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Having been determined by the National Education Basic Law no. 1739 (1739 sayılı Milli Eğitim Temel Kanunu), the National Education System is formed of two main parts as “Formal Education” and “Non-formal Education”. Basic stages in the education system of Turkey are pre-school, primary education, secondary education and higher education stages. Formal education consists of three parts as public, private and open educations.
Schooling Percentages according to Age Groups
Between 2000 and 2016, schooling percentage of girl students compared to boy students progressively increased in years from 89,64 to 103,20 in the primary education, from 74,41 to 95,56 in the secondary education, from 73,56 to 90,15.
According to the data on “National Education Statistics - Formal Education 2016-2017 1st Semester (Milli Eğitim İstatistikleri-Örgün Eğitim 2016-2017 1. dönem” announced by the Ministry of National Education, there are 17 million 3019 thousands 433 students enjoying the formal education. According to data covering the first semester of 2016-2017 education years, of the students in the formal education, 14 million 684 thousand 664 students are studying in the public education institutions, 1 million 204 thousand 963 students are studying in the private education institutions and 1 million 429 thousand 806 students are studying in the open education institutions.
Of the 14 million 684 thousand 664 students studying in the public schools, 7 million 508 thousand 60 are boys (51,1 percent) and 7 million 176 thousand and 604 are girls (48,9 percent).
in private schools, however, there are 653 thousand 377 boy (52,2 percent) and 551 thousand 586 girl (45,8 percent) students are studying.
Of active students enrolled in the 1st semester in the open education, 798 thousand 574 students are formed of boys (55,9 percent) and 631 thousand 232 students are formed of girls (44,1 percent).
Of the 11 million 101 thousand 180 students studying in the public schools’ basic education stage, 10,02 percent are in the pre-schools, 42,85 percent are in the primary schools and 47,13 percent are in the secondary schools.
Of the 704 thousand 522 students studying in the basic education stage in private schools, 28,87 percent are in the pre-schools, 30,26 percent are in the primary schools and 40,87 percent are in the secondary schools.
In the secondary education stage, however, out of 5 million 513 thousand 731 students, 3 million 726 thousand 41 students are studying in public schools, 1 million 287 thousand 249 are studying in open education schools and 500 thousand 441 are studying in private schools.
Of the 5 million 513 thousand 731 students in the secondary education, 2 million 912 thousand 93 (52,8 percent) are educated in the general high schools, 1 million 967 thousand 232 (35,7 percent) are in vocational and technical high schools, 634 thousand 406 (11,5 percent) are in imam hatip high schools.
According to the Report on Policy Proposals for Grade Repetition, Reasons of Early Leaving from School and Children outside the Formal Education in Secondary Education (Ortaöğretimde Sınıf Tekrarı, Okul Terk Sebepleri ve Örgün Eğitim Dışında Kalan Çocuklar Politika Önerileri Raporu) published in 2013; ages of students that repeated grade in the secondary education in the 2012-2013 education year varies between 14 and 18. Age average of these students is determined to be 16,3. Of the grade repeating students, two thirds are formed of boys (%66,5) and one third are formed of girls (%33,5). The biggest group among the grade repeating students that are within the scope of the research is formed of 9th grade students with %74,5. This is followed by 10th grade (%14,8), 11th grade (%7,1) and 12th grade (%3,6) students respectively. Majority of the grade repeating students are determined to be from families with low socio-economical and education levels. %11 of grade repeating students stated that they smoke, drink alcohol and use other similar substances. Smoking, drinking alcohol and using similar substances is more common among boys. It is determined that more than one third of the grade repeating students had difficulty in understanding the classes, most students did not have the efficient studying habits and more than half lacked studying habits. %30 of the students expressed the factors playing role in their grade repetition as having difficulty in understanding the classes, bad teacher lectures, failure to finish homework and assignments in time. It is determined that compared to boy students, the grade repeating girl students perceived more peer support, more self sufficiency belief and more positive feelings towards the future. According to research results, grade repeating students show similar characteristics in terms of variables of educational state of their parents, working after school hours, living with the family, number of siblings, school type, class level, perceived peer support, self sufficiency belief, future aims, attitude towards school, relationships with teachers and perceived parental support. Grade repeating students show common characteristics in terms of variables of number of siblings, whether the family had regular income, father’s educational state, having a personal bedroom, social activities in the school, enjoying education and training activities. Similarly, number of siblings, whether the family had regular income and whether having a personal bedroom are common variables in the groups. Furthermore, it is found that peer support, self sufficiency, attitude towards school and perceived parental support are also similar variables.
