Millions of Turkish students start winter break

Millions of Turkish students start winter break

Millions of Turkish students start winter break

Nearly 18 million Turkish students received their mid-term report cards on Jan. 19 as schools across the country began a two-week winter break, with experts warning parents to appreciate their children for their efforts and not their grades.

The mid-term holiday will end on Feb. 4.

Experts have been advising families “to appreciate efforts instead of grades.”

Selahattin Gelbal, an academic from Hacettepe University in Ankara, said families should draw correlation between students’ grades and their lives at home.

“If their grades are very low, it means there’s a problem in the student’s academic life. Parents have to think about this. Factors like the child’s mental development being behind his/her peers, lagging behind classmates and not having good communication with teachers may result in bad performance,” he said.

Another academic, Aslı Bugay Sökmez, from Middle East Technical University (ODTÜ) said grades on report cards did not determine the child’s personality.

“Families must be aware that report cards are not the sole thing that determines who the child is. The marks partly reflect who the student is, what the student knows and what the student can do to improve. Important characteristics such as emotional intelligence, honesty, sensitivity and creativity are not measured in report cards. Do not punish your children because of bad grades; instead find out why they performed poorly. Start speaking to them by asking them what they think about their bad grades,” she said.

 Winter break to ease traffic in Istanbul

The two-week summer break is set to reduce traffic congestion in Turkey, particularly in Istanbul, which is among the most congested cities in the world.

Taxi drivers who spend most of their days in traffic are pleased to be working during the break.

They said they can reach anywhere they want on short notice in Istanbul, adding that school buses not being on the roads will significantly ease traffic in Istanbul.