Latvia is a democratic, parliamentary republic and the structure, authority and functioning of the public institutions of Latvia are set in the Constitution (Satversme) adopted on 1922. Satversme prescribes that everyone has the right to education. The State has to ensure that everyone may acquire integrated primary and lower secondary education (pamatizglītība) without charge. Pamatizglītība is defined by the constitution to be compulsory.
The Protection of the Rights of the Child Law determines equal rights and possibilities of all children to acquire education according to their personal abilities. A child has the right to participate in self-administration in the fields of education, culture and sports, says the Law, and schools implementing general educational programmes have to ensure that each child has the opportunity to learn about the rights and duties of the child.
The goal of the Education Law is to provide a possibility for every resident of Latvia to develop ones mental and physical potential, to become an independent personality, the member of the democratic state and society of Latvia. After Latvia regained independence, the Education Law was adopted in 1991, and since then radical reforms in all levels of education have been taking place. The Law regulates the whole system of education of all types and levels, determines the rights and duties of the state, local governments, public organizations, professional associations, individuals, educational institutions, parents and students, as well as types of educational institutions.
The Law stipulates the organisational and functional principles of general (pre-school, integrated primary and lower secondary (pamatizglītība) and upper secondary) education; regulates rights and obligations of institutions and persons involved in general education.
The Law sets out the principles for organising, implementing and awarding qualifications both for initial and continuous vocational education; states the division of tasks and competences and the relationship between employers, teachers and trainees; recognises an active role for social partners in vocational education; states the different pathways for pursuing vocational education, the structure of programmes and the funding principles.
The Law states the cooperation between higher education institutions and state institutions to harmonize autonomy of higher education institutions with interests of society and state; regulates legal basis of higher education institutions and colleges, sets the autonomy of higher education institutions. The Law linked education system of Latvia with European higher education systems.
This Law determines the procedures for the formulation, approval and implementation of the State budget and self-government budgets, and responsibilities in the budget process. The Law describes also financial management which applies to budgetary funds of the State budget and self-government budgets.
This Law regulates the procedures for granting, calculation and disbursement of State social insurance benefits related to Early Childhood Care, namely, maternity benefit, paternity benefit and parents’ benefit.
Pašvaldību likums / Law on Local Governments (2023)
The Law sets out the general provisions and economic basis for the activities of the local governments of Latvia, the competence of local governments, the rights and responsibilities of city or municipality councils and their institutions.
Regulations of the Cabinet of Ministers
There are various regulations issued by the Cabinet of Ministers regulate the enacting of laws. Among them:
Funding of Education
The Regulation defines minimum salary rate for general, vocational and higher education teachers and heads of institutions. The Regulation describes the system of remuneration and the system of additional payments for pedagogues.
The Regulations prescribe the minimum amount of stipends (study grants) and the procedures for the receipt of stipends for students of higher education programmes who have been admitted on the basis of competition procedures and who study in the state-subsidised places; students of vocational education programmes who have been admitted in conformity with the number of state-subsidised or local government-subsidised places, except persons in imprisonment.
- Noteikumi par vispārējās pamatizglītības un vispārējās vidējās izglītības programmu īstenošanas izmaksu minimumu uz vienu izglītojamo (gadā) / Regulations on General Education and General Education Programme Implementation Cost Minimum per One Student (per Year) (2001)
Regulation sets general education programme costs minimum per one student (per year).
- Noteikumi par vispārējās pirmsskolas izglītības un speciālās pirmsskolas izglītības programmu īstenošanas izmaksu minimumu uz vienu izglītojamo / Regulations on General Pre-school Education and Special Pre-school Education Programme Implementation Cost Minimum per One Student (2001)
Regulation sets pre-school education programme costs minimum per one student.
Organisation and content of Education
- Kārtība, kādā izglītojamie tiek uzņemti vispārējās izglītības programmās un atskaitīti no tām, kā arī obligātās prasības izglītojamo pārcelšanai nākamajā klasē / Procedures for Enrolling Educatees in General Education Programmes and Discharging from Them, and also the Mandatory Requirements for Moving Educatees up into the Next Grade (2022)
This Regulation prescribes the procedures for enrolment of students in and discharge from general educational institutions (with the exception of boarding schools and special educational institutions) and the mandatory requirements for moving them up into the next grade.
