Schools in United Kingdom
- Independent Schools
Gross enrolment overall: 89.3% (2012)
Primary female–male ratio: 1:1 (2012)
Secondary female–male ratio: 1:1 (2012)
Primary pupil–teacher ratio: 18.3:1 (2012)
Secondary pupil–teacher ratio: 14:1 (2008)
There are 12 years of compulsory education starting at the age of five. Primary school comprises six years and secondary seven, with cycles of three and four years. The school year starts in September.
There are around 2600 independent schools in the UK; approximately 6.5% of children in the United Kingdom, 628,000, attend independent schools. About 23,000 of the pupils are non-British mainly from Asia and Europe. Independent schools consistently outperform state schools at GCSE and A – level. Older independent schools in the UK are commonly known as public schools. The terms ‘public school’, which should not be confused with state or public-funded schools, date back to the 18th century, when the schools for boys began attracting and accepting students from beyond the local surroundings and thus became ‘public’ as opposed to local or private.