Education Encyclopedia - » Global Education Reference

French Guiana

education primary secondary educational

Official Country Name: Department of Guiana
Region: South America
Population: 172,605
Language(s): French
Literacy Rate: 83%

French Guiana, an overseas department of France governed by the French Constitution, is located on the northeast coast of South America, adjacent to Brazil and Suriname. The educational system there is modeled after that of France.

Between 1980 and 1993, enrollment increased by 70 percent at the primary level and by 87 percent at the secondary level. Education, which is free, is mandatory for children between the ages of 6 and 16. Primary education lasts for five years; school enrollment at that level is nearly 100 percent, with the exception of the more remote areas of the country, such as the settlements of the Amerindians and Maroons, where resources are much more limited.

Secondary education is broken up into two cycles: a four-year program that concludes with the Brevet de College examination and an additional three-year program that culminates with the Baccalaureat examination, successful completion of which is required for entrance into tertiary institutions.

Higher education in the country is limited to teacher training and agricultural colleges and the University Antilles-Guyane, which offers postsecondary studies in administration, French language and literature, and law. Many students seeking higher education attend universities in France or the French Antilles.

The primary language of instruction at all levels is French, an issue that has been the subject of much debate given that many indigenous groups speak other languages. Also, the Guyane Educational Authority for Primary, Secondary, and Higher Education, based in Cayenne, is a decentralized government department that oversees the educational system in French Guiana.


Crant, Phillip A. "La Guyane: Past and Present." Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Pacific Northwest Council on Foreign Languages, Portland, April 1975.

"French Guiana." In Europa World Yearbook. Pittsburgh: Europa Publications, 1999.

Reno, Fred, and Richard D. Burton, eds. French & West Indian: Martinique, Guadeloupe, and French Guiana Today. University Press of Virginia, 1995.

—AnnaMarie L. Sheldon

French Polynesia [next] [back] France - History Background, Constitutional Legal Foundations, Educational System—overview, Preprimary Primary Education, Secondary Education

User Comments

Your email address will be altered so spam harvesting bots can't read it easily.
Hide my email completely instead?

Cancel or

Vote down Vote up

about 4 years ago

hello my name is hakim ellis and this goes out to who i am speaking to on the other side. i am a new author in the game and i am diffrent from others for i am writing at a very young age. most of the other authors are older than me. i want to entertain the youths of today that choose to gain knowledge in life. however my knowledge i am giving out are for a specific age group. some youths know already certain things in life and some do not. whether are not my aim is to make the future generations more wiser. i do not like all this email writing non sense. i want to come to french guyana and talk to Mrs. doodmattie Singh for she is the one i have to conversate with. i will be coming in a short time and want you to know that i will be expected.

Vote down Vote up

over 7 years ago

this was unreaddd able

Vote down Vote up

over 7 years ago

i think it is very great