Greek Orthodox education and the Greek -American Institute: 1912–1999

Thomas Charles Moulketis, Fordham University


This study focuses on the history of the Greek-American Institute, Bronx, New York. It is historical in nature and has four objectives: to present a history of Greek Orthodox education, to offer a history of the Greek-American Institute, to examine the school's stated philosophy and mission, and to determine if there are any changes or shifts in the school's philosophy and mission over time and to ascertain reasons for such changes. The study is undertaken primarily by means of document analysis. Interviews are included as support for the narrative. The main mission and philosophy of the Greek-American Institute, as of 1912, was the preservation of the Greek language and culture. Religion was a secondary concern at first because there was no church affiliated with the school when it began. The Greek language was of primary importance. Beginning with the eventual affiliation of Zoodohos Peghe Church with the Institute in the 1930s, the school's philosophy or mission expanded to include the teaching of religion and Orthodox tenets. By 1966, with changing demographics, an increase in mixed marriages, a desire to compete with the American public education system, and the influx of Greek-American priests and principals, the Institute's philosophy expanded once again. The Institute was now more concerned with offering students the best in Greek and American education so that students would be expertly prepared for entry into high school and beyond. The Greek-American Institute, today, seems to be on the right track with its present school philosophy and stated mission. This present philosophy and mission must be continued, however, despite decreasing enrollments (which is a reality in all the Greek Orthodox parochial schools), so that the Greek-American Institute will remain a viable, meaningful bellwether well into the 21 st century.

Subject Area

Religious education|Education history|Minority & ethnic groups|Sociology

Recommended Citation

Moulketis, Thomas Charles, "Greek Orthodox education and the Greek -American Institute: 1912–1999" (2000). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI9975357.