3 EducationUntil the age of 7 children usually go to kindergarten, which means that they obtain preschool education.In grades 1−9 pupils get basic education.In grades pupils get secondary education
4 Preschool EducationPreschool education is acquired either in a preschool child care institution or at home and its acquisition is the responsibility of the child’s parents or guardians.There are four types of preschool child care institutions – day nurseries (for children 1 to 3 years of age), nursery schools (for children 1 to 7 years of age), special nursery schools and nursery-primary schools.Parents have to pay for food and study aids. Local government cover other expenses.There are private kindergartens too.
5 Basic EducationCompulsory school attendance begins for children who turn 7 by 1 October at the latest.Basic school is divided into three stages of study: stage one – grades 1−3; stage two – grades 4−6; stage three – grades 7−9.Every school creates its own curriculum, that´s based on national curriculumThere are standard tests at the end of every stage of study.
6 Basic Education Basic education is obligatory and free of charge. There is the obligation to attend basic school until completing the curriculum or receiving 17 years.School year is 175 days and is divided into 4 terms.Length of the lesson is 45 minutes.Government pays for school lunch. textbooks and workbooksGovernment pays teachers´ salaryLocal government provides all other costs.Parents are allowed to choose school.
7 Assessment There are five grades in Estonian school. The best grade is “5”.“1” and “2” are not good enough, it means pupils achieve 0 -44% of maximum result.The pupils are evaluated four times a year at the end of every term, that based on the grades students get during the whole term.The behaviour and diligence is evaluated in Estonian schools.The pupils have to repeat the grade if they have not completed the curriculum. (It`s not the rule.)
8 Supporting systemThe following support systems are available in schools: • individual curriculum; • providing learning support for students with learning difficulties; • speech therapy; • long day groups; • studying at home • classes for students who have behavioural problems; • boarding schools for children who have social problems.
9 The maximum permitted weekly workload of pupils is as follows 20 lessons in grade 1;23 lessons in grade 2;25 lessons in grades 3 and 4;28 lessons in grade 5;30 lessons in grades 6 and 7;32 lessons in grade 8;34 lessons in grade 9.:
10 Compulsory subjects in basic schools Estonian Language and Literature,Foreign Language A (from grade 3) and B (from grade 6) (English, Russian, German or French),Mathematics,Natural Science, Geography, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, AnatomyHistory, Social Education, Music, Art,Physical Education, Manual Training for boys and Handicraft for girlsStudying Estonian as a second language is compulsory in Russian or non-Estonian medium schools.Studying religion is voluntary.
11 Graduating from basic school In order to graduate from basic school, students are required to complete the curriculum and successfully pass three basic school graduation examinations –in Estonian and LiteratureMathematicsand in one subject chosen by the pupil.Examination tasks are same in whole country and take place at the same time.
12 Secondary EducationThere are several opportunities for continuing education after graduation from basic school:acquisition of general secondary education in an upper secondary school. At the end of the three-year study period pupils take five graduation examinations, of which at least three are state examinations.secondary vocational educationsimply a vocation in a vocational educational institution.
13 Higher educationAll persons with secondary education have the right to apply for curricula of higher education offered in universities, professional higher education institutions and vocational educational institutions. Curricula of professional higher education, Bachelor study, Master’s study, doctoral study and long-cycle study are available in Estonia.Students have to pay for higher education or its free when government pays for it.
14 The Ministry of Education and Research plans, organises and develops education, research, youth and language policies;develops national development plans in the areas of education,organises the funding, completion and assessment of the results of development plans;exercises governmental supervision over the activities of educational institutions regarding provision of education plans
15 Teachers Teachers must have higher education. Teachers have working contracts.Full working time is 35 hours per week. including lessons.Leading a class gives extra money 10%Assessment of teachers takes place after 5 years.
16 E-schoolThe school and pupils data is presented on the internet database. (It`s called EHIS- Estonian Educational Informational System)Lots of schools use only internet school journals. (We call it E-kool – “Electronical school”).Tiger leap Foundation is supporting the development of using computers in educational institutions.Internet based learning programme (called MIKSIKE- Lots of questions) gives possibilities to study on the Internet. ,E-school is a solution that allows parents and school-children to see their study-information i.e. grades, missed classes, home assignments over the Internet. It also improves parents' communication with teachers via Forums. Information in e-school is personalized, it allows authorised persons filtered viewing only the information they have the right to access.
17 Education and mediaLots of schools in Estonia have their own school newspapers edited by the students.Every school has the Internet home page“The Teachers` Newspaper” comes out every week.Educational magazine “Education” (Haridus) comes out 6 times a year.
18 ProblemsThe birth of children has decreased (approximately children was born in a year and only in a year 2008)The profession of teacher is not popular enough(low salary and psychologically difficult job)There are lots of too small schools in EstoniaThe problem of contents of the national curriculum (lots of academical facts and few practical topics )There are too few male teachers in the schoolsToo many students leave school without completing the curriculum