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Greece
Overview of the education system (EAG 2013)
  • The overall level of education attainment in Greek society rose sharply between 2000 and 2011. In 2000, more than half (51%) of the adult population had only attained compulsory education (i.e. below upper secondary). In 2011, the share of adults who had only attained below upper secondary education had decreased by 18 percentage points, double the OECD average decrease. By 2011, more than two-thirds (67%) of the adult population had attained at least an upper secondary education, in comparison to 50% at the beginning of the last decade. Nonetheless, the share of the adult population in Greece who had attained at least an upper secondary education was still below the OECD average (76%).
  • As in most OECD countries, women outperformed men in tertiary education in 2011. The proportion of women with a first degree from a largely theory-based tertiary-type A programme was 34 year-olds %, more than double the rate among men of 16%, but still far below the OECD average for both women (40%) and men (26%).
  • Since the global recession in 2008, the rise in unemployment among 25-64 year-olds has equally affected those with and without an upper secondary education, rising by more than 10 percentage points in both cases, up to more than 17% in 2011. Tertiary-educated individuals have not done much better. 13% of 25-64 year-olds with a tertiary degree were unemployed in 2011, an increase by 7 percentage points compared with 5% across the OECD. Unemployment for this group has increased by 7 percentage points since 2008. Young people were hardest hit by the impact of the economic crisis, whatever their level of qualification. Among 25-34 year-olds, the unemployment rate between 2008 and 2011 increased by more than 13 percentage points to reach 23% among those with an upper secondary education, and more than 26% among those with tertiary qualifications.
  • In 2011, some 22% of 15-29 year-olds were neither in employment nor in education or training (NEET), against 16% in OECD countries as a whole. In 2011, Greece reported 30% of NEETs among 25-29 year-olds, the second highest proportion of NEETs across OECD countries after Turkey (OECD average: 20%).
  • Teachers' salaries in Greece fell by 17% in real terms between 2009 and 2011, while they fell by around 2% on average among OECD countries. In addition, Greek teachers also saw their net salaries shrink due to the creation of a solidarity tax, increasing the level of taxation, while insurance coverage paid by teachers is still calculated based on their earlier higher salaries.
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    The following list displays indicators for which your selected country shows the highest and lowest values among countries. The list can be sorted by level of education or by age group. All rankings are calculated including available data from OECD and partner countries. Find out more about the methodology here.

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    Educational outcomes

    The level of upper secondary attainment among 25-34 year-olds is one of the lowest among OECD and G20 countries with available data. (80.1 %, rank 28/35 ) Download Indicator

    The level of upper secondary attainment among 55-64 year-olds is one of the lowest among OECD and G20 countries with available data. (47.2 %, rank 28/35 ) Download Indicator

    The level of tertiary attainment among 30-34 year-olds is one of the lowest among OECD and G20 countries with available data. (29.4 %, rank 25/34 ) Download Indicator

    The proportion of 25-64 year-olds who have attained vocational programmes in the upper secondary or post-secondary level is one of the lowest among OECD and G20 countries with available data. (14.9 %, rank 22/27 ) Download Indicator

    The proportion of 25-64 year-olds men who have attained vocational programmes in the upper secondary or post-secondary level is one of the lowest among OECD and G20 countries with available data. (17.3 %, rank 22/27 ) Download Indicator

    The proportion of 25-64 year-olds women who have attained vocational programmes in the upper secondary or post-secondary level is one of the lowest among OECD and G20 countries with available data. (12.5 %, rank 22/27 ) Download Indicator

    The proportion of 25-64 year-olds who have attained general programmes in the upper secondary or post-secondary level is one of the highest among OECD and G20 countries with available data. (26.2 %, rank 2/27 ) Download Indicator

    The proportion of 25-64 year-olds men who have attained general programmes in the upper secondary or post-secondary level is one of the highest among OECD and G20 countries with available data. (23.6 %, rank 5/27 ) Download Indicator

    The proportion of 25-64 year-olds women who have attained general programmes in the upper secondary or post-secondary level is one of the highest among OECD and G20 countries with available data. (28.8 %, rank 2/27 ) Download Indicator

    Participation in education

    In Greece, the percentage of today's young people expected to graduate from upper secondary education during their lifetimes is one of the low among OECD and G20 countries with available data. (67.5 %, rank 26/29 ) Download Indicator

    In Greece, the percentage of today's young men expected to graduate from upper secondary education is one of the lowest among OECD and G20 countries with available data. (59.5 %, rank 27/29 ) Download Indicator

