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There are lots of different types of primary school and educational settings in Bristol.  Most primary schools in Bristol follow the National Curriculum.  Below is information on the different types of primary schools in Bristol.

Find out about what schools should do to support children with special educational needs on the special educational needs support page.


Local Authority Schools

These are schools controlled by the local council.  These could also be community schools, foundation schools and voluntary schools.  Find out more.

Find Local Authority Schools on Findability.


Academy Schools

Academies get money direct from the government, not the local council. Academies don’t have to follow the national curriculum and can set their own term times. They still have to follow the same rules on admissions, special educational needs and exclusions as other state schools.  Find out more.

Find Academies on Findability.


Free Schools

Free schools are funded by the government but aren’t run by the local council. They have more control over how they do things.  Find out more.

Find Free Schools on Findability


Faith Schools

Faith schools have to follow the national curriculum, but they can choose what they teach in religious studies.  Faith academies don’t have to teach the national curriculum and have their own admissions processes.  Find out more.

Find Faith Schools on Findability.


Independent or Private School

Independent or private schools charge fees to attend instead of being funded by the government. Pupils don’t have to follow the national curriculum. Find out more.

There are some Independent schools for pupils with special educational needs.  Find out more.

Find Independent or Private Schools on Findability.


State Boarding Schools

State boarding schools provide free education but charge fees for boarding. Some state boarding schools are run by local councils, and some are run as academies or free schools. Find out more. Find out more.

Find State Boarding Schools on Findability. 


Special schools

Special schools provide education for children and young people with significant special educational needs.  Children and young people who attend special schools will usually have Education, Health and Care plans.

Find Special Schools on Findability.


School with Specialist Inclusion

These are local authority, academy, free or faith schools with additional funding from the local authority to provide some specialist provision (for example a class for children with significant special educational needs).  Sometimes these classes are called 'Resource Bases'. Find out more.

Find Schools with specialist inclusion on Findability.


Alternative Learning Providers

These settings provide education for pupils who can't attend mainstream educational settings.  Find out more.

Find Alternative Learning Providers on Findability.



This page has information for residents in the City of Bristol.  Find out about what other Local Authorities do.

Last Update 1 December 2016 by Findability Team.


We make sure we keep information on Findability as up to date as we can.  If you think this page is out of date or inaccurate please contact us on sendplus@bristol.gov.uk.  Findability is not responsible for the content of external websites.