Italy Education

Italy Education

The school in Italy is compulsory from the age of six to the age of 16. The compulsory schooling includes the entire first part of the education course (which lasts for eight years) and the first two years of the second part of the education course. The public school offer is free.

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Organization of education

Preschools and kindergartens

Around 19% of children under two years attend kindergarten (asilo nido). Preschool (la scuola dell’infanzia) is an offer that usually applies to children between three and six years. There are state and private preschools, and the offer is not free. A large majority of Italian children attend preschool.

Basic education

The first cycle of the Italian education system consists of the elementary school (la scuola primaria) and the secondary school (la scuola secondaria di primo grado). The pupils start when they are six years old and finish primary school when they are eleven. The secondary school is three years old and ends when the pupils are 14 years old.

Students learn English from their first year of primary school Secondary school is compulsory for a foreign language in addition to English, usually French, Spanish or German. Christian education is initially compulsory in the Italian school, but it is possible to get exemption from this subject and to receive alternative education instead.

Pupils are not automatically moved up to the next grade level in elementary school, but in practice it is very rare for students to retire.

Teacher density is high in the Italian elementary school. In primary school there are an average of ten pupils per year. class, while the average in the OECD countries is 16.

The elementary school must have a minimum of 200 school days a year. The summer holidays are long and last from June to September. The school day in elementary school usually lasts from 8 to 16 Monday to Friday. In many places it is also school Saturdays. In essence, the students have 30 hours of teaching per week. week, and Italy is among the countries in the industrialized world that have the most teaching hours for pupils in primary school.

Italy Schooling

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Secondary education

High school (la scuola secondaria di secondo grado) is five years old and goods from pupils are 14 to 19 years. Only the first two years are compulsory. Around 50% of students choose study preparation education programs (liceo), and here are six different directions to choose from. Technical high school (istituto tecnico) is chosen by approx. 30% of the students, while 20% choose vocational education program (istituto professional).

Around 10% of primary and secondary school pupils attend private schools, a majority of these schools being religious and run by the Catholic Church.

Secondary schools and upper secondary schools usually only have morning instruction, and the school day ends at. 13. The students then go to school on Saturdays. The schools largely decide for themselves how the school day should be organized, and some schools have recently replaced Saturday teaching with afternoon teaching.

Higher education

There are around 60 state universities and colleges in Italy, as well as several private ones. In order to gain study skills, you must have completed high school. The university education is divided into three levels: The first level is laurea (bachelor), which is obtained after three years of study. After a further two years of study, one can obtain a laurea magistrale (master) and finally one can take a three-year research degree (dottorato di ricerca). Some studies are structured as five- or six-year studies, such as architecture, law, dentistry and medicine.

The largest university in Italy is La Sapienza in Rome, with around 150,000 students, which is also considered the largest university in Europe.


At the gathering of Italy in 1870, the proportion of illiterate people in the country was high, especially in southern Italy. Despite the introduction of compulsory schooling for all children in the post-collection period, illiteracy remained a problem in Italian society until the late 1900s. Although the school was compulsory for all, it was primarily children who lived in urban areas who received an adequate education, while it took a long time for children in the country to receive the same offer.

Under fascism, major reforms were made in educational policy, led by renowned philosopher Giovanni Gentile, who was appointed Minister of Education in 1922. Education was mandatory for all children aged 14 and special schools for pupils with special needs were established. example for the blind and deaf. The number of illiterates was significantly reduced during this period, from about 35% in 1920 to about 13% at the end of World War II. Illiteracy nevertheless remained relatively high even in the postwar period, compared with other industrialized countries.

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Ten-year compulsory schooling for anyone between the ages of 6 and 16 was introduced in 2007.

The institutions of higher education have a long and rich history in Italy. The University of Bologna is considered the oldest university in the world, founded in 1088. During the 1100s and 1200s, a number of universities were founded in cities in the Italian peninsula, including Parma, Modena, Padova, Rome, Naples and Siena..

Regional differences

Ever since the unification of Italy, there has been a significant difference between the North and the South in terms of results in the education sector. Exam results and results from international surveys reveal major regional differences. The 2013 PISA study showed that Italy was just below the OECD average in math, but many regions in Northern Italy (Trentino-Alto Adige, Veneto, Lombardy and Friuli-Venezia-Giulia) were on par with the countries of Europe that achieved the best results in the survey. Most regions in southern Italy, on the other hand, were far below the OECD average.

Rome – city in Italy

Rome, Italian Roma, the capital of Italy, first name The Eternal City, the capital of the province of the same name and of the Lazio region; 2.87 million housing (2016; 4.35 million in metropolitan area); Add to this an unknown number of illegal immigrants. Rome is Italy’s most populous city and lies along both banks of the Tiber, partly in plains and partly on hills, of which Monte Mario with its 139 m is the highest. Completely surrounded by Rome lies the Vatican City.


When Rome was incorporated into Italy in 1870, the city had 226,000 residents; population growth is due to extensive immigration, especially from the regions of Lazio, Marche and Abruzzo as well as from southern Italy and since the 1970’s also from Eastern Europe and especially North Africa.

Throughout the 1990’s, however, the population has remained stable because many Romans have moved to the surrounding municipalities.

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