    In Greece, the percentage of today's women expected to graduate from upper secondary education is one of the lowest among OECD and G20 countries with available data. (76 %, rank 24/29 ) Download Indicator

    In Greece, the percentage of today's young people expected to graduate from upper secondary education of general programme is one of the highest among OECD and G20 countries with available data. (67.5 %, rank 8/36 ) Download Indicator

    The proportion of upper secondary students enrolled in vocational or pre-vocational programmes is one of the smallest among OECD and G20 countries with available data. (31.7 %, rank 30/38 ) Download Indicator

    In Greece, the number of expected years in education between the ages of 5 and 39 is one of the highest among OECD and G20 countries with available data. (18.6 Years, rank 8/38 ) Download Indicator

    Resources for education

    The change in expenditure between 2005 and 2010 per student at the tertiary level is comparatively small. (63 Index, rank 29/29 ) Download Indicator

    The change in total expenditure between 2005 and 2010 at the tertiary level is comparatively small. (42 Index, rank 33/33 ) Download Indicator

    The change in the number of students between 2005 and 2010 at the tertiary level is comparatively small. (68 Index, rank 28/29 ) Download Indicator

    In Greece the change in GDP between 2008 and 2010 is comparatively small. (92 Index, rank 32/34 ) Download Indicator

    The change in total public expenditure for all services, including education, between 2008 and 2010 is one of the smallest among OECD and G20 countries with available data. (94 Index, rank 32/34 ) Download Indicator

    Teachers

    The number of days of instruction in a school year in pre-primary school is especially small. (177 Days, rank 27/30 ) Download Indicator

    The number of days of instruction in a school year in primary school is especially small. (177 Days, rank 26/33 ) Download Indicator

    The number of days of instruction in a school year in lower secondary school is especially small. (153 Days, rank 30/30 ) Download Indicator

    The number of days of instruction in a school year in upper secondary school is especially small. (153 Days, rank 31/31 ) Download Indicator

    The number of hours pre-primary teachers spend teaching in public institutions is comparatively small in Greece. (708 Hours, rank 25/29 ) Download Indicator

    Classroom environment

    Intended instruction time for lower secondary students, in hours per year, in Greece is one of the shortest among OECD and G20 countries with available data. (796 Hours, rank 29/31 ) Download Indicator

    Total compulsory instruction time for lower secondary students in Greece is one of the shortest among OECD and G20 countries with available data. (2387 Hours, rank 26/31 ) Download Indicator

    Total intended instruction time for lower secondary students in Greece is among the shortest among OECD and G20 countries with available data. (2387 Hours, rank 28/31 ) Download Indicator

    Compulsory instruction time for lower secondary students, in hours per year, in Greece is one of the shortest among OECD and G20 countries with available data. (796 Hours, rank 26/31 ) Download Indicator

    Classes are particularly small in primary schools. (17 Students, rank 30/31 ) Download Indicator

    Economic and social outcomes

    The employment rate among 25-64 year-old women with only primary or pre-primary education is comparatively low. (34.8 %, rank 17/26 ) Download Indicator

    The employment rate among 25-64 year-old individuals with a tertiary education is comparatively low. (74.8 %, rank 36/36 ) Download Indicator

    The employment rate among individuals with an upper secondary or a post-secondary non-tertiary education is comparatively low. (62.6 %, rank 35/36 ) Download Indicator

    The employment rate among men with an upper secondary or a post-secondary non-tertiary education is comparatively low. (75.9 %, rank 30/36 ) Download Indicator

    The employment rate among men with a tertiary education is comparatively low. (79.7 %, rank 36/36 ) Download Indicator

    The employment rate among women without an upper secondary education is comparatively low. (37.6 %, rank 27/35 ) Download Indicator

    The employment rate among women with an upper secondary or a post-secondary non-tertiary education is comparatively low. (49.4 %, rank 35/36 ) Download Indicator

    The employment rate among women with a tertiary education is comparatively low. (69.9 %, rank 33/36 ) Download Indicator

    The proportion of male full-time earners among all earners aged 55 to 64 with below upper secondary education is comparatively low. (39.7 %, rank 14/14 ) Download Indicator

    The proportion of female full-time earners among all earners aged 55 to 64 with below upper secondary education is comparatively low. (15.9 %, rank 13/13 ) Download Indicator

    The proportion of male full-time earners among all earners aged 55 to 64 with upper secondary and post-secondary non-tertiary education is comparatively low. (37 %, rank 14/14 ) Download Indicator

