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Basic Schools and Upper Secondary Schools Act
Passed 15 September 1993
(RT1 I 1993, 63, 892; consolidated text RT I 1999, 42, 497),
entered into force 10 October 1993,

amended by the following Acts:
26.03.2002 entered into force 05.04.2002 - RT I 2002, 34, 205;
20.02.2002 entered into force 01.09.2002 - RT I 2002, 25, 144;
29.08.2001 entered into force 21.09.2001 - RT I 2001, 75, 454;
16.05.2001 entered into force 01.07.2001 - RT I 2001, 50, 288;
22.11.2000 entered into force 01.01.2001 - RT I 2000, 95, 611;
14.06.2000 entered into force 16.07.2000 - RT I 2000, 54, 349;
04.04.2000 entered into force 04.05.2000 - RT I 2000, 33, 195;
12.10.1999 entered into force 01.09.2000 - RT I 1999, 79, 730.

Chapter I
General Provisions

§ 1.
(1) This Act determines the legal status and the organisation of work of basic schools and upper secondary schools owned by the state and local governments (schools in municipal ownership).
(2) This Act applies to private nursery-primary schools, private primary schools, private basic schools and private secondary schools in so far as the Private Schools Act does not provide otherwise.
          (03.06.98 entered into force 06.07.98 - RT I 1998, 57, 859; 22.11.2000 entered into force 01.01.2001 - RT I 2000, 95, 611)

§ 2.
(1) Basic schools and upper secondary schools are comprehensive schools in which each subsequent academic year (year) is based directly on the previous one and which allows smooth transfer from one school to another.
(2) A basic school is a school which provides students with opportunities to acquire basic education and fulfil the obligation to attend school. Basic school includes years 1-9. In order to ensure access to education and fulfilment of the obligation to attend school, primary schools (including nursery-primary schools) may be established which may include, depending on the needs and opportunities, years 1-6.
(3) An upper secondary school is a school which provides opportunities to acquire general secondary education. An upper secondary school includes years 10-12. An upper secondary school may also include years of basic school which provide opportunities to acquire basic education.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(4) For the purposes of this Act, school means:
1) a nursery-primary school;
2) a primary school;
3) a basic school;
4) an upper secondary school;
5) an upper secondary school which has classes of basic school;
6) a basic school and an upper secondary school which operate as one institution.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(5) The name of a school is not required to include the words “gümnaasium” [upper secondary school] or “põhikool” [basic school].
          (23.11.94 entered into force 30.12.94 - RT I 1994, 91, 1528)

§ 3.
(1) The standards for basic education and general secondary education shall be established on the basis of the national curriculum for basic schools and upper secondary schools by stages of study. The stages of study are as follows:
1) I stage of study - years 1-3;
2) II stage of study - years 4-6;
3) III stage of study - years 7-9;
4) upper secondary school - years 10-12.
(2) The national curriculum for basic schools and upper secondary schools shall be approved by a regulation of the Government of the Republic. The simplified national curriculum for basic schools (supplementary learning curriculum) and the national curriculum for students with moderate and severe learning disabilities shall be established by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
(3) Schools shall prepare their curricula on the basis of the corresponding national curriculum specified in subsection (2) of this section. The head of a school shall approve the school curriculum by a directive.
(4) Religious education shall be non-confessional. A school is required to teach religious studies if at least fifteen students in a stage of study so wish. The study of religious education shall be voluntary.
          (29.08.2001 entered into force 21.09.2001 - RT I 2001, 75, 454)

§ 31.
(1) In order to ensure the consistent development of a school, the school shall prepare a development plan in co-operation with the board of trustees (council) and teachers' council.
(2) A school development plan shall set out:
1) the main objectives and areas of development of the school;
2) an activity plan for three years;
21) the necessary and possible measures to be implemented in non-Estonian language upper secondary schools for transition to instruction in Estonian;
          (26.03.2002 entered into force 05.04.2002 - RT I 2002, 34, 205)
3) the procedure for renewal of the development plan.
(4) School development plans shall be approved pursuant to the procedure provided by the relevant rural municipality or city council.
          (14.06.2000 entered into force 16.07.2000 - RT I 2000, 54, 349)

§ 4.
(1) Depending on the need of students to receive special education, special support, special treatment due to behavioural problems, or treatment, a basic school or an upper secondary school may be a school for students with special needs or be a sanatorium school.
(2) Schools for students with special needs are intended for students with physical disabilities, speech impairments, sensory or learning disabilities, or mental disorders, and for students who need special treatment due to behavioural problems.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(21) Students are referred to schools for students who need special treatment due to behavioural problems at the request of a juvenile committee on the basis of a court ruling on the bases and pursuant to the procedure provided for in the Juvenile Sanctions Act (RT I 1998, 17, 264; 2001, 50, 288).
          (16.05.2001 entered into force 01.07.2001 - RT I 2001, 50, 288)
(3) Sanatorium schools are intended for students with health disorders where students study and receive the necessary treatment.
(4) In the case of special education, arising from a curriculum, the number of academic years may differ from that established in § 2 of this Act. The specific number of academic years, list of subjects and number of lessons in schools for students with special needs and sanatorium schools shall be established by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)

§ 5.
Basic schools and upper secondary schools are municipal schools. Pursuant to a resolution of the Government of the Republic, basic schools and upper secondary schools may also be state schools administered by the Ministry of Education or a county government.
          (18.03.97 entered into force 25.03.97 - RT I 1997, 24, 365)

§ 6.
(1) Learning activities in schools shall be carried out in the form of daytime study, evening courses and distance learning.
(2) Persons who have passed the minimum permitted school-leaving age and have not acquired basic education may acquire basic education in the form of evening courses or distance learning, and graduate from school as external students. Persons who have acquired basic education may acquire general secondary education in the form of evening courses or distance learning, and graduate from school as external students. The procedure for and conditions of attending a basic school or upper secondary school in the form of evening courses or distance learning, and graduating from school as an external student shall be established by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)

§ 7.
A school shall operate pursuant to this Act, other legislation and the statutes of the school.
          (18.03.97 entered into force 25.03.97 - RT I 1997, 24, 365)

§ 8.
Attendance of state schools and general education schools of local governments is free of charge.
          (18.03.97 entered into force 25.03.97 - RT I 1997, 24, 365)

