Skip Navigation

Back Arrow Return Download Excel Excel format (629 KB)

Table E.1.07. School structure as reported in International Review of Curriculum and Assessment Frameworks Internet Archive (INCA), by type of education and country: 2010

Country Primary Lower secondary Upper secondary
England comp mixed mixed
Ireland comp comp comp
Northern Ireland1 comp mixed mixed
Scotland comp comp comp
Wales2 comp comp comp
France comp comp select
Germany comp select select
Hungary comp select select
Italy comp comp select
Netherlands comp mixed mixed
Spain comp comp mixed
Sweden comp comp comp
Switzerland comp mixed select
Australia comp comp comp
Canada3 comp comp comp
Japan comp comp select
Korea comp comp select
New Zealand comp comp comp
Singapore comp comp select
South Africa comp comp comp
USA comp comp comp
1 There has, until recently, been a selective system of secondary education, with children taking tests in the final year of primary education to determine selection for the post-primary phase. The last 'transfer tests' were taken in autumn 2008 for entry to post-primary education in September 2009. For 2010 entry, the Government provided a menu of recommended criteria that schools could choose to use; and schools had to have regard to these. Schools are recommended not to use academic criteria but are not precluded from doing so.
2 The overwhelming majority of secondary schools in Wales are comprehensive schools. There are no grammar schools, that is schools which are wholly selective by academic ability or aptitude.
3 At one time, secondary schools were primarily academic and prepared students for university. Vocational and technical schools were often separate institutions. Although some of these still exist, most secondary schools are now composite and offer both academic and vocational courses.
NOTE: This table indicates whether: there is a unitary system of schools catering for all students (comp), or distinct school types for students of different educational aptitudes (select), or a mixed system offering both types of schools (mixed). Even where the structure may be common for all, differentiated courses are usually offered, at least at upper secondary level to suit students’ abilities and preferences. For those countries with devolved structures (Australia, Canada, Germany, South Africa, Switzerland, and the USA) it is not always possible to provide ‘national’ data. Readers should therefore recognize that the data may refer to specific states or provinces, as examples, and cannot necessarily be taken to reflect a national position.
SOURCE: O'Donnell, S., Sargent, C., Byrne, A., and White, E. (2010). International Review of Curriculum and Assessment Frameworks Internet Archive Comparative Tables. Table 6.1. International Review of Curriculum and Assessment Frameworks Internet Archive.