- Noteikumi par valsts pirmsskolas izglītības vadlīnijām / Regulation on the State Pre-school Education Guidelines (2012; in force till September 2019)
- Noteikumi par valsts pirmsskolas izglītības vadlīnijām un pirmsskolas izglītības programmu paraugiem / Regulations Regarding the State Guidelines for Pre-school Education and the Model Pre-school Education Programmes (2018; in force from September 2019)
These Regulations describe guidelines for pre-primary education and samples of respective educational programmes.
- Prasības bērnu uzraudzības pakalpojuma sniedzējiem un bērnu uzraudzības pakalpojuma sniedzēju reģistrēšanas kārtība / Requirements for Providers of Child Supervision Services and Procedures for Registration of Providers of Child Supervision Services (2013)
The Regulation prescribes the professional qualification and safety requirements in providing child supervision services and the procedures for registration of service providers in the Register of Providers of Child Supervision Services.
- Noteikumi par valsts pamatizglītības standartu, pamatizglītības mācību priekšmetu standartiem un pamatizglītības programmu paraugiem /National Standard for Basic Education and Standards for Basic Education Subjects, and Basic Education Sample Plans (2014; in force till September 2020)
- Noteikumi par valsts pamatizglītības standartu un pamatizglītības programmu paraugiem / National Standard for Basic Education and Sample Plans for Basic Education Programmes (2018; in force from September 2020)
These Regulations prescribe the national integrated primary and lower-secondary education standard, which includes samples of integrated primary and lower-secondary education programmes conforming to the requirements of this standard, and the names of the fields of integrated primary and lower-secondary education.
- Noteikumi par valsts vispārējās vidējās izglītības standartu, mācību priekšmetu standartiem un izglītības programmu paraugiem / Regulations Regarding the State General Secondary Education Standard, Subject Standards and Sample Education programmes (2013)
These regulations set the curricula for schools providing upper-secondary education. Regulations determine general aims, the key objectives and tasks of general upper-secondary education programs, the minimum content, including the compulsory subjects and standards, as well as student learning assessment principles and procedures and mandatory national tests.
- Noteikumi par valsts vispārējās vidējās izglītības standartu un vispārējās vidējās izglītības programmu paraugiem / Regulations Regarding the State General Secondary Education Standard and Model General Secondary Education Programmes (2019)
Renewed regulation on upper-secondary education curricula.
- Noteikumi par valsts profesionālās vidējās izglītības standartu un valsts arodizglītības standartu / Regulations regarding the State Vocational Secondary Education Standard and the State Industrial Education Standard (2000)
These regulations set the curricula for schools providing vocational upper-secondary education. Regulations determine general aims, the key objectives and tasks of vocational upper-secondary education programs, the minimum content, including the compulsory subjects and standards, as well as student learning assessment principles and procedures and mandatory national tests.
- Noteikumi par valsts profesionālās vidējās izglītības standartu un valsts arodizglītības standartu / Regulations on the state vocational secondary education standard and the state vocational education standard (2020)
Renewed regulation on vocational upper-secondary education curricula.
Par kārtību, kādā reģistrējami iesniegumi par bērna uzņemšanu 1.klasē Rīgas pilsētas pašvaldības izglītības iestādēs / On the procedure for registration of applications for the admission of a child to Grade 1 at the educational institutions of Riga Municipality (2015)
The regulation describes submission of applications about the admission of a child to grade 1st in Riga City municipality's schools implementing general education programmes.
Quality Assurance and Evaluation
- Izglītības iestāžu, eksaminācijas centru, citu Izglītības likumā noteiktu institūciju un izglītības programmu akreditācijas un izglītības iestāžu vadītāju profesionālās darbības novērtēšanas kārtība / Procedure for accreditation of educational institutions, examination centers, other institutions and educational programmes specified in the Education Law, and assessment of the professional performance of educational institution leaders (2020)
The new regulation on accreditation of education institutions and programmes, and procedure for evaluation of heads of education institutions refers to quality assurance indicators in vocational education and training (EQAVET). The regulation also responds to some OECD recommendations for improvement of education system and describes evaluation procedure of school heads’ professional activity.
- Noteikumi par centralizēto eksāmenu saturu un norises kārtību / Regulations on the Content and Procedure of Centralized Examinations (2010)
Regulations prescribe the content and the procedure of centralized examinations in accredited education programs at the end of compulsory basic education (ntegrated primary and lower-secondary education) and upper-secondary schooling.
- Valsts pārbaudījumu norises kārtība / Regulations on the Procedure of National Testing (2013)
Regulations prescribe the procedure of final exams in accredited education programmes at the end of compulsory basic education (integrated primary and lower-secondary education) and upper-secondary schooling, these regulations do not apply on centralized examinations.
