118-year-old school to be restored

118-year-old school to be restored

118-year-old school to be restored

A 118-year-old secondary school in the southern province of Antalya, which was once used as a military hospital in the Turkish War of Independence, will be restored.

Located in the historical district of Kaleiçi, Dumlupınar Secondary School draws attention with its story witnessing the history of the region.

According to the information in the archives of the Ottoman Empire, the Greek community living in Kaleiçi attempted to build a school in 1895.

In 1905, the school was opened to give education to Greek children.

With the outbreak of World War I in 1914, the school was converted into a hospital for the treatment of soldiers wounded in battle.

Soldiers injured in the war were being treated at the school until the end of the Turkish War of Independence, while one of the rooms was also used as an operating room by Dr. Burhanettin Onat, one of the most important figures in Turkish history.

The building was converted into an elementary school in 1929, and its name was also changed to Dumlupınar Elementary School in the same year.

Students have been receiving education for 94 years at the school, which has witnessed history and is a registered building within the protected area.

Restoration work will begin in two months at the school, where a total of 445 students are enrolled.

Underlying the importance of the historical texture of the school, Antalya Governor’s Office Cultural Heritage Unit Officer Cemil Karabayaram said, “Dumlupınar Secondary School is a structure that contains cultural data of a certain period.”

“Non-Muslim children received education at this institution during the Ottoman period. This shows how tolerant and open the Ottomans were through different ethnicities and religions,” Karabayram expressed.

Stating that the restoration project of the school was tendered, Karabayram noted that in the following months, the project will be started and that they plan to finish it in late 2024.

Touching upon a design they planned for a classroom at the school, Karabayram noted that they wanted to turn a room into a memorial section consisting of graduates’ photos.

“We ask all our graduates to contact the school and share their old photos taken here. This is not just a school. We also consider it a museum. That’s why we aim to display the shared photos in a room,” he said.