At what age can you get a job? In every country we can only do some things, like getting married or driving a car, when we get to a certain age. If you are under this age it is not legal (it is against the law). In this activity you will learn about legal ages in the UK.
At what age can you leave school?
In Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland young people can leave school when they are 16.
The school leaving age in England is changing in 2013. Children who are now in year 11 must stay in education or training until they are 17. From 2015 children will have to stay in education or training until they are 18.
This does not mean all children will have to stay in the classroom. If young people don’t want to stay in full time education at a school or college, they can do an apprenticeship, or they can get a full time job (over 20 hours a week) but they must also attend part time education or training at the same time.
At what age can you vote?
You can vote in elections for the British Parliament, for the European Parliament, the Scottish Parliament, the Welsh Assembly, the Northern Ireland Assembly and elections for the local government in your area when you are 18.
If you are a British, Irish, EU or Commonwealth citizen and you want to vote, you must fill in the form to put your name on the electoral register. If your name is not on the electoral register you can’t vote.
At what age can you drink alcohol?
You are not allowed to buy or drink alcohol in pubs or shops if you are under 18. However, in England, Scotland and Wales, 16 and 17-year-olds can drink wine, beer or cider with a meal in a restaurant or a hotel. You can only do this if someone aged 18 or over is with you at the meal and buys the alcohol. In Northern Ireland you can only drink alcohol in a pub or restaurant if you are over 18.
At what age can you get married?
In England, Wales and Northern Ireland you can get married when you are 16, but if you are under 18 your parents or guardians must give their consent. In Scotland you don’t need your parents’ consent if you are under 18.
At what age can you drive a car?
You can get a provisional driving licence when you are 17. When you pass your driving test you will get a full driving licence. While you are learning to drive you must always have another person with you in the car. This person must be 21 or over, and must have had a full driving licence for at least 3 years.
At what age can you get a job?
You are allowed to work for up to 2 hours on Sundays and school days when you are 14, and up to 5 hours on Saturday or in the school holidays. When you are 15 it is the same, but you can work up to 8 hours on Saturdays and other days when you are not at school. If you have left school when you are 16 you can work full time (up to 40 hours per week), but not in a bar. However, in England from the summer of 2013 young people must do some part time education or training until they are 17.
▶Task 1 - legal ages in the UK
▶Task 2 - vocabulary matching
▶Task 3 - can, can’t, be allowed to, must, have to
You can buy alcohol if you are over 18.
You are allowed to buy alcohol if you are over 18.
It’s not OK:
You can’t buy alcohol if you are under 18.
You aren’t allowed to buy alcohol if you are under 18.
Your parents must give their consent.
Your parents have to give their consent.
More like this
- What do you think about the legal ages for these things in the UK?
- Do you think they should be different?
- Are they different in your country?
Write and tell us about it.
This is based on a resource from Salford City College, we would like to thank them for allowing us to use this.