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EACEA National Policies Platform:Eurydice
Ongoing reforms and policy developments


14.Ongoing reforms and policy developments

Last update: 2 October 2022

This chapter provides a thematic and chronological overview of national reforms and policy developments since 2020.
The introduction of the chapter describes the overall education strategy and the key objectives across the whole education system. It also looks at how the education reform process is organised and who are the main actors in the decision-making process.

The section on ongoing reforms and policy developments groups reforms in the following broad thematic areas that largely correspond to education levels:

  • Early childhood education and care
  • School education
  • Vet and Adult learning
  • Higher education
  • Transversal skills and employability.

Inside each thematic area, reforms are organised chronologically. The most recent reforms are described first.

The progress of the educational reform and the proposal for the National Plan for Education, 2021-23

A complete picture with the data of the educational system was presented by the Minister of Education to the Council of Ministers (YS) on November 11,2022. Based on some of the characteristics that emerge, the design of a series of policies that are currently being promoted also emerges.
In order to achieve the main goals of the Educational Reform, namely the quality in education and learning outcomes, the following steps have been taken by the Ministry of Education:
1.Increase of the number of teachers in schools, especially in Special Education
2. The application of a new credible and meritocratic evaluation plan for teachers
3. The adoption of free breakfast to elementary student beneficiaries according to set criteria
4. Continuance and intensification of the efforts to integrate the children of Special education equally into regular classes
5. Significant improvement in learning outcomes due to the reform effort and innovations adopted
6. Adoption of a plan for strengthening and effective integration of immigrant students 
7. Adoption of a plan for strengthening and reorganizing Special Education
8. The utilization of digital technology throughout all levels of education
9. French language teaching in the whole high school cycle
10. Certification of foreign language knowledge
11. Diagnostic procedures of learning problems and other characteristics from the earliest age possible
12. Adoption of "school and social inclusion actions" program
13. Greater emphasis on sexual education and prevention against sexual abuse
 14. Policy to support small schools in mountainous, rural, and remote areas 

Employment Needs Forecast Proposal for a National Plan for Education, 2021-23

Responding to a proposal on November 1, 2021 by the President of the Commission of Education and Culture of the Parliament, the Minister of Education, Culture, Sports and Youth will proceed to a proposal of the National Plan for Education, 2021-23.
After the briefing to be given to the Council of Ministers on the development of policy reform and innovation in education, and submission of an analysis of school performance with suggestions for measures improvement, the Minister will submit a relevant proposal with suggestions to Education and Culture Committee of the Parliament.

Decision on the creation of an Undersecretary of Culture

On July 8, the Council of Ministers reached a decision on the creation of an Undersecretary of Culture. After the initial consultations, the initial legislative draft was prepared by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Athletics and Youth, which will cooperate with the Minister of Finance in order to obtain the necessary financial provisions and make the financial planning. The proposal will then be submitted to the Legal Service for legal inspection and will be prepared for a vote by the House of Representatives.

Coronavirus response by the European Commission

The European Commission has been coordinating a common European response  since the beginning of the coronavirus outbreak. They have been taking resolute action to reinforce their public health sectors and reduce the socio-economic impact in the European Union. They have been mobilizing all means at their disposal to help their Member States coordinate their national responses and are providing objective information about the spread of the virus and effective efforts to contain it. 

President von der Leyen has established a Coronavirus response team at political level to coordinate the European Commission response to the pandemic.


Launch of the project on eGovernment in the service of Cypriot education

The project for the design and implementation of e-Government in Cyprus Education was launched on June 25, 2018, with the signing of a contract for the implementation of the "Support Services System" (SSS) project, a modern computerized system designed to standardize and speed up bureaucratic procedures.

  • The overall objective of SSS which will be completed in 2023 is to create an advanced information system which will ensure the immediate information, cooperation and support of the following stakeholders:
  • School Units
  • School Unit Directorate
  • Provincial Education Offices
  • Teachers
  • Parents and Pupils
  • Trade unions
  • Educational Service Committee
  • School Committees
  • The Pedagogical Institute

The project is co-funded by National Resources and by the European Union (EU) Regionall Development Fund.

Cyprus Academy of Sciences, Letters and Arts

On November 10, 2017, the Cyprus Academy of Sciences, Letters and Arts Law of 2017 was passed unanimously by the House of Representatives, establishing the Cyprus Academy as a Legal Entity of Public Law with independent entity status.