    The proportion of female full-time earners among all earners aged 55 to 64 with upper secondary and post-secondary non-tertiary education is comparatively low. (18.7 %, rank 14/14 ) Download Indicator

    The proportion of male full-time earners among all earners aged 55 to 64 with tertiary education is comparatively low. (60.4 %, rank 14/14 ) Download Indicator

    The proportion of female full-time earners among all earners aged 55 to 64 with tertiary education is comparatively low. (32.2 %, rank 14/14 ) Download Indicator

    Compared with other OECD and G20 countries, the earnings of men without an upper secondary education are relatively low compared to those of men with an upper secondary education. (69 Index, rank 12/17 ) Download Indicator

    Compared with other OECD and G20 countries, the earnings of women without an upper secondary education are relatively low compared to those of women with an upper secondary education. (50 Index, rank 18/18 ) Download Indicator

    Compared with other OECD and G20 countries, the earnings of adults without an upper secondary education are relatively low compared to those of adults with an upper secondary or a post-secondary non-tertiary education. (61 Index, rank 17/18 ) Download Indicator

    Compared with other OECD and G20 countries, the difference in earnings between men with a tertiary education and those with an upper secondary education is quite low. (151 Index, rank 11/18 ) Download Indicator

    Compared with other OECD and G20 countries, the difference in earnings between women with a tertiary education and those with an upper secondary education is quite high. (222 Index, rank 3/18 ) Download Indicator

    Compared with other OECD and G20 countries, the proportional difference in earnings between adults with a tertiary education and those with an upper secondary or post-secondary non-tertiary education is quite high. (170 Index, rank 8/18 ) Download Indicator

    The proportion of 25-29 year-olds who are neither employed nor in education or training is comparatively large in Greece. (30 %, rank 2/34 ) Download Indicator


