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Greece:Ongoing Reforms and Policy Developments

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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

This chapter provides a thematic and chronological overview of on-going national reforms and policy developments since 2014. These are classified into the following broad education levels: Early childhood education and care; School education; VET and Adult learning; Higher education; and Transversal skills and Employability.

First, though, a brief introduction of the overall national education strategy and the education reform process is presented.

What follows is a brief description of the overall education strategy for Greece, the way the education reform process is organised in the country and the main factors that influence the decision-making process.

The overall education strategy revolves around 20 strategic objectives for all levels of education, lifelong learning, research and technology and general management methods and practices.

At the same time, as regards education reforms, this process mainly stems from central Ministerial level. Decision-making takes into account the principles of decentralised governance, transparency, quality assurance, efficiency and effectiveness.

Overall national education strategy and key objectives

The strategic objectives of the Ministry of Education as announced in 2014 are divided into three thematic areas and most of them aim at a public, free of charge and high quality education at all levels. Towards this vision, the strengthening of the institution of remedial teaching and additional teaching support, the modernisation of special education and intercultural education are highlighted. Foreign language learning ​​and training in new technologies will be also promoted.

Particular reference is made to teaching staff, since legislation for appointment and transfer of teachers will be revised, so as to simplify and improve the management of human resources.

More specifically, the 20 strategic objectives of the Ministry of Education (http://static.diavgeia.gov.gr/doc/ΒΙΕΒ9-20Ε) are as follows:

Public, free of charge and high quality education for all, at all levels of education, including lifelong learning, in the following key areas:

  1. Extension of pre-primary education for all children over 3 years old.
  2. Generalisation of the institution of the Unified Revised Curriculum throughout all ‘all day’ schools of the country.
  3. Generalisation of the "New School" in Primary and Secondary Education and finalisation of the procedures for the "Digital School", through the promotion of new technologies and foreign language learning.
  4. Finalisation of textbook and curriculum review for Primary and Secondary Education by the Institute of Educational Policy.
  5. Cost savings by increasing the lifetime of textbooks in Primary and Secondary Education.
  6. Promoting the institution of remedial teaching and additional teaching support.
  7. Modernising special education structures, through utilising the principles of inclusion and use of new technologies and by giving priority in vocational education and training of pupils with disabilities.
  8. Revision of legislation for the appointment and transfer of teachers, as a way to streamline the management of human resources.
  9. Implementation of Apprenticeship for graduates of Vocational Upper Secondary Schools (EPAL), for the school year 2013-2014, and Short Term Apprenticeship for EPAL graduates of the previous six years, in order to improve the prospects for employability and connection of technical secondary education with the labour market.
  10. Enhancement of Cross-cultural Education.
  11. Establishment of the National Qualifications Framework (NQF) as part of the European Qualifications Framework for the attribution of professional rights in all disciplines and the alignment of education and the labour market.
  12. Expansion of Continuing Vocational Training and Lifelong Learning structures.
  13. Association of Higher Education Institutions with research institutions, as a means to develop synergies for effective participation in European programmes and the development of research activity.

 Research and Technology in the following key areas:

  1. Encouragement of public and private sector to contribute more effectively to the country's efforts to address current needs and challenges and to create a single national and European research area.
  2. Creating favorable conditions for the strengthening and development of Research, Technological Development and Innovation.

 Management by Objectives in the following key areas:

  1. Adoption of new methods for the proper management of administrative structures of the Ministry of Education and its supervised agencies, in particular as regards fiscal consolidation and financial control of the Research Committees in Higher Education Institutions, as well as savings from specific budget lines without proportional reduction occurred in the quality of education.
  2. Rationalisation and reorganisation of agencies supervised by the Ministry of Education, through the reduction of bureaucratic procedures.
  3. Finalisation of new Organisational Charters for supervised agencies of the Ministry of Education.
  4. Implementation of effectiveness and efficiency tools for the administrative structures of the Ministry of Education and other agencies supervised by it (Common Assessment Framework, effectiveness and efficiency Indicators, strategic goals, etc). Adoption of the Common Assessment Framework for Education, as a means to enable the implementation of self-evaluation through the use of an international assessment tool.
  5. Simplifying Procedures, Law Codification and development of Information Systems in Primary, Secondary (My School) and Higher Education (new organisational charters), as well as Lifelong Learning (My Vocational Center).

