THE UNIVERSALIZATION OF EDUCATION IN TÜRKİYE AND NEW ORIENTATIONS

The national and international data show that the Turkish education system has improved significantly in the last two decades. In this context, Türkiye has experienced a significant transformation since the 2000s to increase access to education and educational equality in opportunity. To achieve this, investments in education increased in parallel with the budget of the Ministry of National Education; thus, social support programs were implemented and spread throughout Türkiye. The universalization of education benefited relatively disadvantaged groups the most as a result of significant improvement efforts. Additionally, steps have been taken to increase inclusiveness in the education system: the coefficient regulation for university entrance and the headscarf ban was removed, and elective courses were diversified significantly. Therefore, this period is a critical phase for education’s democratization and universalization.

Although the education system in Türkiye has been strengthened with great efforts and investments, the societal awareness of these improvements is not at the same level. Thus, this book aims to evaluate the developments in our education system in the last 20 years, to objectively evaluate the results of these improvements based on national and international data. This book will hopefully contribute to the development of new education policies that will alleviate the achievement gaps between schools and, thus, increase the equality of opportunity in Türkiye’s education.

This book, penned by the Minister of Education Mahmut Özer, will no doubt be a valuable reference to those who wish to have an insight into the development of Turkish National Education and also to policymakers to gain awareness of what needs to be accomplished for a more inclusive, diverse and adaptive education of students.

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