A document recently revealed has surfaced how ‘favoritism’ plays a role in appointment of principals and other members of the management to schools in Turkey.
Known for its affinity with Turkey’s ruling AKP (Justice and Development Party), the trade union for workers in the education field, Eğitim Bir Sen, had sent a list to the district directorate of the Ministry of National Education in Hani district of the southeastern province of Diyarbakır. The list included the names of candidates for the position of school principal and other management positions at a number of local institutions.
According to reports of Sinan Tartanoğlu from Turkey’s opposition newspaper Cumhuriyet, the list prepared by the members of Eğitim Bir Sen also had biased notes about the candidates, such as ‘He is very hard-working and recruited many members’; ‘She is a new member and seems to be kind but we don’t know her views’; ‘He left Eğitim Sen and joined us recently; her views might be twisted’; ‘He is our former members and an active member of Süleyman Education Foundation’.
Even a suggested ‘score’ for the candidates to receive in the interview phase was among the information written down in the list.
The opposition in the country has for a while tried pointing out ruling party’s favoritism in a variety of fields. Interviews for appointments of teachers in the public education sphere, which is a new practice adapted by AKP, have also been objected by a large group of civil society institutions and trade unions, as well as the opposition parties CHP and HDP, since it is considered as an approach giving the ruling party even further authority to make selections not based on merit but based on personal and institutional preferences.