§ 9.
(1) In basic schools, specific stages of basic schools and specific classes of basic schools, any language may be the language of instruction – in municipal schools, on the basis of a decision of the local government council, and in state schools, on the basis of a decision of the Minister of Education. The board of trustees of a school shall make a corresponding proposal to the local government council or the Minister of Education.
          (04.04.2000 entered into force 04.05.2000 - RT I 2000, 33, 195)
(1 1 In the upper secondary school stage, the language of instruction shall be Estonian. In the upper secondary school stage of municipal schools and in specific classes of municipal schools, any language may be the language of instruction. Permission for instruction in another language shall be granted by the Government of the Republic on the basis of an application by a local government council. A corresponding proposal shall be made to the local government council by the board of trustees of an upper secondary school based on the development plan of the school.
          (26.03.2002 entered into force 05.04.2002 - RT I 2002, 34, 205)
(12) The language of instruction is the language in which at least 60 per cent of the teaching on the curriculum is given.
          (04.04.2000 entered into force 04.05.2000 - RT I 2000, 33, 195)
(2) In a school or class where instruction is not given in Estonian, Estonian language instruction is compulsory beginning from the first year.
          (12.10.1999 entered into force 01.09.2000 - RT I 1999, 79, 730)

§ 10. (Repealed - 23.11.94 entered into force 30.12.94 - RT I 1994, 91, 1528)

Chapter II
Establishment of Schools
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)

§ 11.
(1) On the basis of a decision of a local government council, the Ministry of Education and rural municipality or city government shall establish and finance the number of schools necessary to provide opportunities to acquire basic and secondary education.
(2) In order to establish a school, the following number of children of an appropriate age shall permanently reside within the catchment area of the school:
1) thirty students to establish a primary school of 3 years;
2) sixty students to establish a primary school of 6 years;
3) ninety students to establish a basic school.
(3) Sixty students are required to establish an upper secondary school (years 10-12).
(4) (Repealed - 22.11.2000 entered into force 01.01.2001 - RT I 2000, 95, 611)

§ 12.
(1) The Ministry of Education shall establish state schools with the consent of local government councils.
(2) Rural municipality or city governments shall establish municipal schools pursuant to a decision of the local government council, on the basis of an education licence issued by the Ministry of Education. Schools which provide services for several local governments shall be established jointly by the rural municipality or city governments of such local governments pursuant to the decisions of local government councils, on the basis of education licences issued by the Ministry of Education.
(3) Schools have statutes which shall include the following information:
1) the full name, location and type;
          (29.08.2001 entered into force 21.09.2001 - RT I 2001, 75, 454)
2) the purpose of the activities and functions of the school;
3) the language of instruction;
4) the bases for organisation of studies;
5) the rights and obligations of students;
6) the rights and obligations of the employees (staff) of the school;
7) the bases for financing, management and administration;
8) the bases of and procedure for reorganisation, transformation and closure.
          (29.08.2001 entered into force 21.09.2001 - RT I 2001, 75, 454)
(4) The statutes of municipal schools shall be approved and amended pursuant to the procedure provided for by the relevant rural municipality or city council. The Minister of Education or county governor shall approve the statutes of state schools, if the state school is administered by the county government.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358; 14.06.2000 entered into force 16.07.2000 - RT I 2000, 54, 349)

§ 121.
(1) An education licence is a public document which grants a municipal school the right to provide schooling and education on the basis of a curriculum which conforms to the national curriculum in the stage of study indicated in the education licence. The procedure for the issue and revocation of education licences and the format of education licences shall be established by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
(2) In order to obtain an education licence, a rural municipality or city government shall submit an application to the Ministry of Education not later than six months prior to the beginning of an academic year.
(3) The following shall be appended to an application:
1) the statutes of the school;
2) the curriculum;
3) information concerning the qualifications of the teachers;
4) information concerning the premises (buildings) and land used, and the conformity thereof to health protection and safety requirements;
5) information concerning the catchment area of the school and the written consent of the county governor concerning the need to found a school based on the regional educational policy and the need to establish a network of schools.
(4) The qualification requirements for teachers shall be established by a regulation of the Minister of Education. The health protection requirements for the premises (buildings), furnishings and fittings and the land of the school shall be established by a regulation of the Minister of Social Affairs.
(5) The Ministry of Education shall review the application for an education licence within one month after the date of the receipt of the application.
(6) The Ministry of Education shall not issue an education licence if information prescribed in subsection (3) of this section is missing, or does not conform to the requirements established by legislation. An applicant for an education licence shall be notified of the reasons for refusal in writing within ten working days after the corresponding decision is made.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)

§ 13.
(1) The Ministry of Education has the right to revoke an education licence if:
1) the school has not, during the prescribed term and pursuant to the prescribed procedure, complied with a precept issued thereto by a state supervisory agency;
2) the school has not commenced the provision of education within one year after the issue of an education licence or has suspended or terminated the provision of education;
3) a local government council has made a decision concerning the closure of the school.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)

§ 14.
Schools shall be registered at executive bodies of local governments pursuant to the procedure established by legislation.

§ 15.
(1) Rural municipality or city governments shall form, if necessary, separate classes in schools for students of years 7-9 who have behavioural problems. The conditions and procedure for the formation of separate classes for students of years 7-9 who have behavioural problems shall be established by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(2) The Ministry of Education or executive bodies of local governments shall establish, if necessary, schools for children with health disorders and students with special needs.
          (23.11.94 entered into force 30.12.94 - RT I 953, 91, 1528; 26.06.96 entered into force 26.07.96 - RT I 1996, 49, 1999)
(3) The head of a school may, with the consent of the rural municipality or city government, form preparatory groups for pre-school children to provide opportunities to acquire pre-school education, form remedial groups, long day groups and school dormitories in the school.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(31) Remedial groups are groups formed to provide learning support outside of lessons for students with learning difficulties.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(4) A school shall have a library.
          (23.11.94 entered into force 30.12.94 - RT I 1994, 91, 1528)
(5) The bases for the organisation of work of preparatory groups for pre-school children, remedial groups, long day groups, school dormitories and libraries shall be established by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358; 14.06.2000 entered into force 16.07.2000 - RT I 2000, 54, 349; 29.08.2001 entered into force 21.09.2001 - RT I 2001, 75, 454)

§ 16.
(1) Long day groups, hobby groups, activity classes and other forms of extracurricular activities may be established at a school.
(2) Students may live in dormitories of schools for students who need special treatment due to behavioural problems or of sanatorium schools during the entire academic year, except during summer holidays; students in dormitories of schools for students who need special treatment due to behavioural problems shall live there throughout the year.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358; 16.05.2001 entered into force 01.07.2001 - RT I 2001, 50, 288)

