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Compulsory education refers to a period of education that is required of all people and is imposed by the government. This education may take place at a registered
school A school is an educational institution designed to provide learning spaces and learning environments for the teaching of students under the direction of teachers. Most countries have systems of formal education, which is sometimes compulso ...

school
or at other places. Compulsory school attendance or compulsory schooling means that parents are obliged to send their children to a certain school.
International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights The International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) is a multilateral treaty A treaty is a formal legally binding written agreement between actors in international law. It is usually entered into by sovereign states ...
requires, within a reasonable number of years, the principle of compulsory education
free of charge Free may refer to: Concept * Freedom Freedom, generally, is having the ability to act or change without constraint. Something is "free" if it can change easily and is not constrained in its present state. In philosophy and religion, it is ass ...
for all. All countries, except Bhutan, Oman, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands and Vatican City, have compulsory education.


Purpose

At the start of the
20th century The 20th (twentieth) century began on January 1, 1901 ( MCMI), and ended on December 31, 2000 ( MM). It was the tenth and final century of the 2nd millennium File:2nd millennium montage.png, From left, clockwise: in 1492, Italian navigator Ch ...
, compulsory education was to master physical skills which are necessary and can be contributed to the
nation A nation is a community of people formed on the basis of a common language, history, ethnicity, or a common culture, and, in many cases, a shared territory. A nation is more overtly political than an ethnic group; it has been described as "a fully ...

nation
. It also instilled values of
ethics Ethics or moral philosophy is a branch of philosophy Philosophy (from , ) is the study of general and fundamental questions, such as those about Metaphysics, existence, reason, Epistemology, knowledge, Ethics, values, Philosophy of mind, m ...

ethics
and social
communications Communication (from Latin ''communicare'', meaning "to share") is the act of developing meaning among entities or groups through the use of sufficiently mutually understood signs, symbol A symbol is a mark, sign, or word that indicates, ...
abilities in teenagers, it would allow
immigrants Immigration is the international movement of people to a destination country A country is a distinct territory, territorial body or political entity. It is often referred to as the land of an individual's birth, residence or citizenship ...

immigrants
to fit in the unacquainted society of a new country. Nowadays, compulsory education has been considered as a
right Rights are legal Law is a system A system is a group of Interaction, interacting or interrelated elements that act according to a set of rules to form a unified whole. A system, surrounded and influenced by its environment, is describe ...
of every citizen in many countries. It is mostly used to advance the education of all
citizens Citizenship is a relationship between an individual and a state to which the individual owes allegiance and in turn is entitled to its protection. Each state determines the conditions under which it will recognize persons as its citizens, and th ...
, minimize the number of students who stop going to school because of family economic reasons, and balance the education differences between rural and urban areas. The overall correlation between the level of access to education in a country and the skills of its student population is weak. This disconnect between education access and education quality may be the consequence of weak capacity to implement education policies or lack of information on the part of policymakers on how to promote student learning. In other situations, governments might be intentionally motivated to provide education for reasons that have nothing to do with improving the knowledge and skills of citizens. On the other hand, in countries with a republican system of government, being educated is necessary and important for every citizen. Throughout history, compulsory education laws have typically been the latest form of education intervention enacted by states. In general, governments in
Europe Europe is a continent A continent is one of several large landmasses. Generally identified by convention (norm), convention rather than any strict criteria, up to seven regions are commonly regarded as continents. Ordered from largest ...

Europe
and
Latin America * ht, Amerik Latin, link=no * pt, América Latina, link=no , image = Latin America (orthographic projection).svg , area = , population = ( est.) , density = , ethnic_groups = , ethnic_groups_year = 2018 , ethnic_ ...

Latin America
began to intervene in primary education an average of 107 years before democratization as measured by
Polity A polity is an identifiable political entity—any group of people who have a collective identity, who are organized by some form of Institutionalisation, institutionalized social relation, social relations, and have a capacity to mobilize resourc ...
. Compulsory education laws, despite being one of the last measures introduced by central governments seeking to regulate primary education, nevertheless were implemented an average of 52 years before democratization as measured by Polity and 36 years before universal male suffrage.


