An Investigation into Teachers’ Beliefs and Practices
Chapter 1: Developing a common language
19 Chapter 1: Developing a common language The school must be a spearhead into the future classless society. (Olof Palme, 1968) 1.1 Greek educational system In order to understand the dynamics of the development of early childhood edu- cation and specifically pre-primary school in Greece, it is important to be famil- iar with the essential information provided in this section. This book does not aim to describe the Greek education system. However, a brief overview of both the administrative organisation and the structure of this system is necessary be- fore the debate on early childhood education can continue. Greece’s educational system is highly centralized and its administrative organ- ization can be distinguished into four levels: national, regional, prefectural, and the single school unit. Education is divided into three levels of study: primary, secondary, and tertiary. Mandatory schooling lasts 10 years and consists of 1 year in pre-primary school (nipiagogeio), 6 years in primary school (dimotiko), and 3 years in lower secondary school (gymnasio). Primary education is composed of pre-primary schools (nipiagogeia) and primary schools (dimotika scholeia). Pre-primary school may optionally enrol children who reach the age of 4 on De- cember 31st of the year of registering. Nevertheless, attendance of pre-primary school is mandatory for all children who reach the age of 5 on December 31st of the year of registering. Attendance of primary school (dimotiko scholeio) is also mandatory. Children who reach the age of 6 on December 31st of the year of registering have to enrol in primary...
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