MINISTER SELÇUK ADDRESSED PARLIAMENT AS PART OF THE 2021 BUDGET DEBATEMinister of National Education Ziya Selçuk addressed deputies in Parliament as part of the 2021 budget debate. Selçuk said, "Priorities of the Ministry of National Education providing equal and fair conditions in education and training for everyone, teaching modern information, skills, behavior and manners and raise healthy and happy individuals open to education. We continue to work in line with policies that form the upcoming twenty- thirty years step by step for quality of education that will compete in the international level.
2021 budget of the Ministry of National Education was debated in the Turkish Parliament. Addressing the general council during the debate, Minister of National Education Ziya Selçuk said "Priorities of the Ministry of National Education providing equal and fair conditions in education and training for everyone, teaching modern information, skills, behavior and manners and raise healthy and happy individuals open to education. We continue to work on politics that form the upcoming twenty- thirty years step by step for quality of education that will compete in the international level."
Stating that education is moving like a big ship by considering depth and time, Selçuk stressed the importance of setting the right direction.
"We believe in the sacredness of labor of every teacher"
"The pandemic brought new obligations to everyone and changed the course of our missions and daily lives and created new problems that require urgent solutions. These new and unpredictable problems urged us to work in an effort to find solutions," said Selçuk.
Noting that teachers and education workers have a special place and meaning in this fight against the pandemic, Selçuk said the Ministry values every single teacher without any discrimination.
"We believe in the sacredness of labor of every teacher. Our teachers and parents are not just numbers for us. Each and every one of them are individuals who require attention and care and they are the reason of the existence of the Ministry of National Education," stated Selçuk.
"We priorize increasing quality in education and approval of independent international studies"
Selçuk said that when Turkey's results in the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) in December 2019 is compared with the entire world, it achieved an important progress and Turkey increased its points in all fields in the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) in 2019.
Noting that evaluations made in the country might be seen as subjuctive, Selçuk stated that international assesments are considered as more objective.
"Approval of independent international studies is important as they are the indicators of the increase in the quality of education in the country," added Selçuk.
"Our hopes for future increases"
Selçuk said that systematic practices and scientific methods resulted in rise in the international and national data and these results as well as approval of international studies increased Turkey's hope for the future.
Reminding that the 2023 Education Vision Document set goals for certain years, Selçuk said, "We continue to work in line with policies that form the upcoming twenty- thirty years step by step for quality of education that will compete in the international level."
Selçuk said that education budget is calculated as 211 billion 993 million and 156 liras and this figure is 15.7 percent of central management budget of 2021.
"We increased our investment budget by 94 percent"
Selçuk said that 2021 Budget will be monited with annual measurable goals and 67 performance indicators adding that, "Our investment budget has increased from 5.8 billion to 11.3 billion liras for the achievement of distance education, obligatory preschool education, seismic retrofitting and workshops for vocational schools. As a result, we increased our investment budget by 94 percent."
"42 billion 478 million and 310 thousand liras are allocated to secondary education programs"
Noting that the Ministry will continues to give direct cash and in kind support to students from its budget, Selçuk said 42 billion 478 million and 310 thousand lira is allocated to secondary education programs from 2021 budget of the Ministry."
"I would like to stress that we are waiting for conditions to be matured for face to face education. We had decided to open face to face education for five days a week for students of village schools and we will open face to face education when conditions are suitable," said Selçuk.
Selçuk stated that they continue to tape class and activity programs for TRT EBA television channels and students can follow their classes through EBA internet portal and television channels. He added that there are more than 1700 lecture videos and more than 40 thousand enriched interactive education contents in the EBA platform.
With the integration of live class and alternative applications, EBA is capable of offering live classes to 3 million students every day, said Selçuk adding that EBA is the most used website in the world by students and teachers.
"EBA Assistant ranked first in the world"
Selçuk said that only 4 countries in the world managed to establish 3 different television channels for education and Turkey is one of these countries.
Reminding that the Ministry of National Education Communication Center (MEBİM) has won second prize in the world, Selçuk stated that, "Artificial intelligence supported virtual robot EBA Assistant was awarded with first prize in the world. EBA Assistant is considered as the most used virtual assistants of the world."
