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Over Objections, Greek Teachers Will Be Evaluated: SYRIZA Protests

September 20, 2021

ATHENS – School teachers in Greece, who have long resisted any idea their work should be evaluated, will have their performance in class appraised, drawing wrath from their union and the major opposition SYRIZA.

Education Minister Niki Kerameus laid down the law to the teachers over objections from their union, whose leaders said there will be legal consequences if the state goes ahead, reported Kathimerini.

Teachers have said they will refuse to take part in the evaluations and it wasn't said if that happens whether those checking their performance would rate them without their participation.

According to the assessment guides sent to schools by the Institute of Educational Policy, the emphasis of the assessment will be on the teachers educational work, especially remote classes during COVID-19 lockdowns.

That will look at how distance teaching was organized and operated, what the problems faced by schools were and how they were addressed, with the teachers being asked to cooperate, the report said.

Teachers will be evaluated individually on a four-point scale: unsatisfactory, satisfactory, very good, excellent and those judged unsatisfactory will undergo remedial training and no other penalties.

“Why should anyone react to (evaluations)?” an experienced trade unionist told Kathimerini, implying that that there is essentially no “punishment” for teachers whose work is considered failing, apart from losing ground in scoring for administrative positions. 

The same trade unionist – who was not named – said there is no quota for the maximum distribution of teachers per each assessment category.

“Everyone can be judged very good or excellent, there is no limit,” said the trade unionist, who has a long tenure in the ranks of the former PASOK Socialists party and considers the regulations are “absolutely applicable.”

SYRIZA’s shadow education minister Nikos Filis – who as education minister when the Leftists ruled said he didn't want standards – said his party would back teachers if they went on strike in protest, saying evaluations were unconstitutional.

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