Education System in Dominica
|Primary||Primary School||7||Equivalent to eighth grade in the United States. Education is compulsory between the ages of 5 and 16.|
|Secondary||CSEC (Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate) Examinations||5|
|Post-secondary||CXC Caribbean Advanced Placement Examination (CAPE)||2|
Primary EducationIn Dominica early missionaries and the religious institutions they left behind have played a role in education for centuries, and a state / private partnership continues to this day. Opportunities begin with a network of Roman Catholic daycare centers / preschools until the age of 5. Thereafter children attend primary school for 8 grades.
The final 2 years of the school education system complete at state secondary schools. Students who wish to go on to university (and whose parents can afford it) may continue on to 12th grade at private schools, and obtain an advanced level certificate. Unfortunately, these schools are all in larger wealthier urban centers, and there are few bursaries for those who hope to break the chains of rural poverty.
There are a number of state-funded technical colleges where young people may complete trade training in all traditional disciplines. These too, though, are more often than not situated in more densely-populated places.
The University of the West Indies does not have a campus on Dominica and until recently all students had to travel across the oceans to obtain degrees. There have however been 3 lower-level tertiary institutions on the island for some time, namely the Dominica State College, the School of Nursing and the Dominica Teachers Training College.
The State College established in 2002 is continuing to grow, and is finally moving towards full university status by beginning to award bachelors degrees in nursing. Plans are afoot to extend this role.