School represents our earliest experience of social convention and restriction, and has so great an emotional impact that it is never forgotten by the unconscious and is often used in dreams to show up current conflicts and in equivalent triumphs and humiliations.

Often, once the incidents at school are related to the present circumstances, the underlying life conflict will be revealed. Once again it can be useful to ask.

  • How old was I in the dream?
  • What was going on for me then, what stands out as being most vivid?
  • What do I remember of that class, that teacher, those classmates and so on?

School with its grades, uniforms, rules, reprimands and so on, that seemed all so important at the time can be regarded as a rehearsal for later life.  From another perspective school might be about unquestioned social conventions and the dream may be pointing toward our individual authority.  Seen from a wider perspective this may be what the dream is trying to say.

Teachers, especially our first teachers, in common with other authority figures, often bring to our awareness aspects of our relationship to outer authority in general, and our relationship with our own father in particular.

These primary ways of responding result in attitudes that tend to get projected onto new situations and the dream is perhaps trying to call your attention to some equivalent problem.

Starting school was for many a trauma, and was certainly a huge transition for all, and so is often equated in dream life with starting a new job or beginning any new venture. Similarly being late for school can parallel the experience of being late or otherwise unprepared and vulnerable with regard to something current in your life.