The Directorate for Secondary Education in Piraeus – is one of the most central ones in Greece since it covers the Municipality of Piraeus, the neighboring ones and those of the islands of the Saronic Gulf.
The head offices of the Institution are situated in Piraeus, a city with a long history dated back to ancient Greece. The effects of its natural space and geographical place have been critical factors for the configuration of the historical fate of Piraeus.
The growth of Piraeus, which became a municipality in 517 BC, is due to the creativity and vision of two great statesmen, Pericles and Themistocles. At their instance, important works were initiated and completed, amongst other the construction and extension of the Long Walls, which protected both sides of the road all the way from Piraeus to Athens.
As a result the "ancient" Piraeus flourished and became a port of high security with a great commercial activity, and a city throbbing with life. So it was justifiably called "Emporion of Greece". In modern era, Piraeus is a big city bustling with life and an integral part of Athens.
The port of Piraeus is one of the largest ports in Europe. With about 19 million passengers annually, Piraeus occupies the third place worldwide. It is becoming an important international port, open to challenges and international competition.
The Directorate is a decentralized educational service of the Greek state under the umbrella of the Ministry of Education and Religious Affairs. Its responsibility has to do with educational, pedagogical and administrative matters concerning the schools of the region of Piraeus and the islands, a land of amazing beauty and diversity. It has always been at the center of the important economic and social changes.
Piraeus is Greece's third largest city in terms of population. The city itself with its suburbs is an industrial zone of particular importance for the Greek economy, but nevertheless its centre has broad streets, spacious squares, tree-lined avenues.
Our Directorate is supervising about 175 school units (including the private ones). In particularly junior high schools or Gymnasium, high schools of general education or General Lyceum and VET high schools or Vocational Lyceum host many multicultural students of diverse cultural backgrounds. Our schools themselves are very active and carry out many projects in various topics about: Environment, Health, Culture, European projects, etc. What is more, inadequate attention is given to career counselling services (KESYP structures).
Also the Directorate is connected to a strong network of other Education Directorates all over Greece, responsible for the implementation of educational policy and linking local agents to central services, organizations and social partners.
Moreover, the Directorate has to deal with special geographical and social features. In the islands, sea transportation doesn't facilitate the communication among teachers and learners and mobility is difficult to the city of Piraeus. Because of rapid changes during the last decade school population face many urgent problems. Actually the continuous economic downturn affects all Greek population. If (according to the Greek Finance Ministry) nearly a quarter of Greek workers and pensioners are living below the poverty level , no doubt that unemployment and poverty has hit many families of our students which cannot afford to give their children the basic school materials needed to properly learn.
Furthermore, a very important aspect of the situation is the ethical-psychological one which directly affects teachers' work.