Pre-school programme

The pre-school programme is a mandatory programme of educational work with children in the year before starting primary school during which children develop skills, habits and competencies that will help them adapt to new living conditions, growth and development in the school environment

Acquisition of skills

During the planned programme, children adopt basic concepts of temporal and spatial relationships, develop pre-reading skills, create work habits and socialise in an educational group. All this is achieved through socialising and playing with the use of modern teaching aids.

The competencies that a child should acquire and/or improve in the year before starting primary school relate to communication in the mother tongue, basic communication in foreign languages, mathematical competencies and basic competencies in science and technology, digital competencies, learning how to learn, social and civic competences, initiative and entrepreneurship, cultural awareness and expression, and age-appropriate motor competences.

In case the child is already attending kindergarten, the above-mentioned knowledge and skills will be acquired and developed during regular activities and programmes.

Application and duration of the programme

Parents register their children in the compulsory pre-school programme at the secretariat of the nearest kindergarten or primary school, which has the approval of the ministry responsible for education for the implementation of the preschool programme, during August and September. 

The pre-school programme runs from 1 October of the current year to 31 May of the following year and lasts 250 hours per year for children who are not attending the regular kindergarten programme. The pre-school programme can be implemented for a shorter period of time (but not shorter than 150 hours), when there is no possibility of conducting a 250-hour programme due to the extremely small number of children (up to five), difficult conditions of children's arrival or stay and some other objective difficulties.


The pre-school programme is free-of-charge for all parents whose children are included in the programme in the year before starting primary school. Funds for the implementation of the pre-school programme are provided from the state budget and from the budgets of local and regional self-government units.