The second stage of training includes traineeship in courts, and runs from November 24th of the year of enrolment until May 31st of the following year. It concerns trainees who have chosen to serve as candidate probationary officers in the Council of State, the Court of Audit and the Advocate General Audit Office of the Court of Audit, respectively, whereas the other trainees in Thessaloniki shall be placed in courts of first instance and in the public prosecutor’s office.
During traineeship, supervising judicial officers appoint up to five (5) trainees to each instructor, who alternate in such a way during traineeship, so that every instructor is responsible for every trainee, whereas trainees are trained in a wide range of subjects.
Trainees process under the guidance of judicial officers (supervisors and instructors) cases assigned to them, prepare cases or draft court decisions, opening or closing statements, prosecutorial orders, indictments or rulings. If asked, they may attend preliminary investigation proceedings or questioning, as well as take part, without having the right to express their opinion or vote, in court hearings and deliberations, and their participation is not recorded in the court reports, minutes or decisions. Moreover, trainees are required to take part in information and training sessions which are regularly held by the supervisors of traineeships. How often, where and when these sessions take place is set at the supervisor’s discretion.
The trainees’ performance during traineeship is evaluated by the judicial officers responsible for their traineeship on the basis of the following criteria: a) their judicial ethics, professional conduct and stately presence in court; b) their industriousness and diligence; c) their scientific knowledge; d) their cooperation with the instructors and other judicial officers; e) the ability to process a case file, and the arguments they present at the deliberation; and f) good writing skills when preparing a case or draft court decisions, opening or closing statements, prosecutorial orders, indictments or rulings.
The final ranking of trainees regarding the traineeship stage is the sum of the increments corresponding to the marks given by all instructors, as follows: (a) in group 1 an increment of 1.2; (b) in group 2 an increment of 1.15; (c) in group 3 an increment of 1.1; and (d) in group 4 an increment of 1. Trainees included in group 5 are considered to have failed and repeat this stage in the next training course. If they fail again, the School discontinues their studies.
Trainees receive their final mark based on which they are ranked in the respective seniority list. This mark is the sum of marks awarded:
a) During the admission examinations, with a weighted factor of three tenths (0.3);
b1) During the first phase of the first stage of training, with a weighted factor of one tenth (0.1);
b2) During the second phase of the first stage of training, with a weighted factor of two tenths (0.2); and
b3) a total of the first stage of training with a weighted factor of three tenths (0.3) and
c) the graduation examination mark with a weighted factor of four tenths (0.4). Each mark is multiplied by the respective weighted factor, and the sum of marks is divided by the sum of weighted factors. If trainees obtain the same final mark, the one who received the highest mark during the admission examination takes precedence.
Ethics And Character Assessment - Psychiatric Examination
When the second stage of training is concluded, no later than June 5th of the year after the year of enrolment, the Board of Studies convenes a special meeting to assess whether successful trainees meet the requirements to perform the duties of a judicial officer. Their assessment may be negative only if they conclude, by a duly justified decision, that a trainee does not possess the appropriate judicial ethics or they display conduct which either hinders their cooperation with colleagues and other judicial officers, or irreparably affects their personal status or the status of justice. For the above findings, a psychiatric examination is carried out during the first stage, as well as during the second stage of training, which includes a written and oral psychometric test, by a three-member committee consisting of a director and two senior doctors from a psychiatric unit of a state or university hospital.
Extension of Traineeship
Upon completion of training stages and the list of seniority in each area, traineeship may be extended in the same courts or the competent public prosecutor’s office until the presidential decree appointing them to a post of probationary judicial officer is published. During this extension, trainees engage in the same activities under the same supervisor, and receive the same remuneration from the School as they did during training.