Schools: statutory guidance

The Department for Education’s statutory guidance publications for schools and local authorities.

Statutory guidance sets out what schools and local authorities must do to comply with the law. You should follow the guidance unless you have a very good reason not to.

There is some guidance that you must follow without exception. In these cases we make this clear in the guidance document itself.

These publications reflect the current legal position (unless otherwise indicated), but may not reflect the current government’s policies.

For guidance on assessments, view Standard and Testing Agency (STA) publications.

Administration and finance


Behaviour and attendance


Early years foundation stage


Looked-after children

Safeguarding children and young people

Special educational / health needs

Staff employment and teachers pay

Schools and colleges careers guidance

Updates to this page

Published 11 March 2014
Last updated 19 November 2021 + show all updates
  1. Added 'Cost of school uniforms'.

  2. Added 'School teachers' pay and conditions' statutory guidance for 2017.

  3. Added 2017 assessment and reporting arrangements for key stage 1, key stage 2 and the early years foundation stage.

  4. Added 'School teachers' pay and conditions 2016' under the 'Staff employment and teachers pay' heading.

  5. Added 'Multi-agency statutory guidance on female genital mutilation'.

  6. Added the 2015 school teachers' pay and conditions document and guidance.

  7. Added updated 'Keeping children safe in education' and 'Working together to safeguard children' guidance.

  8. Added statutory guidance on 'Disqualification under the Childcare Act 2006'.

  9. Added medical conditions statutory guidance.

  10. Added the 'SEND: managing changes to legislation from September 2014' document.

  11. Added the 2014 school teachers' pay and conditions document and guidance.

  12. Added 'Promoting the education of looked-after children' statutory guidance.

  13. Updated 'Home to school travel and transport' statutory guidance.

  14. Added link to 'P scales: attainment targets for pupils with SEN'.

  15. Added statutory guidance on the 'Constitution of governing bodies of maintained schools'.

  16. Added link to revised 'Early years foundation stage framework' which comes into force on 1 September 2014.

  17. First published.