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School Education Structure
2004/10/27

School education of the People's Republic of China includes preschool, primary school, econdary school, high school, university and college, as well as graduate school education. The following is school age and fixed school terms at different levels:

Kindergartens take children above three years old with a term of three school years;

Primary schools and secondary schools take six school years and three school years, five school years and four school years, or just nine-year-through schooling. Most areas practice the six-year and three-year school-year terms. Therefore, primary school term is six or five years, and secondary school term is three or four years; school age for primary schools is six or seven years old, and 12 or 13 for secondary schools;

School age for common high schools is 15 or 16, with a term of three school years. Secondary professional schools are divided into two types: school age for the first type that takes junior middle school graduates is 15 or 16, usually with a term of four school years but with some exceptions of three-year schooling; school age for the second type that takes high school graduates is no more than 22, with a two-year term of schooling; secondary vocational schools usually provide three or four years of schooling: technical schools provide three years of schooling; school age for vocational high schools is 15 or 16, with a term of two or three school years, or even four years in some places;

The schooling time of full-time universities is four or five school years (seven or eight years in some medical universities), schooling term of professional schools of higher education and vocational technical schools of higher education is two or lhree years;

Graduate education is divided into Master degree and Ph.D degree. The school age for Master degree students than 40, with a term of two or three school years; school age for Ph.D Students
is no more than 45, usually with three years of schooling;

The schooling term of various adult schools follows the practice of similar fullqime schools. Adult
secondary schools usually have the same schooling term as full-time schools of same nature; part-time or spare-time adult schools have one year more schooling term than full-time schools of same nature. The schooliing time of undergraduates in adult schools of higher learning is lour or five years, while education at professional schools of high education takes many forms, usually with a term of two to four school years.

Law of the People's Republic of China on Compulsory Education stipulates that the state should
implement the nine-year compulsory education system, namely, education at primary and secondary stages is compulsory. "Children of six years old, despite gender, nationality, and race, must go to school to receive free education. And areas where conditions are yet to be ready could postpone the school age to seven years old, which the state, society and families must guarantee."

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