Education and cultural life in the Republic of Kazakhstan
Education is universal and mandatory through to the secondary level and the adult literacy rate is 99.5%. Education consists of three main educational phases: primary education (forms 1–4), basic general education (forms 5–9) and senior level education (forms 10–11 or 12) divided into continued general education and professional education (primary education is preceded by one year of pre-school education). These three levels of education can be followed in one institution or in different ones (e.g. primary school, then secondary school). Recently, several secondary schools, specialized schools, magnet schools, gymnasiums, lyceums, linguistic and technical gymnasiums, have been founded. Secondary professional education is offered in special professional or technical schools, lyceums or colleges and vocational schools.
At present, there are universities, academies, and institutes, conservatories, higher schools and higher colleges. There are three main levels: basic higher education that provides the fundamentals of the chosen field of study and leads to the award of the Bachelor's degree; specialized higher education after which students are awarded the Specialist's Diplom; and scientific-pedagogical higher education which leads to the Master's Degree.
The Ministry of Education of Kazakhstan runs a highly successful Bolashak scholarship, which is annually awarded to about five thousand applicants of Kazakhstan citizens. The scholarship funds their education and all living expenses abroad as well as transportation expenses once in a year from home to a university and back home. The choice of an institution of higher education and research as well as any corporation that provides both undergraduate and postgraduate education has no restrictions, if an applicant complies with the eligibility requirements of an institution abroad. Awarded student can study at any educational institutions such as prestigious University of Cambridge, Harvard University, University of Toronto, University of Oxford, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Technical University Munich, Imperial College London, University of Tokyo and other universities. The terms of the program include mandatory return to Kazakhstan for at least five years of employment.
119. Kazakhstan in 2030. (President’s appeal to the Nation of Kazakhstan)
In 1997 was published a strategic program "Kazakhstan-2030". Strategic Programme "Kazakhstan-2030" - a document of great historical and political significance. It contained a detailed analysis of the republic at the moment, was disclosed to the "mission of Kazakhstan" and described such "priority long-term goals," as: 1) national security, 2) political stability and consolidation of society, and 3) economic growth based on developed market economy with high levels of foreign investment, and 4) health, education and welfare of the citizens of Kazakhstan, and 5) energy resources, 6) infrastructure, particularly transport and communications; 7) professional state, limited to basic functions.
President of the Republic of Kazakhstan N. Nazarbayev has defined eight internal strengths of Kazakh society, which serve as fertile ground for the implementation of the Strategy - 2030.
1. Independence of the state, its attributes and symbols;
2. The final break with the old political-economic system;
3. The presence of a new political and economic system;
4. Human resources - is a highly educated population with a high level of scientific and creative potential;
5. Rich natural resources of Kazakhstan;
6. The huge agricultural land fund;
7. Maintenance of political stability and social cohesion;
8. Tolerance and patience of Kazakhstan, their hospitality and friendliness that is celebrated by all foreigners.
120. Republic of Kazakhstan and International relations
The Republic of Kazakhstan, is a transcontinental country in Central Asia and Eastern Europe. Ranked as the ninth largest country in the world. It is neighbored clockwise from the north by Russia, China, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, and also borders on a significant part of the Caspian Sea. The capital was moved in 1998 from Almaty (formerly Alma-Ata), Kazakhstan's largest city, to Astana.
Kazakhstan declared itself an independent country on December 16, 1991, the last Soviet republic to do so. Its communist-era leader, Nursultan Nazarbayev, became the country's new president. Since independence, Kazakhstan has pursued a balanced foreign policy and worked to develop itseconomy, especially its hydrocarbon industry. While the country's economic outlook is improving, President Nazarbayev maintains strict control over the country's politics. Nevertheless, Kazakhstan's international prestige is building. It is now considered to be the dominant state in Central Asia. The country is a member of many international organizations, including the United Nations, the Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council, the Commonwealth of Independent States, and the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation. Kazakhstan is one of six post-Soviet states who have implemented an Individual Partnership Action Plan with NATO. In 2010, Kazakhstan chaired the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe. Kazakhstan has stable relationships with all of its neighbors. On December 1, 2007, it was revealed that Kazakhstan had been chosen to chair OSCE for the year 2010.
Since independence in 1991, Kazakhstan has pursued what is known as the "multivector foreign policy" (Kazakh: êөïâåêòîðëû ñûðòқû ñàÿñàò; mnogovektornaya vneshnyaya politika), seeking equally good relations with two large neighbors, Russia and China, and the United States and the West in general. The policy has yielded results in the oil and gas sector, where companies from the U.S., Russia, China, and Europe are present at all major fields, and in the multidimensional directions of oil export pipelines out of Kazakhstan. Kazakhstan also enjoys strong, and rapidly developing, political and economic ties with Turkey. Kazakhstan formed a customs union with Russia and Belarus which will be transformed into a common economic space soon.