Different Types of Schools in UK

The United Kingdom has different types of schools to deliver education at distinct levels. Here given a glimpse of different types of schools in the UK.

State-funded Schools

State-funded schools follow the “National Curriculum,” with main subjects including English, math and science. State schools are reviewed by the Office for Standards in Education, Child Services and Skills (Ofsted) every three years.

** The national curriculum is a set of subjects and standards used by primary and secondary schools. 

Independent Schools

Independent schools are funded by student fees and interest earned on school funding/investments. They set their own curriculum

Home Schooling

Children aged 4-16- are schooled at home, taught by either their parents or tutors. 

Special Schools

Special schools with students of the age 11 years and older can specialize in the following areas: communication and interaction, cognition and learning, behaviour, emotional and social development and sensory and physical needs

Other Types of Schools

Faith Schools

Faith schools are associated with a particular religion. Faith schools follow the national curriculum except for religious studies, where they can teach about their own religion without any set curriculum. The admissions criterion varies. 

Free Schools

Free schools are funded by the government but aren’t run by the local council. Free schools are run on a not-for-profit basis and can be set up by groups like charities, Universities, independent schools, community and faith groups, teachers, parents, or businesses. Free schools can set their own conditions and school terms. 
Types of free school: 
  • University technical colleges: University technical colleges specialise in subjects like engineering, IT, Construction and business skills. The curriculum is designed by the university and employers, who also offer students the work and internship experience. 
  • Studio schools: Studio schools are small schools, usually with around 300 students delivering mainstream qualifications through project-based learning, i.e. working in realistic situations as well as learning academic subjects. Students at Studio schools work with local employers and a personal coach, and conform to a curriculum planned to give them the skills and qualifications they require at work, or to take up further education.


Academies are publicly funded independent schools. They’re run by an academy trust which employs the staff. Academies can set their own terms.  Academies have sponsors such as commercial enterprises, universities, other schools, faith groups or voluntary groups.

City Technology Colleges

City technology colleges are independent schools in urban areas owned and funded by companies as well as central government. They are free to attend and lay major focus on technological and practical skills.

State Boarding Schools

State boarding schools offer free education, but charge fees for boarding. Some state boarding schools are run by local councils, and some are run by academies or free schools.
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