latter group, wishing to continue their education beyond the age of 16 (to be able to enter university) may transfer to the sixth form of an

11-18 school, to a sixth-form college or to a tertiary college which provide complete courses of secondary education. The tertiary college offers also part-time vocational courses. Comprehensive schools admit children of all abilities and provide a wide range of secondary education for all or most of the children in a district. In some areas children moving from state primary to secondary education are still selected for certain types of school according to their current level of academic attainment. There are grammar and secondary modern schools, to which children are allowed at the age of 11 on the basis of their abilities. Grammar schools provide a mainly academic education for the 11 to 18 age group. Secondary modern schools offer a more general education with a practical