In the mid-1990s, much of the Soviet-era education system remained
in Kyrgyzstan, which had made a conscientious effort to educate
all of its citizens before 1991 and continued to do so after that
date. Substantial structural and curriculum changes were underway
by 1995, however. The 1993 constitution continues the Soviet guarantee
of free basic education at state institutions to all citizens;
education is compulsory through grade nine. Free education at
the vocational, secondary specialized, and higher levels also
continues to be offered by the state to qualified individuals.
The fundamentals of post-Soviet education policy were enumerated
in the 1992 law on education, which established the Ministry of
Education as the central administrative body of the national system.
Although Soviet-era statistics indicated that 100 percent of the
people between the ages of nine and forty-nine were literate,
the actual literacy rate probably is somewhat less.
Data as of March 1996