The educational system in Cyprus consists of compulsory and optional education.
For all children it is mandatory to attend a preschool for one year before entering elementary school, which lasts for six years and is followed by another three years of high school. Instead of lyceum, young people can choose to attend a technical college and get a professional education. Secondary education can also be obtained in private schools.
Cyprus offers excellent opportunities for getting high quality education within the UK national school curriculum. In all major cities of Cyprus, there are English schools that provide a full cycle of primary and secondary education, with Limassol having the largest number of them.
Usually, children start school at the age of five. Primary education lasts six years, and secondary education lasts seven. At the end of high school, students take exams and receive a General Certificate of Secondary Education – GCSE. The last two years of secondary school are dedicated to preparation for entering university. At the end of school, pupils take exams and their results are the basis for admission to British universities.
There are also several Russian schools in Cyprus. Education takes 11 years and is based on the Russian state educational programs. School graduates receive a Russian diploma. The modern system of higher education in Cyprus has its own unique features and characteristics. Universities follow the European model of education, but students can obtain three diplomas: after the first two years of study, the student receives a certificate known as "associative" diploma.