Education is arguably one of the most important parts of a young person’s life. The quality of education helps shape who you are as an individual and how you interact with the world around you.
The St Lucian Education System, is based on that of the British due to our history as a former British colony. The structure of our grade system, schools, terms, and examinations have close parallels to the British system, but have been somewhat modified for the Caribbean environment.
Most children in St Lucia start their education in preschool once they are about 3-4 years old. In a preschool environment, students are able to interact with each other, and get an introduction to formal instruction, routines and lessons.
There are a number of preschools and Infant Schools in St Lucia – however, you will find most are a stand alone preschool or daycare. The Montessori Centre is one of the few preschools directly related to a primary school in St Lucia.
At the end of their preschool term, parents register students for the primary school of their choosing. Due to the high demand for certain schools, spots at the most desired, and centrally located schools, fill up fairly quickly.
Primary School in St Lucia consists of Kindergarten to Grade 6. At the end of Grade 6 students take the national Common Entrance Exam in order to be placed into a Secondary School. At primary school students take a variety of subjects such as
Additionally schools may offer subjects such as Art, Music, Physical Education etc.
Secondary School in St Lucia consists of Form 1 to Form 5 (Grade 7 to 11).
In the first 3 forms, students get a broad exposure to a multitude of subjects. Before starting fourth form, students select on average 8 subjects to concentrate their studies on to prepare for the CXC examinations.
CXC Examination are assessments taken by all Fifth Form students across the Caribbean. Students generally spend their last two years of Secondary School preparing for these exams which they take in January or June of their final term.
Results of the CXC Examination are used to enter Tertiary Institutions.
At current, there are a limited number of options for Tertiary Education in St Lucia. The Sir Arthur Lewis Community College is the largest institution of this type on island – where students can prepare for A-Level Examinations or work towards an Associate’s Degree.
The UWI Open Campus also allows for Distance Learning for individuals wanting to complete a Bachelor’s Degree.