Welcoming School

iSTANBUL, Turkey
Sultanbeyli/ Istanbul, Turkey
To enable Syrian refugee children to integrate successfully into Turkish primary schools the project empowers them with sufficient Turkish language skills, support of their parents and favourable learning conditions through reduced post-stress learning hindrances and a welcoming school climate.
  • to work towards systemic change, by operating as a show case that persuades the public administration to invest more into primary schools. The project wants to show that it pays off to provide extra resources to primary schools’ capacity to integrate Syrian refugee children successfully. Such an investment is preventive and avoids the ‘curative’ high costs that result from non-integration of Syrians.
  • to promote a replicable and scalable approach for refugee integration that engages Syrian parents for the children’s schooling, as a means of integration for both children and parents.
  • to promote an approach that is collaborative with the municipality. 


The project’s initial activity is a four weeks Summer Preparation Programme for Turkish language support, that will be conducted in August 2017 for 500 Syrian refugee children coming from the district’s 15 different neighbourhoods. Then these ‘SPP trainees’ will be placed in the public primary schools of their respective neighbourhoods. The project will ensure that in-school they will get additionally needed Turkish language support, a welcoming school climate and – if needed – support to overcome learning hindrances that result from post-traumatic stress. Simultaneously, for these 500 SPP trainees the project will ensure the engagement and the active school support of their parents, with the transfer of Turkish language to the parents being one of the major project activities. High level decision makers in Istanbul and Ankara will be persuaded to adopt on a large scale into Turkey’s public education system the cost-effective new practices that the project will have developed, by lobby and advocacy activities that showcase the project’s field evidence on “what works for whom?” for the achievement of outcomes.