In Greece, public primary school ("Dimotiko" in Greek) and junior high school ("Gymnasio" in Greek) are free and open to everyone. Greece provides for free your child's books but does not pay for school supplies such as pencils, notebooks, or transportation to school.
You can enrol your children in:
- Primary school if they are 6 to 12 years old.
- Junior high school if they are 12 to 15 years old.
Children who completed primary school during the previous school year will be automatically registered with the nearest junior high school.
Children over 12, who are enrolling for the first time in Greece, will need to register at the nearest junior high school following the same process described in this article.
Quick facts about primary school enrollment
- Children who attend primary school will automatically register for the next grade at the same school they attended last year.
- Schools start mid of September.
What if I miss the deadline?
You can still enrol your children. But the Ministry of Education warns that you should enrol your children during registration to give them the best chance of getting a place.
What if I'm waiting for Family Reunification?
Your child should enrol even if you are waiting for Family Reunification to another country. Enrolling won't affect if and when you can leave Greece.
Will my children attend a reception class at the public primary school?
Greece's Zone of Educational Priorities program offers specialized reception classes and other help for refugee children ages 6 to 15 who are not yet fluent or don't communicate easily in Greek. These classes are 15 additional hours every week where they learn the Greek language only. Students can attend these classes for a maximum of 3 years.
In addition to reception classes, refugee children will also attend regular classes with Greek students.
At the beginning of the school year, the Greek Ministry of Education will start organizing reception classes in primary schools around Greece, depending on the need in each school.
What if my children don't speak any Greek at all?
The Greek Ministry of Education will continue to offer afternoon school classes for children who live in most official camps, who don't speak any Greek or have just arrived.
The classes will be from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. and will cover Greek language, English, math, sports, arts and computers.
Children aged 6 to 15 can attend these classes, which will be held in Greek schools and are scheduled to start in October. For more information, ask the Refugee Education Coordinator at your camp.
Who can help you enrol
If you live in an urban accommodation hosted by an NGO, ask a social worker or another NGO worker for help. They will contact the nearest primary school, or a Refugee Education Coordinator, who will help you enrol.
If you live in a camp, contact the Ministry of Education's Refugee Education Coordinator in the camp for help.
If you live in private accommodation, send us a message on Facebook, and we will try to help you find an NGO that can help you.
How to enrol?
To enrol, visit your nearest public school. You can enrol at any time during the school year. If you can, ask an NGO working to help you.
If you're going to a school alone and don't speak Greek or English, you can take along this letter (in Greek, English, Arabic, Farsi and Urdu). It asks the school to help you enrol your children.
Download this letter if you are going to school alone and do not speak English. Visit your nearest kindergarten or primary school and show it to the School Director to help you. Also, ensure you get your application number with you («protokolo» in Greek).
Documents to bring
When you visit the school to enrol, bring:
- Proof of vaccination.
- Proof of address. If you live in a private apartment, you can take an electricity bill in your name as proof of address.
- Your child's Registration card or Residence Permit. The school will make a copy.
- For Ukrainian nationals, you need to bring the Temporary Protection card.
If you are coming from another RIC, where your child has already attended a class in a school, make sure to ask the school before you leave for certification of attendance and inform, if possible, the school that you are moving to. This will help speed up the process of enrollment in the new school.
If you are missing documents, school principals should enrol your child anyway.
During enrollment, your school will give you a form you must take to a public health centre or clinic. You can also see and print this form in advance here. A doctor will examine your child for free and give you a health certificate to bring back to your school.