The School Education in Great Britain (Школьное образование в Великобритании) — страница 3
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bias up to the minimum school-leaving age of 16. Some local education authorities run technical schools (11 – 18). They provide a general academic education, but place particular emphasis on technical subjects. However, as a result of comprehensive reorganization the number of grammar and secondary modern schools fell radically by the beginning of the 1990s. There are special schools adapted for the physically and mentally handicapped children. The compulsory period of schooling here is from 5 to 16. A number of handicapped pupils begin younger and stay on longer. Special schools and their classes are more generously staffed than ordinary schools and provide, where possible. Physiotherapy, speech therapy and other forms of treatment. Special schools are normally maintained by state, but a large proportion of special boarding schools are private and fee-charging. About 5 per cent of Britain’s children attend independent or private schools outside the free state sector. Some parents choose to pay for private education in spite of the existence of free state education. These schools charge between 300 pounds a term for day nursery pupils and 3,500 pounds a term for senior boarding-school pupils. All independent schools have to register with the Department of Education and Science and are subject to inspection be Her Majesty’s Inspecrorate, which is absolutely independent. About 2,300 private schools provide primary and secdondary education. Around 550 most privileged and expensive schools are commonly known as public schools. The principal examinations taken by secondary school pupils at the age of 16 are those leading to the General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE). It aims to assess pupils’ ability to apply their knowledge to solving practical problems. It is the minimum school leaving age, the level which does not allow school-leavers to enter university but to start work or do some vocational training. The chief examinations at the age of 18 are leading to the General Certificate of Education Advanced level (GCE A-level). It enables sixth-formers to widen their subject areas and move to higher education. The systems of examinations are co-ordinated and supervisedby the Secondary Examination Council. Admission to universities is carried out by examinationor selection (interview). Applicants for places in nearly all the universities are sent initially to the Universities and Colleges Admission Service (UCAS). In the application an applicant can list up to five universities or colleges in order to preference. Applications must be sent to the UCAS in the autumn term of the academic year preceding that in which the applicant hopes to be admitted. The UCAS sends a copy to aech of the universities or colleges named. Each univesity selects its own students. The overall pupil-teacher ratio in state primary and secondary schools is about 18 to 1, on of the most favourable in the world.