The educational system in Kazakhstan is conducted in two languages – Kazakh and Russian and consists of several levels of state and private educational establishments: infant schools, elementary (or primary) schools, comprehensive schools, colleges and academies. The constitution of the Republic of Kazakhstan fixes the right of citizens of the republic on free-of-charge secondary education which is obligatory. The constitution prohibits any discrimination on the basis of language or ethnicity and guarantees equal rights in education regardless of nationality. Children start school at the age of 7 and finish at 17. As a rule a child attends the school, located in the neighborhood. However, in big cities there are so-called special schools, offering more in depth studies of the major European languages (English, French, German) or the advanced courses in physics and mathematics and children, attending one of this may have to commute from home.
The first stage of education in Kazakhstan is elementary (or primary) school for grades one through four. The second is secondary school for middle grades from five through nine. Upon graduation from secondary school students are given the choice of either continuing to attend the same school (high school – senior grades 10-11) or entering a vocational or technical school. Both of these schools are meant to provide one, along with the certificate of secondary education with a number of useful skills (e. g. those of an electrician, technical or computer operators.) Having completed one’s secondary education, one can either become a part of work force or go on college (institution of higher learning-Institute).
To be admitted to the institute one has to pass a series of oral or written tests. Students may get free-of-charge higher education in the higher educational institution and the limited number of the state grants is given each academic year on a competitive basis. Some college departments (law, journalism, foreign language-especially English) have dozens of applicants for one prospective student’s position. The system of higher education prepares highly – skilled experts on economy, transport, agriculture, medicine, languages and others. Today the young people of Kazakhstan have the opportunity to choose and acquire various types of education and build their lives according to their ambitions.
Studying of foreign languages and development of computer skills of pupils is of a special importance. More opportunities appear for the interested persons to be trained abroad on the basis of local and state grants, scholarships
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