History


Antiquity to medieval times

Compulsory education was not unheard of in ancient times. However instances are generally tied to royal, religious or military organization—substantially different from modern notions of compulsory education.
Plato Plato ( ; grc-gre, Πλάτων ; 428/427 or 424/423 – 348/347 BC) was an Athenian , image_skyline = File:Athens Montage L.png, center, 275px, alt=Athens montage. Clicking on an image in the picture causes the ...

Plato
's '' The Republic'' (c. 424–c. 348 BCE) is credited with having popularized the concept of compulsory education in Western intellectual thought. Plato's rationale was straightforward. The ideal city would require ideal individuals, and ideal individuals would require an ideal education. The popularization of Plato's ideas began with the wider
Renaissance The Renaissance ( , ) , from , with the same meanings. is a period Period may refer to: Common uses * Era, a length or span of time * Full stop (or period), a punctuation mark Arts, entertainment, and media * Period (music), a concept in m ...

Renaissance
and the translation of Plato's works by
Marsilio Ficino Marsilio Ficino (; Latin name: ''Marsilius Ficinus''; 19 October 1433 – 1 October 1499) was an Italian scholar and Catholic priest who was one of the most influential Christian humanism, humanist philosophers of the early Italian Renaissanc ...

Marsilio Ficino
(1434–1499), culminating in the
Enlightenment Enlightenment, enlighten or enlightened may refer to: Age of Enlightenment * Age of Enlightenment, period in Western intellectual history from the late 17th to late 18th century, centered in France but also encompassing: ** Midlands Enlightenment ...
. The Enlightenment philosopher
Jean-Jacques Rousseau Jean-Jacques Rousseau (, , ; 28 June 1712 – 2 July 1778) was a Republic of Geneva, Genevan philosopher, writer, and composer. His political philosophy influenced the progress of the Age of Enlightenment, Enlightenment throughout Europe, as w ...

Jean-Jacques Rousseau
, known for his own work on education (including
Emile, or On Education ''Emile, or On Education'' (french: Émile, ou De l’éducation) is a treatise on the nature of education and on the nature of Human, man written by Jean-Jacques Rousseau, who considered it to be the "best and most important" of all his writings. ...
), said, 'To get a good idea of public education, read Plato's Republic. It is not a political treatise, as those who merely judge books by their title think, but it is the finest, most beautiful work on education ever written.' In
Sparta Sparta (Doric Greek Doric, or Dorian ( grc, Δωρισμός, Dōrismós) was an Ancient Greek dialect. Its variants were spoken in the southern and eastern Peloponnese as well as in Sicily, Epirus, Southern Italy, Crete, Rhodes, some ...

Sparta
boys between the age 6 and 7 left their homes and were sent to military school. School courses were harsh and have been described as a "brutal training period". Between the age of 18 and 20, Spartan males had to pass a test that consisted of fitness, military ability, and leadership skills. A student's failure meant a forfeiture of citizenship () and political rights. Passing was a rite of passage to manhood and citizenry, in which he would continue to serve in the military and train as a soldier until the age of 60 when the soldier could retire to live with his family. Every parent in
Judea Judea or Judaea, and the modern version of Judah (; from he, יהודה, Hebrew language#Modern Hebrew, Standard ''Yəhūda'', Tiberian vocalization, Tiberian ''Yehūḏā''; el, Ἰουδαία, ; la, Iūdaea) is the ancient, historic, Bib ...

Judea
since ancient times
was required
was required
to teach their children at least informally. Over the centuries, as cities, towns and villages developed, a class of teachers called Rabbis evolved. According to the
Talmud The Talmud (; he, תַּלְמוּד ''Tálmūḏ'') is the central text of Rabbinic Judaism Rabbinic Judaism ( he, יהדות רבנית, Yahadut Rabanit), also called Rabbinism, Rabbinicism, or Judaism espoused by the Rabbanites, has been ...

