K-12 Education System of Peru

The Ministry of Education administers the K-12 education in Peru. K-12 education starts with pre-primary education, followed by 6-year primary education and concludes with 5-year secondary education. Education in Peru is compulsory for children aged 5 to 17.

Understanding the Peruvian K-12 Education System

Pre-primary Education

Pre-primary education in Peru is offered by nurseries, kindergartens and other preschools. This educational level acquaints the children with the school-type environment, and works towards the intellectual, sensory, emotional and relational development of the child. Pre-primary education in Peru is organized into three cycles:
  • First cycle is for children up to 3 years old and offered by creches. 
  • Second cycle is for children aged 3 to 5 and is offered at nursery schools. 
  • Third cycle is for children aged 5-6 and is compulsory to attend. This cycle education is offered by kindergartens. 
As per the Constitution of 1993, pre-primary education is mandatory for children aged 5-6. 

No. of teaching hours a day: 5 (In the age group 0-3, these hours are flexible)
No. of teaching hours a week: 25

Primary Education (Educacion Primaria)

Primary education in Peru is compulsory. This education level develops the creative, social, artistic, vocational, personal, physical, logical thinking, and spiritual skills of the students. It also implements basic learning through communication, psycho-motor skills and mathematics. 
  • Duration: 6 years
  • Ages: 6 to 12
  • Grades: 1 to 6
Primary education is organized into following cycles:
  • First cycle comprises of grades 1 and 2
  • Second cycle comprises of grades 3 and 4
  • Third cycle comprises of grades 5 and 6
No. of teaching hours a day: 6

Teaching hours a week: 30

Curriculum: Mathematics, religious education, communication, environment and nature, science, arts, physical education, social studies, and personal social development.

Secondary Education (Educacion Secundaria)

Secondary education in Peru is compulsory.
  • Duration: 5 years
  • Ages: 12 to 17
  • Grades: 7 to 11
Secondary education in Peru is divided into two cycles:
  • First cycle is general secondary education of 2 years. This cycle is compulsory and common for all students. 
  • Second cycle provides two options to students- academic and technical. This cycle is of 3 years duration. Students after completion of the general secondary education are required to choose between academic secondary education and technical secondary education.

General Secondary Education

The general secondary education offers general studies to the students. 
  • Duration: 2 years
  • Ages: 12 to 14
  • Grades: 7-8

Academic Secondary Education (Ciclo Diversificado Cientifico-Humanista)

Academic secondary education offers two educational tracks- scientific and humanistic.
  • Duration: 3 years
  • Ages: 14 to 17
  • Grades:  9 to 11

Technical and Vocational Secondary Education (Ciclo Diversificado)

This educational level offers technical and technological education. This education is offered in Secondary schools with technical variation (colegios secundarios con variante tecnica). Vocational pupils can choose between agricultural, commercial and industrial programmes. 
  • Duration: 3 years
  • Ages: 14 to 17
  • Grades:  9 to 11

Curriculum: Mathematics, environment and nature, religious education, science and technology, communication, English, civics, social skills, geography, social studies, history, art, economics, physical education, and vocational training.

No. of teaching hours a day: 7

Certificate: Upon successful completion of the secondary education, students are awarded the Official Certificate of Secondary Education Studies (Certificado Oficial de Estudios de Educacion Secundaria). Students who possess this certificate are eligible for university-level education.

Technical and Vocational Training (Educacion Tecnico-Productiva)

Pupils after completion of the general secondary education can go for centers of technical- productive education (CETPRO, or Centros de educacion tecnico-productiva).
Students who register directly after the primary education are enrolled at the basic level (ciclo basico) of the technical- productive education, and those who have complete 2-years general secondary education are admitted to the middle level (ciclo medio).

Qualifications awarded:  Assistant technician (Titulo de Auxiliar Tecnico) and Technician (Titulo deTecnico) 
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