ATHENS – Greece’s State High School Teachers’ Federation (OLME) said state schools should not accept private donations because it could bring about the “full commodification of the education sector,” even though the country’s economic crisis has driven many parents to seek outside tutors and private schools to supplement their children’s education.
That decision came after the Magnesia branch of the State High School Teachers’ Association (ELME) in central Greece turned down a reported donation from the Bodossaki Foundation, saying it “rejects the logic of donations (because) it substitutes the state’s responsibility and obligation with regard to the operation of public schools.”
The Bodossaki Foundation was established in 1972 and is one of the most respected privately owned public-benefit organizations in Greece, it claimed on its website.
In its statement, OLME took note however of budget cuts to state education funding that have led to substandard facilities and chronic understaffing but said education is still the province of the state and private donors aren’t welcome.
“This gives private bodies the opportunity to enter state schools,” OLME said, suggesting the money given could come with inherent strings attached and private agendas as well.