n. & v.
n. 1 a an institution for educating or giving instruction, esp. Brit. for children under 19 years, or US for any level of instruction including college or university. b (attrib.) associated with or for use in school (a school bag; school dinners). 2 a the buildings used by such an institution. b the pupils, staff, etc. of a school. c the time during which teaching is done, or the teaching itself (no school today). 3 a a branch of study with separate examinations at a university; a department or faculty (the history school). b Brit. the hall in which university examinations are held. c (in pl.) Brit. such examinations. 4 a the disciples, imitators, or followers of a philosopher, artist, etc. (the school of Epicurus). b a group of artists etc. whose works share distinctive characteristics. c a group of people sharing a cause, principle, method, etc. (school of thought). 5 Brit. a group of gamblers or of persons drinking together (a poker school). 6 colloq. instructive or disciplinary circumstances, occupation, etc. (the school of adversity; learnt in a hard school). 7 hist. a medieval lecture-room. 8 Mus. (usu. foll. by of) a handbook or book of instruction (school of counterpoint). 9 (in pl.; prec. by the) hist. medieval universities, their teachers, disputations, etc.
v.tr. 1 send to school; provide for the education of. 2 (often foll. by to) discipline; train; control. 3 (as schooled adj.) (foll. by in) educated or trained (schooled in humility). at (US in) school attending lessons etc. go to school 1 begin one's education. 2 attend lessons. leave school finish one's education. of the old school according to former and esp. better tradition (a gentleman of the old school). school age the age-range in which children normally attend school. school board US or hist. a board or authority for local education. school-days the time of being at school, esp. in retrospect. school-inspector a government official reporting on the efficiency, teaching standards, etc. of schools. school-leaver Brit. a child leaving school esp. at the minimum specified age. school-leaving age the minimum age at which a schoolchild may leave school. school-ma'm (or -marm) US colloq. a schoolmistress. school-marmish colloq. prim and fussy. school-ship a training-ship. school-time 1 lesson-time at school or at home. 2 school-days. school year = academic year.
[ ME f. OE scol, scolu, & f. OF escole ult. f. L schola school f. Gk skhole leisure, disputation, philosophy, lecture-place ]