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A primary school in Český Těšín, Czech Republic
A small primary school in Norfolk, England
An elementary school in Višňové (Slovakia)
"Michlal" Elementary school in Ramat Gan (Israel)
A Shōgakkō or Elementary school class in Japan

A primary school or elementary school is a school in which children receive primary or elementary education from the ages of about five to eleven, coming before secondary school and after preschool. It is the first stage of compulsory education in most parts of the world, and is normally available without charge, but may be offered in a fee-paying independent school. The term grade school is sometimes used in the US though this term may refer to both primary education and secondary education.

The term primary school is derived from the French école primaire, which was first used in 1802.[1]

  • Primary school is the preferred term in the United Kingdom and many Commonwealth Nations, and in most publications of the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).[2]
  • Elementary school is preferred in some countries, especially in North America.

In the United States, "primary school" may refer to a school with grades Kindergarten through second grade (K-2). In these municipalities, the "elementary school" includes grade three through five.[3] The terms first school or infant school may also be used in North America though these, strictly speaking, refer to different educational programs.

In some places, primary schooling has historically further been divided between lower primary schools (LP schools), which were the elementary schools, and higher primary schools (HP schools), which were established to provide a more practical instruction to poorer classes than what was provided in the secondary schools.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Online Etymology Dictionary". 
  2. ^ Primary school. In Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved on 12 June 2007, from Encyclopædia Britannica Online: http://search.eb.com/eb/article-9061377
  3. ^ "Cartersville City School District ::". cartersville.k12.ga.us. Retrieved 29 July 2015. 
  4. ^ Bruce Ryburn Payne, Public Elementary School Curricula: A Comparative Study of Representative Cities of the United States, England, Germany and France (1905), p. 155.

External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Primary_school — Please support Wikipedia.
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East London and West Essex Guardian Series
Mon, 03 Aug 2015 03:28:23 -0700

A primary school has received a 'good' Ofsted rating, just three years after being placed in special measures. Roydon Primary School was judged to be failing in 2012, but following an inspection earlier this month the education watchdog has rated the ...

The Guardian

The Guardian
Fri, 31 Jul 2015 14:00:26 -0700

Children of primary school age are to be the focus of an anti-obesity strategy to be unveiled this autumn, David Cameron has disclosed. The prime minister has already held talks in Downing Street with the celebrity chef Jamie Oliver, the chief medical ...
Sun, 02 Aug 2015 23:56:15 -0700

Palapye — As the name suggests, Diloro Primary School is located at Diloro village in Tswapong. The school is one of the first batch of schools to benefit from the pre-school programme. The programme was a response to the Revised National Policy on ...

The Bellingham Herald

The Bellingham Herald
Fri, 31 Jul 2015 12:11:54 -0700

A new Blaine Primary School playground will be completed in time for the first day of school in September, according to the district. The new playground is being built about 100 feet from the existing playground on the same lot, said Blaine School ...


Thu, 30 Jul 2015 08:22:30 -0700

... ways to support those children and young people. "Children are most likely to be excluded in year 5 in primary school or years 9 and 10 in secondary school – what is it about our education system that doesn't work for the children excluded at these ...

Liverpool Echo

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Sun, 02 Aug 2015 09:01:30 -0700

Pupils from a Runcorn primary school have spent nearly a year undertaking lessons with a nun as part of a spiritual journey. Year 6 children from St Martin's Catholic Primary School in Murdishaw have spent 10 months attending a weekly Mini Vinnies ...

Daily Mail

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Thu, 30 Jul 2015 23:12:55 -0700

Alarmed parents have received a letter from a primary school advising them that a 10-year-old boy bought a gun to school earlier this week. WA police have confirmed that a student from Comet Bay Primary School, in Secret Harbour, south of Perth ...
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Albany Primary School is supporting young people with disabilities by taking part in Jump Jam 4 StarJam. Ashleigh Jarrett, a teacher from Albany Primary School, is firmly behind the campaign. “We thought that this would be a great cause for the Jump ...

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