On the first day of the academic year in an Ankara school, parents seemed as excited as students. Some of the students said they were happy to meet their classmates before starting lessons, while parents said it was good for their kids to begin school one week earlier. As a special first-day-of-school treat, teachers served candy to students and parents as the students met their classmates. Students and parents then participated in a drawing activity.
The young students started school one week before older students and participated in an orientation program in order to better adapt to the school environment with their parents, who were allowed to attend school to help their children comfortably make the transition to attending school.
The students will attend orientation programs at their new schools through Sept. 19 and participate in activities under the supervision of their teachers in order to better adapt to their new environments. During this week, first graders will get to know their teachers, their schools and their new friends. The students will also be taught how to go to school and return home safely.
Some 1.2 million first graders will begin school this year. The 2009-2010 school year will begin for all other students on Thursday, Sept. 24, following the end of the Eid al-Fitr holiday. The first semester will end on Jan. 22, 2010, and students will have a winter break until Feb. 5, 2010. The second semester will end on June 18, 2010.
More than 15,000 teachers appointed yesterday
The Ministry of Education appointed 15,655 new teachers yesterday. A ceremony was held at the ministry to mark the appointments, with the participation of Education Minister Nimet Çubukçu.
Speaking at the ceremony, Çubukçu said there are currently around 15 million students studying at primary, secondary and high schools throughout Turkey and 586,196 teachers working at these institutions, excluding administrators.
Meanwhile, a protest was held by a group of teachers who have not yet been appointed by the state in front of the building where the ceremony took place. The participants chanted slogans and carried placards during the protest.