Talmud
(tractate
Bava Bathra Bava Batra (also Baba Batra; Talmudic Aramaic Jewish Babylonian Aramaic was the form of Middle Aramaic employed by writers in Lower Mesopotamia between the fourth and eleventh centuries. It is most commonly identified with the language of the ...
21a), which praises the sage
Joshua ben Gamla Joshua ben Gamla () or Joshua the son of Gamala (), was a Jewish Kohen Gadol, high priest in about 64-65 CE. He was killed during the First Jewish–Roman War. The Talmud refers to Joshua ben Gamala, while in the earlier Greek works of Josephus F ...
with the institution of formal Jewish education in the 1st century AD, Ben Gamla instituted schools in every town and made formal education compulsory from age 6–8. The
Aztec Triple Alliance The Aztec Empire, or the Triple Alliance ( nci, Ēxcān Tlahtōlōyān, jéːʃkaːn̥ t͡ɬaʔtoːˈlóːjaːn̥, was an alliance of three Nahua peoples, Nahua city-states: , , and . These three city-states ruled the area in and around t ...

Aztec Triple Alliance
, which ruled from 1428 to 1521 in what is now central
Mexico Mexico ( es, México ; Nahuan languages: ), officially the United Mexican States (; EUM ), is a List of sovereign states, country in the southern portion of North America. It is borders of Mexico, bordered to the north by the United States; ...

Mexico
, is considered to be the first state to implement a system of universal compulsory education.


Early Modern Era

The
Protestant Reformation The Reformation (alternatively named the Protestant Reformation or the European Reformation) was a major movement within Western Christianity File:Petersdom von Engelsburg gesehen.jpg, 250px, St. Peter's Basilica in Vatican City, the larges ...
prompted the establishment of compulsory education for boys and girls, first in regions that are now part of
Germany ) , image_map = , map_caption = , map_width = 250px , capital = Berlin , coordinates = , largest_city = capital , languages_type = Official language , languages = German language, German , demonym = Germans, German , government_ ...

Germany
, and later in
Europe Europe is a continent A continent is one of several large landmasses. Generally identified by convention (norm), convention rather than any strict criteria, up to seven regions are commonly regarded as continents. Ordered from largest ...

Europe
and in the
United States The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US), or America, is a country Contiguous United States, primarily located in North America. It consists of 50 U.S. state, states, a Washington, D.C., federal di ...

United States
.
Martin Luther Martin Luther, (; ; 10 November 1483 – 18 February 1546) was a German professor of theology Theology is the systematic study of the nature of the Divinity, divine and, more broadly, of religious belief. It is taught as an Discipl ...

Martin Luther
's seminal text ''An die Ratsherren aller Städte deutschen Landes'' (To the Councillors of all Towns in German Countries, 1524) called for establishing compulsory schooling so that all parishioners would be able to read the
Bible The Bible (from Koine Greek Koine Greek (, , Greek approximately ;. , , , lit. "Common Greek"), also known as Alexandrian dialect, common Attic, Hellenistic or Biblical Greek, was the koiné language, common supra-regional form of Greek ...
by themselves. The Protestant South-West of the
Holy Roman Empire The Holy Roman Empire ( la, Sacrum Imperium Romanum; german: Heiliges Römisches Reich) was a multi-ethnic complex of territories in Western Europe, Western and Central Europe that developed during the Early Middle Ages and continued until its D ...
soon followed suit. In 1559, the German Duchy
Württemberg Württemberg ( ; ) is a historical German territory roughly corresponding to the cultural and linguistic region of Swabia upThe coat of arms of Baden-Württemberg shows the three lions passant of the arms of the Duchy of Swabia, in origin th ...
established a compulsory education system for boys. In 1592, the German Duchy
Palatine Zweibrücken Palatine Zweibrücken (), or the County Palatine of Zweibrücken, is a former state of the Holy Roman Empire The Holy Roman Empire ( la, Sacrum Imperium Romanum; german: Heiliges Römisches Reich) was a multi-ethnic complex of territories in Wes ...
became the first territory in the world with compulsory education for girls and boys, followed in 1598 by
Strasbourg Strasbourg (, , ; german: Straßburg ; gsw, label=Bas Rhin Bas-Rhin (; Alsatian: ''Unterelsàss'', ' or '; traditional german: links=no, Niederrhein; en, Lower Rhine) is a department in Alsace which is a part of the Grand Est Grand ...

