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Troika shuts down schools & kindergartens; more than 1,000 closed since 2011

A total 118 public elementary schools and kindergartens will be shut down this summer and another 29 will be merged after the Troika demands for “structural reforms”, “rationalization of state expenditure” – name it whatever you want.

The 31 schools and 87 kindergartens to be shut down are located in Eastern Attica, Central Greece, and two areas in NE Greece (Rodopi, Xanthi).

According to Greek education ministry the shut down will save 76,000 euro in public money for 2013 as it occurs in the middle of the year, while the saving will amount 228,000 euro for the year 2014. How the saving will triple? Do not ask me. It’s the Greek government logic which is rather tricky.

The scheme of Greek logic is simple: School units are shut down + work places are limited = lay-off of teachers becomes inevitable.

With this year’s decision a total of 1,038 primary and secondary education schools have been shut down since 2011.

2011: 800

2012: 120

2013: 118

The shut down and merger of public schools often ends up in conflict among parents, drivers and education ministry, as the state has to come up for the students’ transport cost. Money shortage normally delays the payments to transport means (buses, taxi) with the effect that they strike and the students have to seek other ways to attend classes.

But this is not important. More important is that this year the Education Ministry practically dissolved the technical/vocational high schools by erasing 46 positions for specialized teachers.

What? You want to study Graphic Design,  Hairdresser,  Cosmetics,  or get skills to work as assistant in a pharmacy, a laboratory, a hospital or at a dentists’, while in high school? You should go to a private technical & vocational high school and pay.

The dissolved teacher’s positions at technical high schools made the impossible possible and thus overnight: 2,500 technical school teachers could be sent home in the context of ‘labor reserve’ scheme: 75% of the wage for 9 months, then dismissed. Troika was pressing in June…

100% BTW: while the plan to dissolve the technical & vocational public high schools was given to the press, Education Minister Arvanitopoulos was attending the opening ceremony of a new private technical and vovational high school. But that’s another story – just one more story of the “Once a Greek, always a Greek” book.

In order to make the bitter pill of unemployment sweeter, the Education and Health Ministers, Arvanitopoulos and Georgiadis, decided that 55-60% of the 2,500 technical school teachers will be transferred to the health care sector.

I mean it will be a real innovation to have a Graphic design teacher covering your post operation wound with a highly aesthetic pattern or a hair extensions specialist  gives you an injection with fluid antibiotics.

PS I fully agree with the closure of  school units. What is the purpose of investing in kids’ education, when they complete primary and secondary education, university and post university studies to end up  jobless after all?


I heard, some ministers were practicing in difficult yoga poses to make the absurd look normal.




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