National Information Centre
of Academic Mobility

Путь на сайте


Primary education (1-4 grades) is the first stage of complete general secondary education, beginning of intellectual, physical, and social development of children. In the primary school, children acquire their first life experiences, study and social behavior skills.

In 2018/2019 academic year first-grade students started 12-year secondary education program of the New Ukrainian School. The complete transition to the 12-year school education system shall take place in 2027, please read more detail here.

Educational institutions. Children acquire primary education in general second education institutions of the I level that operate independently or as parts of general secondary education institutions of the I-II and I-III levels. The average number of students in classes is usually up to 24.

Program duration. In Ukraine, primary schooling takes four years. Children usually start school at the age of six, and the latest at the age of seven. Children with special educational needs can start education at a older age, in which case the program duration can be extended, and the program for these children is usually supplemented with rehabilitation and developmental component.

Classes. In accordance with the sanitary and hygienic regulations, classes in primary school have the duration of 35 minutes in the first year, and 40 minutes in the second, third and fourth years. Schools have a 5-day week. However, specialized schools with intensive foreign language classes may have a 6-day academic week.

Assessment. Learning outcomes in primary school are usually assessed verbally. In grades three and four, at the choice of an educational institution, students can receive verbal or level assessments, which can be expressed both orally and in writing. The level assessment is a gradual transition from verbal assessment in primary school to grading in basic secondary school. The verbal evaluation may be expressed in the following words: "have significant success", "demonstrate noticeable progress", "achieve results with external help", "need attention and help"; the assessment levels used are the following: "initial", "average", "sufficient", "high".

Graduation. The fourth year is the graduation year in the primary school. It ends with the State Final Attestation (exams), most often in the Ukrainian language or the language of study, reading and mathematics. The State Final Attestation in primary school is carried out only for the purpose of monitoring the quality of educational activities of institutions and the quality of education. The content, forms, procedure and terms of attestation are annually approved by the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the primary school graduates were exempted from the State Final Attestation exams in 2020/2021 academic year. And exemption continued for the next two academic years, 2021/2022 and 2022/2023, for safety reasons during the martial law in Ukraine.

Learning outcomes of the primary education are the following:

  • proficiency in speaking, reading, computational skills and physical skills;
  • general knowledge of the world;
  • sufficiently developed thinking, imagination, memory, and sensor skills;
  • creative self-expression skills;
  • valuing work, art, and health; and
  • ability to perform simple creative tasks.

Educational documents. After completing primary school graduates are awarded the Certificate of Primary Education with the results of the annual assessment and State Final Attestation (if not exempted).

Historical profile:

Primary education up to 2018

This information has been produced with the financial assistance of the Council of Europe. The views expressed herein can in no way be taken to reflect the official opinion of the Council of Europe.