Copyright © 2004-2017  All rights reserved.  Carol Palioudaki      Living in Crete
Living in Crete
Living - Schools



Crete school
Schools in Crete
Schools in Crete

If you are thinking of moving to Crete with children, their education will be an important factor affecting you
decision of whether or not to move.

There is one full time school in Heraklion (the European school - non fee paying) which teaches lessons in
English and two full time private (fee paying) school in Chania which follow the American curriculum.

The European School in Heraklion
The School of European Education (SEE) opened in September 2005. It  was set up as an international school
primarily in order to provide schooling for the children of the multi-lingual European employees of ENISA, The
European Organisation for the Safety of Networks and Information, and to offer all pupils a European oriented
intercultural and multilingual education.

The European school provides Nursery, Primary and Secondery school education.  As well as providing
education for the children of ENISA employees, the school also takes other pupils as follows:

- Children of the employees of International Organizations and Diplomatic services that are based in Heraklion,
- Children whose parents (at least one of them) are nationals of an EU member state.

The School aims at familiarising the pupils with a multilingual and multicultural education.

The school is actually based in a Greek school, the 3rd Dimotiko of Heraklion  in Ag. Triada,  on Savathianou
street. It is part of the public school system and there are no fees.

At present (2015 – 2016), all years in the Greek and English Section of Primary Education, operate. In
Secondary Education all the classes of the Greek Section and 5 classes of the English Section operate.
For more information about  the European School see their website at Tel. (0030) 2810 301780
Read an article about the European school

Chania - Theodoropoulos International School
Theodoropoulos School  is a private school in Korakies, Akrotiri, Chania which teaches the Calvert
Homeschooling Curriculum (American curriculum). It is authorised by the Greek Ministry of Education. All
international students are accredited, are eligible to study anywhere abroad and the transcription from the
school will be accredited by colleges and universities in the USA.

Fees start at €7,800 per year (2010)

School main Website:
Email: kostas(at)

Chania - Mavromakataki - Mitera Private School
The Mavromatiki-Mitera school offers English instruction using the American Calvert Homeschooling
Curriculum.  For all other subjects,  the classes are integrated with the Greek school system offering far greater
immersion without requiring supplemental studies at home for Primary School from Kindergarten through 6th

Website (English)

Part time English Language Schools
In Chania the Cross Cultural Center offers part time English language and cultural programmes aimed at bi-
lingual or native English speaking children.

Cross Cultural Center
32 Athinon
Koun Kapi
Contact Tel. Carla Dolce-Stavrides- +30 6948364681
A message can also be left at the following landline number 2821054364.

Lessons are  two to three times a week, in the afternoon, 2 hours per session. There are classes for pre -
school aged children, right up to teens.    

Greek School
Any child who lives in Greece can attend Greek school.
To register your child at Greek school or nursery  go along to the school in your residential area. Some
documentation showing  your local address (e.g. electricity or phone bill) is usually required, to prove that you
are living in the area. You will also need the child's birth certificate, and you may be asked for details/proof  of
your child's innoculation history.

How will your child adjust to Greek school?
In general, the younger the child, the easier it will be for him/her to adapt. Toddlers and small children adapt
and absorb  new language very  easily. Children who join a Greek school at a very young age should progress
normally (and with the help of extra lessons, as is the norm for Greek school children) through the Greek school

Older children, and especially those coming up to, and in,  their teens  may have a very hard time adjusting.
They will be thrown into a strange language and culture and any child who is not  fluent in Greek will be placed
in a class with much younger children as they learn the language. Note that this does not mean they will be
taught Greek in class - they will be sitting in on lessons which will be impossible for them to understand if they
don't fully comprehend Greek.. Imagine how your 12 year old will feel spending seven hours a day in a class of
8 year olds, with whom he can hardly communicate...

You should carefully consider what effect a move would have on older children in particular, and their future
education. Children from another country with little or no knowledge of Greek, who join the system mid way
through are unlikely to graduate from high school as they will not have the language skills. Think of  reading
and debating Greek literature, for example,  or passing an advanced physics exam in Greek, after just two or
three years studying the language, and having missed much of the curriculum.

Nursery Schools
The state nursery schools  'nipio' , start taking children who have reached their fourth birthday by the start of
the school year (September). There are two years of state nursery school, 'pro nipio' and 'nipio', however some
nursery schools have a shortage of teachers and so will only take children in the second year (nipio) i.e. at 5
years old.
You should enquire at the nearest school to where you will be living.

Private nurseries in Crete are very reasonably priced, and many working parents send their young children to
one. The cost is around  250 Euros a month for 5 days a week, and you can negotiate a better price for part
time. It may be a good idea for a young child to go to one of these nurseries, even part time, just to get used to
the language. They generally accept babies from a few months old, up to children of five.


Further reading

  • If you have any other questions about schooling in Crete you can ask for advice on the forum from
    members living in Crete, or on the Living in Crete Facebook page

  • Further detailed information on schools in Greece & Crete including curriculum,
        teaching methods and expectations throughout the Dimotiko, Gymnasio and
        Lykeio school system can be found in the book  "Living in Crete. A Guide to
        Living, working, Retiring & Buying Property in Crete".
click here to get a copy

Living in Crete guide book