Education in Barbados
The government of Barbados doesn’t hold back on spending when it comes to education. In fact, from 1966 to year 2000, the government had already spent US$15 billion. Up to the present, on a yearly average, the government allocates 20% of its national budget on education. This is indeed astounding because Barbados only has 284,589 citizens.
The educational system of Barbados is primarily fashioned after the educational system in Britain. All citizens of Barbados aged 5 up to 16 are entitled free access to free enrollment. Currently, Barbados follows the three-tiered educational system which starts at Primary then Secondary before moving on to Tertiary.
Primary schooling involves all children ages 3-11. Primary level is subdivided further into nursery and junior levels. Nursery education is for those at 3-7 years of age and then after completing this, they move to junior level up to the age of 11.
After graduating from Primary school, students are now eligible for the Secondary level which will take 7 years to complete. Secondary school education is free for all government-run schools but students may enroll at private schools.
In the tertiary level (16 and up), there are only three schools that provide degree level education for both diploma and vocational degrees. Barbadians may choose from among these three schools: The Barbados Community College, the Samuel Jackman Prescod Polytechnic and the University of the West Indies.
Barbados prides itself in belonging to the top 5 countries with a literacy rate of being close to 100%. Indeed, the government was right in investing in the education of its people and as a result, Barbados is considered the 51st richest country in the world if the basis would be per capita income.