At between age 3 and 4 Lebanese children enter primary school for 6 years. This time is divided equally between elementary and more advanced cycles 1 and 2. Gross enrolment is around 95% for both sexes.
The following three years are spent at intermediate level equivalent to middle school. By this time more that 10% of primary pupils will have dropped out.
During their 3 levels at secondary school head teachers decide whether students follow humanities or technical education streams. If successful, they obtain either Shahaadat Al-Bakaalouriya al Lubnaaniya l’il-ta ‘liim al-Thaanawi
secondary education certificates, or Al-Bakaalouriya al-Finniya
After secondary school students with technical baccalaureates may proceed to technical or vocational institutes. Alternatively, they are already qualified to enter employment, and perhaps attend several shorter training courses later on too.
Lebanese tertiary education institutions comprise universities, university colleges and university institutes where gross enrollment approaches 50% of potential. The only public facility is the Lebanese University.
Academic standards are high although local job opportunities are relatively few. For this reason Lebanon continues to lose many of its brightest children. The American University of Beirut is Lebanon's oldest, founded in 1866.