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The Italian Programme

School structure and progression

Schools adopt the national recommendations for the curriculum issued by the Italian Ministry of Education (MIUR), allowing students in Globeducate schools to achieve the same qualifications as at a state school.

In both primary and secondary school, the Italian programme takes up between 15 and 20 per cent of curriculum time. Students who do not wish to follow the Italian ministerial programme have lessons in Italian as an additional language.

Education is compulsory for ten years between the ages of six and 16. This covers the first cycle of education, which lasts eight years (five years of primary school and three years of lower secondary school) and the first two years of the second cycle.

After completion of the first cycle of education, the final two years of compulsory education (ages 14 to 16) can be undertaken at a state upper secondary school.

The Italian education system is organised as follows:

Pre-primary school (scuola dell’infanzia) for children between 3 to 6 years of age
Primary school (scuola primaria): 6 to 11 years

All pupils follow the same educational curriculum: students have a core education in Italian, English, mathematics, natural sciences, history, geography, social studies, physical education, and musical and visual arts. 

Secondary education: 11 to 19 years
  • Lower secondary school (scuola secondaria di I grado): 11 to 14 years of age;
  • Second cycle of education (scuola secondaria di II grado), for students from 14 to 19 years of age.

Secondary education lasts eight years and is divided into middle school (scuola secondaria di primo grado, also known as scuola media) and high school (scuola secondaria di secondo grado, also known as scuola superiore). Middle school lasts three years (ages 11 to 14), and high school lasts five years (ages 14 to 19). Every tier involves an exam at the end of the final year, required to study at degree level and have access to further education (esami di Licenza Media, Esame di Maturità or Esame di Stato).

Any type of high school which lasts five years grants access to the final exam, called esame di maturità or esame di stato, that grants access to university.