I try not to dwell on bad news here too much, but scrolling through the Turkish news headlines from the weekend was like reading a nightmare of a math exam on fractions, ratios, and irrational numbers.
Haberlerin Türkçesini okumak isterseniz başlıklar üzerine tıklayın.
15: The number of free places offered by a test prep center in Midyat in Southeastern Turkey. Three students from each of five different levels were to be awarded a free ride to the dreaded university entrance exam and a glimmer of hope.
2000: The number of students who applied.
Just an hour's drive away from Midyat, in Batman, the police chief told children to come back the next day for free shoes. The police, with the support of local businessmen, were prepared to distribute 150 pairs of shoes. 1000 children showed up. We commend them for their sensitivity and generosity, but suggest that next time they take an introductory statistics course first.
4 786 < 40 000 < n
The National Ministry of Education held placement exams for teacher applicants, with plans to allocate 4786 new teachers. Nearly 40,000 applied. The real question is this: Next year is the first year of the new 4-year high school curriculum (it used to be 3-years). Next year for the first time every high school in the country will have one more grade. We've known this was coming for four years, but to my knowledge there has not been a corresponding 33% increase in teacher training and recruiting (and would even 40K have been enough?). I can say with a little more certainty that there has not been a nationwide increase of 33% in physical space. I think someone misplaced a decimal.
2008 - 2000 = 32
A subcommittee of the Turkish parliament directed inspections of the shipyards at Tuzla on the Sea of Marmara. Eighteen have died in accidents at the docks in the last eight months; 32 since 2000. The inspectors found hundreds of violations of regulations concerning safety, fiscal reporting, employment of foreigners, and provision of social security. Maybe these perpetrators of the human condition could benefit from IB math practice exams that require you to "Show your work."
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