Chapter III
Compulsory School Attendance

§ 17.
(1) Children who attain 7 years of age by 1 October of the current year are subject to the obligation to attend school. Students are subject to the obligation to attend school until they acquire basic education or attain 17 years of age.
(11) A parent may apply to a counselling committee for postponement of the obligation to attend school.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(12) The conditions and procedure for satisfying an application specified in subsection (11) of this section shall be established by a regulation of the Minister of Social Affairs.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(2) The state and local governments shall ensure the opportunities to acquire secondary education for those interested therein.
(3) At the request of parents, a child who has attained 6 years of age by 30 April of the current year may be admitted to year 1.
(4) The children of citizens of foreign states and of stateless persons who reside in Estonia, except children of representatives of foreign states, are subject to the obligation to attend school.
(5) The executive bodies of local governments shall register the children subject to the obligation to attend school. The executive bodies of local governments together with schools shall monitor the performance of the obligation to attend school and create conditions for the compliance therewith.
(6) Parents are required to create favourable conditions at home for children to study and fulfil the obligation to attend school.
(7) In the case of failure of a child to fulfil the obligation to attend school, the provisions of § 153 of the Code of Administrative Offences apply to the parents of the child.
(8) The Government of the Republic shall establish the procedure for the registration of children subject to the obligation to attend school.

§ 18.
Parents may freely choose a school for a child subject to the obligation to attend school if there are vacant places in the school they wish the child to attend.
          (23.11.94 entered into force 30.12.94 - RT I 1994, 91, 1528)

§ 19.
(1) A school is required to ensure study opportunity for each child subject to the obligation to attend school who resides in the catchment area of the school.
(2) The local government council shall approve the catchment area of a school. The catchment area of a school which provides services for several local governments shall be approved jointly by the corresponding councils of rural municipality and city councils.
          (23.11.94 entered into force 30.12.94 - RT I 1999, 91, 1528; 10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1996, 24, 358)

§ 20.
The obligation to attend school may also be fulfilled by studying at home. The procedure for home schooling shall be established by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
          (18.03.97 entered into force 25.03.97 - RT I 1997, 24, 365)

§ 21.
(1) Rural municipality and city governments shall allow children with special needs to attend the school of their residence under the conditions established by the Minister of Education. If suitable conditions are not found, disabled children and children who need special support have the right to attend the nearest school which meets the requirements.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(2) Students who need special treatment due to behavioural problems shall attend school and fulfil the obligation to attend school in schools specified in subsection 4 (21) of this Act.
          (16.05.2001 entered into force 01.07.2000 - RT I 2001, 50, 288)
(3) Children with special needs shall be recommended a curriculum or school suitable for their abilities by a decision of a counselling committee based on medical, psychological and pedagogical assessments. The conditions and procedure for referral of children with special needs to a counselling committee shall be established by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(31) Counselling committees shall be formed in counties by an order of the county governor. City governments may form city counselling committees in co-ordination with county counselling committees.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(32) A counselling committee shall comprise of five members. The membership of a county counselling committee shall be approved by an order of the county governor, the membership of a counselling committee of a city government shall be approved by the city mayor. A counselling committee shall include a special education teacher, a speech therapist, a psychologist, a social worker and a representative of the county government or the city government accordingly.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(33) A counselling committee is competent to:
1) assign to a child with special needs a curriculum or a form of study suitable for the needs of the child;
2) refer a child with special needs to a sanatorium school, a school or a class for students with special needs with the consent of a parent (caregiver);
3) decide postponing the obligation to attend school at the request of a parent.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(4) A student shall be admitted to a sanatorium school or to a school or class for students with special needs on the basis of a written application from a parent (caregiver) and a decision of the counselling committee. The conditions and procedure for admission to and dismissal from sanatorium schools and schools and classes for students with special needs shall be established by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(41) The following classes shall be established, if necessary, in a state or municipal school by the Ministry of Education or the rural municipality or city government:
1) classes for children with physical and sensory disabilities, speech impairments, sensory disabilities and mental disorders;
2) opportunity classes for teaching children with learning difficulties;
3) supplementary learning classes for teaching children with slight learning disabilities;
4) coping classes for teaching children with moderate learning disabilities;
5) nursing classes for teaching children with severe and profound learning disabilities.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(5) After attendance of a sanatorium school or a school for students with special needs is no longer necessary, a student has the right to continue his or her studies in his or her former school.

§ 22.
The procedure for admission, transfer from one school to another, leaving school and expulsion from school of students of basic schools and upper secondary schools shall be established by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
          (18.03.97 entered into force 25.03.97 - RT I 1997, 24, 365)

Chapter IV
Organisation of Schooling and Education

§ 23.
(1) The curriculum of the school is the source document for studies.
(2) Textbooks, work exercise-books, workbooks and other teaching aids and materials are used in order to ensure and support the completion of the curriculum.
(3) The conditions and procedure for the approval of the conformity of textbooks, work exercise-books, workbooks and other educational literature to the national curriculum, and the requirements for textbooks, work exercise-books, workbooks and other educational literature shall be established by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
(4) The list of all textbooks, work exercise-books and workbooks which conform to the national curriculum shall be approved for each academic year by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
(5) The textbooks, work exercise-books and workbooks necessary for study in each year shall be chosen by teachers from the list specified in subsection (4) of this section.
(6) (Repealed - 22.11.2000 entered into force 01.01.2001 - RT I 2000, 95, 611)

§ 24.
(1) The duration of an academic year is from the start of study in one calendar year until the start of study in the next calendar year. An academic year consists of a period of study, an examination session and school holidays.
(2) An academic year shall start on 1 September.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(3) The units of account of study periods are lessons, days of study, weeks of study, courses, quarters of academic years and half-years.
          (18.03.97 entered into force 25.03.97 - RT I 1997, 24, 365)
(4) A study period shall include not less than 175 days of study (35 weeks). School holidays shall be determined by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
          (18.03.97 entered into force 25.03.97 - RT I 1997, 24, 365)
(41) In the final year of upper secondary school, the period of study together with the examination session shall include not less than 175 days of study. Examination sessions for graduation from a basic school and upper secondary school shall be determined by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
          (18.03.97 entered into force 25.03.97 - RT I 1997, 24, 365)
(5) One week of study shall include five days of study. The weekly study load of students in lessons shall be determined by the curriculum of the school.
          (20.02.2002 entered into force 01.09.2002 - RT I 2002, 25, 144)
(51) The lowest permitted weekly study load of students in the upper secondary school stage is thirty-two lessons.
          (20.02.2002 entered into force 01.09.2002 - RT I 2002, 25, 144)
(52) The highest permitted weekly study load of students in the basic school classes is:
1) twenty lessons in year 1;
2) twenty-three lessons in year 2;
3) twenty-five lessons in years 3 and 4;
4) twenty-eight lessons in year 5;
5) thirty lessons in years 6 and 7;
6) thirty-two lessons in year 8;
7) thirty-four lessons in year 9.
          (20.02.2002 entered into force 01.09.2002 - RT I 2002, 25, 144)
(6) The length of lesson shall be forty-five minutes. The length of break shall be not less than ten minutes.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(7) The number of lessons and the order thereof within a day of study shall be determined in the timetable which shall be approved by the head of the school.

