Michael Kelpanides, Despoina Poimenidou, Zoe Malivitsi
June 20, 2016
Greece’s education system lags behind those of other European countries. Its two overarching problems, which encompass many others, are (a) the incompatibility of school knowledge and societal needs, and (b) the low performance of public schools. Because of these inadequacies, there exists a ‘shadow education system’ of private cramming courses preparing students for the required qualifications for university admission. Despite recurring criticisms from international organizations, the relative position of Greece to other countries has not improved. This paper addresses why there has been no improvement so far despite Greece’s use of available resources and expertise supplied by the EU. To explain why there has been no change, the authors trace the Greek system’s problems to historical antecedents and examine the political and social forces resisting educational change at present.