Category: Curiosities

Schools in the UK are free

Schools in the UK are free, efficient, organized and therefore accessible to the whole population. Those costs are only for food and uniforms. For this reason, some people choose to put their children in public schools, but there are also options for private schools, called Independents schools.

In today’s post, we will explain how the public education system works in England. Check out!

Academic Year and Holidays

The school year starts at the beginning of September and ends at the end of July. The days may vary according to the school council. Remembering that the teaching schedule is complete beginning in the morning and ending only in the afternoon.

The holidays are a little different than in Brazil, for example. There are several breaks during the year, the longest holidays will be between a school year and another, lasting around 1 month and a half. Divided periods are called terms. Each term has a 1-week break during the period and between one and the other is 2-weeks.


Nurseries are equivalent to daycare centers in another countries and children from 3 years old are empowered to 15 hours a week free of charge. If you choose to put before that age you will probably have to shell out a figure.


At age 4 the child starts in the class called Reception, which is not part of the necessary curriculum but many primary schools already offer. Only after the age of 5 does schooling become required and the child must be registered in a school.

Primary School

Primary schools correspond to elementary education and run from year 1 to year 6, meaning the ages of 5 to 11 years. Primary education is split into:

Key Stage 1 – years 1 and 2

Key Stage 2 – year 3 through year 6

Secondary School

Secondary schools are equivalent to elementary education II and high school and it runs from year 7 to year 11. At this stage, it is likely that the child will have to change schools. There are also schools called Grammar schools, these are secondary public schools considered to be differentiated and consequently popular. During the year 6 students can take a test to be called to study in these schools depending on the score reached.

The secondary education comprises the ages of 11 to 16 years and is divided into:

Key Stage 3 – years 7 to 9

Key Stage 4 – 10 and 11 years

It is also during this period that students take the General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE) exam that is important for university education and the professional future, as some job openings require it.

Sixth Form

Some secondary schools do not have Sixth Form which is the last years year 12 and year 13 attended between the ages of 16 and 18 as they are not required. At this age, the teenager can decide to work. The Sixth Form is divided into year 12 also called Lower Sixth and year 13 calling Upper Sixth.

This point can be considered preparatory to the university teaching and a direction for the student for the future career.

If you have recently moved to UK and still do not know how to register your children in the schools, it is quite simple, just go to the council of your area and they will guide you the best option based on your address and available positions.


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5 great British TV shows to improve English

Thinking about improving your English? How about watching some British series? Apart from training the accent, you still attain by historical facts and learn more about the local culture. Check out these 5 proposals we have for you!

1 – Downton Abbey

This award-winning British series is set in the twentieth century and follows the life of the English aristocratic Crawley family. The name of the series comes from the fictional rural estate Downton Abbey, where the family lives in the Yorkshire region. The story also follows the servants beyond the members, Crawley.

A full plate for lovers of drama and history. Unfortunately, the series was completed in 2015 after the sixth season, but fans can celebrate as they recently reported that a movie will soon be produced.

2 – The Crown

Do you like to accompany a royal family? So this series is for you! In addition, to training British English, you still learn a little more about the history of Queen Elizabeth II. Produced by Netflix, production begins with the Queen’s life from her marriage in 1947.

There are already two seasons available in the streaming service and the third is already confirmed for the beginning of next year. The series has won much acclaim to awards such as Golden Globe for Best Dramatic Series and Best Actress in a Dramatic Series.

3 – Sherlock

Who has never heard of the detective Sherlock Holmes stories written by Sir Arthur Conan? Now imagine if they would happen these days. Did you? That’s exactly what the show brings. Follow Sherlock’s cases and his fun way of solving the crimes with the help of his faithful friend Dr. John Watson.

The four seasons available on three long episodes in each one that will catch you from beginning to end. Benedict Cumberbatch stars in the principal role and has done a great job. Sherlock is also available through the Netflix streaming service.

4 – Luther

The excellent actor Idris Elba plays a dedicated detective. John Luther is extraordinary in solving crimes, but he needs to control his personal life as he deals with his behavior in relation to some psychological factors that surround the cases in the Luther series.

Produced by the BBC and available by Netflix, the police drama returns in its fifth season, still without a date of a debut, after three years that the production had been closed.

5 – Call the midwife

If you admire and want to know more about the work of professionals known as a midwife, be sure to follow the Call the Midwife series. Past the 1950s, this period drama brings back memories of a newly formed midwife living in East London.

These female heroes tended and cared for pregnant women and their babies in a poor region of the city at the time of the post-European war where the country was in chaos. The six seasons are also available through the Netflix streaming service.

Remember an important tip to train the English language: the original audio helps you memorize and train the audition for the British accent, but it is worth putting the subtitles in your mother language to learn the translation of the unknown words.

Tell us about your favorite British series!

Permanent residence and Registration Certificate in the UK

Brazilians with dual European citizenship enjoy the privileges as any other citizen of the countries that are part of the European Union. However, many who have a European passport are in doubt as to the type of application they must make to officiate their residence in the United Kingdom.

To date, the British Government does not require European citizens to apply for residency in the country to prove their right to live and work in the United Kingdom. However, with Brexit, those who already have their situation regulated will certainly avoid future problems.

Among those who will apply, it is very common to confusion between permanent residence and Registration Certificate.  So stay tuned and take your questions.

Registration Certificate

Everyone who has citizenship from any country belonging to the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland can obtain the Registration Certificate, which can be used as a proof of the right to live in the UK.  The certificate can be very useful in some circumstances to prove your immigrant status.  To apply it is necessary to prove that the applicant is working as an employee or autonomous, studying or that he is financially self-sufficient to pay his bills in the country without a request for benefits. As there are larger requires for students and people economically self-sufficient.

Permanent Residence

Permanent residence in the United Kingdom is also applicable to all European citizens living in the country. However, it is necessary that they have lived for at least five years continuously in England and that they have qualified within the hypotheticals above. After that period, everyone is entitled to permanent residence. It is necessary to prove the period of stay over the years through contracts of employment, rent, etc. The whole process lasts on average up to 6 months, but the Home Office usually gives priority to these cases.

LondonHelp4U is an expert on applications for permanent residency and Registration Certificate in the UK. Our consultants provide the necessary assistance throughout the process, from the selection of the documents to the delivery of the certificates.