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Education in Colombia: Wikis


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Education in Colombia comprehends the formal and non-formal education. Formal education is composed of nursery school, elementary school, high school and technical instruction and college education. The basic goal expected for the average citizen is of 11 grades (elementary school and mid highschool). The covering of basic education for the state institutions is about 50%. The private institutions cover the other 50% and most of the technical and university formation, due to the scarcity of public resources destined to education.[1]


Nursery school

Most of the children under one years old are provided with daycare and nursery school in "Hogares Comunitarios" (community homes) sponsored by the National Institute for Family Welfare (ICBF acronym in Spanish), where mothers from the community take care of their own children, as the children from the immediate neighborhood. When children of Colombia learn to read and write, they are usually transferred to the elementary school. There are also a large number of private kindergarten facilities, but most of the time the low fees are very restrictive to the average family.[2].

Elementary school

Elementary school last 5 years and no matter what school primary or secondary you still have to pay for your child to go to it. The net primary enrollment (percentage of relevant age-group) in 2001 was 86.7 percent. The completion rate (percentage of age-group) for children attending elementary school (primaria) in 2001 totaled 89.5 percent. In many rural areas, teachers are poorly qualified, and only five years of primary school are offered,but in many others teachers have a lot of expierence in which they are aloud to become the proffession they are.

Due to the insufficiency of the existing institutions to accomplish the full coverage of the children's population, the public education system has adopted the "automatic promotion" as standard practice (Decreto 230 de 2002), yet the teachers know a great amount to teach these students which make them much more educated then many schools in the U.S.A. Schools also are almost an entire year long!

High school

Secondary education is divided in basic secondary (grades 6th to 9th) and mid secondary (grades 10th and 11th). Net secondary enrollment in 2001 was 53.5 percent. School life expectancy in 2001 was 11.1 years.

In order to access college or technical education, highschool students must take the statal test "pruebas de estado" provided by Instituto Colombiano para el Fomento de la Educación Superior - ICFES.

University education

Che Square or Santander Square, Universidad Nacional de Colombia, Bogotá.

Superior education is divided into under-graduate degrees and post-graduate degrees and is regulated by the 30th law of 1992. Most of the university degrees are 5 years long. Technical formation usually lasts 3 years. Post-graduate education includes masters degrees and PhD.

Education for Employment and Human Development

Education for Employment and Human Development is regulated by law 1064 of 2006 and the 2888 decrete of 2007. This kind of Education provide a degree of Technical Education, provides skills and talents to improve the level of subsistence. Education for employment involves technical skills necessary to the performance of work through the formation of "labor competences", which is a Colombian strategy to standardize and certify human resource, expanding and diversifying the formation and training of human resources. It includes the education provided by the enterprises to their employees. The Colombian government promotes this kind of education as an alternative for the university education, which is not accessible for the majority. Some institutions that provide this services are : SENA (national service of learning); CESDE; ANDAP; INCAP among others.

Non profit organizations working to fill the education gap in Colombia

There are hundreds of well-run non profits in Colombia that are helping to close the education gap. To support their efforts, the Colombian diaspora has begun to organize and channel resources to them from the United States. One of the largest examples is the Genesis Foundation. Other organizations like Colombia Progresa raise scholarships in the US to support the education of kids in Colombia.

External links



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