In another research carried out for the said report, it is found that of the youth that are outside the formal education, %37,1 are 18 years old, %25,7 are 17 years old, %18,8 are 16 years old, %13,7 are 15 years old, and %4,1 are 14 years old. The youth outside the formal education are found to have families with low socio-economical and education levels. Smoking, bad physical health, bad financial state and unemployed father are among the most important issues with the youth outside the formal education. Almost one third of the youth outside the formal education that participated in the research is open high school most of whom left the high school early. Some of the participants have graduated from primary education but were unable to continue in high school.
The National Education System, determined by National Education Basic Law no. 1739 (1739 sayılı Milli Eğitim Temel Kanunu), consists of two main parts, namely “formal education” and “non-formal education”. Formal education is the regular education conducted within a school for individuals in a certain age group and at the same level, under programs developed in accordance with the purpose. Formal education includes pre-primary, primary school, lower secondary school, upper secondary and higher education institutions.
Pre-Primary Education: Pre-primary education; involves the education of children in the age group of 3 (children who have completed 36 months, who were born between first and 9th months of 2013) age group 4 and age group 5 (children who are younger 66 months, who were born between 4th and 12th months of 2011) who have not reached the age of compulsory primary education. Preprimary education institutions may be established as independent kindergartens or, where considered necessary, as nursery classes within a primary education school or as practice classes affiliated to other related education institutions. The objective of pre-primary education is to ensure that children develop physically, mentally and emotionally and acquire good habits, that they are prepared for primary education, that a common environment of upbringing is provided for children who come from a disadvantaged background and that they speak Turkish properly and correctly. Pre-Primary education institutions are opened as independent kindergartens and as nursery classes and practical classes within formal and non-formal education institutions with suitable physical capacity.
Summer Preschool: The aim of summer school programme is to spread and develop pre-primary education and to meet the needs of families that are on work about their child care and education. Summer school programme is an education that covers the subjects which have importance and priority in pre-primary programmes and implemented in summer especially for children aged 60-66 months who can not continue pre-primary education.
Mobile Classroom: Aiming at developing pre-primary education, mobile classroom is an implementation to institution based pre-primary education for children of lowincome families aged 36-66 months who cannot attend preprimary education institutions. Mobile classroom project is carried out by General Directorate of Basic Education for provincial education directorates, municipalities and universities.
Primary Education Institutions: The compulsory primary school age covers the age group of 5 (children who have completed 66 months, who were born between first and third months of 2011) to 13. (The coverage of this age group starts with children who are 66 months old by the end of September of the year of registration and ends at the end of the educational year when the child completes 13 and begins the age of 14.) The objective of primary education is to ensure that every Turkish child acquires the necessary knowledge, skills, behavior and habits to become a good citizen and is raised in accordance with the concept of national morals and that he/she is prepared for life and for the next level of education in accordance with his/her interests, talents and capabilities. Primary education institutions are consist of the fouryear and compulsory lower secondary schools four year and compulsory lower secondary schools which give opportunity to allow between different programmes, and lower secondary schools for imams and preachers. The preferable lessons in type of supporting students’ upper secondary education are consist of by students’ ability, improvement and prefers in lower secondary schools and lower secondary schools for imams and preachers.
