Costa Rica Education System

Costa Rica Education System


Since 1948, Costa Rica has been one of the few countries without a military, and is probably the most significant nation without an army. The expenditures the nation used to have for arms and their standing army were redirected towards, amongst others, education. It is included in the constitution that the government allocates a minimum of 8% of GDP annually to education in Costa Rica

The literacy rate in Costa Rica is 96.3%, one of the highest in Latin America. When the army was abolished in 1949, it was said that the “army would be replaced with an army of teachers”.[106] Universal public education is guaranteed in the constitution; primary education is obligatory, and both preschool and high school are free. Students who finish 11th grade receive a Costa Rican Bachillerato Diploma accredited by the Costa Rican Ministry of Education.

There are both state and private universities. The University of Costa Rica has been awarded the title “Meritorious Institution of Costa Rican Education and Culture”.

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