§ 25.
(1) The upper limit of the size of a class shall be thirty-six students.
(2) (Repealed - 10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(3) If the number of students in two or more classes together is twenty or less, a composite class shall be formed of these students. Classes of years 1 to 4, 3 to 6 and 5 to 9 may be joined into composite classes.
          (14.06.2000 entered into force 16.07.2000 - RT I 2000, 54, 349)
(4) (Repealed - 10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(5) A long day group may include up to thirty students.
(6) A school dormitory group may include up to twenty-five students.

§ 26.
(1) The upper limit of the size of a class shall be:
1) twelve students in a class for children with speech impairments, sensory and physical disabilities, and behavioural disorders;
2) sixteen students in a class for children with mental disorders, in an opportunity class and a supplementary learning class;
3) seven students in a class for children with multiple disabilities, in a coping class and a class for children with severe and profound learning disabilities.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(2) (Repealed - 10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(3) The upper limit of the size of a class in a sanatorium school shall be twenty-five students.

§ 27.
(1) The knowledge, skills and experience of students shall be evaluated on a five-point scale where the grade “5” means “very good”, “4” means “good”, “3” means “satisfactory”, “2” means “poor” and “1” means “weak”. Verbal evaluation may be used in years 1 and 2. State examinations shall be evaluated on a ten-point or a hundred-point scale pursuant to the regulation of the Minister of Education.
          (18.03.97 entered into force 25.03.97 - RT I 1997, 24, 365)
(11) The behaviour and conscientiousness of students shall be evaluated with grades “excellent”, “good”, “satisfactory” or “non-satisfactory”.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(2) The bases, conditions and procedure for the evaluation of students, transfer of students to the following class and making students repeat a year shall be established by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
          (29.08.2001 entered into force 21.09.2001 - RT I 2001, 75, 454)
(3) The external evaluation of study results is the evaluation at state level of the level to which the study results determined by the national curricula for basic schools and upper secondary schools are achieved. The external evaluation of study results is conducted by means of state examinations, final examinations in basic schools and national standard-determining tests. The principles for the external evaluation of study results and the bases for compiling, evaluating and analysing the results of state examinations, final examinations in basic schools and national standard-determining tests shall be approved by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
          (29.08.2001 entered into force 21.09.2001 - RT I 2001, 75, 454)

§ 271.
(1) A report card and student's record book are documents by means of which a school informs a student and his or her parent (guardian, curator) of the student's study results and conduct at the end of a quarter of an academic year or at the end of a half-year, course or academic year. At least the following information shall be entered on a report card and in a student's record book:
1) the name of the school and the class;
2) the given name and surname of the student;
3) the grades or a written evaluation given for subjects at the end of a quarter of an academic year or at the end of a half-year or course, and at the end of an academic year;
4) grades for behaviour and conscientiousness issued at the end of a quarter of an academic year or at the end of a half-year or course, and at the end of an academic year;
5) information concerning the imposition of additional study, transfer to the next class or requirement to repeat the year.
(2) A report card and student's record book shall be approved with the signatures of the head of the school and the class teacher and with the seal of the school.
(3) A report card is issued for one academic year and a student's record book is issued for three academic years (one stage of study).
(4) The format of report cards and students' record books shall be approved by the teachers' council.
          (29.08.2001 entered into force 21.09.2001 - RT I 2001, 75, 454)

§ 28.
Admission to an upper secondary schools shall be based on basic school graduation results.

§ 29.
(1) For graduation from basic schools and upper secondary schools, final examinations shall be conducted. Final examinations in upper secondary schools are state final examinations and school examinations. Final examinations in basic schools are school examinations with harmonised questions and assignments.
(2) The conditions and procedure for conducting final examinations of basic schools and upper secondary schools and graduation from basic schools and upper secondary schools shall be established by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
          (29.08.2001 entered into force 21.09.2001 - RT I 2001, 75, 454)
(3) The subjects and formats of, and the time for state examinations and final examinations of basic schools shall be established by the Minister of Education by 25 May of the preceding academic year.
          (29.08.2001 entered into force 21.09.2001 - RT I 2001, 75, 454)
(4) In order to conduct state examinations, county governors shall form state examination committees of not less than three members in upper secondary schools by 20 March every academic year, and approve the membership thereof such that there is one member in the state examination committee for every twenty examinees. If less than fifteen students participate in a final examination in an upper secondary school, the county governor shall form a joint state examination committee for several upper secondary schools and determine the place for conducting the examination. The chairman of a state examination committee shall generally be a head of a school. The chairman of a state examination committee shall not be a teacher of the subject of the state examination.
(5) A person appointed by the Minister of Education shall deliver the examination materials to a person appointed by the county governor who shall deliver the materials to the heads of schools on the date of the state examination. After a state examination, the person appointed by the county governor shall receive the state examination materials from the heads of schools and deliver them to the person appointed by the Minister of Education.
          (29.08.2001 entered into force 21.09.2001 - RT I 2001, 75, 454)
(6) In order to prepare state examinations and final examinations in basic schools, committees shall be formed with the task of elaborating the assignments for state examinations and final examinations in basic schools and the instructions for the evaluation thereof. The rules of procedure for committees preparing state examinations and final examinations in basic schools shall be approved by a regulation of the Minister of Education and the membership of the committees shall be approved by a directive of the Minister of Education.
          (29.08.2001 entered into force 21.09.2001 - RT I 2001, 75, 454)
(7) State examinations in each subject shall be evaluated by a separate committee. The rules of procedure for committees evaluating state examinations shall be approved by a regulation of the Minister of Education and the membership of the committees shall be approved by a directive of the Minister of Education.
          (29.08.2001 entered into force 21.09.2001 - RT I 2001, 75, 454)
(8) If an examinee is not satisfied with the result of a final examination, he or she has the right, within three working days after the issue of the graduation certificate from a basic school or upper secondary school or within ten working days after the issue of the state examination certificate, to submit an application to the Ministry of Education for review of his or her final examination results.
(9) The Minister of Education shall form a Board of Appeal for review of applications concerning state examination results. The rules of procedure for the Board of Appeal shall be approved by a regulation of the Minister of Education and the membership of the Board of Appeal shall be approved by a directive of the Minister of Education.
          (29.08.2001 entered into force 21.09.2001 - RT I 2001, 75, 454)
(91) A person who has acquired secondary education shall pay a state fee pursuant to the rate provided for in the State Fees Act to register to resit a state examination.
          (14.06.2000 entered into force 16.07.2000 - RT I 2000, 54, 349)
(10) The graduates of basic schools shall be issued a basic school graduation certificate. The graduates of upper secondary schools shall be issued an upper secondary school graduation certificate and a state examination certificate. The formats of basic school and upper secondary school graduation certificates and the format and statute of the state examination certificate shall be approved by the Government of the Republic.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
Chapter V
Students and their Parents

