In the last two decades, PakTurk Schools in Pakistan have brought pride and distinction to Pakistan by winning over 260 medals. Its students participated in education and science competitions in 97 countries, and topped the federal and provincial boards as well as Cambridge International Boards of Examinations.
In 2010, I completed my university education, and thought time had come to join the journey of peace and safety. I was just 24. Though I had long time ahead, yet there was no reason to be late. In order to sow the seeds of love through teaching mathematics, I arrived in Khaipur. It was an extraordinary experience.
The Islamabad High Court, while rejecting the petition filed by Turkey’s Maarif Foundation, decreed that there was no meaning in the foundation’s demand for inclusion in the case as it was out of the question for such foreign structures to find in themselves any right to take over the [Pak-Turk] schools in Pakistan.
The Turkish Light International School System campus came alive when students between ages 10 and 18 demonstrated their talents in a science exhibition. The school’s science and technology department has attracted many students to enroll in the institution.
Since the ill-intentioned Maarif Foundation was found by Erdoğan regime in wake of failed coup attempt on July 15, 2016, just for aiming at taking over the successful schools operated by Turkish civic society, Gülen movement, the step has not been welcomed by the affected schools in Afghanistan.
The school administration believes that the action is taken to appease Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who believes that the school promotes and teaches his arch-rival and cleric Fetullah Gulen’s teachings. “We have gone through the school curriculum during our time and have not found them imparting any extremism ideology or anything that goes against the interests of Pakistan,” said one of the graduates.
Afghanistan president Ashraf Ghani has agreed to hand over the Afghan-Turk schools, previously run by a pro-Gulen institution, to the Turkish Education Foundation which is a governmental institution. This step has, however, not been welcomed by the affected schools. Officials of the schools have warned that the move would lead to closing the schools and damage the quality of education.
Justice Aamer Farooq of the Islamabad High Court on Friday disposed of a petition filed by Pak-Turk Educational Foundation against the possible handover of its schools to another Turkish educational network, the Maarif Foundation.
Renowned Scientist Dr Samar Mubarakmand was the chief guest and distributed the certificates, plaques, and cash prizes among winners. Addressing the ceremony, Mubarakmand said that PakTurk International Schools and Colleges have been striving hard to provide quality education to the Pakistani youth since 1995.
Bilal, a parent, told media that the network consisted of 28 schools and colleges in 10 cities of the country with a staff strength of 1700 including 108 Turkish teachers, teaching around 12,000 students from pre-school to A level. Since 1995, he added, the schools have been giving quality education to Pakistani students with no political motivation or illegal activity.
A network of schools in Ethiopia linked to Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen is changing ownership. The sale of the Nejashi Ethio-Turkish International Schools follows pressure from the government of Turkish President Erdogan, who is urging countries that host institutions inspired by Gulen to close or take them over.
“All the Turkish teachers and administrators have left Pakistan and the schools are being run by Pakistanis,” said one of the parents Syed Amir Abdullah. He added that the government still seemed hell bent on ruining these institutions by handing them over to an ‘infamous organisation’ which has no experience of running them.