In Gambia the education follows a 6-3-3 system, where the
primary school lasts for 6 years, the secondary school for 3
years and the secondary school for 3 years. According to
UNESCO, in 2011, 49% of the population over 15 years were
The official school age is 7 years. In principle, the
primary and lower secondary school is free and compulsory.
In 2011, about 70% of seven-year-olds started primary
school. English is the most important language of
instruction, but in most places the first three classes are
taught in local languages. The Qur'anic schools teach
Arabic. A majority of the high schools in the country are
private. See TOPSCHOOLSINTHEUSA for TOEFL, ACT, SAT testing locations and high school codes in Gambia.
Higher education is offered at the University of The
Gambia, which was established in 1999 and is the
country's only university, as well as at four colleges.