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Protests, strikes over discrimination against principals continue across Turkey.

ySTANBUL (CyHAN)- Various demonstrations and protests against discrimination in the appointments of many public school principals continued on Wednesday across Turkey.

In Gaziantep, members of the Education Personnel Union (Ey-itim-Sen) staged protests on Monday in front of the Gaziantep governorA[sup.3]s office against systematic discrimination on the part of the Ministry of Education (MEB) towards principals and teachers who belong to unions that do not support the government.

In a press statement during the protests, Ey-itim-Sen Gaziantep branch chairman Ali ErsE[micro]nmez said the union was disappointed to see that school principals and teachers are being appointed by the authorities without regard to merit.

"If you are a member of a pro-government union, you can be appointed as a principal or manager. In the same way, you can be placed anywhere in the country if you are a member of a pro-government union. This is disappointing and discriminatory," the branch chairman said.

ErsE[micro]nmez also criticized the MEB for making changes to the Turkish education system that are likely to create further polarization among people instead of focusing on real problems that have been going on for years.

"Unfortunately, instead of getting to the root of the problems, the ministry makes moves to save the day. But this will not take us anywhere. For example, since beginning of the implementation of the 4+4+4 education system, political interference in education has greatly increased. All those critical but quick changes in the system not only trap educators but also affect the students in negative way," ErsE[micro]nmez said.

The 4+4+4 system was introduced by the government at the beginning of the 2012-2013 academic year and brought about fundamental changes to the education system in Turkey.

The Union of Active Educators (Aktif Ey-itim-Sen) Bursa branch chairman ybrahim Kaygysyz also released a statement late on Wednesday protesting authorities who engage in malpractice in the appointment of Ministry of Education provincial and district managers.

"In addition to only solving short-term problems, the ministry insists on complicating the situation. As members of Aktif Ey-itim-Sen, we will not be mere spectators of the imprudent and discriminatory actions of the government and the ministry regarding educators and [education] principles. We have never been in support of installing one's own cadre in public offices. Thus, we will not obey the government's unlawful and discriminatory policies against our educators," Kaygysyz said.

In Afyonkarahisar, a group of school administrators from Aktif Ey-itim-Sen staged a protest in front of the Provincial National Education Directorate and issued a press statement there. The union's branch representative, Abdullah Hatipoy-lu, said that the government's practices constitute the most comprehensive operation of seizure of public offices based on political considerations In Ankara, members of Aktif Ey-itim-Sen came together on Wednesday for a panel discussion with titled "The teacher's role in the way to build Turkey's bright future." Delivering a speech during the panel, professor Osman Euzsoy said that remaining a member of Aktif Ey-itim-Sen during this process is an indication of devotedness.

"Those who stand against the discriminatory policies of the government will be best remembered for their rightful stances," Euzsoy noted.

(Cihan/Today's Zaman) CyHAN

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Publication:Cihan News Agency (CNA)
Date:Sep 24, 2014
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