12. EDUCATION IN THE CZECH REPUBLIC
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12. The system of Education in the Czech Republic Structure Curriculum Problems (if any) Advantages The Czech education system operates on three levels: primary, secondary and tertiary. Firstly, at the age of six Czech children have to enter nine-year primary school. Most schools are financed by the state. However, there are also private schools where you pay for fees. By law, the school-leaving age is 15. For those willing to continue, there are many secondary education alternatives. The traditional secondary school prepares students for university and lasts four years or longer if the students have enrolled earlier from elementary school. The studies may be focused more on humanities as well as science. All the secondary studies finish with a final school-leaving exam in the fourth year, which comprises four (sometimes 5) subjects, two compulsory: Czech and a foreign language and two or three electives. For the types, who prefer study, there is a grammar school. It should prepare student for university. Another option is secondary vocational schools, which train young people for jobs like bakers, mechanics, bricklayers or waiters. A known problem of high schools in the Czech Republic is private schools. In most of European countries private means better quality of study. But here it is mostly about amount of money, that you pay, not about education. If you pay a lot in private school, your children can pass without knowing important thinks. However, there are exceptions such as a grammar school and primary school PORG, which are one of the best schools in the Czech Republic. Finally, in order to study at university, students have to pass demanding entrance exams. Education at universities is free of charge in the Czech Republic. The most popular subjects include humanities, law or medicine studied at Charles University in Prague or Masaryk University in Brno. The universities offer three-year-bachelor programmes as well as five-year-master programmes which finish with a final state exam and a thesis defence. Czech universities, for example Charles University, are well known around the Europe. Students all over the world want to study here. Actually,the Czech educational system is considered to be one of the best in the world according to the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA). In addition, Czech higher education institutions offer a wide variety of study programs taught in English and other foreign languages specifically designed for international students. In fact, over 30000 international students chose to study in the Czech Republic in 2009, whether as part of an exchange program or as free movers. I would like to study medicine. I would like to take demanding entrance exams in three universities: Charles, Palackého and Masarykova University as well. Most people say, that the quality of Czech universities is almost the same, so I whichever university I join, I would be highly educated and professional.