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Czech-Republic:Upper Secondary and Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

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Czech-Republic:Early Childhood Education and Care

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Czech-Republic:Teaching and Learning in Programmes for Children over 2-3 years

Czech-Republic:Assessment in Programmes for Children over 2-3 years

Czech-Republic:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Early Childhood Education and Care

Czech-Republic:Single Structure Education (Integrated Primary and Lower Secondary Education)

Czech-Republic:Organisation of Single Structure Education

Czech-Republic:Teaching and Learning in Single Structure Education

Czech-Republic:Assessment in Single Structure Education

Czech-Republic:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Single Structure Education

Czech-Republic:Upper Secondary and Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Czech-Republic:Organisation of Upper Secondary Education

Czech-Republic:Teaching and Learning in Upper Secondary Education

Czech-Republic:Assessment in Upper Secondary Education

Czech-Republic:Organisation of Conservatoires (Arts Education)

Czech-Republic:Teaching and Learning in Conservatoires (Arts Education)

Czech-Republic:Assessment in Conservatoires (Arts Education)

Czech-Republic:Organisation of Follow-up and Shortened Study

Czech-Republic:Teaching and Learning in Follow-up and Shortened Study

Czech-Republic:Assessment in Follow-up and Shortened Study

Czech-Republic:Higher Education

Czech-Republic:Types of Higher Education Institutions

Czech-Republic:First Cycle Programmes

Czech-Republic:Bachelor

Czech-Republic:Short-Cycle Higher Education

Czech-Republic:Second Cycle Programmes

Czech-Republic:Programmes outside the Bachelor and Master Structure

Czech-Republic:Third Cycle (PhD) Programmes

Czech-Republic:Adult Education and Training

Czech-Republic:Distribution of Responsibilities

Czech-Republic:Developments and Current Policy Priorities

Czech-Republic:Main Providers

Czech-Republic:Main Types of Provision

Czech-Republic:Validation of Non-formal and Informal Learning

Czech-Republic:Teachers and Education Staff

Czech-Republic:Initial Education for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Czech-Republic:Conditions of Service for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Czech-Republic:Continuing Professional Development for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Czech-Republic:Initial Education for Academic Staff in Higher Education

Czech-Republic:Conditions of Service for Academic Staff Working in Higher Education

Czech-Republic:Continuing Professional Development for Academic Staff Working in Higher Education

Czech-Republic:Initial Education for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Czech-Republic:Conditions of Service for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Czech-Republic:Continuing Professional Development for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Czech-Republic:Management and Other Education Staff

Czech-Republic:Management Staff for Early Childhood and School Education

Czech-Republic:Staff Involved in Monitoring Educational Quality for Early Childhood and School Education

Czech-Republic:Education Staff Responsible for Guidance in Early Childhood and School Education

Czech-Republic:Other Education Staff or Staff Working with Schools

Czech-Republic:Management Staff for Higher Education

Czech-Republic:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Higher Education

Czech-Republic:Management Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

Czech-Republic:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

Czech-Republic:Quality Assurance

Czech-Republic:Quality Assurance in Early Childhood and School Education

Czech-Republic:Quality Assurance in Higher Education

Czech-Republic:Quality Assurance in Adult Education and Training

Czech-Republic:Educational Support and Guidance

Czech-Republic:Special Education Needs Provision within Mainstream Education

Czech-Republic:Separate Special Education Needs Provision in Early Childhood and School Education

Czech-Republic:Support Measures for Learners in Early Childhood and School Education

Czech-Republic:Guidance and Counselling in Early Childhood and School Education

Czech-Republic:Support Measures for Learners in Higher Education

Czech-Republic:Guidance and Counselling in Higher Education

Czech-Republic:Support Measures for Learners in Adult Education and Training

Czech-Republic:Guidance and Counselling in a Lifelong Learning Approach

Czech-Republic:Mobility and Internationalisation

Czech-Republic:Mobility in Early Childhood and School Education

Czech-Republic:Mobility in Higher Education

Czech-Republic:Mobility in Adult Education and Training

Czech-Republic:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Early Childhood and School Education

Czech-Republic:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Higher Education

Czech-Republic:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Adult Education and Training

