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Statistics on educational institutions


2.Organisation and governance

2.8Statistics on educational institutions

Last update: 27 November 2023

This section provides the most recent available data on the number of educational institutions from preprimary to upper secondary non-tertiary education level (ISCED levels 0-3). Statistics on numbers and characteristics of higher education institutions can be found in the European Tertiary Education Register. A general overview of the categories of institutions providing publicly-subsidised adult education and training can be found in the chapter on adult education. The notes below the tables provide methodological explanations necessary for a good interpretation of data.

Statistics on educational institutions providing regular education

Type of educational institution in English (and in national language)

ISCED levels provided

Main orientation of the programmes provided

Number of educational institutions



Government-dependent private

Private independent

Preprimary schools (scuole dell'infanzia)



22 283

15 164


7 119

Primary schools (scuole primarie)



16 653

15 273


1 380

Lower secondary schools (scuole secondarie di I grado)



8 050

7 411



Upper secondary schools (scuole secondarie di II grado)



6 911

5 308


1 603

Source: data processing from the Ministry of education and merit, 2022.

Data on schools are also available in the section ‘Pubblicazioni’ of the website of the Ministry of education and merit.

G = General

V = Vocational

(:) Data not available

(-) Not applicable

Terminology The 2018 version of the Unesco/OECD/Eurostat Manual on concepts, definitions and classification can be consulted for the definitions general and vocational programmes of education (p.19); as well as public institution, government-dependent private institution and private independent institution (pp. 24-26)

ISCED= International Standard Classification of Education


The counting unit for the number of educational institutions is an ‘education delivery point’. An education delivery site can be either a school as a legal entity or, in the case of comprehensive institutes, a site part of a bigger legal entity. Comprehensive institutes group ‘schools’ providing different ISCED levels (for ISCED 3 different branches of study). Comprehensive institutes are managed by a single school manager. Their purpose is to assure didactic continuity within the same cycle of education.

The column ‘public’ includes both State schools and non-State schools run by local authorities. Among public schools, the number of schools run by local authorities in 2021/2022 is: 1 986 preprimary schools, 604 primary schools, 178 lower secondary schools and 143 upper secondary schools. The category of government-dependent private institutions does not exist.

General programmes are organised at general institutes (licei), while vocational programmes are offered by both technical and vocational institutes. However, one upper secondary school can provide both general and vocational programmes. In this case, the school is counted as one.