Education in Ethiopia was traditionally based on principles of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church. Secular education was adopted in the early 1900s as the system continues to develop and change. There is still a need for improvement as illiteracy remains high, even when compared with other areas of Africa. Rural areas are still poorly served, and girls drop our at a higher rate than their male counterparts. The sequence of general education in Ethiopia is eight years of primary school, two years of lower secondary school and two years of higher secondary school. Foreign nationals are not accepted in the public schools of Ethiopia.