The main goals of the Academy are the promotion of excellence; the cultivation and promotion of Sciences, Letters and Arts; the contribution to the development of research and innovation; the promotion of the work of the Republic's scholars; the support of education and empowerment of the cooperation between Universities, Research Centers and Industry; the provision of scientifically valid information and opinion to the Republic and its institutions on scientific, technological and cultural issues and the active participation of the Republic of Cyprus in European and International Organizations of Academies. The Council of the Academy has appointed a 4-member Founding Committee for organizing and starting the Academy.

Overall national education strategy and key objectives

The overall education strategy and key objectives across the whole education system are described in the Government Programme (Πρόγραμμα Διακυβέρνησης). The report National Strategy in Lifelong Learning 2014-2020 also describes the strategic objectives and the areas of action that will be promoted by the Government, with regard to every form of learning (formal, informal and non-formal), in the period 2014-2020.  

The Government programme

The overall education strategy and key objectives across the whole education system, as described in the Government Programme, are based on five pillars of educational policy, as follows:

1. Human resource development and upgrading in education, with reference to the following content areas:

1.1 Modernising the system of appointment in the public educational sector;

1.2 Upgrading the teachers’ in-service education and training;

1.3 Modernising the evaluation system for the teachers and educational work.


2. Modernising the administrative structures of the schools and the whole educational system, with reference to the following content areas:

2.1 Modernising the administrative structure of the ministry of education and culture;

2.2 Promoting school autonomy.


3. Upgrading the educational content and promoting effectiveness in education, with reference to the following content areas:

3.1 The curricula;

3.2 The timetables;

3.3 Textbooks.


4. Supporting and empowering all learners, with reference to the following content areas:

4.1 Promoting new technologies in the educational system;

4.2 Pursuing educational success and literacy;

4.3 Promoting differentiation in the learning process.


5. Expanding and upgrading tertiary education, with reference to the following content areas:

5.1 Increasing the number of students;

5.2 Upgrading the private institutes/universities;

5.3 Promoting international cooperation;

5.4 Modernising the legal framework for the operation of private institutes of tertiary education.

Further information is available from the website of the Ministry of Education and Culture


National Strategy for Lifelong Learning 2014-2020

The Council of Ministers approved, on 18 June 2014, the National Strategy for Lifelong Learning 2014-2020, which defines the strategic aims and priorities of the Government regarding Lifelong Learning (LLL) and prescribes the main actions to be promoted within the following areas of priority:
1. Encouraging access to LLL for all;
2. Improving the quality and effectiveness of education and training;
3. Promoting research and development to support LLL;
4. Improving employability by promoting enrolment and re-enrolment in the labour market.
Securing LLL for all is a responsibility both of the Government and the social partners.
For a detailed description of the measures provided within each priority area, see the report National Strategy for Lifelong Learning 2014-2020. 

Overview of the education reform process and drivers

Reforms in education are based on policy objectives of the Government and views and suggestions of experts and stakeholders.

The Council of Ministers is the highest authority for education policy-making, while overall responsibility for education rests with the Ministry of Education and Culture. In the reform process, the Ministry of Education and Culture is responsible for drafting proposal measures, laws and budgets submitting them for approval to the House of Representatives via the Council of Ministers. The Attorney’s General Office (Γραφείο Γενικού Εισαγγελέα) acts as the legal adviser to the Ministry.

The Education Council (Συμβούλιο Παιδείας) is a consultative body to the Minister of Education and Culture, the objective of which is to initiate dialogue on reforms in the whole education system. It is made up of representatives from all of the parliamentary parties, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Education and Culture, the Permanent Secretary of the Planning Bureau, (renamed, by Law 127(I)/447, as Directorate-General for European Programmes, Coordination, and Development, on November 1st, 2013),  the Chairman of the Education Committee of the House of Representatives, as well as other interested bodies. It is presided over by the Minister of Education and Culture.

The Education Committee of the House of Representatives is central to the education reform process, as it scrutinizes the policies and expenditure of the proposed reforms.

Major reforms on the restructuring of the educational system are usually based on views and suggestions of experts’ committees appointed Ad Hoc by the Government.

Public consultation with the various stakeholders is a common practice in the reform process. The teachers’ and the parents’ organisations are considered the main stakeholders in the process.