In this article you can find out
- how the Hungarian school system is structured;
- where to enroll your school-age child;
- how long compulsory education lasts.
If you want to know what rights and responsibilities you have as a parent in Hungary, read our previous article on the Hungarian education system here.
Where should my child go to school?
Primary education should be provided by the local school of your registered address. This is the place where your child could and should go to school in case you don’t choose another private institution for him/her that is nationally accredited.
You can find the address of the local school at the education department of the district office, on the municipality website or on the link here.
How does the school system look like?
The education consists of 12 grades in three stages:
- Primary (general) education
- Secondary education
- Upper secondary education
When should I enrol my child in school?
Children of compulsory school age should be enrolled in the first year at the school of their place of residence or the school of their choice in the spring. A few days are set for this every year.
What documents will you need to enroll your child in school?
The documents and declarations required for enrolment in primary school may vary from one school district or even school to another, so it is always best to check with the school in advance.
The usual set of documents is:
- Child’s birth certificate
- Proof of address (e.g., utility bill or rental agreement)
- Child’s immunization records
- Parent’s or guardian’s identification documents (e.g., passport or ID card)
- School registration form
- Previous school records or report cards (if applicable, particularly for transferring students)
- Proof of custody (in case of divorce or separation)
Can the educational obligation be replaced by participation in Ukrainian online education or by other means?
- The educational obligation is considered fulfilled only in case of studies in an educational institution accredited in Hungary.
- This is the reason why this obligation can NOT be replaced by online participation in the Ukrainian education system according to the Hungarian law. Neither can it be discharged by attending another educational institution that is not accredited in Hungary, which may or may not be a Ukrainian-language educational institution. In other words, legally speaking, you must enroll your child to a Hungarian school or a school accredited in Hungary.
What options my child has after primary school? What are the secondary education institutions?
- Secondary school
8-year upper secondary school (after grade 4)
6-year upper secondary school (after grade 6)
4-year upper secondary school (after grade 8)
- Secondary vocational school (after grade 8)
- Technical School (after grade 8)
To enter these educational institutions, you must pass an entrance exam.
How does the child’s compulsory education end?
- Pupils finish their studies at upper secondary school and upper secondary vocational school with a baccalaureate. The baccalaureate is a state examination organised and conducted according to nationally uniform requirements.
- In the exam, you have to take some specific subjects like Hungarian language and literature, history, mathematics, and foreign languages. In vocational secondary schools, you also have to take an exam in the subject related to the sector you’re studying. The baccalaureate exami can be at upper or intermediate level.
- The baccalaureate certificate is a condition for entry to higher education, for vocational training and for certain jobs.
For more info about the baccalaureate exam see this page.
The Department of Education’s information for those arriving from Ukraine on or after 24 February 2022 is available here.