Things You Should Know About Primary Schools

A ‘Primary School’ is that stage of education between pre-school and secondary school ages, usually from five to eleven, in the western world; however, in some countries the age ranges could be from three to nine. It is also referred to as ‘Elementary School’ and almost everywhere it is the first or principal stage of compulsory education. The education provided in these schools is generally done with any charge, although a large number or fee-charging independent schools exist.

The French term ‘├ęcole primaire’ is where the primary school originated from and was first used in the early 1800s. Sometimes the primary school is referred to as ‘infant school’.

In the UK, the preferred usage is ‘primary school; so is the case with most Commonwealth Nations. In the US, primary school refers to the grades from Kindergarten to Second Grade; in such situations, the grades from Three to Five are in the elementary school category.

Worldwide, it is mandated that children receive primary education although it is the parents’ option. Basically, primary education’s principal goals are to provide basic literacy as well as numeracy while establishing the foundations of learning others subjects too such as geography, history, mathematics and sciences. The areas of debate, political as well as administrative, that are raging around the world see marked differences of opinions between groups who question the priority of the areas of teaching, the methods used to teach and if and how basic sexual education is to be imparted to young children.

In a primary school setup, children are places in the care of one teacher who holds primary responsibility for the learning and welfare for an entire year. While the core subjects may be taught by this teacher, additional teachers can come in to teach certain special skill such as music or physical education. By placing children in classes with a single teacher, the aim is to create continuity and the opportunity to build strong teacher-student relationship.

Millennium Development Goal

The Millennium Development Goal Charter set out by the United Nations is to achieve the goal of ‘universal primary education’ by 2015. This means that children all over the world irrespective of color, gender or race will be able to complete primary schooling by that time. However, in view of the fact that the focus in sub-Saharan Africa and southern Asia where most of the world’s children do not have proper access to primary schooling for various factors, this goal seems unlikely and may take a while longer to achieve. The statistics collected as of 2012 estimate that the number of school-age children who are not in school stands at 70 million and Africa and Asia account for that number.

Maladministration fears

In the last few years, government reports in the UK find that the number of these schools found guilty of flouting exam results, both by teachers and students, is rising. As such, results have had to be scrapped and exams re-conducted leading to fears of the mushrooming of unauthorized schools ill-equipped with infrastructure and experienced staff.