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Greece:Continuing Professional Development for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

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Overview Greece

Contents

Greece:Political, Social and Economic Background and Trends

Greece:Historical Development

Greece:Main Executive and Legislative Bodies

Greece:Population: Demographic Situation, Languages and Religions

Greece:Political and Economic Situation

Greece:Organisation and Governance

Greece:Fundamental Principles and National Policies

Greece:Lifelong Learning Strategy

Greece:Organisation of the Education System and of its Structure

Greece:Organisation of Private Education

Greece:National Qualifications Framework

Greece:Administration and Governance at Central and/or Regional Level

Greece:Administration and Governance at Local and/or Institutional Level

Greece:Statistics on Organisation and Governance

Greece:Funding in Education

Greece:Early Childhood and School Education Funding

Greece:Higher Education Funding

Greece:Adult Education and Training Funding

Greece:Early Childhood Education and Care

Greece:Organisation of Programmes for Children under 4 years

Greece:Teaching and Learning in Programmes for Children under 4 years

Greece:Assessment in Programmes for Children under 4 years

Greece:Organisation of Programmes for Children over 4 years

Greece:Teaching and Learning in Programmes for Children over 4 years

Greece:Assessment in Programmes for Children over 4 years

Greece:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Early Childhood Education and Care

Greece:Primary Education

Greece:Organisation of Primary Education

Greece:Teaching and Learning in Primary Education

Greece:Assessment in Primary Education

Greece:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Primary Education

Greece:Secondary and Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Greece:Organisation of General Lower Secondary Education

Greece:Teaching and Learning in General Lower Secondary Education

Greece:Assessment in General Lower Secondary Education

Greece:Organisation of General Upper Secondary Education

Greece:Teaching and Learning in General Upper Secondary Education

Greece:Assessment in General Upper Secondary Education

Greece:Organisation of Vocational Upper Secondary Education

Greece:Teaching and Learning in Vocational Upper Secondary Education

Greece:Assessment in Vocational Upper Secondary Education

Greece:Organisation of Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Greece:Teaching and Learning in Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Greece:Assessment in Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Greece:Higher Education

Greece:Types of Higher Education Institutions

Greece:First Cycle Programmes

Greece:Bachelor

Greece:Short-Cycle Higher Education

Greece:Second Cycle Programmes

Greece:Programmes outside the Bachelor and Master Structure

Greece:Third Cycle (PhD) Programmes

Greece:Adult Education and Training

Greece:Distribution of Responsibilities

Greece:Developments and Current Policy Priorities

Greece:Main Providers

Greece:Main Types of Provision

Greece:Validation of Non-formal and Informal Learning

Greece:Teachers and Education Staff

Greece:Initial Education for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Greece:Conditions of Service for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Greece:Continuing Professional Development for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Greece: Initial Education for Academic Staff in Higher Education

Greece:Conditions of Service for Academic Staff Working in Higher Education

Greece:Continuing Professional Development for Academic Staff Working in Higher Education

Greece:Initial Education for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Greece:Conditions of Service for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Greece:Continuing Professional Development for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Greece:Management and Other Education Staff

Greece:Management Staff for Early Childhood and School Education

Greece:Staff Involved in Monitoring Educational Quality for Early Childhood and School Education

Greece:Education Staff Responsible for Guidance in Early Childhood and School Education

Greece:Other Education Staff or Staff Working with Schools

Greece:Management Staff for Higher Education

Greece:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Higher Education

Greece:Management Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

Greece:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

Greece:Quality Assurance

Greece:Quality Assurance in Early Childhood and School Education

Greece:Quality Assurance in Higher Education

Greece:Quality Assurance in Adult Education and Training

Greece:Educational Support and Guidance

Greece:Special Education Needs Provision within Mainstream Education

Greece:Separate Special Education Needs Provision in Early Childhood and School Education

