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Slovakia: Introduction of a legal entitlement to pre-primary education

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Slovakia: Introduction of a legal entitlement to pre-primary education

15 September 2023
school kit
Country news

In May 2023, an amendment to the Education Act was approved, which introduces the legal entitlement to a place in kindergarten (ECEC facility for children aged 3 and above). The implementation of the reform will be gradual. From the school year 2024-25, children aged 4 will be legally entitled to a place in kindergarten. This right will be extended to children aged 3 from the school year 2025-26. 

From September 2024, children aged 4 will be preferably admitted to their catchment area’s kindergarten. If the kindergarten in a given catchment area cannot admit a child and the child is not subsequently admitted to a kindergarten managed by a local church or a private kindergarten, the responsible municipality will take all the steps necessary to ensure that the headmaster of one of its kindergartens admits the child. If the municipality in question does not find any other kindergartens, it will find a kindergarten with available admission capacity located in close proximity to the child’s permanent residence, or a kindergarten that can be easily reached by public transportation. 

If there still are no viable options, the regional school administration office will consult other kindergartens in the area and inform the parents of available capacities and places. In case there is a group of ten children who were not admitted, it is possible to create new fully funded classrooms in areas that were not originally designed to be a kindergarten – e.g., administrative premises. 

Kindergartens provide pre-primary education on workdays and during school instruction time for at least four hours a day. Upon a parent’s request, kindergartens can also provide pre-primary education of a duration of less than four hours a day to children suffering from health-related issues. 

Source: Eurydice Unit Slovakia 

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