§ 30.
(1) Students are required to follow the internal rules of a school.
(2) Students shall be praised and punished pursuant to the procedure prescribed by a regulation of the Minister of Education, the statutes of the school and the by-laws of the school.
          (18.03.97 entered into force 25.03.97 - RT I 1997, 24, 365)
(3) For the period of attending an educational institution, students shall be issued students cards, the procedure for the issue and format thereof shall be approved by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)

§ 31.
Students have the right to:
1) choose a school suitable for their interests and abilities, to choose subjects from among the elective subjects taught at the school, or to pursue studies on the basis of an individual curriculum pursuant to the procedure established by a regulation of the Minister of Education;
          (26.06.96 entered into force 26.07.96 - RT I 1996, 49, 953; 18.03.97 entered into force 25.03.97 - RT I 1997, 24, 365; 10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
2) form a student representative board in the school and form organisations, clubs, activity classes and hobby groups, the goals and activities of which are not in conflict with the educational objectives of the school and the home;
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
3) participate via the elected student representatives in solving the problems of school life; students of upper secondary schools have the right to be elected into the board of trustees of the school;
4) use the buildings, premises, library, teaching aids, sports equipment, technical means and other equipment of their school for extracurricular activities free of charge;
5) receive material assistance from the sums or funds allocated therefor pursuant to the prescribed procedure;
6) be granted travel fare concessions and other benefits in the extent and pursuant to the procedure established by the Government of the Republic and the local government council;
7) receive information from the school concerning the organisation of study, the rights of students and basic information concerning the opportunities for study;
8) address the Ministry of Education, county governor or child protection organisations for the protection of their rights.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)

§ 311.
(1) Student self-government means the right of students to decide and manage independently, in accordance with law, the issues of student life based on the interests, needs, rights and obligations of students.
(2) In order to exercise student self-government, a student body has the right to elect a student representative board which shall represent the student body in relations within the school and in relations with national and international organisations, agencies and persons.
(3) The functions of a student representative board and the procedure for election thereto shall be provided for in the statutes of the student representative board which shall be approved by the board of trustees of the school (school board) and by the head of the school.
(4) Student bodies have the right to:
1) form associations and organisations with other student bodies on the bases of and pursuant to the procedure provided by legislation;
2) become members of the corresponding international organisations or develop co-operation with such organisation;
3) decide and manage all other issues of student life which pursuant to law and legislation issued on the basis thereof are within the competence of a student body and which on the same grounds have not been transferred to any other person to decide or manage.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)

§ 32.
(1) Schools shall ensure the protection of students' health during their stay at school and prepare a daily schedule according to health protection rules and standards.
          (23.11.94 entered into force 30.12.94 - RT I 1994, 91, 1528)
(2) The medical surveillance of students shall be organised by the owner of the educational institution together with the rural municipality or city medical officer pursuant to the procedure established by a regulation of the Minister of Social Affairs.
          (23.11.94 entered into force 30.12.94 - RT I 1997, 91, 1528; 18.03.97 entered into force 25.03.97 - RT I 1996, 24, 365)

§ 33.
Upon disagreement with a decision of the teachers' council and in the case of points of dispute concerning teaching and education, students and their parents have the right to address the board of trustees of the school and the official exercising state supervision over the school.

§ 34.
Proprietary damage wrongfully caused to a school by a student shall be compensated for by the student or his or her parents (guardians) on the bases and pursuant to the procedure provided for in legislation.
          (14.06.2000 entered into force 16.07.2000 - RT I 2000, 54, 349)

§ 35.
In order to co-ordinate the co-operation between the school and the home, the management of a school (class teacher) shall call a parents' meeting at least once a year. At the request of one third of the parents of the students of a class, the management of the school is required to call a meeting of the parents of the students of the class.

Chapter VI
Staff of Schools

§ 36.
(1) The staff of a school (hereinafter staff) includes teachers and other employees.
(2) The minimum required staff of schools shall be established by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
(3) The staff of a school shall be determined by the head of the school based on the minimum required staff established by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
(4) The functions and obligations, rights and liability of the staff shall be determined by the statutes and internal work procedure rules of the school, by job descriptions and employment contracts which are in accordance with labour laws and other legislation which regulate the employment relations of teachers.
(5) For the purposes of this Act, teachers, the head, his or her teaching and education deputy and other persons employed in the field of schooling and education are deemed to be teachers.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)

§ 37.
(1) There shall be class teachers and subject teachers in schools.
          (23.11.94 entered into force 30.12.94 - RT I 1994, 91, 1528)
(2) A class teacher shall mostly teach all subjects in his or her class in years 1 to 6.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(3) A subject teacher shall teach one or several subjects in years 5 to 12 according to his or her qualifications. A subject teacher may also teach one or several subjects in years 1 to 6 according to his or her qualifications.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358; 14.06.2000 entered into force 16.07.2000 - RT I 2000, 54, 349)
(4) (Repealed - 23.11.94 entered into force 30.12.94 - RT I 1994, 91, 1528)

§ 38.
(1) The head of a school shall enter into, amend and terminate employment contracts with the staff in accordance with labour laws and other legislation which regulates the employment relations of teachers. The head of a school shall enter into an employment contract with a teacher to be employed on the basis of an international agreement for the term determined by the international agreement.
          (29.08.2001 entered into force 21.09.2001 - RT I 2001, 75, 454)
(2) In order to fill vacant positions of teachers, the teaching and education deputy head and other persons employed in the field of schooling and education, the head of the school shall organise a competition, unless otherwise provided by an international agreement. The procedure for organising a competition shall be approved by the board of trustees (school board) on the proposal of the head.
          (29.08.2001 entered into force 21.09.2001 - RT I 2001, 75, 454)
(3) Evaluation shall be conducted in order to decide on the professional skills and professional competence of teachers and their level of qualification. The conditions and procedure for evaluation shall be established by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)

