The educational system in Slovakia has traditionally tended to follow that of Bohemia and the Moravia. Slovakia has a state eight-year compulsory and free school with a voluntary ninth year. In addition, there are special schools for the disabled and private schools.
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There are 16 higher education institutions, including four universities, in Bratislava (originally founded in 1467 under the name Academia Istropolitana and reorganized in 1919 under the name Comenius University) in Košice (founded in 1959), Nitra and Žilina. The latter two gained university status after the country’s independence in 1993.
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A more detailed review of the history of Czechoslovakia – of which Slovakia was a part until 1991 – can be found under the Czech Republic.
A Celtic tribe from Western Europe settled in the period 500-100 BCE in the area now known as Slovakia. Later, in the period 100 BCE to 400 AD, a Germanic tribe, the Quadis, founded a number of satellite states for the Roman Empire north of the Danube. Both the Quadis and their neighbors, the Marcomans who lived in Bohemia, were displaced by the females, led by Atila.
The Slavic tribe, the Slovakians, who came from the western region of Vistula and were closely linked to the Czechs, established themselves in the area from the 6th and 7th centuries, and were quickly forced to defend themselves against the Avars, a nomadic tribe from the lower Panonia, until the Frankish merchant, Samo, uniting the Slavic tribes who elected him king. Frank D. Charlemagne, who wished to expand his Christian empire, allied himself in 805 with the Czech leaders who lived in Bohemia and the Moravia in order to finally defeat the Avars. As payment for the assistance, Karl d. Created large duchies, which were distributed among the Czechs, thus gaining control of Moravia, Bohemia and Slovakia. Thus was founded the kingdom of Moravia, which included parts of Bohemia and Slovakia. The first monarch of Mohr, Mojimir d. 1, who converted to Christianity.
His nephew and successor, Rotislav d. 1, who reigned from 846-870, expanded the kingdom’s borders to include all of Bohemia; he united for the first time the Slavic territories and founded the Great Moravia. Under Rotislav, relations with the Frankish Empire were consolidated. At the invitation of Rotislav, Byzans sent the two monks Constantine and Metodio at the head of a delegation of priests. The monks translated the gospels and designed the first Slavic alphabet.