Education in Spain – Spanish School System


Schooling in Spain is mandatory for any person between 6 and 16 years old. The education is usually government-sponsored, as long as you don’t have to repeat a grade. That is, parents do not pay any fees for primary and secondary education, as these schools are funded by the government. However, parents still have to incur some expenses for buying school uniforms, books, and other learning materials.

If you are a student, you can find some excellent reading materials and other useful documents that can help you with your homework at On this site, you can find materials for all school levels, whether you are in elementary, middle, or high school.

Once a person has completed the required schooling in Spain (6 years of elementary school and 4 years of middle school), they can choose to either attend high school for 2 years or attend a vocational training institution. You can only be admitted to a university after you have completed your high school education.

Spanish preschool

The preschool in Spain is broken down into 2 cycles. One of the cycles is for kids aged 0-3 years, while the second cycle handles children aged 3-6 years. The first cycle is not state-funded, but there are often programs put in place to help needy families. However, the second cycle is usually free, as this stage is considered crucial in the Spanish school system. While most of the preschools have been handling the students aged 3-6 years, they have also recently incorporated children from the first cycle (aged 0-3 years).

Spanish elementary school

Spanish elementary school is usually the start of mandatory education, as required by the government. It comprises 6 academic years, starting with children over the age of 6, up until 12 years old. This system is also broken into cycles, with each cycle taking 2 years. This primary education aims to provide the students with knowledge in culture, reading, writing, and simple math. Here, students learn social studies, physical education, art, and even the Spanish language. This primary education is usually tailored to suit the level of the student.

Spanish middle school

When children complete primary school, they are required to proceed to middle school, or “compulsory secondary education,” which takes 4 years. This schooling is also broken down into cycles, with each cycle taking 2 years. Once the children complete this secondary education, they choose to go to high school to achieve a diploma, or to a vocational training institution. Some students even join the workforce.

Spanish high school

Like the previous levels, Spanish high school is free. The only thing that changes is that it is not mandatory. This level takes 2 years to complete, and comprises both general subjects and the more specialized ones. Here, a student concentrates on a subject that eventually proves to be crucial if the student applies to university for a specific major.

Spanish university and higher education

University education usually spans 4 years, except for some courses like medicine, which can take up to 6 years. The Spanish university education is made up of bachelor degrees, which take 4 years on average, master’s degrees, which take 2 additional years, and also some post-graduate programs.