Education in Bolivia

Bolivia – education

Bolivia’s public school has since 1968 consisted of an eight-year compulsory primary school (a five-year primary school and a three-year secondary school) as well as a four-year secondary school in two stages. Four out of five children of compulsory school age go to primary school; only every fourth continues in addition. Students in higher education are significantly recruited from the private schools, which make up 11-14% of the schools at all levels. After independence in 1825, the educations came under public control. Simón Bolívarsgoal was education for all, but it was not until 1872 that basic education was made compulsory and free by law. However, the law was not put into practice because there was a lack of schools and teachers. In the 1930’s, the first schools for children of the Native American rural population were established in the countryside, but despite strong expansion since the 1950’s, a stark disparity between city and country still exists. General literacy has improved significantly since the 1960’s; However, 15% of the male and almost 30% of the female adult population are still illiterate.

The eight state universities are located in each of the district capitals, except Pando. The oldest (grdl. 1624) is in Sucre; the largest, San Andrés (grdl. 1830), in La Paz, which also houses a private Catholic university of more recent origin (1966). Bolivia has a few more private universities.


CAPITAL CITY: Sucre, La Paz (seat of government)

POPULATION: 8,990,000 (Source: COUNTRYaah)

AREA: 1,080,000 km²

OFFICIAL LANGUAGE (S): spansk, quechua, aymará

RELIGION: Catholics 88%, Protestants 9%, others 3%

COIN: bolivianos




POPULATION COMPOSITION: quechua 30%, aymará 25%, mestizer 30%, hvide 15%

GDP PER residents: $ 1061 (2007)

LIFE EXPECTANCY: men 63 years, women 67 years (2007)




Bolivia is a Republic of South America. The state is named after the great South American freedom hero Simón Bolívar. Bolivia is a large, sparsely populated country, one of the poorest and most isolated in Latin America. Bolivia originally had access to the Pacific Ocean, but wars with neighboring countries have halved the area since independence in 1825. After World War II, the country has for long periods been characterized by political unrest and chaotic economy.

  • Find two-letter abbreviation for each independent country and territory, such as BO which stands for Bolivia.

Bolivia – religion

Over 90% of the population is Catholic. The Christian mission among the Indians began as early as the 1500’s. The majority of the remaining population belong to various Protestant denominations, but for example the Baha’is are also represented. Ancient traditions of the local Native American religions have been assimilated into the practice of the Catholic Church. In the later decades of the 1900’s, the Catholic Church has also engaged in social issues. Check youremailverifier for Bolivia social condition facts.

Bolivia – Constitution

The Constitution of the Republic of Bolivia is from 2009. The executive power lies with the President, who is the Head of State and Government and appoints the members of the Government. He is responsible for foreign policy, can issue decrees and take legislative initiatives through special messages to Congress. The president is elected by direct election every five years; if no candidate gets an absolute majority, the election of president passes to Congress.

The Congress consists of a Senate and a Chamber of Deputies. The Senate has 36 members, four from each of the country’s nine departments. They are elected by proportional representation for five-year periods. The Chamber of Deputies has 130 members, of which 77 are elected in single-member constituencies. The rest are elected by proportional representation on party lists in the nine departments. All 130 members are elected for five years.

Bolivia – political parties

From approximately 1880 to 1925 the country was ruled by the Conservatives and the Liberals alternately; both represented the interests of the mine and landowners. From approximately From 1930 to 1960, new parties and movements emerged with roots in the middle classes and the working class, The National Revolutionary Movement (MNR). After approximately In 1960, the old parties were split, and new parties emerged, MNR-Histórico, a center/left party whose leader, Gonzalo Sánchez de Lozada, was the country’s president in the mid – 1990’s. The right wing is represented by the Nationalist Democratic Action (ADN), created in 1979 by the former dictator Hugo Bánzer under the motto “peace, order and work”. With Evo Moralesmajor election victory in 2005, his party MAS (The Movement Towards Socialism) became a significant power factor. MAS is left-wing with populist features and has not least the Native American population as its power base.

Bolivia – social conditions

The centuries-old contempt and oppression of the white Bolivians by the Indians did not break the social cohesion of the Highland Indians, and in 1994 a law was passed for the first time that allowed a form of local self-government in the Native American communities. Wages are low for most employed Bolivians and do not go far, just as housing conditions are generally primitive.

