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The Albania K-12 Education System

The Ministry of Education and Sports of Albania is responsible for the administration of K-12 education system. The K-12 education system consists of 
  • Preschool education
  • Basic education that encompasses elementary education and lower secondary education
  • Secondary education that comprises of general secondary education-Gymnasium and secondary vocational education

Albanian K-12 Education System

Preschool Education

Preschool education in Albania is not compulsory, and is offered by nurseries and kindergartens.
  • Nurseries are for children up to 3 years old. 
  • Kindergartens are for children aged 3-6 years. Activities such as singing, playing, dancing, drawing and social interaction are held at kindergartens. 
In Albania, preschool education is private as well as public.  Preschool education is an integral part of the child development. 

Basic Education

Basic education in Albania is compulsory, and is divided into 2 cycles: elementary education and lower secondary education. The basic education develops the practical, social, intellectual, physical and creative skills of the students. Civic and culture education is also imparted to students. This educational level also prepares students for further studies.
  • Duration: 9 years
  • Grades: 1 to 9
  • Ages: 6 to 15
Core curriculum: Mathematics, Albanian language, history, physics, civic education, knowledge of nature, foreign language, geography, computer studies, chemistry, art education, health education and biology, music, chemistry, physical education and technological training. 

Elementary Education

The elementary education in Albania focuses on numeracy and literacy skills, along with establishing a strong base in social science, science, geography and history. 
  • Duration: 5 years
  • Grades: 1 to 5
  • Ages: 6 to 11

Lower Secondary Education

Lower secondary education in Albania continues the elementary education programmes of the basic education, although it is more subject-focused. 
  • Duration: 4 years
  • Grades: 6 to 9
  • Ages: 11 to 15
Certificate awarded: Upon successful completion of the basic education, students are awarded the “Certificate of Complete Basic Education”.  

Secondary Education

Secondary education in Albania is not compulsory, and comprises of Gymnasium (general secondary education), and secondary vocational education.

Admission requisite: Students who have completed 9-year basic education are eligible for secondary education in Albania. 

Gymnasium/General Secondary Education

This educational level deepens the knowledge gained at the basic education level. 
  • Duration: 3 years
  • Grades: 9 to 12
  • Ages: 15 to 18
Curriculum: Mathematics, foreign language, social sciences, arts, Albanian language and literature, natural sciences, civic education, sports and physical education, ICT and technology, environment, and career education and personal growth.

Secondary Vocational Education

Secondary vocational education in Albania provides theoretical as well as practical skills and knowledge in a particular field/profession. Students who complete secondary vocational education are eligible to work or go for higher education.  
  • Duration: 2 to 5 years
In Albania, there are vocational schools for technology, agriculture, services, construction, industry, and economy and administration.

Certificate awarded: Vocational training certificate/ certificate of vocational skills. 

Examination: At the end of the secondary education, students must undertake “State Matura exams”. This exam marks the end of secondary education. Students who pass the exam are awarded a “Maturity certificate” that makes them eligible for higher education in Albania.

Other Secondary Schools in Albania

In Albania, secondary education is also offered in arts, foreign language, pedagogical, and sports schools. 

Foreign Language Secondary Schools

These schools provide general education as well as training in one or more foreign languages. 
  • Duration: 3 years

Secondary Arts Schools

These schools focus on training pupils in the field of art, ballet and music. 
  • Duration: 3 to 4 years

Secondary Sports Schools

These schools educate students in the field of sports.
  • Duration: 3 to 4 years

School Year

The school year in Albania runs from September to June. The school year is split up into two terms. 
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