The Gallery holds the most extensive collection of portraits in the world. Search over 215,000 works, 150,000 of which are illustrated from the 16th Century to the present day.

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Schools and Colleges

Schools and Colleges

Schools and Colleges

Welcome to the National Portrait Gallery’s programmes for schools

Bring your class face-to-face with people past and present who contribute to the rich identity and diversity of British history, art and culture. Our engaging Gallery sessions use portraiture to inspire learning across the curriculum, helping students learn about their own identity, British society and their place within it.

National Portrait Gallery Learning offers a wide range of free and charged workshops, gallery sessions, talks and tours. These support the use of portraiture across the curriculum focussing on History, Art, Literacy, PHSE and Citizenship.

Booking for Summer term opens 17 February 2020

To book call 020 7312 2483 or email [email protected]

The Gallery has announced this year (5 November 2019) that in order to deliver the Inspiring People Gallery transformation project, the Gallery will temporarily close from June 2020 and re-open Spring 2023. Inspiring People is an exciting moment for the Gallery as we design a new Learning Centre featuring bespoke art, photography and editing studios and a schools lunch room and cloakroom.

Our current Schools Programme will be unaffected and will continue until the end of June 2020.

London outreach sessions September 2020 - March 2023
From September 2020 we will be offering a new Schools Outreach Programme in London working with select London boroughs. There will be more detail on when and where the Gallery will be offering sessions and how schools can get involved in late spring 2020.

Staying in Touch
Schools and teachers are vital to helping develop the Gallery’s future programmes and facilities. We would love to hear from primary and secondary schools teachers who are interested in working as expert advisers to shape the new schools programme, resources and teacher CPD programme. If you’re interested in getting involved, being kept up-to-date with our plans and progress or want to be a school ready to book for the grand re-opening in spring 2023 please sign up to our teacher e-newsletter for more information.

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Primary Schools, child drawing in Gallery school workshop

Primary Schools

Bring your class face-to-face with the most extensive collection of portraits in the world

Find out more

Secondary Schools, students viewing Malala portrait

Secondary Schools

Develop critical thinking and practical making skills around portraiture

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SEN, Portrait drawing by student


Investigate our portraits on display in interactive ways

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Self Directed Groups, School class exploring the gallery

Self Directed Groups

Book your class visit to explore people and portraiture in the Galleries

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CPD & Teachers’ events, Popular event hosted in Room 20

CPD & Teachers’ events

Join us to hear from guest speakers and work directly with artists

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Resources and Special Projects, Self portrait of Lucian Freud

Resources and Special Projects

Explore our resources and find out about special projects

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News, Photograph of Eleanor Mitchell


The latest news on the Schools Programme

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Book your visit today

Book your group visit and find out what to expect as a group leader when visiting us.

Phone us 020 7312 2483 (Type Talk: 18001)
Email us [email protected]


Data Protection Act 1998: The National Portrait Gallery may take photographs of participants as part of standard gallery sessions. All images will be held securely by the Learning Department. In some cases, these images may be used to publicise the Gallery's services (on the website; promotional leaflets; displays etc.). Under the terms of the Data Protection Act, 1998 you have the right to object to the use of your image for the above purpose. If further information is needed please telephone the Education Department on 020 7312 2483 (BT's Text Direct: 18001).

Sign up to our Schools’ newsletter to keep up to date with teacher events & opportunities for your class.

Follow us on Twitter and receive regular updates on the Schools Programme @NPGSchools