Schools are generally public, managed by the Ministry of Education and Training. The private sector accounts for less than 1% of primary education and less than 5% of secondary.
When coming to Tunisia with AFS, you will study in a Tunisian high school , Tunisian high school is said to be a high level one, with strict rules, long day classes, lots of homework, few extra-curricular activities.
This system offers the possibility to learn a lot in topics such as history, literature, foreign languages (French, English, Spanish, Germen, Italian, and also in some school Russian and Chinese).
No uniform is required, pupils can express themselves regarding school organization through the « Conseil de la Vie Scolaire » and there is about 10 days holiday every 2 months!
In Tunisia going to school is compulsory until 16.
The system is structured in a nine-year cycle (six primary and three intermediate years) followed by four years of secondary education leading to a national exam taken at the end of 13th grade and called le baccalauréat or le bac. The first year of secondary education includes common coreâ studies for all 10th grade students. At the end of 10th grade and depending on students’ performances and grades in various subjects, they can move into one of five fields of specialization that begin in the 11th grade: arts/humanities, math, experimental science, technology and economics/management.
The average time spent in school is 32 hours per week, unevenly distributed between weekdays (from three to six hours per day) and between classes (from one to five hours per week), depending on the field of specialization. On Friday afternoons, Saturday afternoons and Sundays, schools are closed.
Classical Arabic is the official language of Tunisia, as it is in all 20 Arab countries with a total population of nearly 300 million. This language is used in schools, newspapers and official correspondence. In daily life, within the family, with friends and in informal contacts, Tunisians speak a Tunisian Arabic dialect.
French is Tunisia’s second language and is very widely spoken. English is third; it is taught in school starting in seventh grade and is spreading through computers and the Internet. Tourism, among other factors, has led to the spread of German and Italian being spoken by Tunisians working in the hotel and tourist industries. These two languages, together with Spanish, are also taught in schools.