Strasbourg
, then a free city of the Holy Roman Empire and now part of
France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a country primarily located in Western Europe, consisting of metropolitan France and Overseas France, several overseas regions and territories. The metro ...

France
. In
Scotland Scotland ( sco, Scotland, gd, Alba ) is a Countries of the United Kingdom, country that is part of the United Kingdom. Covering the northern third of the island of Great Britain, mainland Scotland has a 96-mile (154 km) Anglo-Scottish bo ...

Scotland
, the School Establishment Act of 1616 commanded every parish to establish a school for everyone paid for by parishioners. The
Parliament of Scotland The Parliament of Scotland ( sco, Pairlament o Scotland; gd, Pàrlamaid na h-Alba) was the legislature of the Kingdom of Scotland. The parliament, like other such institutions, evolved during the Middle Ages from the king's council of bishops ...
confirmed this with the Education Act of 1633 and created a local land-based tax to provide the required funding. The required majority support of parishioners, however, provided a tax evasion loophole which heralded the Education Act of 1646. The turmoil of the age meant that in 1661 there was a temporary reversion to the less compulsory 1633 position. However, in 1696 a new Act re-established the compulsory provision of a school in every parish with a system of fines, sequestration, and direct government implementation as a means of enforcement where required. In the United States, following Luther and other Reformers, the
Separatist Separatism is the advocacy of cultural, ethnic, tribal, religious, racial, governmental or gender separation from the larger group. As with secession, separatism conventionally refers to full political separation. Groups simply seeking greater ...
Congregationalists Congregational churches (also Congregationalist churches; Congregationalism) are Protestant Protestantism is a form of Christianity that originated with the 16th-century Reformation, a movement against what its followers perceived to be Crit ...
who founded
Plymouth Colony Plymouth Colony (sometimes Plimouth) was an British America, English colonial venture in America from 1620 to 1691 at a location that had previously been surveyed and named by Captain John Smith (explorer), John Smith. The settlement served as th ...
in 1620, obliged parents to teach their children how to read and write. The
Massachusetts School LawsThe Massachusetts School Laws were three legislative acts of 1642, 1647 and 1648 enacted in the Massachusetts Bay Colony The Massachusetts Bay Colony (1628–1691), more formally The Colony of Massachusetts Bay, was an English settlement on the east ...
, three legislative acts enacted in the
Massachusetts Bay Colony The Massachusetts Bay Colony (1628–1691), more formally The Colony of Massachusetts Bay, was an English settlement on the east coast of America around the Massachusetts Bay, the northernmost of the several colonies later reorganized as the ''Prov ...
in 1642, 1647, and 1648, are commonly regarded as the first steps toward compulsory education in the United States. The 1647 law, in particular, required every town having more than 50 families to hire a teacher, and every town of more than 100 families to establish a school. The Puritan zeal for learning was reflected in the early and rapid rise of educational institutions; e.g.,
Harvard College Harvard College is the undergraduate education, undergraduate college of Harvard University, an Ivy League research university in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Founded in 1636, Harvard College is the original school of Harvard University, the oldest i ...

Harvard College
was founded as early as 1636.
Prussia Prussia, , Old Prussian Distribution of the Baltic tribes, circa 1200 CE (boundaries are approximate). Old Prussian was a Western Baltic language belonging to the Balto-Slavic branch of the Indo-European languages The Indo-Europe ...

Prussia
implemented a modern compulsory
education system Education is the process of facilitating learning Learning is the process of acquiring new understanding Understanding is a psychological process related to concepts, such as a person, situation, or message whereby one is able to ...
in 1763. It was introduced by the Generallandschulreglement (General School Regulation), a decree of
Frederick the Great Frederick II (german: Friedrich II.; 24 January 171217 August 1786) was King in Prussia King ''in'' Prussia ( German: ''König in Preußen'') was a title used by the Prussian kings (also in personal union Electors of Brandenburg) from 1701 t ...