    General findings
    • Across almost all OECD countries, upper secondary attainment is the norm. On average, 75% of 25-64 year-olds and 82% of 25-34 year-olds had reached this level of attainment in 2011. However, despite notable strides, some countries remain far below the OECD average in upper secondary attainment. For example, in Mexico, Portugal and Turkey, less than 20% of the population had attained upper secondary education as the highest level of education in 2011.
    • Vocational education and training is a major factor in the educational attainment of people in many countries. In 2011, a vocational upper secondary or post-secondary non-tertiary education was the highest level of attainment for more than 50% of 25-64 year-olds in Austria, the Czech Republic, Germany, Poland, the Slovak Republic and Slovenia. However, in these countries, people tend to leave education after attaining upper secondary qualifications. In an additional 10 OECD countries, a vocational upper secondary or post-secondary non-tertiary attainment was the highest educational level for more than 30% of 25-64 year-olds.
    • Tertiary attainment levels have increased considerably over the last decades. On average across OECD countries, the proportion of 25-64 year-olds that hold a tertiary qualification has increased by 4.2% per year since 2000. However, even though tertiary attainment rates have increased in recent years, less than 35% of both men and women had attained a tertiary education in 2011.
    • If current tertiary attainment rates among 25-34 year-olds are maintained, the proportion of adults in France, Ireland, Japan and Korea who have a tertiary education will surpass that of other OECD countries, while the proportion in Austria, Brazil and Germany will fall further behind other OECD countries.
    • Significant progress has been achieved in reducing the gender gap in educational attainment and women have surpassed men in many aspects of education in OECD countries. Among 30-34 year-olds, more than 40% of women had a tertiary education in 2011, surpassing the rate of men with that level of education by about 8 percentage points. Tertiary attainment rates among young women have grown strongly in Australia, Canada, Ireland, Israel, New Zealand, Norway and Sweden, where 50% or more of younger women in that age group had attained tertiary education in 2011.
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    • Across OECD countries, employment rates are highest among people who have a tertiary education; and these individuals are also most likely to be employed full time.
    • Unemployment rates are nearly three times higher among individuals who do not have an upper secondary education (13% on average across OECD countries in 2011) than among those who have a tertiary education (5% in 2011).
    • Individuals who have at least an upper secondary education have a greater chance of being employed than those without that level of education.
    • Gender differences in employment rates are smallest among tertiary-educated individuals and largest among men and women who do not have an upper secondary education.
    • In all OECD countries, adults with tertiary education earn more than adults with upper secondary or post-secondary non-tertiary education, who, in turn, earn more than adults with a below upper secondary education.
    • On average across OECD countries, the difference in earnings between younger and older workers increases with educational attainment, benefitting more educated older workers. The earnings premium for tertiary-educated 55-64 year-olds is generally larger than that for all tertiary educated workers: in 2011, on average, the earnings differential between these two groups increased by 16 percentage points.
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    • In 2011, on average across OECD countries, 16% of 15-29 year-olds were neither employed nor in education or training (NEET) (7% unemployed and 9% inactive), as were 8% of 15-19 year-olds (2.7% unemployed and 5.8% inactive), and 20% of 25-29 year-olds (8% unemployed and 12% inactive).
    • In Chile, Greece, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Mexico, Spain and Turkey, more than 20% of 15-29 year-olds were NEET in 2011 compared to less than 10% in Austria, Iceland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and Switzerland. Unemployment levels are particularly worrying in Greece (14.6% in 2011) and Spain (17.0% in 2011), as is inactivity among young people in those countries (7.1% and 7.5%, respectively, in 2011).
    • On average across OECD countries in 2011, 18% of 15-29 year-old women were NEET (12% inactive and 6% unemployed) as were 13% of 15-29 year-old men (7% unemployed and 6% inactive).
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    • In 2010, OECD countries spent an average of 6.3% of their GDP on educational institutions. Out of the 33 countries for which data were available, this proportion exceeded 7% in Denmark, Iceland, Israel, Korea, New Zealand, Norway and the United States. Only the Czech Republic, Hungary Italy, the Russian Federation and the Slovak Republic spent less than 5% of their GDP on educational institutions.
    • On average, OECD countries spent USD 9 313 annually per student from primary through tertiary education in 2010: USD 7 974 per primary student, USD 9 014 per secondary student and USD 13 528 per tertiary student. Spending per pre-primary student amounted to USD 6 762 per year.
    • While there was no clear global trend in how the proportion of public expenditure on education evolved during the economic crisis, in 14 out of the 30 countries with available data, public expenditure on education grew at a faster rate than public expenditure on all other services between 2008 and 2010.
    • Public funding accounted for 84% of all funds for educational institutions on average in OECD countries in 2010, and between 2000 and 2010, public funding increased for all levels of education combined. However, more pressure has been put on households to share the cost of education, and private funding increased at an even greater rate in more than three-quarters of countries. The share of public and private investment in education differs among education levels. Tertiary institutions and, to a lesser extent, pre-primary institutions obtain the largest proportions of funds from private sources (32% and 18%, respectively, in 2010).
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    • The ratio of students to teaching staff varies across OECD countries and levels of education. At the primary level, there were more than 15 students for every teacher on average in OECD countries in 2011. In most countries, the student-teacher ratio decreases between primary and lower secondary school, despite an increase in class size. In 2011, there were, on average, about 14 students per teacher at the secondary level. At the tertiary level, there were, on average, about 16 students per teacher in OECD countries.
    • The number of teaching hours per teacher in public schools in 2011 averaged 790 hours per year in primary education, 709 hours in lower secondary education, and 664 hours in upper secondary education.
    • Teachers' statutory salaries vary widely across countries, but often increase with the level of education. In 2011, the statutory salaries of teachers with at least 15 years of experience averaged USD 36 135 at the pre-primary level, USD 38 136 at the primary level, USD 39 934 at the lower secondary level, and USD 41 665 at the upper secondary level. Between 2000 and 2011, teachers' salaries increased in real terms in most countries.
    • On average in OECD countries, pre-primary school teachers' salaries in 2011 amounted to 80% of full-time, full-year earnings of tertiary-educated adults working in different occupations. Primary school teachers' salaries amounted to 82% of that income, lower secondary school teachers' salaries amounted to 85% of that benchmark, and upper secondary school teachers' salaries amounted to 89% of those earnings.
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    Note: These values should be interpreted with care since they are influenced by countries' specific contexts and trade-offs. In education, there is often no simple most- or least-efficient model. For instance, the share of private expenditure in education must be read against other measures designed to mitigate inequities, such as loans and grants; longer learning time is an opportunity to convey more and better content to students, but may hinder investments in other important areas. If you want further information on the nature of different variables, please take the time to read the analysis and contextual information, available at the website for each publication.
    All rankings for individual variables are compiled on the basis of OECD and G20 countries for which data are available. The OECD average includes only OECD countries which are listed here: http://www.oecd.org/about/membersandpartners/

    For additional notes, please refer to annexes in the list of links below the introductory country profile text.