Open Lower Secondary School: It is the institution that provide the opportunity of completing lower secondary education to citizens at least 14 years old who completed primary education but couldn’t attend to lower secondary education because of any reason, by distance educational method. There are not any divisions and teachers in accordance with system. Since 2009-2010 academic year, the completion period of Open Primary School has been reduced to one year from three years. In Open Lower Secondary School, an academic year consists of three semesters. Students are required to renew their registration on the internet every semester (3 times a year) at the times specified in the academic calendar. Registration of students, who do not enroll for one semester, is FREEZING, and registration of students, who do not enroll for two semesters consecutively, is UNREGISTERED. Previous credits of unregistered students are kept in reserve and they can continue from where they left off by reregistering.
Upper Secondary Education: Upper secondary education includes all the teaching institutions, general vocational and technical education institutions with at least four year compulsory formal or non-formal education, based on primary and lower secondary education. The aims and duties of secondary education, in accordance with the general purposes and basic principles of National Education, are as follows;
1. Enabling all students to have the awareness and power to get to know the problems provided that giving culture on minimum common general level look for ways of solution and aqquire the conscious of contributing to country’s economical, social and cultural development and power.
2. Preparing students for higher education or for life and job fields in accordance with their interests, aptitude and abilities with various programs and schools. While these missions are accomplished, a balance is set between students’ expectations and abilities and the needs of the society. General Secondary Education: It is a four-year compulsory educational process that prepares students both for higher education and for the future according to their interests, expectations and abilities in addition to equipping them with world knowledge with an education based on primary education.
General Secondary Education: It is a four-year compulsory educational process that prepares students both for higher education and for the future according to their interests, expectations and abilities in addition to equipping them with world knowledge with an education based on primary education.
Open Upper Secondary High School: It offers education to students who are not able to attend formal educational institutions providing face-to-face education, who have completed the formal education stage in terms of age, and who want to follow an open upper secondary high school while attending upper secondary high school. Education is provided with a pass or fail and a credit system. There are not any classes and teachers as the system does not require them. In 2006, with the upgrading of education of all high schools to 4 years, students enrolled in the Open Upper Secondary High School were gradually included in the 4-year system. Students enrolled at formal education age may graduate 4 years later at the earliest (8 semesters). However, students who are 18 years of age can complete 8 semesters in 2.5 years since they have rights to take examinations three times a year.
An academic year in an Open Upper Secondary High School consists of three semesters. Students are required to renew their registration on the internet every semester (3 times a year) at the times specified in the academic calendar. Registration of students, who do not enroll for one semester, is FREEZING, and registration of students, who do not enroll for two semesters consecutively, is UNREGISTERED. Previous credits of unregistered students are kept in reserve and they can continue from where they left off by reregistering.
Vocational and Technical Secondary Education: It is a four-year compulsory educational process that prepares students both for higher education and for the future as well as for an occupation and job fields according to their interests, expectations and abilities in addition to equipping them with world knowledge with an education based on primary education. Open Vocational Upper Secondary High School: Provisions related to the establishment of Open Vocational Upper Secondary High School dated 24.12.2005 and numbered 26033 are published in the Official Gazette. Students enrolled in Open Vocational Upper Secondary High School as a graduate of Lower Secondary / Primary School after 2006 may graduate 4 years later at the earliest (8 semesters). An academic year in an Open Vocational Upper Secondary High School consists of two semesters. Students are required to renew their registration on the internet every semester (2 times a year) during the times specified in the academic calendar. Students who fail to register for two semesters consecutively will be unregistered. Previous credits of unregistered students are kept in reserve and they can continue from where they left off by reregistering.
