February 14, 2016

Yamanlar Schools sweep medals at national science competition

İzmir's private Yamanlar Schools was awarded the most medals among secondary schools in Turkey in the 23rd National Science Olympiads, sponsored by the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TÜBİTAK), during a program in Antalya on Saturday.

Students from the middle schools section of Yamanlar Schools won three gold, seven silver and four bronze medals in TÜBİTAK's National Science and Mathematics Olympiads, which were held in December 2015. They accepted their medals on Saturday after a TÜBİTAK science camp for the students who will represent Turkey in the International Olympiads.

The head of TÜBİTAK's Department for Scientist Training, Professor Mustafa Çufalı, awarded three gold medals, with one in chemistry and two in mathematics; seven silver medals, with three in chemistry, one in biology, one in mathematics and two in technology; and four bronze medals, with three in mathematics and one in biology, to the students of Yamanlar Schools.

Speaking after the awards ceremony at a hotel in Antalya where students stayed during the science camp, from Jan. 30 to Feb. 13, the director of the private Yamanlar Schools, Şakir Ural, told the Cihan news agency that Yamanlar were the most successful schools in 23rd National Science Olympiads. Ural underlined that students of Yamanlar Schools alone had won 120 medals out of the 491 medals that Turkey has won in International Science Olympiads.

Schools under Yamanlar educational institutions, established by volunteers from the faith-based Gülen movement, also called the Hizmet movement, were targeted in police operations in August of last year as a part of what many see as an ongoing Justice and Development Party (AK Party) government-orchestrated intimidation operation.

After the revelation of country's largest graft scandal in December 2013, the AK Party accused the movement of attempting to bring down the government by graft probes through its sympathizers in the police force and the judiciary. The movement firmly denies the charges.

Published on Sunday's Zaman, 14 February 2016, Sunday