Schooling is compulsory for children aged 6
to 15 years. Most children complete primary school,
which is free of charge. A large majority also go on to
high school. The education sector suffers from lack of
money as well as suitable facilities and the quality of
teaching is low.
The proportion of children completing schooling has
increased over a number of years. Not least, the
proportion of girls attending high school has increased,
from just over half shortly after the turn of the
millennium to 85 percent in 2015. A few more boys go to
upper secondary school, which is subject to fees and
consists of three to four years of university
preparatory studies or vocational education.
Country facts of Kosovo, including geography profile, population statistics, and business data.
More than 80 percent of children go to preschool at
least a year before starting school. The goal is to
introduce public pre-school and to extend the compulsory
schooling to 12 years.
In 1990, all Albanian-language teaching had been
banned in Kosovo, which was then a Serbian province, and
the teaching was conducted only in Serbian. Teachers
were dismissed if they refused to follow the Serbian
curriculum or teach in the Serbian language. The
Albanians then established a parallel, underground
school system, which operated until the war of 1999,
with tuition in Albanian and often in private housing.
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Many schools were destroyed during the war, but most
have been rebuilt or repaired. Still, school buildings
are missing and many children are forced to attend
school in shifts. Although the government emphasizes the
importance of education, less than five percent of GDP
goes to this sector, which suffers from a lack of
resources. The quality of teaching is generally low and
not adapted to the current demands of the labor market.
Albanian children are taught in Albanian, Serbs usually
follow the Serbian school system. This means that
history education, among other things, is lacking when
it comes to objectivity.
Among younger people, literacy is more than 95 per
cent, but among older people, women and in the
countryside the figure is lower.
There are two public universities - in Prishtina and
in Prizren. In the city of Mitrovica, where there are
many Serbs, there is a university that follows the
Serbian curriculum. In recent years, several private
universities have also been founded, many affiliated
with foreign educational institutions, several however
of questionable quality.
Haradinaj is acquitted in The Hague
Former Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj is re-acquitted by the UN War Crimes
Tribunal in The Hague. The judge notes that Serbian prisoners were abused at the
UÇK guerrilla's premises in Kosovo and that at least one prisoner died from
their injuries during the time that Haradinaj was a guerrilla leader, but it is
not possible to prove that he or his co-defendants participated in the abuse or
participated in plan such activities.
Direct contact with the Government of Serbia
Prime Minister Hashim Thaçi and his Serbian colleague Ivica Dačić meet in
Brussels for the first direct political contacts between the respective
governments since Kosovo declared independence. The negotiations trigger unrest
in Kosovo's capital Prishtina and 20 people are injured when police try to
resolve a demonstration. The protest has been organized by the Vetëvendosje
party which opposes all talks with Serbia.
Steering group leaves Kosovo
The International Steering Group (ISG) completes its mission as supervisor in
Kosovo. However, the NATO-led Kfor force of about 6,000 men remains, and
Parliament decides that the EU law enforcement authority EULEX will remain until
Controversial media law controversy
Justice Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Hajredin Kuçi resigns in protest
of a new law that makes it criminal for journalists not to disclose their
sources. The law also provides for punishment for slander. The president vetoes
the law, but Parliament is re-voting it. When the controversial points of the
law are removed in a third vote, Kuçi returns to his post.
Kosovo Representation Agreement
With the help of the EU, Kosovo and Serbia will agree on how Kosovo should be
represented in regional forums. The settlement is interpreted differently by
different parties, but is seen as a success of the United States, Germany with
several countries that have been sponsoring Kosovo's independence.
Voting among the Serbs
The Serbs in northern Kosovo carry out a referendum on whether or not to
accept Kosovo's authorities. Nearly 100 percent of those who vote cast it,
saying no to the proposal. The government in Prishtina rejects the vote as
illegal and invalid.
Stone throwing against the President of Serbia
Albanians in the city of Dečani throw stones at Serbian President Boris
Tadić's car when he visits the Serbian minority in Kosovo in connection with the
Orthodox Christmas celebration.