Frederick the Great
in 1763–5. The Generallandschulreglement, authored by
Johann Julius Hecker Johann Julius Hecker (December 2, 1707 – June 24, 1768) was a German educator who established the first Realschule (practical high school) and Prussia's first teacher-education institution. Hecker was born to a family of educators in Essen-We ...
, asked for all young citizens, girls and boys, to be educated from age 5 to age 13-14 and to be provided with a basic outlook on (Christian) religion, singing, reading and writing based on a regulated, state-provided curriculum of text books. The teachers, often former soldiers, were asked to cultivate silk worms to make a living besides contributions from the local citizens and municipalities. In
Austria Austria, officially the Republic of Austria, is a landlocked country in the southern part of Central Europe, located on the Eastern Alps. It is composed of nine States of Austria, federated states, one of which is Vienna, Austria's ca ...
,
Hungary Hungary ( hu, Magyarország ) is a landlocked country A landlocked country is a country A country is a distinct territory, territorial body or political entity. It is often referred to as the land of an individual's birth, residence ...
and the
Lands of the Bohemian Crown The Lands of the Bohemian Crown were a number of incorporated states in Central Europe during the Middle Ages, medieval and early modern periods connected by feudalism, feudal relations under the List of Bohemian monarchs, Bohemian kings. The crow ...
(Czech lands), mandatory primary education was introduced by Empress
Maria Theresa Maria Theresa Walburga Amalia Christina (german: Maria Theresia; 13 May 1717 – 29 November 1780) was the only female ruler of the Habsburg dominions, ruling from 1740 until her death in 1780. She was the sovereign of Austria Austria (, ...
in 1774.James van Horn Melton. "Absolutism and the Eighteenth-Century Origins of Compulsory Schooling in Prussia and Austria". p. xiv.


Late Modern Era

Compulsory school attendance based on the Prussian model gradually spread to other countries. It was quickly adopted by the governments in Denmark-Norway and
Sweden Sweden ( sv, Sverige ), officially the Kingdom of Sweden ( sv, links=no, Konungariket Sverige ), is a Nordic countries, Nordic country in Northern Europe.The United Nations Group of Experts on Geographical Names states that the country's for ...

Sweden
, and also in
Finland Finland ( fi, Suomi ; sv, Finland ), officially the Republic of Finland (; ), is a Nordic country in Northern Europe. It shares land borders with Sweden to the west, Russia to the east, Norway to the north, and is defined by the Gulf of Bo ...

Finland
,
Estonia Estonia ( et, Eesti ), officially the Republic of Estonia ( et, Eesti Vabariik, links=no), is a country in Northern Europe. It is bordered to the north by the Gulf of Finland across from Finland, to the west by the Baltic Sea across from Swe ...

Estonia
and
Latvia Latvia ( or ; lv, Latvija ; ltg, Latveja; liv, Leţmō), officially known as the Republic of Latvia ( lv, Latvijas Republika, links=no, ltg, Latvejas Republika, links=no, liv, Leţmō Vabāmō, links=no), is a country in the Baltic reg ...

Latvia
within the
Russian Empire The Russian Empire, . commonly referred to as Imperial Russia, was a historical empire that extended across Eurasia and North America from 1721, succeeding the Tsardom of Russia following the Treaty of Nystad that ended the Great Northern War. T ...
, and later
England and Wales England and Wales () is a legal jurisdiction covering England and Wales, two of the four countries of the United Kingdom, parts of the United Kingdom. England and Wales forms the constitutional successor to the former Kingdom of England and follows ...

England and Wales
and
France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a country primarily located in Western Europe, consisting of metropolitan France and Overseas France, several overseas regions and territories. The metro ...

France
. Due to population growth and the proliferation of compulsory education,
UNESCO The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) (french: Organisation des Nations unies pour l'éducation, la science et la culture) is a specialised agency United Nations Specialized Agencies are autonomous organ ...

UNESCO
calculated in 2006 that over the subsequent 30 years, more people would receive formal education than in all prior human history.''Schools Kill Creativity''
TED Talks, 2006, Monterey, CA, USA.


