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Snapshot of Chile Education System

Education in Chile is managed by the Ministry of Education. The education in Chile starts with preschool education, followed by compulsory education that covers primary and secondary education, and then the tertiary education. 
Schools in Chile are both public and private. Public schools are owned by the municipalities. 

Classification of Schools (In Terms of Financing)

The different types of schools in Chile are:
  • Municipal: These schools are state-subsidized managed by the municipalities.
  • Particular Subvencionado: These are private schools that receive government ubsidy. 
  • Particular: These are private schools.

Snapshot of Chile Education

Preschool (Educacion parvularia)

The preschool education in Chile is not compulsory. The preschools are public as well as private that provide fundamental developmental skills. At the transicion level, basic arithmetic, reading and writing skills are provided. This level prepares children for primary school education. 
  • Sala cuna: This level is for children who are 85 days old up to 2 years old.
  • Nivel medio: This level of preschool is for children aged 2 to 4.
  • Transicion : This level of preschool is for children aged 4 top 6.

Primary Education (Educacion basica)

The primary education in Chile is mandatory to attend and lasts for 8 years. Children aged 6 to 13 attend primary schools in Chile.

Levels: Primary schools are divided into 2 levels (niveles basicos):
  • Level 1 comprises of grades 1 to 4
  • Level 2 comprises of trades 5 to 8

Curriculum: 
Compulsory subjects: Mathematics, Spanish language and communication, natural science, technology, music, geography, visual art, history, indigenous language, social sciences, physical and health education, and English language.
Optional subject: Orientation and religion education

Secondary Education (Educacion media)

Secondary education in Chile is compulsory to attend and lasts for 4 years. Children at the age of 13 may attend secondary education. 
At the secondary educational level, pupils are required to take up at least 33 hours of instruction per week. In the first 2 years, general curriculum is taught, and in the last 2 years, pupils get to choose their specialisation area. 
Secondary education is divided into two types (on the basis of curriculum):
  • Scientific-humanities: In grade 11, pupils can choose science or humanities. Science covers math, chemistry, biology and physics; and humanities cover philosophy, literature and history. This type of secondary education prepares pupils for higher education. 
  • Technical-professional: This type of secondary education prepares students for employment. At this level, practical knowledge in technical field is provided. The technical-professional programmes in Chile are offered in the following fields:
    • Commercial: Covers accountancy, secretarial work, management, etc. 
    • Agricultural
    • Technical: Covers nursing, fashion, etc.
    • Maritime
    • industrial Covers mechanics, informatics, electrical, electronic etc. 
Curriculum: 
In Grade 9 and 10: Compulsory subjects are science, English language, mathematics, history, Spanish language and literature, geography, technology, physical and health education, social science, and philosophy and psychology. 

Certificate awarded: Upon successful completion of the secondary education, the Licenciado en Ensenanza Media is awarded to the student. This certificate enables the students to apply for university education in Chile.

Tertiary Education (educacion superior)

Tertiary education in Chile is offered by the following higher education institutions:
  • University (Universidad)
  • Professional Institute (Instituto Profesional)
  • Technical School (Centro de Formacion Tecnica)
The universities in Chile offer a wide range of study programmes at leading to bachelor, master or doctor degrees.  The technical training centres offer programmes leading to a technician degree, and professional institutes offer programmes leading to Titulo professional.
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