Chapter VII
Administration of School Life

§ 39.
(1) A school shall be directed by a head (hereinafter head). The head is responsible for the general state and development of the school, and for the legitimate and expedient use of financial resources.
(2) A head is the legal representative of a school. A head may conclude transactions in order to perform his or her functions provided by law.
(3) In order to fill a vacant position of head, a public competition shall be organised.
(4) The rural municipality or city government shall announce a competition to fill a vacant position of head of a municipal school and establish the procedure for conducting it. The person who wins the competition shall be appointed to office by the rural municipality or city government.
(5) The Minister of Education or, if the state school is administered by the county government, the county governor shall announce a competition to fill a vacant position of head of a state school. The procedure for conducting competitions to fill vacant positions of heads of state schools shall be established by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
(6) An employment contract with the head of a school shall be entered into for the term announced at the competition, but for not more than five years.
(7) An employment contract with the head of a municipal school shall be entered into, suspended, amended and terminated by the rural municipality or city mayor or an official authorised by him or her. An employment contract with the head of a state school shall be entered into, suspended, amended and terminated by the Minister of Education or the county governor if the state school is administered by the county government.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)

§ 40.
(1) A school has a teachers' council whose function is to determine, analyse and assess the schooling and education of the school and to make the decisions necessary for directing the school.
(2) Teachers of a school shall be members of a teachers' council.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(3) The competence and procedures of teachers' councils shall be established by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
          (26.06.96 entered into force 26.07.96 - RT I 1996, 49, 953; 18.03.97 entered into force 25.03.97 - RT I 1997, 24, 365)

§ 41.
(1) In order to create the conditions necessary for the successful functioning of a municipal school, the rural municipality or city government shall form a board of trustees.
          (23.11.94 entered into force 30.12.94 - RT I 1999, 91, 1528; 10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1996, 24, 358)
(2) A board of trustees is a permanent body whose functions include the joint activities of the teachers of the school, the local government council, the parents, graduates and organisations which support the school in monitoring the schooling and education of the school, and facilitating the creation of better conditions therefor.
(3) The board of trustees of an upper secondary school shall include on the basis of a decision of the general meeting of parents a representative of the local government council, a representative of students, two teachers on the basis of a decision of the teachers' council, and five representatives of parents, graduates and of organisations which support the school.
(4) The board of trustees of a basic school shall include on the basis of a decision of the general meeting of parents a representative of the local government council, a representative of teachers, and five representatives of parents, graduates and of organisations which support the school.
(5) The board of trustees of a primary school shall include on the basis of a decision of the general meeting of parents a representative of the local government council, a representative of teachers, and three representatives of parents and of the organisations which support the school.
(6) A board of trustees shall elect a chairman and a deputy chairman from among themselves. A board of trustees shall meet at least once every three months during an academic year. The procedures of boards of trustees shall be established by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
          (23.11.94 entered into force 30.12.94 - RT I 1994, 91, 1528; 26.06.96 entered into force 26.07.96 - RT I 1996, 49, 953; 18.03.97 entered into force 25.03.97 - RT I 1997, 24, 365)
(7) Besides the functions provided for in this Act, a board of trustees shall submit proposals to the executive body of the local government in order to resolve the issues related to the school better.
(8) The head is accountable to the board of trustees.

§ 42.
(1) The Ministry of Education shall form in state schools under its administration state school councils which consist of nine members and include specialists and parents. In state schools administered by county governments, the state school councils shall be formed by county governors.
          (18.03.97 entered into force 25.03.97 - RT I 1997, 24, 365)
(2) A state school council shall elect a chairman and a deputy chairman from among themselves. The councils shall act pursuant to the procedure established by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
          (26.06.96 entered into force 26.07.96 - RT I 1996, 49, 953; 18.03.97 entered into force 25.03.97 - RT I 1997, 24, 365)
(3) The rights and obligations of boards of trustees provided for in this Act extend to state school councils. A state school council shall submit proposals to the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Social Affairs in order to resolve the issues related to the school better.
          (26.06.96 entered into force 26.07.96 - RT I 1996, 49, 953)
(4) The head of a state school is accountable to the council. Assets, Financing and Budget of Schools
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)

§ 43.
(1) The land, buildings, constructions, equipment, inventory and other assets granted to a school by the owner for management and use for specific purposes form the assets of a school. The list of teaching aids minimally required for the activities of schools shall be established by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(2) The procedure for the management, use and disposal of school assets shall be established for state schools by the Government of the Republic and for municipal schools by the relevant rural municipality or city council.
          (23.11.94 entered into force 30.12.94 - RT I 1994, 91, 1528; 10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358; 14.06.2000 entered into force 16.07.2000 - RT I 2000, 54, 349)

§ 44.
(1) A school shall have its own budget and may have its own bank account.
(2) The school budget revenue comprises allocations from the city budget and rural municipality or state budget, revenue from foundations, donations and income received from extracurricular activities provided for in the statutes of the school.
(3) The expenses of a municipal school shall be covered by the owner. Based on the number of students in municipal schools, grants shall be allocated to rural municipality and city budgets from the state budget each year in concordance with the Rural Municipality and City Budgets and State Budget Correlation Act (RT I 1995, 94, 1627; 1996, 87, 1542; 1997, 16, 263) in order to cover the expenses related to the remuneration of, social tax for and in-service training of teachers of municipal schools and acquisition of textbooks.
          (22.11.2000 entered into force 01.01.2001 - RT I 2000, 95, 611)
(4) (Repealed - 22.11.2000 entered into force 01.01.2001 - RT I 2000, 95, 611)
(5) (Repealed - 14.06.2000 entered into force 16.07.2000 - RT I 2000, 54, 349)
(6) The expenses of a state school shall be covered by the annual State Budget Act in the amount prescribed for state schools within the expenditure of the area of government of the Ministry of Education.
(7) The draft budget of a municipal school shall be accepted by the board of trustees of the municipal school and the rural municipality or city government, and the budget shall be approved by the local government council. The Minister of Education shall approve the budget of a state school.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)