Selçuk said that the Ministry is working in an effort to provide equal accession opportunity to education services and have founded EBA Support Points all over the country and put 162 mobile EBA support vehicles into service.
Noting that they are determined to increase the number of EBA Support Points to 20 thousand, Selçuk reminded that teachers and parents are using these services for free.
Selçuk said that they are working under the leadership of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in order to respond to tablet and computer needs of students during distance education. Till now, the Ministry distributed 150 thouand tablets and it plans to distribute 200 thousand tablets until the end of this year.
"Professional improvement program for 1 million teachers"
Minister Selçuk underlined that the success of education system depends on the professional competence and commitment of teachers and school principals adding that the Ministry has initiated the most comprehensive teachers training program of the history of Turkish education.
Noting that pandemic did not prevent this effort and the Ministry has organized professional improvement programs for 1 million teachers, Selçuk said, "there are 974 thousand 837 teachers working at schools affiliated to the Ministry and number of teachers appointed by AK Party governments are 71 percent of existing teachers.
"11 billion 325 million and 177 thousand is allocated for Management and Support Programs"
Noting that teacher occupancy rate is increased almost the same in all geographic regions of Turkey, Minister Selçuk went on to say that: "occupancy rate is 95 percent in the Eastern Anatolia Region and it is 93 percent in Southeastern Anatolia. Teacher occupancy rate throughout the country is 92 percent. We have important improvements in the financial and social rights of teachers. 11 billion 325 million and 177 thousand is allocated for Management and Support Programs."
"Our goal is to establish 100 thousand Design Skill Workshops"
Minister Selçuk underlined that they have established Design Skill Workshops especially in schools that lack sources and have limited budgets.
Noting that the Ministry established 9 thousand and 497 workshops till now, Selçuk set the goal as the establishment of 100 thousand Design Skill Workshops.
"Students who want to enroll are vocational and technical schools increased by 63 percent"
Stating that the Ministry has harmonized the curriculum of vocational schools with the national professional standards, Selçuk went on to say that: "We have established quality assurance system in vocational and technical schools and promote active participation of private sector companies in the activities of these schools. As a result of students who want to enroll are vocational and technical schools increased by 63 percent."
"Schools specialized in export"
Reminding that vocational and technical schools affiliated to the Ministry of National Education produced N-95 masks, face shields and ventilators as a part of Turkey's fight against the pandemic, Selçuk said that Turkey currently has schools that are specialized in the export of such products.
Selçuk noted that vocational high schools produced various kinds of products such as ventilators, UVC air purifiers, video laryngoscope devices, isolated sample taking units and contact free infrared thermometers during the pandemic.
"'I am special I am in education' mobile application won an international award"
Noting that the Ministry gives great importance to lifelong learning, Selçuk said that participation ratio to lifelong trainings which was 1.8 percent in 2007 increased by 222 in 2019 and reached 5,8 percent.
Selçuk reminded that "I am special I am in education" mobile application had won an international award adding that the Ministry prepares training contents suitable to the needs of students which special needs.
Selçuk noted that the Ministry has opened 17 science and arts centers in 2020 and total of 62 thousand and 9 students with special talents benefit from the services of total of 183 science and arts centers.
"Personal guidance services"
Selçuk stated that currently there are total of 14 thousand and 466 private schools in every stage of formal education and total ratio of students enrolled in these schools are 8.8 percent.
Noting that the Ministry gradually cancelled education and training support allocation paid to private schools for the education of students, Selçuk said they did not include new students to the education and training support since 2019.
Minister Selçuk reminded that his Ministry achieved to receive ISO 9001 Quality Management System and ISO 27001 Information Safety Management System for measurement and assessment activities.
Stating that the Ministry allocated 69 million and 132 thousand lira for Assessment, Selection and Placement Program in all fields and education levels, Selçuk announced the Ministry also allocatd 1 billion 645 million and 282 thousand lira for International Education Cooperation and Study Abroad Program.
Selçuk said that the Ministry has 89 representation office in 61 countries in an effort to maintain ties between the children of Turkish citizens living abroad and Turkish and Turkish culture.
Noting that education is the very element that shapes the future of the country, Selçuk stated, "Our government is working in line with its mentality. I would like to thank our President Mr. Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on behalf of education community and our public."