Skip to main content
European Commission logo
EACEA National Policies Platform:Eurydice



Last update: 27 November 2023



Gümnaasium (upper secondary school) is a general education school that follows basic school; its standard period of study is 3 years (grades 10-12). In fact, there are only a small (but growing) number of upper secondary schools that include only grades 10-12 (or grades 7-12). The most common form is an upper secondary school that offers study from grade 1 to grade 12, i.e. 12 years. Very often gümnaasium refers to upper secondary school stage, not to some form of general education school.


Koolieelne lasteasutus

Koolieelne lasteasutus is a preschool institution for children of up to 3 years of age (crèche) or up to 7 years of age (preschools). Organisation of teaching and education in a preschool child care institution is based on the curriculum of the preschool child care institution, which complies with the national curriculum for preschool child care institutions.



Põhiharidus (basic education) is the level of compulsory general education, which is acquired in the basic school and which gives the right to continue studies at upper secondary education level. With a view to supporting the development of a student and assessing the acquired general competences and skills, and development, the national curriculum specifies the outcomes of basic education acquisition by stage of study:  stage I – grades 1–3; stage II – grades 4–6; stage III – grades 7–9.



Põhikool (basic school) is a 9-year comprehensive school in which each subsequent year (grade) is based directly on the previous one and allows for a smooth transfer from one school to another.  


Täiskasvanute gümnaasium

Täiskasvanute gümnaasium (upper secondary school for adults) is an institution where students are provided with the opportunity to acquire basic education and general upper secondary education in the form of non-stationary study or as an external student.