Students from İstanbul Erkek Lisesi (İstanbul Boys’ High School) protested their school’s principal by turning their backs during his speech at the graduation ceremony on Saturday.
Turkish media reported that the protest was a reaction to the decision by Ministry of Education to directly appoint the principals to 11 high schools in İstanbul about a year ago. The principals used to be appointed after consulting with the foundations related to the school and after the candidates passed a test, however the ministry had chosen 11 high schools in İstanbul to directly appoint the principals itself.
İstanbul Boys’ High School principal Hikmet Konar was directly appointed by former Education Minister Nabi Avcı. Students had criticized the appointment of Konar.
The graduates of the year also released a statement in which they said there was discrimination against certain people in the school. The statement also said that the students’ requests to organize social activities were rejected.
“We side with free thought, we side with democracy, we side with human rights,” the statement read.