Greece:Support Measures for Learners in Early Childhood and School Education

Greece:Guidance and Counselling in Early Childhood and School Education

Greece:Support Measures for Learners in Higher Education

Greece:Guidance and Counselling in Higher Education

Greece:Support Measures for Learners in Adult Education and Training

Greece:Guidance and Counselling in a Lifelong Learning Approach

Greece:Mobility and Internationalisation

Greece:Mobility in Early Childhood and School Education

Greece:Mobility in Higher Education

Greece:Mobility in Adult Education and Training

Greece:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Early Childhood and School Education

Greece:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Higher Education

Greece:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Adult Education and Training

Greece:Bilateral Agreements and Worldwide Cooperation

Greece:Ongoing Reforms and Policy Developments

Greece:National Reforms in Early Childhood Education and Care

Greece:National Reforms in School Education

Greece:National Reforms in Vocational Education and Training and Adult Learning

Greece:National Reforms in Higher Education

Greece:National Reforms related to Transversal Skills and Employability

Greece:European Perspective

Greece:Legislation

Greece:Institutions

Greece:Glossary

In recent years, both society and the state have taken a great interest in continuing efforts made to upgrade the quality of the education provided as well as the need to modernise the educational system.  Scientific developments made over the past few years, in all fields of scientific activity, have set new standards in the educational field and result in readaptations in the teaching content and methods as well as in the ways of learning.  One of the most important factors contributing to the improvement of education and the teachers’ professional progress and development also being a necessity is the training received.  However, the term training should not be perceived as a static concept but as a continuing, constantly changing process.

Regarding the in-service education and training of teachers (INSET), the aims focus on the following:

  • Targeted teacher training on the implementation of the new curricula in Compulsory Education 
  • Teacher training on ways to organise and implement Experimental Actions and Projects, based on the principles of experimental and inquiry-based learning
  • Training of teachers specialised in ICT, Drama, Music, Arts and intercultural education, who are employed today in all-day primary schools, using a unified and revised curriculum
  • Induction INSET for newly-appointed and substitute teachers
  • INSET for teachers on the use and application of ICT in the teaching practice.

Teacher training is now distinguished, depending on its nature, between mandatory and optional.

The mandatory training forms that are specified in article 1 of P.D. 250/92 are listed below:

  • Probationary training has a duration of up to four months for candidates to be appointed as Primary and Secondary Education teachers.
  • Periodic training in two training courses per academic year, lasts up to three months for permanent teachers.
  • Short-term specific training programmes lasting from 10 to 100 hours for all teachers and 200 hours for teachers serving in Special Education units.

It should be noted that in the context of the teacher’s specific needs, training programmes are provided concerning the training of:

  • education officials (2986/02),
  • teachers in private education (article 7, P.D. 250/92),
  • expatriates serving as seconded teachers in foreign Greek schools (article 8 of the above P.D.)
  • teachers of ecclesiastical education (article 9),
  • teachers in the context of European programmes.

There are also special seminars, which are optional (regarding Environmental Education for example), which meet teachers’ identified needs and concern issues such as: Environmental Education, Health Education, Consumer Education, Traffic Education, Gender Equality, School Vocational & Career Guidance, etc.

Teacher training bodies include: The Institute of Educational Policy (IEP), Universities, T.E.I., school units or School Networks, school counselors, the Hellenic Open University (H.O.U.), ASPETE, educational and scientific associations, scientific institutes or centers of trade unions.

Finally, in order to strengthen the institution of training, teachers are granted service leave, certificates of attendance and on occasion financial compensation.  Moreover, attempts are made for training programmes to coincide with the teachers’ information and professional development, as well as the effectiveness of their teaching.

Organisational Aspects

The probationary training for the candidate that is to be appointed as teaching staff and the assistants that are employed in municipal childcare centers and nurseries is mandatory for both the service and the employee (Law 3584 / 2007 Article 54).  This occurs during the first two years of the employee’s appointment and aims at familiarising the employee with the object of his/her service and his/her duties as a Local Self-Government (O.T.A.) employee in general.  The competent services are required to ensure the provision of the necessary funds in the local budget.  An employee is not promoted past probationary level, if the probationary training has not been successfully completed.  As soon as the employee completes the probationary training, the promotion is conducted retrospectively with all the consequences.