§ 441.
(1) Other rural municipalities or cities shall fully participate in covering the operating expenses of a municipal school in proportion to the number of students attending the school who permanently reside in their administrative territories.
(2) Operating expenses consist of:
1) staff expenditure, except the remuneration and social tax of teachers, as specified in subsection 44 (3) of this Act.
2) management expenses;
3) the acquisition costs of teaching aids, except the cost of obtaining textbooks specified in subsection 44 (3) of this Act.
(3) A rural municipality or city government shall approve the calculated cost of the operating expenses of a student place per student for each budgetary year.
          (14.06.2000 entered into force 16.07.2000 - RT I 2000, 54, 349)
(4) Other rural municipalities and cities shall cover the operating expenses of municipal schools on the basis of invoices submitted by the corresponding rural municipality or city government. Corresponding rural municipalities and cities shall agree on the procedure for their participation in covering the operating costs of municipal schools. If no agreement is reached, other rural municipalities and cities shall participate in covering the operating costs of municipal schools pursuant to the procedure established by the Government of the Republic.
          (29.08.2001 entered into force 21.09.2001 - RT I 2001, 75, 454)
(5) Contestation of the amount payable to cover the operating costs of a municipal school does not release the other rural municipality or city from the obligation to pay the invoice.
          (29.08.2001 entered into force 21.09.2001 - RT I 2001, 75, 454)
(6) If other rural municipalities and cities do not participate in covering the operating costs of a municipal school, the county governor has the right to propose to the Government of the Republic that the transfers made from the state budget to such rural municipality or city budgets be reduced by an amount equal to the operating costs which have not been covered in order to compensate, out of such funds, for that part of the operating costs of the municipal school which has not been covered.
          (29.08.2001 entered into force 21.09.2001 - RT I 2001, 75, 454)

§ 45.
(1) The Government of the Republic, the authorised representatives of local governments and a delegation formed by the representatives authorised by registered associations of teachers shall agree on the minimum salaries of teachers nationally by each grade to which teachers are appointed upon evaluation. If no agreement is reached, the Government of the Republic shall establish the minimum salaries of teachers of municipal schools nationally by each grade to which teachers are appointed upon evaluation.
          (22.11.2000 entered into force 01.01.2001 - RT I 2000, 95, 611)
(2) Rural municipality or city councils shall approve the bases of remuneration of teachers of municipal schools, and upon approval of the salary grades and rates of teachers, the agreement specified in subsection (1) of this section shall be taken into account. If no agreement is reached, the minimum salaries of teachers of municipal schools established by Government of the Republic shall be the basis.
          (22.11.2000 entered into force 01.01.2001 - RT I 2000, 95, 611)
(3) The Government of the Republic shall establish the bases of remuneration of teachers of state schools.
          (22.11.2000 entered into force 01.01.2001 - RT I 2000, 95, 611)

§ 46.
The list and format of mandatory documents relating to the schooling and education at a school, and the procedure for completion thereof shall be approved by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
          (14.06.2000 entered into force 16.07.2000 - RT I 2000, 54, 349)

§ 47.
A school shall submit a statistical report on its activities and a report on the implementation of the budget pursuant to the procedure and by the terms established by a regulation of the Minister of Finance.
          (18.03.97 entered into force 25.03.97 - RT I 1997, 24, 365) State Supervision
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)

§ 48.
(1) The officials of the Ministry of Education and a county governor (hereinafter state supervisory agency) shall exercise state supervision over the schooling and education in schools. The procedure for conducting state supervision and the evaluation criteria for evaluating the efficiency of schooling and education in a school, and of management shall be established by a regulation of the Minister of Education.
(2) The principal objective of state supervision is to facilitate obtainment of quality education in schools and to ensure the effectiveness and legality of schooling and education.
(3) Based on the principal objective of state supervision, the functions of a state supervisory agency are the following:
1) to analyse and evaluate the efficiency of schooling and education and management of a school;
2) to evaluate the conformity of the level of study results of students to the national curriculum;
3) to monitor the compliance with the requirements arising from legislation in the field of education;
4) to monitor the use of funds allocated to schools from the state budget;
5) to advise schools and the owners thereof on issues of schooling and education, and of the financial management of education;
6) to analyse the situation in basic education and general secondary education regionally and nationally.
(4) A state supervisory agency has the right to:
1) attend lessons and schooling events with the knowledge of the head and participate in the meetings of the teachers' council, the board of trustees (school board) and of parents;
2) carry out standard-determining tests in schools in order to determine the level of education and assess the suitability of a curriculum for the ages and the abilities of students;
3) submit proposals to the head in order to improve the activities of a school and issue precepts in order to eliminate the deficiencies in schooling and education;
4) issue precepts to the head and the board of trustees (school board) to bring legislation issued by the head or the board of trustees (school board) which is in conflict with a law into accordance with law;
5) submit proposals to the rural municipality and city government to improve the conditions of schooling and education or to punish the head under disciplinary procedure.
(5) Upon exercising supervision, a state supervisory agency is required to:
1) be impartial in its assessments, base its decisions on reliable information and the standards provided by legislation;
2) take into account the results of integrated analysis when providing a general evaluation of the schooling and education of a school.
(6) The results of state supervision shall be documented in a report or certificate. Lawful precepts issued by a state supervisory agency are binding on a head during the term provided for in the precept after the head is notified of the precept.
(7) If the head of a school does not agree with a precept issued by a state supervisory agency, he or she has the right to contest the precept in the Ministry of Education within ten working days after he or she is notified of the precept.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)

Chapter IX
Reorganisation, Transformation and Closure of Schools
(29.08.2001 entered into force 21.09.2001 - RT I 2001, 75, 454)

§ 49.
(1) The reorganisation and transformation of state schools shall be conducted on the basis of the Government of the Republic Act (RT I 1995, 94, 1628; 1996, 49, 953; 88, 1560; 1997, 29, 447; 40, 622; 52, 833; 73, 1200; 81, 1361 and 1362; 87, 1468; 1998, 28, 356; 36/37, 552; 40, 614; 107, 1762; 111, 1833; 1999, 10, 155; 16, 271 and 274; 27, 391; 29, 398; 401; 58, 608; 95, 843 and 845; 2000, 49, 302; 51, 319 and 320; 54, 352; 58, 378; 95, 613; 102, 677; 2001, 7, 16; 53, 305; 59, 358; 94, 578; 100, 646; 102, 677), taking into consideration the specifications provided for in this section.
(2) State schools shall be reorganised and transformed by the Ministry of Education. Municipal schools shall be reorganised and transformed by the rural municipality or city government on the decision of the rural municipality or city council. A decision concerning the reorganisation or transformation of a school shall be made bearing in mind that it must be possible to inform the Ministry of Education, county governor, school, parents (guardians, curators) and students at least six months before the beginning of a new academic year.
(3) Schools may be reorganised or transformed in the following cases:
1) due to an increase or decrease in the demand for training in the given city or rural municipality;
2) due to increased or reduced funding possibilities;
3) due to restructuring in the education system;
4) in other cases arising from law or national regional policy.
(4) For the purpose of this Act, reorganisation of schools is the unification or division of schools. Schools shall be united or divided as follows:
1) schools are united into one school, for which the schools to be united are closed and a new school is formed on the basis thereof;
2) a school is joined to another school and the school joining another school is closed;
3) a school is divided into at least two schools and the school being divided is closed;
4) a school is separated from another school, a new school is formed on the basis thereof and the initial school is preserved.
(5) For the purposes of this Act, the transformation of a school is a change to the type of school as specified in subsection 2 (4) of this Act.
(6) The reorganisation or transformation of a school shall be performed after the end of a period of study.
(7) In the case of a municipal school which has been formed as a result of the reorganisation or transformation of a municipal school, an education licence shall be applied for.
          (29.08.2001 entered into force 21.09.2001 - RT I 2001, 75, 454)

