School is the place you go to learn, and the place you escape from when you play hooky. When you school someone, it means you’ve educated or put that person in his or her place.

School has its roots in the Greek skhole. That word originally had the sense of “leisure,” which evolved into a “place for discussion,” so you can see how school came to have its modern meaning. School, as in "school of thought," can describe a group of people bonded together by shared principles. The phrase "school of hard knocks" is slang for “rough experience in life.” School also refers to a large group of fish that swim together.

Definitions of school
  1. noun
    an educational institution
    “the school was founded in 1900”
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    a school for special training
    correspondence school
    a school that teaches nonresident students by mail
    a special school where students are crammed
    dancing school
    a school in which students learn to dance
    direct-grant school
    formerly a school that charged tuition fees and also received government grants in return for admitting certain non-paying students who were nominated by the local authorities
    driving school
    a school where people are taught to drive automobiles
    finishing school
    a private school for girls that emphasizes training in cultural and social activities
    flying school
    a school for teaching students to fly airplanes
    grad school, graduate school
    a school in a university offering study leading to degrees beyond the bachelor's degree
    language school
    a school for teaching foreign languages
    nursing school, school of nursing
    a school for training nurses
    religious school
    a school run by a religious body
    riding school
    a school where horsemanship is taught and practiced
    Gymnasium, lycee, lyceum, middle school, secondary school
    a school for students intermediate between elementary school and college; usually grades 9 to 12
    secretarial school
    a school where secretarial skills (typing and shorthand and filing etc) are taught
    tech, technical school
    a school teaching mechanical and industrial arts and the applied sciences
    training school
    a school providing practical vocational and technical training
    veterinary school
    a school teaching veterinary medicine
    the faculty and students of a school specializing in one of the fine arts
    alma mater
    your alma mater is a school you graduated from
    public school
    a tuition free school in the United States supported by taxes and controlled by a school board
    private school
    a school established and controlled privately and supported by endowment and tuition
    dance school
    a school where students are taught to dance
    day school
    a school giving instruction during the daytime
    night school
    a school that holds classes in the evenings for students who cannot attend during the day
    Sabbath school, Sunday school
    school meeting on Sundays for religious instruction
    elementary school, grade school, grammar school, primary school
    a school for young children; usually the first 6 or 8 grades
    junior school
    British school for children aged 7-11
    infant school
    British school for children aged 5-7
    yeshiva, yeshivah
    an academy for the advanced study of Jewish texts (primarily the Talmud)
    a secondary school (usually private)
    police academy
    an academy for training police officers
    military academy
    an academy for training military officers
    naval academy
    an academy for training naval officers
    air force academy
    an academy for training air force officers
    Plato's Academy
    a school established by Plato in ancient Athens
    business school
    a graduate school offering study leading to a degree of Master in Business Administration
    dental school, school of dentistry
    a graduate school offering study leading to degrees in dentistry
    law school, school of law
    a graduate school offering study leading to a law degree
    madrasa, madrasah
    a Muslim college, university, or school
    medical school, school of medicine
    a graduate school offering study leading to a medical degree
    music school, school of music
    a school for the study of music
    pesantran, pesantren
    a Muslim school in Indonesia operated by religious leaders; produces young militants skilled in jihad
    church school, parochial school
    a private religious school run by a church or parish
    a private place of education for the young
    a theological school for training ministers or priests or rabbis
    engineering school, polytechnic, polytechnic institute
    a technical school offering instruction in many industrial arts and applied sciences
    trade school, vocational school
    a secondary school teaching the skilled trades
    high, high school, highschool, senior high, senior high school
    a public secondary school usually including grades 9 through 12
    junior high, junior high school
    a secondary school usually including 7th and 8th grades
    prep school, preparatory school
    a private secondary school
    charter school
    an experimental public school for kindergarten through grade 12; created and organized by teachers and parents and community leaders; operates independently of other schools
    public school
    private independent secondary school in Great Britain supported by endowment and tuition
    day school
    a private school taking day students only
    boarding school
    a private school where students are lodged and fed as well as taught
    grammar school
    a secondary school emphasizing Latin and Greek in preparation for college
    secondary modern school
    a former British secondary school emphasizing practical rather than academic education
    composite school, comprehensive school
    a large British or Canadian secondary school for children of all abilities
    type of:
    educational institution
    an institution dedicated to education
  2. noun
    a building where young people receive education
    “the school was built in 1932”
    “he walked to school every morning”
    synonyms: schoolhouse
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    conservatoire, conservatory
    a schoolhouse with special facilities for fine arts
    day school
    a school building without boarding facilities
    art school
    a school specializing in art
    music school
    a school specializing in music
    type of:
    building, edifice
    a structure that has a roof and walls and stands more or less permanently in one place
  3. noun
    an educational institution's faculty and students
    “the school keeps parents informed”
    “the whole school turned out for the game”
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    type of:
    educational institution
    an institution dedicated to education
  4. noun
    the process of being formally educated at a school
    “what will you do when you finish school?”
    synonyms: schooling
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    type of:
    the gradual process of acquiring knowledge
  5. noun
    the period of instruction in a school; the time period when school is in session
    “stay after school
    “he didn't miss a single day of school
    “when the school day was done we would walk home together”
    synonyms: school day, schooltime
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    type of:
    period, period of time, time period
    an amount of time
  6. verb
    educate in or as if in a school
    “The children are schooled at great cost to their parents in private institutions”
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    educate (one's children) at home instead of sending (them) to a school
    type of:
    give an education to
  7. verb
    teach or refine to be discriminative in taste or judgment
    “She is well schooled in poetry”
    synonyms: civilise, civilize, cultivate, educate, train
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    make less natural or innocent
    type of:
    down, fine-tune, polish, refine
    improve or perfect by pruning or polishing
  8. noun
    a body of creative artists or writers or thinkers linked by a similar style or by similar teachers
    “the Venetian school of painting”
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    Ashcan School, Eight
    a group of United States painters founded in 1907 and noted for their realistic depictions of sordid aspects of city life
    a school of architecture based on the philosophical theory of deconstruction
    historical school
    a school of 19th century German economists and legal philosophers who tried to explain modern economic systems in evolutionary or historical terms
    a school of painters who used a technique of painting with tiny dots of pure colors that would blend in the viewer's eye; developed by Georges Seurat and his followers late in 19th century France
    art nouveau
    a French school of art and architecture popular in the 1890s; characterized by stylized natural forms and sinuous outlines of such objects as leaves and vines and flowers
    lake poets
    English poets at the beginning of the 19th century who lived in the Lake District and were inspired by it
    secession, sezession
    an Austrian school of art and architecture parallel to the French art nouveau in the 1890s
    type of:
    a group of persons associated by some common tie or occupation and regarded as an entity
  9. noun
    a large group of fish
    “a school of small glittering fish swam by”
    synonyms: shoal
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    type of:
    animal group
    a group of animals
  10. verb
    swim in or form a large group of fish
    “A cluster of schooling fish was attracted to the bait”
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    type of:
    travel through water
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