Although continuing professional development is optional, effort is being made to provide incentives to the continuously trained teachers’ advantage. Continuing training is provided in the form of educational programmes implemented by educational bodies upon approval of the Ministry of Education.

Education bodies can be the following:

  • School units
  • Regional Education Centers 
  • Universities
  • Technological Education Institutions (TEI) 
  • The Higher School of Pedagogical and Technological Education (ASPETE) 
  • The Educational Policy Institute  
  • The National School of Public Administration
  • School Advisors

Forms of Training are:

  • Permanent teaching staff regular training. Teachers subject to regular training are selected from lists drawn up by the Education Regional Directorates.  Registration order is based on teachers’ need for training, schools’ operational needs, teachers’ seniority and other possible needs.  The teaching and exercises programmes as well as the overall number of teaching hours involved are specified by Presidential Decrees or Ministerial Decisions.
  • Special limited duration training programmes, addressed to all in-service teachers as well as teachers employed in Special Education school units. 

At present, teachers training programmes such as the Action “Teachers education for the utilization and implementation of ICT in the teaching process “are implemented within the context of the National Strategic Reference Framework (ΕSPΑ) 2007-2013 Operational Programme (OP) entitled “Education and Lifelong Learning”.  The aim pursued is to prepare teachers for the challenges of “knowledge and information societies”, mostly focusing on the Information Technologies utilization and use in the teaching process.  The programme is held outside the school operating hours in specially equipped centers, usually being schools located across the country, by specialized B level educators properly trained to this end at Universities.  Said training is also known as B level training, as it is the natural sequel to A level training in basic ICT skills held in the context of previous projects.  B level training can be attended by Greek Language and Literature teachers (PΕ02), Mathematicians (PΕ03), Natural Sciences teachers (PΕ04), French, English and German Language teachers (PΕ05/06/07), primary school teachers (PΕ70) and pre-primary school teachers (PΕ60), provided they have certified Information and Communication Technologies basic A level skills and are permanent teachers in both public and private schools.  Moreover, they should be in service during the training period, so that they can use in practice, in their class the knowledge and skills, which actually constitutes an integral part of the training process itself.

The Action “Major in-service Teacher Training Programme” has also been designed in the context of the National Strategic Reference Framework (ΕSPΑ) 2007-2013 Operational Programme (OP) entitled “Education and Lifelong Learning”.  Teachers’ training involves both in presentia and on-line participation includes successiveseminars and ensures constant support to the trained teacher in meeting modern challenges arising in the class.

The Action “Programme of specialised educational support for the inclusion of students with disabilities or / and special educational needs”, which is co-funded by the European Union (European Social Fund) and by national revenues, is implemented also in the same Operational Programme context. This  Action aims at the implementation of specialised educational support to students with disabilities or/and special educational needs in general education schools (parallel support etc.) through properly trained teaching staff supporting students with disabilities or/and special educational needs in the classroom in parallel with the class teacher.  Specialised educational support to students with disabilities or/ and special educational needs essentially leads to their actual social integration in the general education school class and by extension in the school community.  This will result in improving accessibility to social processes and coping with the issue of social exclusion.  Employed teachers, receive training as well as scientific and consultative support from Special Education School Advisors and KEDDY staff appointed to this end.

