The program is set to start in September and with the support of UNICEF as well as other NPOs the children will either be transported by bus to nearby public schools to attend classes and some in specific reception camps will have classrooms set up on site.
According to government reports, Greece plans to educate around 8,500 refugee children who have missed out on much schooling, not only after their arrival to Greece and since they have been at the camps, but also for months and sometimes years in their home country where war has made it impossible to seek an education.
The NPO Save the Children estimates that of the estimated 58,000 migrants trapped in Greece, 22,000 are children and 18,000 are school-aged.
Also, Save the Children reports that the refugee children represent a risk of a lost generation as they are stuck in camps in Greece and on average have not been in school for a year and a half. What’s more alarming is that more that one fifth of school-age refugee children have never even had the opportunity to go to school and have never stepped foot in a classroom.
The costs of educating the refugee children is a steep price and according to Education Ministry sources, Greece has secured 7 million euros from European funds and an additional 3 million euros will be provided by the International Organization of Migration by year’s end.