- Noteikumi par svešvalodas centralizētā eksāmena vispārējās vidējās izglītības programmā aizstāšanu ar starptautiskas testēšanas institūcijas pārbaudījumu svešvalodā / Rules on replacing the centralized foreign language exam in the general secondary education programme with a test in a foreign language by an international testing institution (2022)
The new regulation sets the procedure how students can substitute their final language examination at general upper-secondary level with a test provided by certified international assessment providers. The regulation sets the list of the certified institutions which are allowed to be a substitute of the national centralised language examination at general upper-secondary education level, and the tests they administer.
- Noteikumi par pedagogiem nepieciešamo izglītību un profesionālo kvalifikāciju un pedagogu profesionālās kvalifikācijas pilnveides kārtību / Regulation on Requirements for Necessary Education and Professional Qualification, and Procedure of Continuing Professional Development of Pedagogues (2018)
The Regulation defines requirements for necessary education and professional qualifications for teachers working at pre-primary, primary, secondary and tertiary education level.
- Ārpus formālās izglītības apgūto vai profesionālajā pieredzē iegūto kompetenču un iepriekšējā izglītībā sasniegtu studiju rezultātu atzīšanas noteikumi / Rules for recognition of competences acquired outside of formal education or professional experience and study results achieved in previous education (2018)
The Regulation ensures flexibility in higher education provision for adult students, allowing them to fulfil a study programme by recognising their prior experience from learning or professional life.
- Kārtība, kādā nepilngadīgam patvēruma meklētājam nodrošina izglītības ieguves iespējas / Procedures for the Provision of a Minor Asylum Seeker with Opportunities for Acquiring Education (2016)
This Regulation prescribes the procedures by which a minor asylum has to be provided with opportunities for acquiring education.
- Higiēnas prasības izglītības iestādēm, kas īsteno vispārējās pamatizglītības, vispārējās vidējās izglītības, profesionālās pamatizglītības, arodizglītības vai profesionālās vidējās izglītības programmas / Hygiene requirements for educational institutions implementing general basic education, general secondary education, vocational basic education, vocational education or vocational secondary education programs (2002)
The Regulation describes necessary hygiene and safety requirements for general and vocational schools. Head of education institution is responsible that a school complies with the requirements. Compliance with the requirements is monitored by the Health Inspectorate and the Food and Veterinary Service.
The Regulation prescribes infectious diseases against which mandatory vaccination shall be performed, the range of persons to be vaccinated (including persons employed in specific occupations or belonging to increased risk groups) and vaccination procedures. The Regulation describes duties of school head in regard to vaccination of students.
- Izglītības attīstības pamatnostādnes 2021.-2027. gadam "Nākotnes prasmes nākotnes sabiedrībai" / Educational Development Guidelines 2021-2027 "Future skills for future society" (2021)
Education Development Guidelines 2021-2027 is a medium-term policy planning document that defines a unified national policy and development strategy in education. The guidelines specify the overarching goal and goals of the education policy, the main directions of action and tasks for achieving the set goals, the results of the policy and performance indicators. The overarching goal of the educational development guidelines for 2021-2027 is to provide quality education opportunities to all residents of Latvia in order to promote the development and realization of their potential throughout life and to build their ability to change and responsibly manage the constant changes in society and the economy.
- Izglītības attīstības pamatnostādnes 2014.–2020 / Education Development Guidelines 2014 – 2020 (2014)
Education Development Guidelines 2014 – 2020 sets goals for the development of the whole education system and courses of action for their implementation, as well as the activity and political results, and performance indicators. The main aim of the guidelines is to provide qualitative and inclusive education for personal development and welfare, and sustainable growth of the state.
- Profesionālās izglītības iestāžu tīkla optimizācijas pamatnostādnes 2010.- 2015.gadam / Guidelines for the optimisation of the Network of Vocational Institutions 2010-2015 (2010)
The objective of the Guidelines is to ensure further implementation of the structural reforms of the vocational education system, optimising the number and layout of VEIs in regions and performing the differentiation of VEIs, to establish a modern and logistical support of vocational education corresponding to contemporary requirements, to promote more efficient use of all types of resources, improving the quality and accessibility of vocational education.
- Valsts valodas politikas pamatnostādnes 2015.–2020.gadam / Guidelines for the State Language Policy 2015-2020 (2014)