Overview of the education reform process and drivers

The Greek education system, being principally centralized, is characterized by a top-down approach as regards decision making. However, in the context of an all encompassing education reform that is currently under way, a more participative process is organized, focusing on the principles of decentralized governance, transparency, quality assurance, efficiency / effectiveness and response to actual societal needs.

  • Efficiency and effectiveness: driven by limited financial resources due to the crisis, most decisions taken in the context of education reform are characterized by the need to make efficient and effective use of available human staff resources and funds coming from either EU or national sources. Particular emphasis is put towards skills upgrading of teaching staff and prioritizing investments to cover well substantiated and identified needs at local level.
    The same values of efficiency and effectiveness of resources are served through the restructuring and consolidation of central Agencies such as the National Organisation for the Certification of Qualifications and Vocational Guidance (EOPPEP), the Youth and Lifelong Learning Foundation (INEDIVIM), and the Institute of Educational Policy (IEP). These bodies, supervised by the Minister of Education, have assimilated the responsibilities of the bodies from the merger of which they emerged.
  • Transparency: new means of lawmaking are implemented in Greece, including the institutionalization of online public consultation (through opengov.gr), impact analysis, preamble, simplification, codification and ex-post analysis of legislative reforms introduced (Law 4048/2012 “Regulatory Governance: principles, procedures and means for effective lawmaking”). In parallel, the Diavgeia programme has introduced the obligation to display all government and administrative acts on the Internet for the first time in Greece (since 2010).
  • Decentralized governance: regarding school education, through the restructuring of regional educational services, substantial powers are transferred to regional structures. As far as higher education is concerned, the new Law 4009/2011 brought significant progress in the autonomy of Higher Education Institutions, improved internal governance and management. Finally, as regards lifelong learning, Law 3879/2010, the decentralization of service provision and administration is promoted.
  • Quality assurance: evaluation principles are diffused throughout all education levels. In school education, in particular, internal evaluation of the education provision of schools is generalized; individual teaching staff assessment will be directly put into implementation beginning school year 2014/15. External evaluation framework is also expected to be put into practice from the establishment of the New Authority for Quality Assurance in Primary and Secondary Education / ADIPPDE (Law 4142/2013).
  • Response to actual societal needs: driven by the need to equip young people with necessary skills and qualifications, as well as to prepare them integrate themselves into the labour market, secondary education curricula are reviewed, while apprenticeship opportunities in real working conditions is institutionalized (Law 4186/2013).

Council for National Policy on Education

Law 4283/2014 introduced the Council of National Policy on Education.
According to the Law, the Council of National Policy on Education is established at the Ministry of Education as an advisory body to the Minister. Members are all past ministers of Education. Chairman of the Board is the current Minister of Education, assisted by the responsible Deputy Minister or Undersecretary. Participation in the Council for National Policy on Education is voluntary and its members shall not receive any remuneration or compensation for their participation.
The Council of National Policy on Education is an informal advisory body of the Ministry of Education. Its purpose is to support the Ministry in the design of education policy. Among others, it is responsible to offer opinion or advice on the evaluation of education policy and on the development and implementation of new policies.
The Council of National Policy on Education is convened by the Minister of Education regularly twice a year and on any other occasion if necessary.
The operation of the Council of National Policy on Education shall not yield any expense to the State Budget.
Through the operation of the Council of National Policy on Education, an attempt is being made to succeed in the long-term planning in the education sector, to ensure continuity in the implementation of the education policy, following a spirit of consensual approach, dialogue and common understanding.

Reengineering functions of the Ministry of Education

Based on Presidential Decree 114/2014 the structure and functions of the central services of the Ministry of Education have been reorganized. The new structure involves mergers of existing departments or sections, review of portfolios, while the General Secretariats of Youth, Lifelong Learning, Research & Technology and Religious Affairs constitute distinct structures within the central structure of the Ministry. Two months of transitional period were provided for by the Presidential Decree. The new organigramme, which is a result of assessments carried out by expert groups, has been put into implementation from 29th of October 2014.