Teens and Education in Indonesia

Understand the secondary education system for teens in Indonesia...

Secondary education starts with Sekolah Menengah Pertama (SMP), or Junior High School, for pupils who have reached the age of 12 or 13 before the start of the school year. After finishing three years (Grades 1, 2 and 3) at SMP, pupils can continue their education and register at senior high school Sekolah Menengah Atas (SMA). The school system at SMP is similar to elementary school or Sekolah Dasar (SD) in that children stay in the same classroom and teachers come to the class following the class schedule.

At the end of SMP, pupils have the option to enrol in a Senior High School, Sekolah Menengah Atas (SMA) or vocational high school, Sekolah Menengah Kejuruan (SMK). In third grade pupils are categorised in two or three different specialised groups:

  • IPA (science)
  • IPS (social and economic studies)
  • Bahasa (language and literature)

The third grade specialisation at SMA prepares pupils for further studies at higher education level.

Higher education institutions include universities, academies, and institutes as well as polytechnics.