Finally, reference should also be made to ERASMUS +, which is the new European Commission education and training programme aimed at strengthening skills and employability as well as modernising the educational and training systems in all sectors of Lifelong Learning (Higher Education, Vocational Education and Training, Adult Education, School Education, youth activities, etc.).  The existing EU funding programmes for education, training and youth ended at the end of 2013, and the new program, ERASMUS+, came into effect on January 1, 2014.  The new programme combines all current EU programs regarding education, training and youth, inter alia, the integrated Lifelong Learning Program (LLP) (Erasmus, Leonardo da Vinci, Comenius, Grundtvig), the "Youth in Action" programme and five international cooperative programmes (Erasmus Mundus, Tempus, Alfa, Edulink and cooperative programmes with industrialised countries).  An example of the actions of the Erasmus+ programme, which relates to teacher training is the Action "mobility project for school education staff”: the programme offers the opportunity to members of public schools and private institutions (schools) to live a learning experience in another country.  Participants are given the opportunity to improve their knowledge, professional and linguistic skills, abilities, to come into contact with a new culture and civilisation and develop a sense of European identity.  More information is available on the website of the European Commission http://ec.europa.eu/education/opportunities/school/staff_en.htm, and the State Scholarship Foundation (SSF), the Hellenic National Agency of the Erasmus+ programme (“Education and Training” sectors), http://www.iky.gr/erasmus-plus-key-action-3/sxoliki-ekpedeusis-a1-2.

Incentives for Participation in Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Activities

According to a study on the “Motivation and Barriers in the Participation of Adults in Lifelong Education” by the Labor Institute of the Trade Union Confederation, the incentives included in the professional upskilling category (salary increase, standard qualifications, job assurance, work performance) mark high rates of acceptance.

Sabbatical leaves, occasionally accompanied by a lump sum, are granted to enhance teachers’ opportunities of attending any of the education programmes pertaining, in their own right, to the teachers’ personal and professional development as well as the effectiveness of their educational work.

However, after the publication of Law 4210/2013, all grants and extensions for education leave pursuant to article 58 of the Employee Code for the participation of all public employees in programmes or courses of postgraduate education, is suspended until 12-31-2014.  Given the difficulty of substituting teachers during the 2013-2014 school year, only S.S.F. scholars will be granted renewed education leave with pay.

Furthermore, in accordance with the provisions of sections a and b of para. 9 of decision number DIDAD/F.53/1379/oik.4727/2.19.2008 (GG 315 / B) by the Minister of Interior, in conjunction with the circular number. F.361.34/2/7747/D1/1-24-2012 of the Ministry of Education, Research and Religious Affairs, teachers who receive a scholarship from the S.S.F. shall mandatorily be granted leave, without the opinion service council (APYSPE, APYSDE).

Accordingly, the following shall apply for Primary and Secondary Education teachers:

  1. Suspended until 12-31-2014 is the granting of education leave for Primary and Secondary Education teachers and scholars.
  2. Suspended until 12-31-2014 is the extension of education leave for Primary and Secondary Education teachers and scholars (non-scholars of S.S.F).
  3. Teachers of Primary and Secondary Education, who have been granted education leave due to an S.S.F. scholarship before the publication of Law. 4210/2013, may apply for an extension of their education leave for the 2014-2015 school year by submitting an S.S.F. scholarship certificate.
  4. Finally, in each case, teachers may request the education leave without pay to complete their postgraduate studies, pursuant to the provisions of article 16, case E of Law 1566/1985, by submitting the relevant application with the necessary supporting documents.  Unpaid leave is granted by decision of the Regional Director of Education up until the end of the school year, after consulting the relevant Senior Regional Service Council.

Paid education leave is granted for one school year. If the teacher wishes to renew his/her leave, he/she submits a new application and new supporting documents.  In the case of studies in postgraduate programmes or courses lasting two (2) years, the paid education leave cannot exceed three (3) years.  However, as regards doctoral dissertation, the paid education leave cannot exceed four (4) years.  Throughout the teacher’s service, he/she cannot be granted paid education leave beyond five (5) years. The education leave period is offset with the period of paid education leave that may have been granted to the teacher during his/her service in the broader public sector.  Finally, the provisions of Law 4093/2012  repealed the provisions of Law 3528/2007, regarding the salary increase for those granted education leave within Greece.  For teachers that are granted leave for further training or postgraduate training abroad, only the basic salary is taken into account to calculate the increase.