§ 491.
(1) The Ministry of Education shall close a state school. A rural municipality or city government shall close a municipal school pursuant to a decision of the local government council. A decision concerning the closure of a school shall be made bearing in mind that it must be possible to inform the Ministry of Education, county governor, school, parents (guardians, curators) and students at least six months before the beginning of a new academic year.
          (29.08.2001 entered into force 21.09.2001 - RT I 2001, 75, 454)
(2) A school shall be closed if:
1) according to a state supervisory agency, the level of education at the school does not comply with the requirements established by the national curriculum;
2) the financing of the school is not possible;
3) all education licences of the municipal school are revoked;
4) in other cases prescribed by law.
(3) A school shall be closed after the end of a period of study.
(4) The students shall be ensured an opportunity to continue studies in another school by the Ministry of Education upon the closure of a state school and by the rural municipality and city governments of the catchment area of the school upon the closure of the municipal school.
(5) A state school shall be closed pursuant to the procedure established by the Government of the Republic.
(6) (Repealed - 29.08.2001 entered into force 21.09.2001 - RT I 2001, 75, 454)

§ 50. (Repealed - 10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)

Chapter X
Implementation of Act

§ 51.
(1) Subsection 26 (1) of this Act enters into force 1 September 1995.
          (23.11.94 entered into force 30.12.94 - RT I 1994, 91, 1528)
(2) Subsection 29 (2) of this Act enters into force 1 January 1995.
(3) Section 37 of this Act enters into force on 1 September 1997. The Ministry of Education shall organise the training of teachers pursuant to this Act.
          (23.11.94 entered into force 30.12.94 - RT I 1994, 91, 1528; 26.06.96 entered into force 26.07.96 - RT I 1996, 49, 953)
(4) Pursuant to subsection 39 (2) of this Act, a rural municipality or city government, and the Ministry of Culture and the Ministry of Education shall enter by agreement of the parties into employment contracts for up to five years with heads of schools who are employed and wish to continue working not later than by 1 April 1994.
          (14.12.93 entered into force 08.01.94 - RT I 1993, 79, 1186; 10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)
(5) Subsection 38 (2) of this Act enters into force 1 September 1994.
(6) Section 44 of this Act enters into force 1 January 1994.

§ 52.
(1) By the year 2007, the curricula and organisation of study of non-Estonian language basic schools shall ensure all graduates of basic schools a level of Estonian language skills which enables them to continue studies in Estonian.
(2) Transition to instruction in Estonian shall be started in state and municipal upper secondary schools not later than in the academic year 2007/2008.
          (10.09.97 entered into force 04.10.97 - RT I 1997, 69, 1111; 04.04.2000 entered into force 04.05.2000 - RT I 2000, 33, 195)
(3) In order to preserve their national identity, students whose mother tongue is not Estonian and who attend schools where Estonian is the language of instruction shall be afforded the opportunity to learn their mother tongue and to learn about their national culture, taking into account regional peculiarities and the curriculum of the school. The Government of the Republic shall establish the corresponding procedure not later than by 1 January 2002.
          (04.04.2000 entered into force 04.05.2000 - RT I 2000, 33, 195)

§ 53.
The current curricula and procedure for the approval thereof shall remain in force until the establishment of national curricula.

§ 531.
Municipal schools which operate without an education licence shall be issued an education licence at the request of the owner of the school. The recommendation and reports of a state supervisory agency since the academic year 1996/1997 shall constitute the basis for an application.
          (10.02.99 entered into force 21.03.99 - RT I 1999, 24, 358)

§ 532.
If the head of a school is employed on the basis of a contract of employment entered into for an unspecified term and if he or she wishes to continue working, his or her contract of employment shall, by 1 January 2001, be changed to a contract of employment with a term of five years by the Minister of Education in the case of a state school, by the county governor in the case of a state school administered by a county government, or by the rural municipality or city mayor or an official authorised by him or her in the case of a municipal school.
          (14.06.2000 entered into force 16.07.2000 - RT I 2000, 54, 349)

§ 533.
(1) School development plans specified in § 31 of this Act shall be approved not later than by 1 September 2001.
          (29.08.2001 entered into force 21.09.2001 - RT I 2001, 75, 454)
(2) The statutes of schools already operating shall be brought into compliance with clause 12 (3) 8) and § 49 of this Act by 1 September 2002.
          (29.08.2001 entered into force 21.09.2001 - RT I 2001, 75, 454)

§ 54.
The Republic of Estonia Education Act (RT 1992, 12, 192; RT I 1993, 35, 547; 40, 593; 63, 892; 1994, 12, 200; 1995, 12, 119; 16, 228; 23, 333; 58, 1003; 1996, 49, 953; 51, 965; 1997, 42, 678; 81, 1365; 1998, 57, 859; 61, 980; 64/65, 1007; 1999, 10, 150; 24, 358; 51, 550; 102, 908; 2000, 40, 255; 95, 611; 2001, 65, 375; 75, 454) is amended as follows: in clause 2 (5) 2), the words “elementary education” are substituted by the words “basic education”;
2) in subsection 3 (2), the words “general education schools” are substituted by the words “basic schools and upper secondary schools”;
3) subsection 8 (2) is amended and worded as follows:
“Children who attain 7 years of age by 1 October of the current year are subject to the obligation to attend school. Students are subject to the obligation to attend school until they acquire basic education or attain 17 years of age.”; subsection 8 (3) is repealed;
5) section 15 is amended and worded as follows:
"§ 15. Basic education
Basic education is the minimum compulsory general education prescribed by the national standard of education. Basic education provides the prerequisites and grants the right to continue studies to acquire secondary education.”;
6) section 16 is amended and worded as follows:
"§ 16. Secondary education
The acquisition of secondary education is based on basic education and grants the right to continue studies to acquire higher education.”;
7) section 20 is amended and worded as follows:
"§ 20. Basic schools and upper secondary schools
(1) Basic education shall be acquired in basic schools. Secondary education shall be acquired in upper secondary schools.
(2) The legal status and the organisation of work of basic schools and upper secondary schools shall be established by the Basic Schools and Upper Secondary Schools Act.”
1 RT = Riigi Teataja = State Gazette


Source: Estonian Legal Translation Centre
http://www.legaltext.ee/indexen.htm


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