- Title: Turkey rolls out new school curriculum - without Darwin
- Date: 18th July 2017
- Summary: ANKARA, TURKEY (JULY 18, 2017) (REUTERS) TURKISH EDUCATION MINISTER, ISMET YILMAZ, HOLDING NEWS CONFERENCE MINISTRY OFFICIALS LISTENING (SOUNDBITE) (Turkish) TURKISH EDUCATION MINISTER, ISMET YILMAZ, SAYING: "The evolution theory is not the only theory we took out from the curriculum because it is a subject for a higher educational level. We left the theory of evolution and beginning of life to university as it is above the level of students." OFFICIALS LISTENING VARIOUS OF CHAIRMAN OF THE UNION OF EDUCATION AND SCIENCE WORKERS (EGITIM-IS), MEHMET BALIK, READING A DOCUMENT (SOUNDBITE) (Turkish) CHAIRMAN OF THE UNION OF EDUCATION AND SCIENCE WORKERS (EGITIM-IS), MEHMET BALIK, SAYING: "Turkey is heading in the wrong direction. The new policies that remove the evolution theory from the curriculum and require all schools to have a prayer room, are the most important signs that the educational system departs from the principle of secularism and the scientific principles of education."
- Embargoed: 1st August 2017 20:35
- Keywords: Turkey education curriculum Darwin theory of evolution
- Location: ANKARA, TURKEY
- City: ANKARA, TURKEY
- Country: Turkey
- Topics: Education,Society/Social Issues
- Reuters ID: LVA0016Q8WSHZ
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Turkey announced a new school curriculum on Tuesday (July 18) that excluded Charles Darwin's theory of evolution, feeding opposition fears that President Tayyip Erdogan is subverting the republic's secular foundations.
Education Minister Ismet Yilmaz said the main elements of evolution already underpinned the science curriculum, but there would be no mention of Darwin's landmark theory until university.
The theory of evolution is rejected by both Christian and Muslim creationists, who believe God created the world as described in the Bible and the Koran, making the universe and all living things in six days.
Erdogan, accused by critics of crushing democratic freedoms with tens of thousands of arrests and a clampdown on media since a failed coup in July 2016, has in the past spoken of raising a "pious generation".
The chairman of Union of Education and Science Workers (Egitim-Is), Mehmet Balik described the changes as a huge step in the wrong direction for Turkey's schools and an attempt to avoid raising "generations who ask questions".
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