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The K-12 Education System of Qatar

The Supreme Education administers the K-12 education system in Qatar. K-12 education is free of charge for all Qatari nationals in state-funded schools.  In Qatar, there are both public and private schools. The K-12 education system starts with preschool, followed by 6- year primary education, and then preparatory and secondary education of 3 years each. Primary education is compulsory to attend in Qatar.

Types of Schools in Qatar

Independent schools: The Supreme Education Council (SEC) sets the curriculum in the independent schools. 
  • Language of instruction at these schools is Arabic. 
  • Compulsory subjects: Islamic studies, English, science and mathematics 
Private schools: Many of these schools follow international curriculum. These schools are evaluated and supervised by a system called as the Qatar National School Accreditation System.  These schools charge fees which vary from school to school. 

Company schools: Many energy companies in Qatar have established their own schools for their employees’ families. 

Understanding the K-12 Education System of Qatar

Pre-school Education

Preschool education in Qatar is offered by nurseries and kindergartens. Kindergartens in Qatar are generally operated by the non-governmental sector. This education level emphasize on learning through play, thus meeting the emotional, social, intellectual, physical and language needs of the children. 
  • Ages: 3 to 5 years

Primary/Elementary Education

Primary education in Qatar is compulsory and offers basic writing, reading, arithmetic and self-expression knowledge and skills. This level of education prepares children to live in the society and enable them to continue their studies. 
  • Duration: 6 years
  • Ages: 6 to 12
  • Grades: 1 to 6
Curriculum: Arabic language, fine arts, mathematics, Islamic studies, science and hygiene, physical education, social studies, and English language.

Preparatory Education

Preparatory education in Qatar is an intermediate level between primary and secondary levels. This educational level familiarizes pupils with their local environment and the Arab world. This educational level provides fundamental scientific and human knowledge and religious studies as well. It also  
  • Duration: 3 years
  • Ages: 12 to 15
  • Grades: 6 to 9
Curriculum: Mathematics, Islamic studies, social studies, English language, physical education, Arabic language, fine arts, general science and hygiene, and home economics. 

Secondary Education

Secondary education in Qatar prepares students for university-level studies or for labor market. 
  • Duration: 3 years
  • Ages: 1 5 to 18
  • Grades: 10-12
Secondary education comprises of general secondary education and vocational/technical secondary education. Secondary education consists of following streams:

General education: This stream comprises of 2 literary parts (social studies and languages), and 2 scientific parts (biology and chemistry; mathematics and physics).
  • Curriculum (general secondary education): Mathematics, Islamic studies, physical education, English language, civics, Arabic language, geography, French language, science, sociology, home economics, history, chemistry, fine arts, biology, psychology and philosophy, physics, computer science, integrated sciences, and study skills.
Technical education: This stream comprises of 4 parts with 11 specializations-
  • Building and construction technology: Includes decoration and carpentry; building technologies
  • Mechanics: Includes heavy and light vehicles
  • Electricity and electronics: Includes television and radio; electricity; electronics; refrigeration and air-conditioning
  • Mineral: Includes metal shaping; welding and blacksmith; fitting and turning
Commercial education: This educational stream comprise of 3 parts-
  • Banking and insurance
  • Administration
  • Intermediate accounting
Agricultural education: This stream comprises of livestock, soil and irrigation technology, fisheries, and gardening.

Applied education: This stream includes hotel services, postal service technology, nursing, electronic photography technology, and typing technologies.

Certificate Awarded

At the end of secondary education, final examination is held and those who pass receive the secondary education certificate (general, commercial, technical, or religious) depending on the stream chosen.

School Schedule

School year: Commences in September and ends in June.

School timings: 7:00 am to 8:00 am and 12:30 pm to 14:30 pm

Holidays: Christmas and Easter holidays of 2 to 3 weeks. Schools are also closed on Islamic and public holidays.
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