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Education in Lithuania is free of charge and compulsory from the age of 6 or 7 to 16 years, as stated in the national Law on Education. In 1996, the gross primary enrollment rate was 98 percent. Primary school attendance rates were unavailable for Lithuania as of 2001. While enrollments rates indicate a level of commitment to education, they do not always reflect children’s participation in school. In Lithuania everybody has a right to education. Secondary education is compulsory until 16 years of age. Children start school when they are 6 or 7 years of age. The school year in Lithuania starts at the first of September and lasts nine months. The children have one month holiday during the school years. The school children can stay at school for 12 years, but some of them leave school after 10 years. These children enter vocational junior colleges or manual training schools. In these schools they can get both secondary education and qualifications necessary for a job. Education in Lithuania has been centralised for a long time, but now almost every school has their own education system, but all systems do not differ from each other very much: children study almost the same subjects at all schools. Schoolchildren can transfer freely from one school to another. Each class has its own classroom, where children have the most lessons, but there are special classrooms for physics, chemistry, biology, art and some other subjects. There are extra-curricular activities at some schools organised by clubs, sports and art societies. After a secondary school, a vocational junior college or a manual training school, children can take entrance examination and enter the university.

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