Czech-Republic:Bilateral Agreements and Worldwide Cooperation

Czech-Republic:Ongoing Reforms and Policy Developments

Czech-Republic:National Reforms in Early Childhood Education and Care

Czech-Republic:National Reforms in School Education

Czech-Republic:National Reforms in Vocational Education and Training and Adult Learning

Czech-Republic:National Reforms in Higher Education

Czech-Republic:National Reforms related to Transversal Skills and Employability

Czech-Republic:European Perspective

Czech-Republic:Legislation

Czech-Republic:Institutions

Czech-Republic:Bibliography

Czech-Republic:Glossary


Overview of Upper Secondary and Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Upper secondary schools (střední školy) provide mainly upper secondary education (ISCED 3) which may be general or vocational (with a higher or lower share of general component), while vocational courses prevail. This type of education is post-compulsory provided in two to four-year programmes and pupils usually enter them at the age of 15 after they have completed compulsory schooling. It offers a wide range of professional fields of study at several levels and covers educational needs of the whole 15-18 year old age group. Some secondary schools (multi-year secondary schools – víceletá gymnázia) provide also the lower secondary education.

Upon successful completion of a relevant educational program in an upper secondary school pupils have achieved a level of:

  • secondary education with a school-leaving examination (střední vzdělání s maturitní zkouškou) (ISCED 344 or 354, completed with a school-leaving examination);
  • secondary education with an apprentice certificate (střední vzdělání s výučním listem) (ISCED 353; completed with a final examination);
  • secondary education (střední vzdělání) (ISCED 253 or 353, completed with a final examination).


Following types of study are organised at upper secondary schools for those who have achieved secondary education with an apprenticeship certificate or a school-leaving examination and want to achieve other qualification:

  • follow-up courses  (nástavbové studium) (ISCED 354, completed with a school-leaving examination);
  • shortened courses (zkrácené studium) aimed at achieving secondary education with a school-leaving examination (ISCED 354);
  • shortened courses aimed at achieving secondary education with an apprenticeship certificate (ISCED 353, completed with a final examination).


Only secondary education with a school-leaving examination entitles graduates to enter a tertiary level of education.

By successfully completing a four-year educational programme in case of the day form of education in general (ISCED 344) or vocational courses (ISCED 354), by completing the educational programme of six-year or eight-year programme in the secondary general schools (gymnázia) (ISCED 244+344), or possibly follow-up or a shortened study (ISCED 354) a pupil acquires secondary education with the school-leaving examination. Education in general areas of study (study programs in secondary general schools) should equip pupils with a broad level of knowledge and skills enabling them to enter a tertiary level of education. These subject areas are also covered in eight or six-year programmes of secondary general schools (so-called multi-year secondary general schoolsvíceletá gymnázia) which provide general education at lower secondary level (ISCED 244, pupils complete their compulsory school attendance there) and upper-secondary level (ISCED 344). Vocational fields graduates awarded with a school-leaving certificate are entitled to perform a particular job (some two fifths of them enter the job market), in the recent years, however, more and more of them continue their studies at the tertiary level (some three fifths of them).

Secondary education with an apprenticeship certificate can be obtained by a pupil after he/she has successfully completed a two–year or more often three-year course in a day form (ISCED 353) or upon successful completion of a shortened course (ISCED 353). Subject areas in this type of education are specialized and focus is put on gaining specialized knowledge and practical skills. They are intended to perform particular professions.

Secondary education can be attained by a successful completion of a one-year or two-year (in a day form of education) educational programme: The two-year programmes provide less demanding courses and no apprenticeship certificate is awarded, school-leavers achieve the ISCED 353 level. One-year and two-year practical schools are designated for pupils with severe or multiple disabilities, school-leavers achieve the ISCED 253 level. This type of education is acquired by a very small number of pupils (0.5%). For more information about this issue see part on separate special education.

In the 2014/15 school year, 22% of pupils started their first grade of the upper secondary level entering the general fields of the upper secondary education with a school-leaving examination (fields of secondary general schools), 47% of pupils entered the vocational fields of the upper secondary education with a school-leaving examination and 31% of pupils the vocational fields with an apprenticeship certificate.

