Tekel workers went on strike on Dec. 15, 2009, demanding that the government find them positions in other public institutions in the wake of the privatization of the monopoly. The strike continued for two-and-a-half months.
According to a report by the Sabah daily yesterday, 24 students were expelled from the Mehmetçik High School after protesting in support of the workers and were accused of skipping classes, chanting slogans and disobeying their teachers. The students will continue their education at other schools.
Objecting to the school board’s decision, the students said their protest was an innocent one. School administrators countered that they did not put an end to the students’ educational careers and chose to impose a lighter penalty. “We applied what is required in the disciplinary regulations,” they added.
Some 150 students gathered in the school’s courtyard during lunchtime, chanted slogans and held a sit-down protest. While most of them abandoned the protest after being warned by administrators, 24 of them remained in the courtyard for another hour. The school board identified each of the students through camera records and statements by the school’s counselors. The Çekmeköy District Education Department approved the school’s decision.