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Secondary Education

According to Law 9,394 of December 20, 1996, secondary schooling is the final stage of basic education. From 1990 to 1998, the enrollment in secondary schools almost doubled, from 3.5 million to 6.9 million students. The yearly increase averaged 11.5 percent.

In 2001, a major reform was being undertaken by the government at the secondary level that focused on contextualization, curricular integration, and flexibility. The reform was established along three lines: it was based on the new federal law of Diretrizes e Bases (Directives and Bases); it focused on changing the curriculum in the secondary schools; and it placed an emphasis on the occupational content of the technical schools.

The basic secondary school's objectives are: to consolidate previous acquired knowledge; to prepare the student for high school or technical professions; and to teach the student how to relate theory to practice. The curriculum is organized by the Conselho Federal de Educa&NA;ão or CFE (Federal Council of Education) together with the Conselho Estadual de Educação or CEE (State Council of Education). Individual schools can select additional subjects.

The curriculum has the same basic subjects as in the elementary school: communication and expression, including a foreign language as well as Portuguese; social studies; and sciences. The curriculum includes five to six subjects, and Portuguese is obligatory. In addition, the curriculum has become more flexible over time—75 percent is established by the government on a national basis, and 25 percent is left to each school's discretion.

There is still a low rate of students attending secondary school—only 16 percent of the population between the ages of 15 and 19 participates. There is an age variation-many youngsters in this age span are still attending elementary school. Many students arrive at the secondary level when they are young adults because they have to work and complement the family's salary. Therefore, secondary schools have become in large part evening schools; 55 percent of the secondary level students enrolled in 1998 attended classes at night.

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Education - Free Encyclopedia Search EngineGlobal Education ReferenceBrazil - History Background, Constitutional Legal Foundations, Educational System—overview, Preprimary Primary Education, Secondary Education