Education System in New Caledonia


 EducationSchool/LevelGrade FromGrade ToAge FromAge ToYearsNotes
PrimaryPrimary Education156115 
MiddleLower Secondary1411154 
SecondaryUpper Secondary1316193 

Primary Education

The education system in New Caledonia still mirrors that of the French colonial power, and is compulsory and free from age 6 to 16. Primary schooling lasts for 5 years, during which time pupils will have obtained a firm foundation for their further education.

Middle Education

The mandatory education program lasts for a further 4 years at middle school, and culminates in a national examination. If they wish to, students may complete their schooling at this point and enter the job market.

Secondary Education

The final 3 years known as upper secondary school are not compulsory, although necessary for those students going on to university. The curriculum approximates that used in mainland France.

Vocational Education

The College of New Caledonia offers over 35 training programs in skills that vary as widely as business & technology, early childhood education and various trades. It is also possible to complete the Level-1 programs that allow entry into an apprenticeship.

Tertiary Education

New Caledonia EducationAlthough it does not have a university per se, New Caledonia does have 5 institutions of higher education. Chief among these is College of New Caledonia that incorporates a branch of the Université Française du Pacifique and is illustrated here. It provides university-transfer programs in arts, science & commerce, and 2-year associate degrees in arts and science.


It also offers a variety of continuing education opportunities in the form of training courses and other programs.


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