Ankara, September 20, 2016/Independent Balkan News Agency
Turkey has recently dismissed 27,715 teachers and suspended 9,465, Deputy Prime Minister Nurettin Canikli stated late on Sept. 19, adding that the decisions were made over teachers’ suspected links to either the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) or the Fethullahist Terrorist Organization (FETÖ).
“So far a total of 455 of the suspended teachers have been able to return to work,” Canikli told journalists in a press briefing in Ankara after a cabinet meeting, stressing that although the suspension processes for returning teachers has ended this “does not mean the investigations are over.”
Some 419 of the teachers who have returned to work were from the eastern province of Tunceli, he noted.
Canikli stressed that those teachers who have been dismissed would be replaced by next month.
“The exam process is continuing for 20,000 teachers to be chosen and interviews are continuing. This will be completed by Oct. 10, by which 20,000 new teachers will be able to start. This number will be able meet our needs,” he said.
Canikli also commented on the appointment of trustees by the government to local municipalities, stressing that this “was not a one-time thing.”
“From now on, trustees and replacements will be appointed to whoever supports terrorist organizations,” he added.
Meanwhile, Education Ministry Undersecretary Yusuf Tekin also commented on the situation of teachers under investigation, saying they “should not engage in indiscipline while the process continues.”
“We are warning the investigated teachers to not engage in undisciplined acts that would result in situations against them, and to avoid being instruments of provocations,” Tekin said.
Meanwhile, a total of 22 high school students were detained in the southeastern province of Diyarbakır for staging a protest against the suspensions of teachers over their alleged links to the PKK.
Separately, anti-narcotic teams started their duties in front of schools all over Turkey on Sept. 19 as a part of a project launched by the Education Ministry and the Interior Ministry.