EDUCATION: CHP’s Counterproposal 1+8+4

CHP deputy chairman and head of the party’s Science, Management and Culture Platform Prof Dr Sencer Ayata evaluated the new education reform proposal to daily VATAN.

As someone who has dedicated his career to academia, do you agree with the view that “the two stage secondary school is scientifically proven superior?”

-The world is moving in the opposite direction. The new proposal is not implemented anywhere in the developed world. The world standard is rather 10 years of compulsory education. What do we understand from “two stages?”  Does it mean to separate students by age in each stage, or does it mean different curricula? Let’s cut through the word play, this is really the key question. We need to focus not on age but the essence of the courses. In AKP’s proposal, basic education is cut to 4 years. Than, AKP would institute technical training and separate curricula. This is the objective.   To have two separate curricula for after the 4th grade.

Yet it is argued that all advanced systems make use of the two stages and this is why we should adopt it as well?

-Yes, AKP’s draft law lists several examples. Yes there is stage wise education. But the staging is done according to age, not to curricula.  Let’s take a closer look atUSA, which is cited as an example. The first stage (primary school) is 6 years. But there is no technical training even in secondary school in theUSA.  It starts in college. Also inU.K.,NorwayandFinland, other examples mentioned in the draft bill, technical training starts after secondary school. InSouth Koreathere is only one stage, compulsory and unified, 9 years.

-Germany is the most frequently cited country?

GermanyandAustriaplay a prominent role in the draft, yes. But, Germans are no longer happy with technical training in early ages. There are severe criticisms levied against the system. They are constantly debating this, because what was one of the pillars of past German success has become a burden. The system imposes a deep and unfair class dived on the society. It is unfair to force 10 year olds into a particular career track, it creates a cast system. Turkish citizens inGermanycomplain that their second class status is being reinforced by this system that most frequently guides their children into technical training.  The institution can no longer train the qualified personnel that had become the hallmark of theGermany. Some sates have already reformed the system.

We need to see the truth: Those countries that excel in education turned to longer, single stage schooling.Finland,Denmark,Australia, New Zeeland are the leading examples of the new thinking. In contrast German is sinking fast in European rankings.

-What is CHP’s counterproposal to 4+4+4?

The world is rapidly abandoning the idea of guiding children in a young age to technical training. The new fashion is at least 9 nine years of compulsory basic education in arts and sciences. Why is that? Unless we understand in which direction the advanced world is moving we will commit costly mistakes. Staging must be undertaken after careful and exhaustive pedagogical studies. We recommend one year of pre-school education, provided by the state.  The compulsory education must be made longer. Only in senior high school (last 4 years) can children be separated into “academic track” and “career-technical training”.

Moreover in our surveys, at least 40% of the society and a majority of the AKP voters believe that technical training should be delayed to the college. In specific, our proposal is one year pre-school training, 8 year single stage compulsory and 4 years of senior high school with two separate tracks.  In other words 1+8+4.

The objective should be to end half-day schooling.  Multi-year classes should be end as well. Parents’ contribution to school budgets must be abolished.  Parity in terms of physical facilities and equipment between all schools must be achieved. We fully support enhancing the technological infrastructure of the schools. Schools must have play grounds, parks, sports facilities. Let’s hear our chairman Kilicdaroglu:  “Education should not be a battleground for politics.  We must insulate education from political infighting, ideological priors and vote calculations[1].

About CHP EU Representation

The CHP was founded on 9 September 1923, about one and half month before the proclamation of the Republic of Turkey. The first President of modern Turkey’s oldest party was M. Kemal Atatürk. Today CHP is a social-democratic party, member of the Socialist International and associate member of the Socialist Group at the European Parliament. The scope of the CHP bureau in Brussels is not limited to the bilateral framework of Turkey's EU accession process. Issues such as the information society, energy policies, social development, climate change, international trade and security are among the different focus areas. The EU-Turkey relations are about integration and need multiple, plural and horizontal channels of communication. The CHP supports and promotes Turkey's EU membership process also by being more present and active in Brussels The CHP's Representative to the EU is Ms Kader Sevinç who previously worked as an MEP advisor at the European Parliament and in the private sector.
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