Bolivia is one of the few countries in South America that has a professional national organization (COB). The organization’s opposition to the many economic cuts made since the mid-1980’s and to the government’s privatization program of 1990 has at times resulted in violent confrontations with the military and police. In 2003, COB also played an important role in the violent protests that led to the departure of Sánchez de Losada.

Bolivia’s development is slowed down of the corrupting influence of the drug industry on the judiciary, army and police as well as on the political parties. There has also been widespread opposition in the COB to the anti-drug campaign launched in the 1980’s with support from the United States. The intention is a reorganization of the large coca production.

Bolivia – health conditions

Bolivia has a large population growth, but the number of births per. woman has dropped to below 3. The mortality rate for children in the first year of life is 52 ‰. Life expectancy is 66 years.

The causes of death are dominated by infectious diseases with almost 35%, of which pneumonia and diarrheal diseases each make up about 10%. Cancer and cardiovascular disease are less common than in Western Europe. Protein deficiency in children as well as iron and iodine deficiency at all ages are frequent, but vary geographically and affect 40-60% of the population in many places. Tropical diseases, Chagas’ disease, malaria and yellow fever, is widespread in parts of the country.

The health care system is divided into a state sector, an insurance system for employees and a private sector. Expenditure on health care accounts for 4.5% of the country’s GDP; of which 35% is public expenditure. The hospital system has 2 beds per. 1000 residents, one third of Denmark’s capacity. Bolivia has 1 doctor per. 2000 residents The resources are used predominantly in urban areas.

Bolivia – military

The peacekeeping force of the armed forces is (2006) 31,500, of which 20,000 conscripts. The training period is 12 months. The army 25,000, the navy 3500, the air force 3000. All three defenses have a relatively modern light armament. They are all primarily equipped to conduct operations in support of internal security. In addition, 37,100 in paramilitary police units.

Bolivia – architecture and visual arts

Highland Indians founded the Tiahuanaco culture in western Bolivia south of Lake Titicaca in the 6th century. Through 500 years, the empire spread and left behind ceramics, metalwork, textiles and a monumental architecture, among others. Calasasaya Temple. Later, the Incas in the time leading up to the Spanish conquest left traces in the form of handicrafts and building remains.

The Spanish conquerors brought Renaissance and Baroque architecture to the country. The architecture was predominantly Jesuit, but executed by original craftsmen; thus, in the latter half of the 18th century, the “mestizo-baroque” of the colonial era emerged, characterized by an accumulation of ornaments, the use of original motifs from the local flora and fauna, and the aymara-Quechua culture’s penchant for repetition. Examples of this style are the Church of San Francisco in La Paz (1549) as well as the temples and monasteries of Potosí and Sucre.

The colony’s painting is profiled by Pérez de Holguin (1660-1733). In the 1920’s, Bolivian artists more obviously began to develop an independent expression. After the death of the painter Cecilio Guzmán de Rojas in 1950, Cubist, neo-impressionist, expressionist and surrealist currents emerged. Among the artists of this century should be highlighted Marina Nuñez del Prado (1912-1995), Roberto Berdecio (1913-1996), María Eloy Vargas Cárdenas (b. 1928) and Roberto Arnal (b. 1930).

Bolivia – film

Bolivian film is especially associated with the director Jorge Sanjinés (b. 1936), who with the US-hostile Yawar Mallku (1969, Blood of the Condor) won sympathy for the cause of the Indians and was internationally recognized. After a brief period of silent film, initiated in 1913 by Luis G. Castillo, imports of foreign sound films suffocated virtually all national production until 1958, when the first Bolivian sound film was released. In 1965, the military government handed over the management of the Bolivian Film Institute, ICB, to Jorge Sanjinés; however, it was closed after the broadcast of Sanjinés’ Ukamau(1966), the first Bolivian film with Aymará Native American speech. The film group Ukamau then stood as the most important representative of Bolivian art film, but split after the military coup in 1971. Sanjinés continued his business in exile. From the 1980’s, the photographer and director Antonio Eguino (b. 1938) is behind the biggest audience successes in the country’s film history, Pueblo chico (1974, Small town) and Amargo mar (1984, Bitter sea).

Bolivia Education