Sarah Carpenter Kılınç / The National Education Board Conferences and Political Transition: 1939-1960 / Changing Perceptions of Schooling and Dialogue of Negotiations

An abstract of the thesis of Sarah Carpenter Kilinç for the degree of Master of Arts degree from the Atatürk Institute for Modern Turkish History to be taken September 2007

The National Education Board Conferences and Political Transition: 1939-1960 / Changing Perceptions of Schooling and Dialogue of Negotiations

This thesis uses the published reports that represent the National Education Board Conferences (Milli Egitim Suralari) as a means of exploring both change and continuity in the national system of education during mainly the 1940’s and 1950’s specifically within the context of the political transition between the single-party and multi-party periods. Too often, these Conferences have been utilized as mirrors that simply reflect the most critical issues of education throughout Republican history, while this is an oversight. What this thesis proposes to do is, without assuming that the selected topics of discussion during the Conferences are the most central points of the time, to take a more critical approach towards the character of the Conferences and delve into the details of how the roles, functions, and perceptions of the Conferences evolved within two very dynamic decades. While the contextual portion of the thesis focuses on producing a framework surrounding the general educational developments from the birth of the Republic to the military intervention of 1960 and focusing on the push for a nationalistic system of schooling, the section aiming to be critical examines more specific aspects of the Board Conferences themselves. The following chapters will also briefly analyze the
weight of the Board’s advisory role to the Ministry of Education on issues of religion, technical schooling, the Village Institutes, and democracy in education. It will then be argued that while the Board’s suggestions are generally reflected in governmental policy, there are significant cases in which the advice of the Board and laws and regulations do not correspond. Finally, this thesis will demonstrate that while the Conference reports contain a plethora of information that gives valuable insight into the growth of a nation, the entity itself that can and should be analyzed for not only outcomes, but for the behind-the-scenes perspective as well.

Atatürk Ilkeleri ve Inkilap Tarihi Enstitüsü’nde Yüksek Lisans derecesi için Sarah Carpenter Kilinç tarafindan Eylül 2007’de teslim edilen tezin kisa özeti

Milli Egitim Suralari ve Siyasi ve Intikallar: 1939–1960 / Egitim Üzerinde Degisen Algilar ve Diyalog Müzakereler

Bu tez, tek partili sistemden çok partili sisteme geçis dönemindeki milli egitim sisteminde devamlilik ve degisikligi incelemek amaciyla, özellikle, 1940’li ve 1950’li yillarda yapilan Milli Egitim Suralari nin raporlarini içermektedir. Suralar, arastirmacilar tarafindan genellikle Türkiye Cumhuriyeti tarihindeki en kritik egitim meselelerini yansitan bir ayna olarak kullanildilar. Bu tez, Suralarda tartisilan konularin dönemin en önemli noktalari oldugunu varsaymadan, Suralarin niteligini daha elestirel bir yaklasimla inceliyor. Tezin amaci, içinde çok önemli toplumsal degisikliklerin yer aldigi yirmi yillik bir dönemde Suralarin rolü, görevi ve algilanisinin nasil bir evrim geçirdigi detaylariyla incelemektir. Bu amaç dogrultusunda, çalisma, Cumhuriyetin dogusundan 1960 yilinda gerçeklesen askeri darbeye kadar egitim alanindaki gelismelere ve egitim sistemini milliyetçilik dogrultusunda biçimlendirme çabalarina odaklaniyor. Bunun yanisira, Milli Egitim Suralarinin içerikleri daha ayrintili ve elestirel bir yaklasimla tartisiliyor. Bu dogrultunda, Suralarin din egitimi, meslek okullari, köy enstitüleri ve egitimde demokrasi gibi konular hakkinda Milli Egitim Bakanligina yaptiklari önerilerin ne kadar dikkate alinmis oldugu inceleniyor. Sura önerlerinin genel olarak hükümet politikalarina bir ölçüde yansimis olmalarina ragmen, bazi durumlarda aksi yönde gözlemler yapmak da mümkün olmaktadir. Sonuç olarak, Suralarin incelenmesi Türkiye Cumhuriyeti egitim tarihine isik tutabilecek niteliktedir. Ama bu, sadece önerilerin içerigine bakarak degil, tartismalarin baglam ve arka plan dikkate alindiginda degerlendirilebilecek bir imkandir.