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This question already has an answer here:

What governs when people go into different stages of education? I have noticed at different times that my Grade School might be full, High School empty, and College have a few people.

I know that people won't go to school if they are not available, but do they only go to school if jobs are available within that education level?

Question flagged as a duplicate, which is fair enough, but the answer given provides a better answer than the original thread. Can both be merged?

marked as duplicate by Studoku, GodEmperorDune, Unionhawk, Schism, Dragonrage Apr 26 '16 at 16:31

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

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Tropicans will only enter High School or College if there is a (better) job available for graduates. Additionally, only High School graduates can get into College.

Thus, if you add a bunch of College level jobs (say, by building a Cathedral), you'll potentially notice a bunch of male students at the High School, who will then move to the College after they graduate.

Since jobs at College and High School require those levels of education (ie, being a College professor requires a College education), Tropicans will enroll in them to fill empty slots at the buildings themselves.

Grade School is an exception - Tropican children will enroll in Grade School without jobs available. This will increase their Intelligence, allowing them to master new jobs faster once they become adults.

Note that you're also paying your educators whether or not there are any students to train, so I often times will block off slots in the High School or College in order to keep people from working there when there aren't any jobs to train for.

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