Saturday March 28, 2015 Search
Weather | Athens
14o C
09o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Stifled dreams

By Maria Katsounaki

At more or less the same time every year, we see the same images of high school graduates looking through the Education Ministrys lists of those who passed and those who failed the national university entrance exams some smiling, some disappointed along with media reports about which institutions proved more popular and how many graduates made it into the countrys technical colleges and universities, and so on. The discussions about how many credits were needed to enter which schools quickly die down to be replaced by those about whether the registrations will go smoothly or not and whether students or teachers will go on strike, ending with questions about how the school year will evolve and whether examination periods and semesters will go as planned or be interrupted by one protest action or another.

Every year, of course, has it own unique characteristics. This year, for example, the number of students applying to be transferred from institutions on the islands and in the provinces to others closer to home has skyrocketed and pushed up the number of credits needed to enter universities in the periphery. What this means is that someone who has applied to study medicine at Alexandroupoli, where fewer credits were needed last year, but intends to transfer to Athens is at risk of not getting a place at all. Basically, the Greek penchant for playing the system nullifies the measure itself, even though the measure essentially benefits those with political connections rather than the children from poor families that it is supposed to do.

What do you tell a student who worked hard to make the grade to make into a university in Athens? That yet one more decision made behind closed doors was presented as being in favor of society when in fact it actually prepares teenagers for what equity means in Greece?

And so, across the country, the issues of education are dispensed with by way of procedures that are more ritualistic than effective and the real problems are left unaddressed. Top among these is the use of rote learning throughout the Greek educational system, a practice inspired by the democracy of mediocrity, pushing the standards down further and further. By the time students get into university they are well-tuned memory machines, trained in rote from first grade up.

Who would disagree with the observation that the quality of teaching in tertiary education has declined and that students are just going through the motions? And what does producing university graduates who cant think for themselves mean for the country?

Yet there is no public dialogue on this important matter. It has been drowned out by dogmatism that rejects criticism and by loud populism.

When education is defined in terms of exams based on rote, we really shouldnt be so happy for those who made it in.

ekathimerini.com , Thursday August 28, 2014 (19:21)  
Time to get moving
The same old story
A competent crew is key
A new rule book agreed by all
Defense minister Kammenos sues commentator for 1 mln euros
Defense Minister Panos Kammenos has sued commentator Andreas Petroulakis for 1 million euros in damages over a critical article posted on the Protagon website on March 17. In a statement pos...
Reform talks move to Brussels
The Brussels Group, technical teams from Greece and its lenders, is on Saturday due to begin discussing the details of Athens reform proposals, which were completed Friday and will determine...
Inside News
Bank accounts continue to bleed
Pressures on Greek bank deposits have continued in March, with sector officials estimating that households and enterprises have withdrawn a net 3 billion euros in the first weeks of this mon...
Hania and Athens are the top picks for Easter visitors
Athens and Hania (pictured) are the first choices among foreign holidaymakers heading to Greece next week for Catholic and Protestant Easter, according to international online travel search ...
Inside Business
BASKETBALL
Greens live dangerously in Istanbul
Panathinaikos played with fire in Istanbul, but still managed to beat Galatasaray 86-84 on Friday and climb to the third sport of its group two games before the end of the Euroleague top-16....
SOCCER
Greek federation backs injured Holebas
The Greek soccer federation on Friday insisted that international defender Jose Holebas had been dropped from team training in Austria because of injury and not for any other reason. Media r...
Inside Sports
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
RECENT NEWS
1. Greens live dangerously in Istanbul
2. Bank accounts continue to bleed
3. Hania and Athens are the top picks for Easter visitors
4. Landlords to pay tax on unpaid rent
5. Air arrivals grow 20 pct in Jan-Feb 2015
6. Cash injection from state debtors
more news
Today
This Week
1. Greek future as trade hub in limbo amid Syriza split on railways
2. Greek gov't denies finance minister Varoufakis to resign [Update]
3. Bundesbank's Weidmann says euro zone debt in 'danger zone,' opposes more aid for Greece
4. New Democracy's political council convenes to decide line opposite gov't
5. Clocks go forward one hour on Sunday
6. Berlin says has no exact information about Greek reforms
Today
This Week
1. Next Monday is D-Day for state funds
2. EU asks Greece for more reforms to speed talks on bailout
3. PM faces Merkel amid race to detail reforms
4. Some more equal than others
5. Greece to present reforms by Monday, says gov't spokesman [Update]
6. EU institutions statement on Greece
Find us ...
... on
Twitter
... on Facebook
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright 2015, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.