The establishment of new initial vocational education and training (IVET) schools, (VTS, in Greek: Epagelmatikes Sxoles Katartisis – ESK), awarding qualifications at level 3 of the Hellenic qualifications framework (HQF), was announced by the Ministry of Education. The operation of VTS started in November 2022 at Perama, a suburb of Piraeus and part of the Athens-Piraeus urban area, and at Metsovo, a lively mountain town in Epirus, while the VTS of the island Syros will start its operation in February 2023.

Vocational training schools: aims and prospects

The operation of VTS was introduced by Law 4673/2020 National system for vocational education and training and lifelong learning, which established the National vocational education and training system at HQF levels 3, 4 and 5 of the Hellenic qualifications framework corresponding to the European qualifications framework (Law 4673/2020).

VTS provide modern initial vocational training aiming to upgrade basic skills in the most demanding specialities. Another goal of VTS is to deal with school dropout and improve the possibility of studying at a higher education level. Above all, VTS aim to ensure students’ integration into the labour market and professional life, and particularly to encourage the integration of vulnerable groups into training.

Vocational training schools: structure and programme

Studies in VTS are completed in 2 years following attendance of theoretical and laboratory classes, as well as a paid internship/apprenticeship programme, which is carried out through placements related to students’ speciality in companies of the private and public sectors. To register in a VTS, a degree of compulsory education or equivalent is required. VTS graduates earn a Vocational Education and Training degree at HQF level 3, after successful participation in certification exams conducted by the National Organisation for the Certification of Qualifications & Vocational Guidance (EOPPEP).

The specialities that will be provided in VTS prioritise the acquisition of technical vocational skills. More precisely, the VTS of Perama will provide the following specialities: welding and metal cutting technician, rolling mill technician and rolling mill technician for special constructions. The VTS of Metsovo will provide the speciality of textile artisan.

Additional specialities, with a high demand in the labour market related to the ship-building industry, such as machine tool technicians, applicators, roll workers, pipe workers, electric welders, sandblasters/painters and ship carpenters, will operate in the VTS of Perama and Syros for the training year 2023/24.

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Please cite this news item as: ReferNet Greece; Cedefop (2022). Greece: new public IVET schools established. National news on VET