The first private school that fell victim to the 23 percent value added tax (VAT) implementation on private education is the Michalopouleion private school established in 1931.
The Michalopouleion private school in the Kallipolis neighborhood of Piraeus has endured the German occupation, the Greek Civil War, and other turbulent periods of Greek history, but apparently could not survive capital controls and the new bill that wants parents to pay 23 percent value added tax on private school tuition.
“The decision to close down is final,” owner Evangelos Plafoutzis told Greece’s ANA-MPA news agency, citing the economic crisis as the reason. “The imposition of the VAT was the straw that broke the camel’s back,” he said, adding that the capital controls at the end of June dealt a serious blow on the school.
The Michalopouleion was established in 1931 by Youla Michalopoulou-Plafoutzi, mother of Evangelos Plafoutzis who ran the school since 1969. During the German occupation it served as a shelter when the city of Piraeus was bombarded. Many prominent businessmen and citizens of Piraeus have graduated from there. The building housed an elementary school and a high school, while in the last few years it provided child care facilities.
The student outflow started when the economic crisis hit Greece. Plafoutzis said that four years ago there were 600 students while this year the number dwindled to 200.
The Union of Private School Teachers of Greece said that more than 60 families will be left without jobs after the Michalopouleion closes down while more private schools will be forced to shut down because the 23 percent VAT imposition.
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