This highly praised unique book is a hard-hitting academic and intellectual polemic by a leading anti-racist educationalist in London, backed by over thirty years of practical approaches and projects aimed at raising the achievement levels and participation of the disadvantaged. The Turkish Speaking Communities have been part of British society for over fifty years yet have been made invisible in the education system. Their selected visibility in parts of London reinforces stereotypes of “kebab culture” and criminality against a backdrop of hostility towards refugees and asylum seekers.

Using their “voices”, the book explores the educational needs and aspirations of the Cypriot Turkish, Turkish and Kurdish communities. It brings together analysis, experiences, expertise and recommendations of different stakeholders in the TSCs. The nine chapters include, history of underachievement, the Turkish language and patterns of usage, setting up a bilingual nursery, educational needs and aspirations of women, mentoring, emergency action to stop the educational genocide of the youth.”

A book long overdue. I found it to be an invaluable source of information. The first book, which coherently analyses the educational needs of the Turkish speaking communities as seen by a true insider. It is on the highly recommended book list for our PGCE course.” Dr. Tözün Issa, Director, Centre for Multilingualism in Education, London Metropolitan University.

“It says things that needed to be said which have been kept quiet for a long time.” Enver Gürsev, Artist and Associate Lecturer at Chelsea College of Art and Design, London.

“This book is a ‘bible’ that anyone interested in the educational and social situation of migrants and asylum seekers in England and Europe should refer to over and over again. Highly recommended.” Veronica Alvarez-Cordova, Widening Participation Project Manager for six London universities.

“The underachievement of Turkish Speaking pupils has been a long-standing issue in this country. This book contains the evidence to prove it and will be an invaluable tool for those in the field who have been struggling to bring it to light. Thank you for writing this book. It has helped so many of us.” Ayşe Ahmet, Science teacher, London secondary school.

“An informative and insightful account of the education of these children, who have been represented in British schools for half a century now … and the need for ‘an emergency rescue operation’ to the ‘educational genocide’ of these young people. A welcome resource for teachers.”  Dr. Gillian Klein, Editor, Multicultural Teaching; Vol. 20, November 3 Summer 2002.

“Teachers found the book groundbreaking. Aydın first sets the contexts in which Turkish, Cypriot and Kurdish children and their families live in London and Europe and then proceeds to outline the way whereby families and children are excluded and disempowered by the process of schooling. But where the book makes its outstanding contribution is in the articulation of the voices of the young people, which she weaves into concrete suggestions which schools and teachers can act on.” Mike Vance, Acting Head of Ethnic Minority Achievement Service Team, Hackney, London.

“It is one of its kind and a ‘must read’ book, a valuable resource for professionals working with TS children, young people, women and refugees. It is full of ordinary people’s voices. Aydın not only describes the situation as ‘educational genocide’ and deals with the issues in depth, but also offers solutions in a chapter entitled, ‘An emergency rescue operation – what needs to be done’.  When I read the book it shook me; I found it necessary to redefine my work.” Mahmut Kunter, London Metropolitan University Widening Participation Coordinator for TSCs.

Author: Aydin Mehmet Ali

FATAL publications/2001/pp. 230

 Turkish Speaking Communities & Education – no delight 


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