School system in Poland!

The Polish school system has undergone a major transformation during the last decade. Many things were changed concerning administration, financing, inspection, supervision, guidance, teachers rights and duties.

The current structure of the system is as follows:

1) Pre-school education – day nursery (for children aged between 4 months and 3 years) and kindergarten (designated for children between 3 and 6 years old);
2) Elementary school (period: 6 years);
3) Gymnasium (period: 3 years);
4) Secondary/post-secondary school (period: 3 – 5 years);
5) Higher education (3 – 10 years).

The entry age in Polish educational system is 7 years. At the end of the secondary education cycle students can take the maturity examination (Polish: egzamin dojrzałości – matura), i.e. standardised national secondary school achievement examination, and receive the maturity certificate (Polish: świadectwo dojrzałości). The maturity examination is necessary to enter higher education.

Both state and private institutions of higher education exist in Poland. The higher education on Polish state universities, unlike in many other countries, is free. Most bigger cities have well-established universities and the biggest academic centres include Warsaw, Cracow, Poznan and Gdansk. There are many study programs. They can take the form of daily, evening or extramural studies and distant learning courses. Daily studies is the prevalent form.