Starting and attending school

Apply for a primary or secondary school place, help with costs, dealing with problems, home schooling, term and holiday dates.


  1. Apply for a primary school place

    Apply for a state primary school place through your local council

  2. School term and holiday dates

    Find your child's school term, half term and holiday dates on your local council's website

  3. Find and compare schools in England

    Check school performance tables (‘league tables’), Ofsted reports and financial information.

  4. The national curriculum

    The English national curriculum means children in different schools (at primary and secondary level) study the same subjects to similar standards - it's split into key stages with tests

  5. Schools admissions

    Get a place for your child at a primary or secondary school - applications, deadlines, admission criteria, appeals and complaints

See more services in this topic

Guidance and regulation

  1. Summer-born children: school admission
  2. Children missing education
  3. Elective home education
  4. School behaviour and attendance: parental responsibility measures
  5. Parental responsibility: guide for schools and local authorities
See more guidance and regulation in this topic

News and communications

  1. Almost 9 in 10 receive first choice of primary school
  2. Sarah Teather sets out overarching vision for early years services in 'Nursery World'
  3. Elizabeth Truss speech to the Daycare Trust conference
  4. Teather: parents should have a greater say in their children’s centre
See more news and communications in this topic

Research and statistics

  1. Home learning: the influence of early years providers
See more research and statistics in this topic

Policy papers and consultations

  1. Home education: call for evidence and revised DfE guidance
See more policy papers and consultations in this topic