The Turkish education system was restructured in 1997 to meet the needs of this rapidly developing country. All children aged between three and five can go to pre-school, and primary education is given to children aged between six and fourteen. All education steps are compulsory and free of charge in state schools. All children who have completed primary school can apply for secondary education which takes a further three years. After this, some 1.5 million students apply to enter Turkish universities every year and around 250,000 of them pass the demanding entrance exams. To cater for the many foreign residents who are now living in Turkey, a number of international schools have been opened where English is spoken.