Education in Italy

The education system in Italy has  not got a good reputation. As in recent OECD studies, Italy was again below the European average. Although reforms have attempted to change the education system in the past, little has actually changed. The economic situation could therefore be further damaged due to the poor education in Italy. Education in Italy is compulsory from the ages of 6 to 16, and people place a high value on secondary schooling as well as university studies.

Education in Italy

The breakdown of the different levels of schooling are as followed:

  • Children’s garden: Scuola dell’Infanzia
  • Primary school: Scuola primaria
  • Secondary school: Scuola Secondaria di Primo Grado
  • High school: Leceo

Kindergarten (  Scuola dell’Infanzia)

In Italy kindergarten is usually from age 3 which is very different to the UK and some children can be as young as 2 1/2. This level of schooling however is not compulsory.  The main priorities of this kindergarten is to prepare the children as well as possible for primary school

Primary school ( Scuola Primaria )

Children start primary school at the age of 6 and elementary school lasts 5 years. The region of the schools location depends on the size of the class, but they are usually between 10 to 25 children per class. Scuola Primaria has 3 stages. The first is a year long and is used to as an introduction for the children. Subjects taught include;math, Italian, sports, music, history, art and even a foreign language. When they reach age 11 they are able to continue their education to Scuola Secondaria di Primo Grado.

education in italy

Secondary School ( Scuola Secondaria di Primo Grado )

The secondary school also often called the middle school and starts at age 11 and is a period of 3 years. This level of education is also free; however it is required for children to purchase their own text books. At Scuola Secondaria di Primo Grade” the children begin to learn a second foreign language, this is a lot younger than in the UK. In order to qualify for a Liceo, the students have to pass a final examination at the end of the middle school.

High school ( Liceo )

High school begins at the age of 14, students ge to decide what direction they want to their future career. This decision is crucial as some can realise their choice is not the right one for them. After an examination must be completed to decide their grades. Pupils can then choose either to pursue further education in universities / vocational schools or to start working immediately.

Studying in Italy

There are several state and private universities in Italy . There are also numerous vocational schools, which are also accessible to international students. Universities in Italy are a similar structure to the universities in England. A bachelor degree takes 3 years but a master takes 2 years in comparison to 1 in the UK. Per academic year you have to pay tuition fees in Italy. These can vary depending on the university, but they usually range between 700 and 1,000 euros which is a lot cheaper than in the UK.

For more information about Italy visit our pages moving to Italy and living in Italy.