OECD: Greece should improve its education system

24 Apr 18

Improving the Greek education system could contribute to inclusive and sustainable growth, the OECD has said.

Better governance of schools and resourcing of educational institutes could provide students with the knowledge and skills to contribute to more inclusive and sustainable growth, the report Education for a Bright Future in Greece said.

It highlighted that the Mediterranean country was particularly hard hit by the economic crisis 10 years ago and had to make tough public spending cuts. It highlighted Greece’s public spending had reduced close to 36% over the past decade.

“Now that Greece’s economic prospects are improving, it is time to centre attention on building a highly performing education system that puts children at its centre.

“Greece can turn its education system into the dynamo of a more inclusive and sustainable growth. Building on international best practices, reforms should consider more autonomy for schools and school principals, a solid accountability framework, and a culture based on evaluation.

“In the context of the digital revolution, that is affecting all aspects of life, prioritising the skills and competencies of Greek children, youth and workers will be key,” said Gabriela Ramos, OECD chief of staff and head of the OECD-Greece joint steering committee.

The reform agenda should also focus on providing teachers with “greater contractual stability” and tools for professional development, the report launched in Athens earlier this month said.

The Greek education system was strongly affected by the economic crisis and hit by a series of cuts in public spending and a recruitment freeze of public sector civil servants, which impacted wages and resulted in hiring teachers on short-term contracts.

Figures from the OECD PISA global education survey found that the performance of 15-year-old Greek students in reading, maths and science remains below the OECD average.

Additionally, the report said that streamlining and improving governance and financing of the education system would help. Governance and financing of the education system should also be aligned, the organisation said.  

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