How Are The Ages For UK School Years Calculated

All school ages of UK children are calculated on the 1st September, as this is the start of the UK academic school year and runs through to 31st August in the following year.

For example a child with a birthday of 21st September 2004 would be age 7 on 1st September 2012 so would be in year 3 from 1st September 2012.

Find out more about the timeline of UK education including school ages, timing of exams and questions to consider at each stage of education in our UK Education Timeline, on sale now for just £2.99 on our online store:




School ages:

Nursery (age up 4)

Pre-prep school 

Reception (age 4 on the 1st Sept)

Year 1 (age 5 on the 1st Sept)

Year 2 (age 6 on the 1st Sept)

Year3 (age 7 on the 1st Sept)

Prep school

Year 4 (age 8 on the 1st Sept)

Year 5 (age 9 one the 1st Sept)

Year 6 (age 10 on the 1st Sept) 11+ exam (if relevant) taken at the end of this year

Start year of some senior schools, or last two years of prep school

Year 7 (age 11 on the 1st Sept) First year in senior schools that start at age 11

Year 8 (age 12 on the 1st Sept) Common Entrance Year

Start of some senior schools and many public boarding schools

Year 9 (age 13 on the 1st Sept) Foundation year in ‘public school’

Year 10 (age 14 on the 1st Sept) Start of 2-year GCSE courses

Year 11(age 15 on 1st Sept) GCSE exam year

Sixth Form

Year 12 A1 Level (age 16 on 1st Sept)

Year 13 A2 Level/IB (age 17 on 1st Sept)