K-12, a concept used in Canadian schooling that represents the school levels preceding college, which includes Kindergarten up to 12th grade.

Depending on the province, schools continue to the age of 16 or until the student is in grade 11 or 12. Children will then choose whether or not to continue their studies to higher levels.

K12 Education Structure in Canada

Schools in Canada are grouped and named based on various factors like the region, district, or individual schools. Nevertheless, the Canadian Education System has four levels:

1. Pre-Elementary

Pre-elementary, also known as “kindergarten,” is the first level of schooling in Canada. This education level is available to children aged four to five before they begin primary school. While this level of education is mandatory in some areas, it is optional in others.

In most regions, the first year of pre-elementary education is universal and free, with some provinces offering extra years at no cost. Quebec, for example, provides free preschool for children from low-income backgrounds or those with disabilities.

The curriculum for pre-elementary education is very relaxed. It provides an opportunity for young learners to study new vocabularies as well as other fundamental skills such as reading, numbering, drawing, and how to interact with each other. These programs are specifically tailored to help children get ready for primary school.

2. Elementary School

After pre-elementary, there is elementary school. This stage, also known as primary education, runs from Grade 1 to Grade 8. The academic year usually lasts from September to June of the next year.

Elementary education is compulsory in Canada. In most cases, students only have one teacher who teaches them all subjects. The class also remain the same throughout elementary school.

Music, mathematics, English, chemistry, social sciences, and art are all covered in the pre-elementary curriculum. As students progress through the grades, the complexity of the courses improves. However, special education programs are also offered.

3. Secondary Education

After primary school, the next education level is secondary school. Grades 7 and 8 are referred to as “junior high school,” while grades 9 to 12 are referred to as “high school.”

Students in junior high school have the opportunity to adapt to the transitions of rotating classes and teachers during the day. The objective of this stage is to ensure that students have a better plan for their next level of education since the complexity of courses is set to rise significantly.

Lastly, there is the “high school” category. Students in Ontario and New Brunswick are required by law to attend school until they are 18 years old or have obtained a high school degree. Some jurisdictions also have job training available for high school graduates.

4. Post-Secondary Education (University and College)

Canadian students have the opportunity to apply to colleges and universities after they graduate from high school. Provincial governments provide the majority of funding for public universities and colleges.