Higher Education: Higher education includes all the educational institutions which are based on secondary education, and which provide at least two years of higher education. The aims and duties of secondary education, in accordance with the general purposes and basic principles of National Education, are as follows;
1. Train students according to our country’s science policies and the need for labor in higher and various levels of the society in accordance with their interests, aptitude and abilities,
2. Providing scientific training at various levels,
3. Doing research exploring sciences in further detail in order to finding solutions to scientific, technical and cultural problems especially to ones related to our country,
4. Providing the society with the results on research focusing on our country’s problems regarding its progress and development with the coordination of the government and institutions and giving opinion on the research the government asks for,
5. Publishing everything that shows the results of research and that enables science and technology to develop,
6. Providing educational services such as spreading scientific data that can improve the level of Turkish society and that can enlighten the public in written or oral form.
Higher education institutions are
· Vocational Colleges
· Center for Practice and Research
Early Leaving from Education and Training: It is the indicator expressed, according to the household research published by the Statistics Office of the European Community (Avrupa Topluluğu İstatistik Ofisi) (Eurostat), as the rate of the ones between the ages of 18-24 that are graduates of secondary education at most and not enrolled in any higher educational level to the relevant age population.
Apprenticeship Training It means the education that prepares individuals for a profession in harmony of theoretical education in institutions and practical education in businesses, enable them to improve in their professions and lead to a certificate.
Individuals Requiring Special Education (Individual Necessitating Special Education) It means the individual showing a difference meaningful in the level expected from the peers in terms of their individual characteristics and educational sufficiency for various reasons.
Groups Necessitating Special Policy or Practice (Disadvantaged Groups) It means groups formed of people like women, youth, long-term unemployed people, disabled who have more difficulty in their education and employment, compared to other groups.
Gifted Individuals: It means the individual who show higher performance than to his/her peers in intelligence, creativity, art, leadership capacity, motivation and special academical fields.
Vocational Education in Businesses: It means educational practices of students from vocational and technical education schools and institutions who receive their skill education in businesses and their theoretical education in vocational and technical education schools and institutions or education units allocated by the businesses and institutions.
Formal Education : Formal education is the regular education conducted within a school for individuals in a certain age group and at the same level, under programs developed in accordance with the purpose. Formal education includes pre-primary, primary school, lower secondary school, upper secondary and higher education institutions.
Non-Formal Education: In accordance with the general objectives and basic principles of national education, the objectives of nonformal education, which covers citizens who have never entered the formal education system or are at any level of it or have left at that level, and which may accompany formal education or be independent of it are;
*To teach citizens to read and write and to provide them with the possibility of continuous education so that they may complete their deficient education,
*To provide them with the opportunity of education that shall help them in adjusting to scientific, technological, economic, social and cultural developments
*To provide an education that serves to protect, develop, promote and assimilate the values of our national culture,
*To ensure that an understanding and habits for living together, solidarity, mutual assistance, working together and getting organized are acquired and assimilated,
*To provide opportunities for citizens in non-formal education to gain a profession in accordance with the employment policies and in line with the development of the economy,
*To promote a healthy way of life and healthy nutritional habits,
*To provide people engaged in various professions with the necessary information and skills for further development,
*To establish the habit of spending and using spare time productively.
Distance Educational Institution: They are the institutions that offer education with various means of communication to those who are not able to continue to their studies.
Double-shift Education: It is the education provided for the same student groups in the same school in the morning and in the afternoon.
Education with Transport: It is the practice of transporting primary, lower secondary and upper secondary school students who have problems with access to the schools due to various reasons to certain schools on a daily basis with the aim of providing them with education.
Center for Science and Arts: It is the independent special educational institution which is designed with the aim of having gifted students gain awareness of their individual talents, improve their potential and make the most of it without interrupting their education in formal educational institutions.
Blended Education: They are the special education practices based on the principle that individuals in need of special education should continue with their studies with their peers in state or private formal and informal educational institutions with the provision of supporting educational services.
Center for Special Education and Rehabilitation: They are the private educational institutions which function with the goal of eliminating problems resulting from difficulties in speaking and language development, voice defects, mental, physical, auditory, social, emotional deficiencies or behavioral disorders, taking their abilities to upper levels again, improving their self-care and independent living skills and ensuring their adaptation into the society.