Peru Education

This is a best prospect industry sector for this country. Includes a market overview and trade data.

Last published date: 2022-03-29


Peru has made progress in education over the past 10 years.  In Peru, there are over eight million school children and 1.2 million university students.  The level of enrollment has increased substantially over the years and access to initial education has reached 70% of the total K-12 age population.  But, at the same time, Peru has the challenge of improving educational quality.  The country reached the anniversary of its 200th year of independence 2021, with a learning poverty rate of 56% - meaning that 56% of students at the age of ten cannot adequately read or understand simple text.

There is also the issue of inequality, since a student’s place of birth and socioeconomic status in large part defines the educational possibilities in Peru.  Naturally, those located in the isolated or rural areas outside the main population centers suffer the most from this phenomenon.

Covid Impact:  According to the World Economic Forum, Peru ranked 27th in quality of the educational system for 2020 compared to 24th in 2019.  Covid presented the largest shock to Peru’s educational system in the last 100 years.  Economically, the abilities of the state and families to invest in education have been reduced.  There was also the halting of in-person classes, forcing the entire student population to learn from home – a location where many did not even have the technological capabilities in the form of computers or Internet connectivity to effectively learn.

According to a study carried out by Peru’s National Institute of Statistics, in 2020, Internet accessibility in metropolitan Lima was 72% while in the rest of the country it was 43%, of which the most effected is the primary school sector with 30% accessibility.  Across the board, this interruption has had a noticeable negative impact on children’s learning progress, mental health, and socialization.

According to the Ministry of Education (MINEDU), in 2020, approximately 350,000 students moved from private to public schools, most of them being K-12 students.  Another worrying trend according MINEDU is that in 2020 there was an increase in school dropouts from 1.3% to 3.5% at the pre-school and primary school levels.

Public Spending on Education in Peru:  Public spending on education decreased by about one percent in 2020 to about $8.5 billion USD, representing 16% of total public spending or 4.25% of GDP.  In 2020, Peru was ranked 48th in the world with regards to the amount invested in education per year, decreasing two spots from its 46th position in 2019.  In gross numbers, Peru spends $1,000 per student on basic education.  In contrast, an OECD country spends approximately $7,000 per student. 



Higher Education:  According to the IIE Open Doors 2021 Report, the number of Peruvian students in the U.S. increased by .3% with 3,556 students. After a difficult situation due to the pandemic, a main pillar in 2021 was the continued offering of courses online.  Institutes took the opportunity to expand their course catalog.  The new courses focus on the skills demanded due to the pandemic, such as data analysis, digital transformation, and digital marketing.  The trend has been to offer courses on how to sell products online.  There are also six-month creative marketing programs and others related to e-commerce.  In addition, courses on digital marketing and human talent management have been launched, focusing on any sector.

Private universities in Peru have begun to invest in technology and infrastructure to adapt their campuses to the new “hybrid” format, which is a mix between virtual and in-person classes, with investments in IT and infrastructure expansion.

Secondary Education:  Peru has eight million students between the ages of 5-16 years.  Many of Peru’s students come from the middle class, with families seeking education that is affordable and practical.  Public schools in Peru are 100% managed by the MINEDU, whereas private schools are managed independently but under directives from MINEDU.  Public schools in Peru are free, whereas private schools have different rates depending on the infrastructure, prestige, and quality of teachers.

The role of the private sector in schools in Peru has been key for the revitalization of education.  Private schools have diligently met the growing need for quality education at an increasingly affordable level.  For example, the chain of schools Futura Schools and Innova Schools operate in more than ten provinces of Peru, providing better educational quality in the current health emergency environment, with almost two years utilizing remote education.  Private schools in Peru have provided better infrastructure and teaching, training, and assessment methods.  The process of continuous improvement of private schools has generated skills in the market in order to provide comprehensive education in various parts of Peru.

According to a report by Apoyo Consultoría published in 2021, private regular basic education schools reach 83% of Peruvian provinces.  On the other hand, the report shows that compared to public schools, private schools are characterized by having more qualified teachers, fewer students per teacher, more educational activities, and better infrastructure. 

In this way, private schools perform better than public ones with respect to academic performance and dropout rates.  One of the challenges for private schools is to find trained staff that is integrated into a competitive pedagogical model.  This is why there are many training opportunities for college teachers.



The private sector market for education in Peru presents several opportunities for U.S. firms.  There are different school networks that provide innovative education and seek to cut the cost of higher education.  Their goal is to expand geographical reach within Peru.

Universities in Peru are now focused on the digital aspect to improve their capacity to provide better services to students in a blended at-home and in-class environment.  Universities are not only working on the implementation of new laboratories, workshops, and academic software, but also in increasing classrooms as a result of restricted capacity.  Investments for adaptation also include new licenses for technology platforms, applications to track students, and even systems to improve air purification.

Because Peruvian universities are expanding their geographic reach, U.S. IT companies in the education field can offer partnerships through technological support, as well as best practices in pedagogy methods through special platforms and instructional learning design.  Foreign universities, such as la Universidad de Tarapacá from Chile and the Instituto Tecnologico de Monterrey from Mexico, have begun investing in the Peruvian education market.

The Peruvian government has recently awarded a contract to the United Kingdom for the construction of 125 schools throughout the country that will benefit 142,000 Peruvian students.  The U.S. Commercial Service Team at the U.S. Embassy has been working diligently to introduce potential U.S. sub-contractors to the United Kingdom implementation team.



During Covid, Peruvian students used Zoom, Google Teams, and MS Teams for their virtual classes and primarily relied on Google for investigation and research of information.  The most common platform used to promote professional opportunities is LinkedIn and the most popular streaming platform used in Peru is YouTube.

The primary way Peruvian students receive information about educational opportunities abroad is through the international relations offices at their schools and universities.  The general recommendation for U.S. study state consortia and/or education institutions to build digital outreach is through LinkedIn and Facebook.







Jorge Prado, Commercial Specialist

U.S. Commercial Service – Lima, Peru

Phone:  +51 956023507