Lifelong learning in Greece has been gradually established through a series of laws. The latter specify its content, the bodies involved and the way it is implemented.
In formal education, adult education is provided by second chance schools founded under law 2525/1997, as amended by law 4763/2020.
Law 4186/2013, as amended by law 4763/2020, defines non-formal education providers. Non-formal education is provided in an organised educational context. It occurs outside the formal educational system. It can lead to certificates recognised at national level.
Non-formal education providers are:
- Vocational training institutes
- Lifelong learning centers
The above law also defines the management and staff of non-formal education providers.
Ministerial decision 5953/23-6-2014 refers to the organisation and operation of Second Chance Schools.
In this context, management of the above mentioned providers is exercised by the:
- Deputy head
- Teachers’ assembly.
Heads and deputy heads are seconded permanent teachers of primary or secondary education. They can also be teachers serving under the General Secretariat for Vocational Education, Training and Lifelong Learning. They serve a three-year term.
Their selection is carried out upon decision of the Secretary General for Vocational Education, Training and Lifelong Learning. The procedure and the selection criteria are specified by the Minister of Education relevant decision.
The Head is in charge of the staff in non-formal education providers.
1. To be eligible for consideration a candidate must be a:
- Public (primary or secondary) education teacher or
- Teacher serving under the General Secretariat
2. Candidates will be eligible for this selection procedure if they:
- hold a higher education degree, or equivalent, issued or recognised as equivalent by the Hellenic NARIC,
have a minimum of 8 years educational experience,
- have significant administrative and academic skills in non-formal education.
The Head is the academic, pedagogical and economic supervisor of these education providers. He/she is also the person responsible for issues on their smooth operation and efficient performance.
It is essential that he/she is familiar with their region’s development potential and employment needs and have the know-how after having participated in the pedagogical, productive, business activities in their area.
The Head is responsible for:
- handling the administrative operation and financial management
- abiding to laws, circulars and decisions issued by the competent administrative bodies
- providing information and ensuring that prompt and reliable information is communicated to the General Secretariat, either in paper or electronically
- cooperating with the central and the competent regional directorates of the Ministry of Education to settle any operational issues falling under their competence
- the prompt and reliable electronic record keeping of the non-formal education providers’ financial operation data as well as the electronic updating of their staff service dossiers
- implementing special educational programmes as regards students with disabilities or special educational needs
- tasks to the teaching staff pertaining to the overall educational work such as:
- Career guidance
- Implementation of innovative educational programmes and actions
- Laboratory training, practical training and apprenticeship of students/trainees
- Implementation of programmes on the introduction and use of new technologies and information technology in the teaching process
Also, the head is the disciplinary authority of non-formal education providers. The head of Vocational training institutes is exempted from teaching.
In addition, heads of Second Chance Schools are in charge of:
- Implementing the educational policy of the competent General Secretariat, the curriculum and the school timetable
- The relations and the collaboration with the local and other authorities for promoting the school’s objectives
- Issues on Second Chance Schools staff management
- Chairing the meetings of the teachers' assembly
- The good representation of the school in public meetings
- Sending to the General Secretariat all details on the operation of the school (enrolments, attendances, school activities, briefing reports, statistics etc.)
- Providing teaching services for 3 hours per week.
Public primary or secondary education teachers or teachers serving under the General Secretariat are appointed as deputy heads. They must hold a higher education degree, or equivalent, obtained in Greece or abroad. They must have at least 4 years educational experience.
Deputy heads are appointed in Second Chance Centers, Vocational Institutes and Lifelong learning centres.
Deputy heads must:
- Have knowledge and experience in teaching methods applied to initial vocational training and teachers’ training
- Be able to monitor and supervise the educational process and also coordinate its evaluation process.
Deputy heads co-assist the heads in performing their duties. They can also substitute them. They do not provide teaching services, except for exceptional situations.
Deputy heads have the following competences:
- They make sure that the administrative work is carried out
- They implement the decisions taken by the head and the teachers’ assembly on students’/trainees' attendance issues
- They carry out any other tasks assigned to them by the head.
In the above educational structures there is a teachers’ assembly. It is composed of the teachers serving at the unit regardless of their employment status.
Head chairs the teachers’ assembly and is assembled regularly or occasionally following its chairperson’s invitation.
Regular meetings are held necessarily prior to the beginning of the teaching year and at the end of each semester or trimester.
Occasional meetings are held either when the chairperson considers it necessary or when it is called for by at least one third of its members in the form of a written request specifying the issues for discussion.
The teachers’ assembly primarily has the following responsibilities.
- It contributes to:
- setting directions in implementing the educational policy at school level
- assuring smooth operation of the above educational structures and
- managing all study related issues
- It identifies and evaluates the existing educational needs uses the potential for cooperation between the staff, the education executives and the local community institutions
- It makes decisions on students’/trainees' attendance, performance and conduct
- It proposes the type and form of the provided education and training to the SDE, IEK and KDVM head and contributes to its implementation.
More information on the management of adult education bodies can be found in Chapter 2.7 Administration and Governance at Local and/or Institutional Level – Lifelong Learning.