The basic prerequisite for being admitted to an upper secondary school (ISCED 3) as provided by law is completed compulsory school attendance and fulfilled requirements set for an admission process by the school head. Some courses are especially designated for those who have not successfully completed basic education and did not attain basic education (základní vzdělání) or for leavers from special basic schools (základní školy speciální) who mastered just the basics of education (základy vzdělání). Such schools are established for pupils with severe or multiple disabilities. Admission process (proceedings) can also include entrance or aptitude test. Multi-year secondary general schools (víceletá gymnázia) admit successful leavers from the 5th or 7th year of basic school. Requirements for admission to post-secondary education differ according to the type of education (secondary education with a school-leaving examination or an apprenticeship examination is required).


Secondary education can also be obtained in conservatoires.

Conservatoires provide art education in six-year programmes for pupils who have completed compulsory schooling (upper secondary + tertiary level of education, ISCED 354+554) or in eight-year programmes for pupils who have completed 5th year of the basic school (from lower-secondary to tertiary level of education, ISCED 244+354+554). Only a small number of pupils, admitted on the basis of an aptitude test, participate in this type of education. Education in these schools is usually completed with the graduate examination (absolutorium). Graduates achieve the level of tertiary professional education in a conservatoire (vyšší odborné vzdělání v konzervatoři) (ISCED 554) and are awarded a degree of “specialist with a diploma” (diplomovaný specialista), DiS. Pupils can also take a school leaving examination (maturitní zkouška) and thus attain upper secondary education with the school leaving examination (střední vzdělání s maturitní zkouškou, ISCED 354).


Certification in upper secondary education can also be obtained without prior participation in an educational or training programme if the applicant submits a set of certificates for (partial) professional qualifications. These certificates which together entitle the holder to full qualification enable him to take a final or school-leaving examination without prior participation in organised education. For more information see the parts on National Qualifications Framework (in chapter 2) and Validation of Non-formal and Informal Learning (in chapter 8).

Legislation and Bibliography:

Statistical Yearbook – Education. Education Statistic Indicators

General Objectives

Under the Education Act upper secondary education develops the knowledge, aptitude, skills, attitudes and values pupils have gained in basic education, which are important for the personal development of an individual. Upper secondary schools provide pupils with broader general education or vocational training with an element of general education and strengthen their values orientation. Secondary education lays the foundation for pupils' future, for a full, active life in both personal and civic sphere, for readiness to gain information independently and continue in further learning. It prepares them for entering the labour market and motivates them to engage in life-long learning. General objectives of lower secondary education provided in lower stage of multi-year secondary general schools (gymnázia) correspond to objectives of the single-structure education (see chapter Single Structure Education).

Conservatoires offer a combination of general and vocational education which builds on the knowledge, aptitude and skills pupils have acquired in the basic education or the basic art education. Courses of Music, Dance, Singing, and Music and Drama prepare pupils for employment in the field of performing arts or for teaching in the area of arts. Education in a conservatoire should provide pupils with a sound basis for a full personal and civic life and should also motivate them to continue their studies at higher education level.

More detailed objectives are set in framework education programmes (FEPs) which are drawn-up by the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports for individual fields of study and serve as a basis for school education programmes, where the objectives are concretised (for more information see part Teaching and Learning in Upper Secondary Education).


Legislation and bibliography:

Education Act



Legislative Framework

The area of secondary education, including post-secondary education, just as the areas of preschool, basic, tertiary professional and other education provided in schools and school facilities, is governed by the Education Act. Under this act conditions for delivering education and training are stipulated, rights and duties of physical and legal entities involved in education are regulated and the sphere of authority of state administration and self-government bodies in education is defined.

Education in upper secondary schools and conservatoires (types of upper secondary schools, organisation of theoretical and practical instruction, rules for pupils' assessment and other conditions regarding education) is further specified in a special Decree.

Another Decree regulates organisation of admission process to the first and later years of upper secondary schools and conservatoires.

With introduction of a new school-leaving examination (maturitní zkouška) a new Decree on completion of secondary school education with the school-leaving examination came into force.

An independent Decree regulates requirements for taking a final examination at upper secondary schools (závěrečná zkouška) and a graduate examination (absolutorium) in conservatoires.


Legislation and bibliography:

Education Act

Decree on secondary education and education in conservatoires

Decree on organisation of admission procedure in secondary schools

Decree on completing education by the school-leaving examination in secondary schools

Decree on completion of education in upper-secondary schools in the form of a final examination, and on completion of education in conservatoires in the form of an absolutorium