Pre-primary Education is crucial in upgrading the quality of Primary Education. Pre-primary Education allows for a methodical and supportive intervention in the areas of physical, social, emotional and cognitive development, as evidenced by numerous research results worldwide. It is also widely acknowledged that Pre-primary Εducation contributes significantly to the preparation of children for Primary School and minimises school failure.
The pre-school education provides the opportunity for methodical booster intervention in the areas of physical, social, emotional and cognitive development, as evidenced by numerous research results worldwide. It is also assumed that the pre-school education contributes to preparing the children for primary school and reduces the chances of academic failure.
Bearing these facts in mind, the Ministry of Education and Culture has over the last few years introduced a number of innovations aiming at the upgrading of Pre-primary Education. The most important action is, perhaps, the introduction of compulsory Pre-primary Education for children aged 48/12 – 58/12 years old, which was established in September 2004.
Pre-primary Education is responsible for the education of children attending pre-primary schools, aged 3 to 58/12 years old. Pre-primary Education is responsible for complementing the family’s role and providing ample support for the development of the children, the fulfilment of their basic needs and the creation of supportive and constructive learning experiences. This will, consequently, enable them to become aware of their capabilities and overall potential and enhance their self-image.
The pre-primary schools’ educational programme aims to retain many elements of family life and emphasises the encouragement of creative activities through child-centred approaches in an environment which promotes cooperative learning, experimentation and group work. Emphasis is also placed on offering love, support, trust, acceptance, safety and respect for every child’s individuality.
There are public, community and private pre-primary schools in Cyprus. Since 2004, with the introduction of compulsory education one year before admission of a child to a primary school, all operating expenses of public nursery schools are undertaken by the Ministry of Education and Culture. All children, residing permanently or temporarily in Cyprus, have the right to registration in a public nursery school. Attendance in the pre-primary class (48/12 – 58/12 years old) is free for all the children in public nursery schools. The maximum number of pupils in each class of pre-primary schools does not exceed 25 pupils.