France

France was slow to introduce compulsory education, this time due to conflicts between the secular state and the Catholic Church, 0and as a result between anti-clerical and Catholic political parties. During the July Monarchy, government officials proposed a variety of public primary education provisions, culminating in the Guizot Law of June 28, 1833. The Guizot law mandated that all communes provide education for boys and required that schools implement a curriculum focused on religious and moral instruction. The first set of Jules Ferry Laws, passed in 1881, extended the central government’s role in education well beyond the provisions of the Guizot Law, and made primary education free for girls and boys. In 1882, the second set of Jules Ferry Laws made education compulsory for girls and boys until the age of 13. In 1936, the upper age limit was raised to 14. In 1959, it was further extended to 16.


United States

In 1852,
Massachusetts Massachusetts (, ), officially the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, is the most populous state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * T ...

Massachusetts
was the first U.S. state to pass a compulsory universal public education law. In particular, the
Massachusetts General Court The Massachusetts General Court (formally styled the General Court of Massachusetts) is the state legislature of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Massachusetts (, ), officially the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, is the most populous state ...
required every town to create and operate a grammar school. Fines were imposed on parents who did not send their children to school, and the government took the power to take children away from their parents and apprentice them to others if government officials decided that the parents were "unfit to have the children educated properly". In 1918,
Mississippi Mississippi () is a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The State'' (newspaper), a daily newspaper ...
became the last state to enact a compulsory attendance law. In 1922 an attempt was made by the voters of Oregon to enact the Oregon Compulsory Education Act, which would require all children between the ages of 8 and 16 to attend public schools, only leaving exceptions for mentally or physically unfit children, exceeding a certain living distance from a state school, or having written consent from a county superintendent to receive private instruction. The law was passed by popular vote but was later ruled unconstitutional by the United States Supreme Court in Pierce v. Society of Sisters, determining that "a child is not a mere creature of the state". This case settled the dispute about whether or not private schools had the right to do business and educate within the United States.


Russia/USSR

In the Soviet Union, a compulsory education provision law was implemented in 1930. State-provided education during this era was primarily focused on eradicating illiteracy. In line with the overall goals of the regime’s Five Year Plans, the motivation behind education provision and literacy instruction was to ”train a new generation of technically skilled and scientifically literate citizens”. Industrial development needed more skilled workers of all kinds. No possible source of talent could be left untapped, and the only way of meeting these needs was by the rapid development of a planned system of mass education”. Soviet schools “responded to the economic requirements of society” by emphasizing “basic formation in math, and polytechnic knowledge related to economic production”. The Soviet regime’s deliberate expansion of mass education supremacy was what most impressed the U.S. education missions to the USSR in the 1950s.


China

China's nine-year compulsory education was formally established in 1986 as part of its economic modernization program. It was designed to promote "universalization", the closure of the education gap by economic development and between rural and urban areas by provision of safe and high-quality schools. The program initially faced shortages due to a huge population and weak economic foundation, but by 1999 primary and junior middle schools respectively served 90% and 85% of the national population.


Timeline of introduction


1700s

* 1739: * 1763: * 1774:


1800s

*1805: *1814: *1817: *1824: , *1834: *1842: *1844: *1852: *1857: *1864: , *1867: *1868: *1869: , , *1870: *1871: , , , , *1872: , , (de facto unenforceable), *1873: , Philip Oreopoulos
Canadian Compulsory School Laws and their Impact on Educational
2005
*1874: , , , *1875: , ,State Compulsory School Attendance Laws
/ref> Free, compulsory and secular Education Acts
/ref> *1876: , , *1877: , , , *1878: *1879: *1880: , , , *1882: , *1883: , , , , , *1884: *1885: *1886: (abolished) *1887: , *1889: , , *1890: , *1891: *1892: *1895: *1896: , *1897: , , *1899: ,


1900s

*1900: , *1902: , *1904: *1905: , , , *1906: (white children with less than 4 km to nearest school only) *1907: , , , *1908: *1909: , , *1910: , *1912: *1913: *1915: , , , *1916: , , *1917: , *1918: *1919: , (only for children with less than 3 km to nearest school),Dz.Pr.P.P. 1919/14/147
/ref> *1920: , , (white children only) *1921: , *1923: *1924: *1925: *1926: *1927: (reintroduced) *1929: *1930: , *1935: *1942: *1943: , *1946: *1949: 100 Years of Educational Reforms in Europe: a contextual database
/ref> *1951: *1952: *1953: , *1956: (all children) *1960: *1961: *1962: , *1963: , *1964: (children with less than three miles to nearest school) *1965: *1968: *1971: *1973: *1975: *1976: , *1981: , *1986: *1988: , *1990: , , (all children) *1991: *1994: *1996: , (abolished for women) *1998: ,


