The 6 years of primary school education in Jamaica is compulsory and free. Children receive their instruction in English, and remain there between the ages of 6 and 12. Schools may be state-owned, or private preparatory
The government has embarked on a program to upgrade secondary schools. This is to meet the needs of an emerging economy that requires more advanced literacy and mathematics skills. Libraries have been restocked and computers installed with internet access. Schools are either single-sex or mixed. Many still favor the British grammar school model. When students leave secondary school their education ceases to be free.
The National Training Agency oversees vocational training in Jamaica that is provided by state vocational training centers and private academies. Programs tuned to the nation's needs include agriculture, automotive skills, beauty services, clothing manufacture, commercial skills, information technology, and building and construction skills.
Tertiary education is provided through five universities and a variety of community and teachers colleges, some state-owned and some privately funded. A traditional western-based curriculum is followed.
Universities include the University of the West Indies Mona Campus (illustrated here), The University of Technology, the College of Art, Science and Technology, the North Caribbean University, and the University College of the Caribbean.