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EACEA National Policies Platform:Eurydice
Fundamental principles and national policies


2.Organisation and governance

2.1Fundamental principles and national policies

Last update: 23 January 2024

Rights and obligations in education are anchored in the Constitution of the Slovak Republic, which guarantees that

  • ‘Everyone has the right to education. School attendance is compulsory'. 
  • ‘Citizens are entitled to free education in primary and secondary schools and to free education at higher education institutions according to each citizen’s abilities and society’s possibilities.
  • ‘The national minorities or ethnic groups have the right to multi-faceted development, mainly the right to develop their culture with other members of the minority or group and the right to spread and receive information in their native language, organise themselves in national associations, found and keep educational and cultural institutions’.
  • ‘Under the condition defined by law, citizens who belong to national minorities or ethnic groups have the right to learn the state language as well as to be educated in their native language’.

According to the Education Act (Zákon č. 245/2008 Z. z. o výchove a vzdelávaní), education and training are based on the following principles:

  • free education in public kindergarten for children in compulsory pre-primary education,
  • entitlement to pre-primary education in kindergarten in the school year following the school year in which the child reaches the age of five,
  • free education in public primary and secondary schools,
  • equal access to education and training with respect to one’s educational needs and their shared responsibility for their education,
  • inclusive education,
  • prohibition of all forms of discrimination, particularly segregation,
  • equality and inseparability of education and upbringing in the educational process,
  • lifelong learning,
  • educational counselling 
  • free choice of education with respect to children’s and pupils’ expectations and ability in compliance with educational system possibilities,
  • improvement of the education process according to the results achieved in science, research, and development,
  • preparation for responsible life in a free society in the spirit of understanding and tolerance, gender equality, friendship between nations, national and ethnic groups, and religious tolerance,
  • monitoring and evaluation of education quality and education system quality,
  • integration of the Slovak education system into the European educational space with respect to its experience and tradition,
  • strengthening the upbringing aspect of the education process through all subjects but also through specific educational activities that focus on the development of emotions, motivation and interests, socialisation and communication, self-control and self-management, moral values, and creativity,
  • balanced development of all aspects of a child’s and pupil’s personality in school education,
  • prohibition of providing or publishing information or abuse of means of information, which could lead to violation of moral code or incitement of national, racial, and ethical hate or other forms of intolerance,
  • equal status of schools and school facilities regardless of the founder,
  • equality of education obtained in public schools, schools founded by state recognised church or religious society (church school), and schools founded by another natural or legal person (private school),
  • prohibition of all forms of physical punishment and sanctions in education.



The goal of education is to enable children or pupils to

  • obtain education in compliance with the Education Act,
  • obtain competencies in communication skills, digital technology use, communication in state language, foreign language as well as a national minority language in a national minority school, class or school facility,
  • obtain competencies mainly in natural sciences, humanities, technical sciences, mathematic literacy, financial literacy, reading literacy, exercise and health, lifelong learning competencies, social competencies, art competencies, civic competencies, and entrepreneurial skills, 
  • learn English and at least one other foreign language and be able to use them,
  • learn to identify and analyse problems correctly and propose and implement solutions,
  • develop manual skills, creative, artistic, psychomotor skills, and up-to-date knowledge and work with them in practical seminars in areas related to further education or current labour market requirements,
  • strengthen the respect for parents and other people, cultural and national values and traditions of the state of which they are citizens, the state language, native language and their own culture,
  • acquire and strengthen respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms and the principles defined by the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, as well as the respect for law and the relationship with the prevention of crime and other antisocial behaviour in particular,
  • prepare for responsible life in a free society in the spirit of understanding and tolerance, gender equality, friendship between nations, national and ethnic groups, and religious tolerance,
  • learn to develop and cultivate their personality and engage in lifelong learning, work in a group and assume responsibility,
  • learn to control and regulate their behaviour, take care of and protect their health, including a healthy diet and respect general human ethical values,
  • obtain all information on the child’s rights and the ability to exercise them.



The main task of higher education institutions when fulfilling their mission is the provision of higher education according to the needs of society and creative scientific research and creative artistic activity. Higher education institutions are governed by the Act no. 131/2002 Coll. on Higher Education Institutions (Zákon č. 131/2002 Z.z. o vysokých školách).

Lifelong learning is governed by the Act no. 568/2009 Coll. on Lifelong Learning (Zákon č. 568/2009 Z. z. o celoživotnom vzdelávaní). The goal of lifelong learning is to increase the adaptability and flexibility of Slovak citizens in relation to new conditions in the labour market.

The mission of lifelong learning is to enable everyone to supplement, expand, and deepen their education or obtain qualification in a new field. Lifelong learning thus directly or indirectly leads to an individual’s increased competitiveness and improvement of their position in the labour market.