|Official Country Name:||Gibraltar|
|Language(s):||English, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Russian|
A British overseas territory since being ceded by Spain in 1713, Gibraltar carries on a peculiar existence sandwiched between the Iberian Peninsula and the mouth of the Mediterranean. English is the official language in the government and the schools, while Spanish remains the language frequently used within most homes. As is the case in much territory with a history of British influence, Gibraltar offers free and compulsory education for citizens aged 5 to 15. This education is provided to the bulk of the nation's 4,000 students by way of 14 schools.
The Gibraltar public school system includes three levels of schools, the first two of which are co-educational. These levels are termed first schools, for ages 5 to 8; middle schools, for ages 8 to 12; and secondary schools, for students age 12 through completion. Although English is the official language of instruction, Spanish is introduced into the curriculum during middle school. Other core subjects required of all students include mathematics, science, English, physical education, and religious education. Religious education varies among the schools with Anglican, Catholic, and Hebrew schools presently functioning.
The nation also supports a technical College of Further Education that grew out of a Royal Navy technical school. With no local higher education facilities, Gibraltar offers scholarships and grants for students seeking university education in Britain.
The constitution charges the minister for education, an elected representative, with responsibility for education in Gibraltar. Managerial oversight is provided through the Department of Education and Training and its director. The department creates and applies the prescribed National Curriculum Regulations, which are modeled closely on the United Kingdom National Curriculum.
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