Therefore, Greek managers coordinate considerable businesses in Romania which generated a business pattern specially created for the Greek community in Bucharest – a private school for Athenian expats’ children.
The Greek School of Bucharest “Athena” can be approached as a business as it attracts investments; it returns profit and has paying venues. Nonetheless, in spite of the high cost of the operation, the tuition fees are very low – 3,500 euros.
The Greek School of Bucharest "Athena" was established in 2008, in accordance with the protocol which was signed between the Greek Embassy on behalf of the Greek Administration and the Association of the Greek Parents & Guardians which bears the responsibility for the foundation and operation of the school under the Greek Embassy’s auspice.
In 2008-2009 the school operated as kindergarten and the first 3 classes of the elementary school, whereas each year the school will operate one higher class of the elementary school in order within the next 2 years to operate all the 6 classes of the elementary school as per the Greek curriculum and education system.
“Each year, as the today’s and tomorrow’s children signed up to this school will grow, new classes will be added”, Panos Loukas, general manager Edrasis Construct Group, one of the school’s sponsors and head of the Parents’ Association of Greek School Bucharest told Wall-Street.
Other members of the Parents’ Association include Sotiris Yannopoulos, general manager East Balkans at PepsiCo International – Star Foods, Spiros Vamvakas, commercial manager Stirom SA, Sotiris Karagiozidis, managing partner HCS - Human Capital Solutions and Michas Petros, managing director of Steelmet Romania.
The tuition fees are very low particularly if you compare them with the fees of the other foreign schools, said Loukas. Whereas the Greek Ministry of Education provides the teachers, it is the Parents Association which is responsible for the operation of the school including the covering of the cost for all the expenditures (rental of the building, payroll for the administrative staff, the assistants, etc.)
“Despite the high costs of operating a school of this kind, especially when compared to other schools and correspond to an amount of 3,500 euros per year an additional charge of the 200 euros for food and transportation services provided by the school”, said the president of Association of Parents.
Moreover, the school benefits of the help from 15 sponsors, such as STIROM, Alpha Bank, Alumil, Cosmote, EDRASIS Construct, Star Foods, STEELMET, Alexandrion Group and several other companies from several business sectors across Romania.
These companies provide financing to the Association of Parents. The funds are used for the school to operate under proper conditions, and reduced the tuition fees paid by the parents.
Recently, the members of the Association of Parents have decided to set up their own building. The monthly costs of the school mount to nearly 25,000 euros per month, while the monthly rent is around 9,000 euros/month.
Greek School’s objective is to attract children of the Greek and Cypriot communities of Romania, the mixed families and the mid to upper income Romanian families.
A research conducted by CIVITAS indicates that 90% of the Romanians want to send their children to a private school, 80% would be interested to receive more information about the Greek School whereas 30% of them would consider sending their children to the Greek School.
In addition, based upon certain criteria, the Parents Association offers each year 10 scholarships for the children of whom their parents cannot afford to pay the tuition fee.
Apart from the traditional Greek curriculum, courses include, English and Romanian language classes as well as other educational activities.
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