The European Dimension in Greek education in the context of the European Union
This article examines the objectives, the benefits and the difficulties in the implementation of school partnerships under the optional European educational programme Comenius in the context of a policy promoting the European Dimension in the education systems of Europe and particularly in Greek education. A sample of Greek teachers having run such a partnership project and promoters of the programme were interviewed in depth for the purpose of this study. It was argued that through the European Dimension, the Community's objective is to promote a common attitude of European countries towards topics of social interest through the incorporation of similar features into the curricula of different education systems across Europe. In this context, all the interviewees underlined that by participating in Comenius, pupils and teachers had the opportunity to meet people from different European countries and education systems, learned foreign languages and made use of new technologies. However, the Greek respondents described difficulties in the implementation of Comenius related to language problems, lack of technical infrastructure, limited prior experience and increased central control. Correspondingly, they suggested that more emphasis could be placed on the teaching of foreign languages in Greek schools and teacher training institutions, on the use of efficient technical means of communication and on the effective guidance of the partnership projects so that Greek education can respond to the European challenge.
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