School system Mexico – How are Mexicans educated?

Education system Mexico

To understand the education standards in Mexico, it is important to know how the school system works in Mexico. In the following we provide an overview of the education system in Mexico.


The pre-school in Mexico starts at the age of three, when the children enter in the kindergarten (which is obligatory). The kindergarten is divided into three levels; the so-called “children 1”, “children 2” and “children 3”. During kindergarten, the children already have a fixed timetable, learn how to read & write and  the numbers until 1,000 and need to do homework.


The school system in Mexico is divided into 4 different levels. First, pupuls attend primary school for 6 years (Primaria), following 3 years secondary school (Secundaria) and then another 3 years in high school (Preparatoria), among Mexicans also known as “Prepa”, “Bachillerato” or “Bachi”.

The Prepa prepares for a job or the university. The Bachillerato enabels students to apply for Universities. The courses have an average duration of 5 years.

The state schools have no tution fees. Typical for them is the school uniform, which should prevent students from getting better clothes than their classmates. However, almost all Mexicans who can afford it, send their children to private schools, because the teachers are usually better educated and they have larger supply of materials.

However, teachers usually do not earn much better than at the state schools, but enjoz a more pleasant working atmosphere (smaller class associations, more discipline).

School subjects

The compulsory subjects are usually Spanish, mathematics, physics, chemistry, sports, English, biology, history, literature and often sociology, psychology and logic. But that can vary from school to school.

Doctrine of Law and Order

In the north of Mexico, a few years ago, the subject Cultura de la Legalidad was introduced, the doctrine of law and order. The children are supposed to learn what law and order means. This subject was introduced for criminal prevention.

A school day usually lasts from 7 to 12 or 14 o’clock, but also afternoon or evening classes are common.

Grading System

The grading is from 1 to 10, with 1 being the worst and 10 being the best grade.

The scores in Mexico range from a 10 (very good) to a 5:

  • 9-10 – Excellent
  • 8-9 – Very good
  • 7-8 – Good
  • 6-7 – Enough
  • 5-6 – Insufficient
  • 0-5 – (Unused)

On average, at least a 6 must be achieved for each subject to be moved.

Do you have further questions? We are happy to advise you.