Czech School System: From Kindergarten to Postgraduate Study

#LifeInCzechia Have you relocated to the Czech Republic with your children? Then it’s time to talk school! The Czech school system offers a variety of educational opportunities at each stage of a student’s journey. Embark on a journey through the Czech school system, where knowledge flourishes and talent unfolds.


Kindergarten is compulsory for children aged 5.


Kindergarten and Elementary Education

The education journey begins with kindergarten, which is compulsory for children aged 5 years. However, it is widely attended by children from 3 years old. Kindergartens provide a nurturing environment where children engage in play-based learning and develop social skills.

Elementary education follows, comprising nine grades (1st to 9th). During this period, students acquire foundational knowledge in subjects like mathematics, the Czech language, science, and humanities, alongside extracurricular activities such as physical education and arts.

It is also possible to leave elementary school at grade 5 or 7 and continue their studies at 6-year and 8-year secondary grammar school called Gymnasium.


Secondary Education and Maturita Exam

After completing elementary education, students can choose between several paths for their secondary education. The two primary choices are the academic-oriented Gymnasium and the vocational-focused Professional/Secondary Vocational Schools (SOŠ).

Gymnasiums provide a broad curriculum preparing students for university education, whereas SOŠs offer specialized vocational training and are further divided into industrial, trade, medical, pedagogical, agricultural, forestry, hotel, wine, fishery, horticultural, secondary art, and art-industrial schools. 

Gymnasium and Professional Schools lead to the Maturita exam, a comprehensive assessment taken at the end of secondary education. The Maturita exam evaluates students’ knowledge and skills across various subjects and is a requirement for admission to higher education institutions.

For Secondary Vocational Schools, the graduates obtain a certificate after 3 years and can continue with a follow-up study (called nadstavba) of 1-2 years to complete the Maturita exam.


The Maturita exam marks the end of secondary education.


Higher Education: Universities and Colleges

The Czech Republic offers a range of universities and colleges offering bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degree programs. Universities often provide a more research-oriented and theoretical approach to education, while colleges focus on practical skills and professional training.

Bachelor’s degree programs typically last three to four years, followed by two-year master’s programs. Doctoral studies can take three to five years to complete, emphasizing independent research and an original thesis.


Postgraduate Studies and Lifelong Learning

Beyond doctoral studies, there are opportunities for postgraduate studies, such as postdoctoral research and specialized programs for professionals seeking to enhance their knowledge and skills.

Lifelong learning initiatives are encouraged, with various institutions and organizations providing further education and training options to support continuous personal and professional development.


Check out our category Education in the Czech Republic for more information about studying in Czechia. Do not hesitate to contact us regarding school search. We are here to help!


Monika Tužinská

Hey, my name is Monika. I love exploring the world and learning new languages. I worked in the USA for several months and moved to Brno a year ago, so I know how it feels to live in a different country. Let's discover Czech Republic together.

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