2000s

*2000: *2001: (reintroduced for women), *2003: , , *2005: *2007: *2008: *2009: (enforceable misdemeanor, unenforceable prior to 2009) *2010:


Countries without compulsory education

* * * * *


Per-country variations in age range

The following table indicates at what ages compulsory education starts and ends, country by country. The most common age for starting compulsory education is 6, although this varies between 3 and 8.https://webgate.ec.europa.eu/fpfis/mwikis/eurydice/images/2/24/Compulsory_Education_in_Europe_2016_2017.pdf


Criticism

While compulsory education is mostly seen as important and useful, compulsory schooling is seen by some as obsolete and counterproductive in today's world and has repeatedly been the subject of sharp criticism. Critics of compulsory schooling argue that such education violates the freedom of children; is a method of political control; is ineffective at teaching children how to deal with the "real world" outside of school; and may have negative effects on children, leading to higher rates of
apathy Apathy is a lack of feeling, emotion, interest, or concern about something. It is a state of indifference, or the suppression of emotions such as Worry, concern, Psychomotor agitation, excitement, motivation, or Passion (emotion), passion. An a ...
,
bullying upright=1.3, Banner in a campaign against bullying Cefet-MG Bullying is the use of force, coercion, hurtful teasing or threat, to abuse Abuse is the improper usage or treatment of a thing, often to unfairly or improperly gain benef ...
, stress, and
depression Depression may refer to: Mental health * Depression (mood), a state of low mood and aversion to activity * Mood disorders characterized by depression are commonly referred to as simply ''depression'', including: ** Dysthymia ** Major depressive ...
.


See also

*
History of education The history of education extends at least as far back as the first written records recovered from ancient civilizations. Studies of modern peoples remote from western or other civilizations and with little history of a written culture, neverthe ...
*
Public education State schools ( British English) or public schools ( North American English) are generally primary or secondary educational institution, schools that educate all children without charge. They are funded in whole or in part by taxation. State fu ...
*
Public school (government funded) State schools (in England, Wales, and New Zealand) or public schools (Scottish English and North American English) are generally primary or secondary educational institution, schools that educate all children without charge. They are funded in w ...
*
Child Labor Child labour ( British English) or child labor (American English American English (AmE, AE, AmEng, USEng, en-US), sometimes called United States English or U.S. English, is the set of varieties of the English language native to the Un ...
*
Unschooling Unschooling is an informal learning that advocates learner-chosen activities as a primary means for learning. Unschoolers learn Learning is the process of acquiring new understanding, knowledge, behaviors, skills, value (personal and cult ...

Unschooling
*
Raising of school leaving age The raising of school leaving age (ROSLA) is an act brought into force when the legal age a child is allowed to leave compulsory education Compulsory education refers to a period of education that is required of all people and is imposed by the go ...
*
Democratic education Democratic education is an educational ideal in which democracy is both a goal and a method of instruction. It brings democratic values to education and can include self-determination theory, self-determination within a community of equals, as wel ...


References


Further reading

*Coleman, J. S., et al. (1966). ''Equality of Educational Opportunity.'' Washington: U.S. Government Printing Office. * *Paglayan, A. (2020).
The Non-Democratic Roots of Mass Education: Evidence from 200 Years.
''American Political Science Review.'' *Van Horn Melton, J. (1988). ''Absolutism and the Eighteenth-Century Origins of Compulsory Schooling in Prussia and Austria'' Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. *White, John (1876).
The Laws on Compulsory Education
" ''The Fortnightly Review'', Vol. XXV, pp. 897–918.


External links


A discussion of compulsory education as a human right (Right to education Project)
{{DEFAULTSORT:Compulsory Education Education policy Youth rights Human rights abuses