Istanbul, July 1 () - The high school entrance exam results of 519 non-Muslim students, who were exempt from questions on the Islamic faith, were re-calculated upon notices issued about erroneous calculations, Turkey’s Education Ministry said in a written statement late June 30.
The grades of the Transition from Primary to Secondary Education (TEOG) exam were recalculated and announced for 519 non-Muslim students who were exempt from questions about religion and ethics, when their initial scores on the religion section of the exam were calculated as zero, lowering their overall grade.
“The exemption requests of our 519 students could not be reflected in the ‘e-okul’ [nationwide electronic school] system and their exemptions could not be made due to either late application or schools’ late operation process,” said the statement issued late June 30 by the Education Ministry.
“The points of these students have been recalculated, put up on the ‘e-okul’ system and were available to students as of 9:00 p.m., after an investigation was launched upon the petitions that reached our ministry,” it continued.
The ministry assured that the recalculation of the 519 students did not affect the percentile of the other 1.3 million students who entered the exam.
Turkish Education Ministry sources told daily Hürriyet the grades of TEOG would be recalculated for 371 non-Muslim students, as the information of non-Muslim students was booked either incorrectly or late in the ministry’s online schooling system.
The sources said administrations of schools catering primarily to Turkey’s non-Muslim communities had applied to the Education Ministry over the erroneous calculation, along with parents, except Istanbul’s Ulus Private Jewish Elementary School.
The recalculation came less than a week after an Ankara court issued a ruling June 26, cancelling question no.11 in the English section of TEOG’s D Booklet, which had been the subject of a lawsuit filed by an exam taker’s parent who had claimed the question was incorrect. The lawsuit filed has suspended school registration for more than a million students in the country as the Education Ministry authorities postponed the announcement of the results previously set to be declared June 24.
The ministry said in a written statement June 29 the 12th Administrative Court declared question no.11 in the English section of the D Booklet void, deeming all answers to the question as correct, and reevaluating all students’ overall scores.