NEW ERA IN HIGH SCHOOL PLACEMENT SYSTEM"Deputy Minister of National Education Mahmut Özer stated in his article about the transformation in the high school placement system, "We are aiming at placing at least 60 percent of the students who did not enter the LGS exam to their first choice in 2021 and our goal for 2022 is 70 percent. As much as we achieve this goal, a majority of students will be able to enroll in high schools they prefer without entering the exam."
Deputy Minister of National Education Mahmut Özer wrote:
"There have been debates about high school and university exams in Turkey. The Ministry of National Education has taken various different steps and tried different systems for high school entrance exams. In 2018, the new High School Entrance System (LGS) exam lifted the obligation that forced all students to enter the central exam and provided two different options for placement in high schools, one being central and the other local. In other words, 90 percent of students have been placed without exam obligation and other students entered central exam for the placement of high school institutions. Central exam grades used for central placement while local placement was made according to school success points without considering central exam grade.
Students are enrolled in Science High Schools, Social Science High Schools, all Vocational and Technical Anatolia High Schools which are implementing the Anatolia technical program and Anatolia, Anatolia İmam Hatip schools which are included in the project school context according to their exam grades. On the other hand, students are enrolled in other Anatolia, Anatolia İmam Hatip schools and Anatolia Vocational and Technical schools according to their school success points.
Permanent improvements in the system
The greatest problem in the LGS exam in 2018 was the placement criteria. Order of choice and permanence in secondary school was important than the school success grade. We have updated the placement criteria in order to eliminate these problems and increase student-parent satisfaction. Place of residence, school success grades and attendance to school are used as criteria for placement without exam.
On the other hand, there were two major problems during the 2020 LGS central exams. First was the serious increase in the number of 8th grade students and the other was the Covid-19 pandemic.
Students failed to get face-to-face education in the second term of this academic year. Due to this reason, the questions at the exam were limited with only first term issues. Students entered the exam at their own classrooms in order to increase the concerns of parents and students. Number of buildings used during the exam was increased by five fold. In addition to disinfection of the buildings, the Ministry distributed free masks for all students and teachers and took necessary measures to maintain social distance before, during and after the exam.
Most important part of placement to a higher education institution is making a choice. Students are placed to schools they choose according to placement criteria. However, the Ministry also has the obligation to place all students to a high school institution. In this light, it is crucial for students to prefer a high school institution which is suitable to their condition and make rational choices. Due to this reason, the Ministry gave great importance to choice counseling.
Occupancy rate of schools accepting students according to the results of LGS is 99 percent
Placement results were announced in a detailed assessment report. In 2019, first central placement results displayed a positive table. Occupancy rate of schools accepting students according to the results of LGS is 99.6. Despite 53 percent increase in school capacities in 2020, occupancy rate of schools accepting students according to the results of this year's LGS is 99.3. This improvement is the clear indicator of the success of the steps that we have taken.
92 percent of students enrolled in one of their first three choices
The real indicator that shows the real performance of placement is local placements without exam. In 2019, 91 percent of students enrolled in one of their first three choices during local placements without an exam. This rate is important as it also shows student satisfaction. Despite important increase in the number of students, this figure rose to 92 percent in 2020. Consequently, these figures show that improvements in the LGS system clearly increased student satisfaction.
On the other hand, 52 percent of students enrolled in their first choice of school in 2019 during local placements and this figure dropped to 49 percent due to increase in the number of students. In other words, almost half of the students managed to enroll in their first choice during local placements without an exam. This is an indicator of improvement in the local placement.
40 percent increase in vocational education
There is an important increase in the number of students who are enrolled in vocational schools. When compared to the figures of 2019, there was a 40 percent increase in the number of placements to vocational schools. These figures revealed that more students preferred vocational training.
New goal placing students to their first choice
Finally, improvements in 2019 made the system more successful and recent improvements in the system carried us to a better point. From now on, we will focus on improvements that will increase the success level and student-parent satisfaction. The most important indicator is the rate of placing students to their choice. In 2020, this rate was 49 percent. Despite serious increase in the number of students, one of every two students enrolled in the high school institution he or she wanted. We want to increase this figure.
On the other hand, we will focus on eliminating the gap between success differences among high schools and support disadvantaged schools more.