When should children begin their education? According to some speakers at the Professional Association of Teachers' annual conference, the school starting age should be raised to six or seven. This would bring the UK into line with most of Europe, as this 2002 report from the NFER illustrates.
If you are interested in seeing 'how they do it' in other countries, there are a number of websites which can provide you with detailed information on educational systems in other countries. The largest of these belongs to the International Bureau of Education, although INCA and Eurydice are also well worth a look.