In this article you can find the conclusions of the survey which has been conducted during the first phase of the project implementation.
Summarizing, one could say that the notion of Entrepreneurship in the Greek reality still has not received proper attention. Its isolated and often optional teaching in secondary education does not allow students and teachers to be deeply informed and to dare its practical application. Private initiatives and personal interest are the main motives for dealing with this subject. Thus, there should be a much more active promotion by the State itself and the Ministry of Education, if we really want Greek students to have the right skills and be competitive in the international labour market.
But first of all we must realize that entrepreneurship is mentality, it is a way of thinking. Consequently a new culture, an entrepreneurship culture must be cultivated, into our schools, a need which arises from the students' capability to decode the financial situation and its potential.
School curricula should include entrepreneurship education with an evaluation of the quality of activities through internal procedures, self-assessment and an external and independent control. It should also measure:
• General entrepreneurial skills; creativity, ability to promote innovative ideas, curiosity, ability to work as a part of a team, self-confidence, leadership, a proactive attitude, risk appetite, ability to solve problems, responsibility, etc .;
• Specific entrepreneurial competences: the knowledge and skills to understand what must be done to start and run a new business; the processing power of a good business plan; the ability to seize opportunities; a good know-how of the production methods, knowledge of finance, etc .;
• Attitudes: how many students consider self-employment as a possible career choice? Such skills, competences and attitudes should preferably be measured both before and after students' participation in the program.
• All that can be achieved through: - self-assessment; - Interviews; - Feedback of focus and discussion groups; - Evaluation questionnaires; - Tests and simulation games, etc.
Summing up all the responses we can see that teaching entrepreneurship is not satisfactory in Polish schools and both teachers and students can see it. Also both the groups feel that this subject should be taught at schools as it is important for the future of the students. However teaching entrepreneurship is not possible without educating competent teachers of the subject who would be specialists in the subject but the theoretical approach should be abandoned for more practical exercises and tasks. Teaching entrepreneurship requires special organisational conditions to conduct classes – they should be made compulsory as only then students will feel that they should get involved in it. Also special programme oriented on practical, hand-on experience, on job shadowing and simulations should be introduced instead of the existing one. Active methods of teaching such as role playing, group works, workshops, Problem Based Learning and project work, discussions and decision games should be the core of the entrepreneurship as school subject. At the moment the curriculum comprises such topics as: Market economy, Money and banks, National economy or the Enterprise and economic activities – all of them present only theory, facts and figures. It seems that teaching entrepreneurship does not offer proper preparation of young people to open and run their own businesses in real life and that needs to be changed.
An entrepreneurial culture and entrepreneurship are conveyed in school. Advocates of more economics in the secondary school curriculum point out that economics and financial education can be the key to a better understanding of the world – particularly in the current climate – and therefore should be included in the secondary school curriculum.
Even so in vocational schools for economics different topics of entrepreneurship are included as a cross-curricular objective in all levels, according to the survey almost all students claim not being taught in the subject of entrepreneurship.
As the most important conclusion of the survey one can state:
Making Entrepreneurship a separate curriculum subject in all secondary school forms taught by teachers with a respective qualification, with more compulsory teaching hours, could significantly improve entrepreneurship education and could certainly help to create a stronger entrepreneurial culture in Germany.
Entrepreneurship has to be worked in schools from an "early age", promoting far-reaching actions not only in schools of various grades but also to society in general, motivating, raising awareness and supporting the encouragement of entrepreneurship.
There has been in recent years a growing approach to this issue such as the national competition "Ideas Contest - Entrepreneurial Schools" which is an initiative that aims to raise awareness and motivate young people to entrepreneurial practices promoting the initiative spirit and dynamism in its surrounding area.
Despite some good practices observed, School curricula should include entrepreneurship education with an assessment of the quality of activities through internal procedures, self-assessment and an external and independent audit. It should also measure:
• general skills; creativity, the ability to promote innovative ideas, curiosity, ability to work as part of a team, self-confidence, leadership, problem-solving skills, responsibility, ....;
• Specific competences: the knowledge and skills to understand what must be done; the ability to seize opportunities; knowledge of finance, ....;
• Attitudes: how many students consider self-employment as a possible career choice? Such skills, competences and attitudes should preferably be measured before and after the participation of students in the program.
• All that can be achieved through: - self-assessment; - Interviews; - Feedback from focus groups and debate; - Evaluation questionnaires; - Tests and simulation games
Final Report of the Expert Group, March 2008, European Commission concluded:
"If it is to make a success of the Lisbon strategy for growth and employment, Europe needs to stimulate the entrepreneurial mindsets of young people, encourage innovative business start-ups, and foster a culture that is friendlier to entrepreneurship and to growth of SMEs. The important role of education in promoting more entrepreneurial attitudes and behaviours is now widely recognized."
More and more students are realizing that they cannot pass their degree in for a job upon graduation anymore. The old promise made by our education system was that if you worked really hard in school, you would be almost guaranteed a job as a reward for your efforts. Both of these promises have been broken due to economic constraints and global competition.
In the modern world people can no longer expect large enterprises to guarantee them jobs for life. Individuals are increasingly expected to seek out their own opportunities, actively create value and behave ethically, rather than faithfully follow rules and routines set by others. In particular, today's young people need to learn to be enterprising, both when working for others and when setting up their own businesses. Being enterprising involves taking responsibility for decision making, becoming increasingly self reliant, pioneering, adventurous, daring, dynamic, progressive, opportunist, ambitious and holding your values, as well as being able to initiate ideas and see them through into action.
From our survey conducted in Romania, we can deduce many things, namely: