While Tajikistan was consumed by civil war in the 1990s, Turkish businessman and philanthropist Kemal Erimez arrived with a plan to open schools.
With the fall of the Soviet Union and the conflict raging, the educational system was falling apart. In the two decades since they opened their doors, the six schools that Erimez helped establish have come to be widely recognized as standard-bearers on the national education landscape.
As of this fall, however, the government has wrested control of the schools from charity that set them up, leading to fears among parents of an inexorable decline in teaching standards. Authorities have said the schools will have to continue being self-financing, but seem to have few ideas about how that will happen.
The network of schools, which offered instruction in Turkish and English and were known locally as “Turkish schools,” was run by a locally registered company called Shalola. In the early years, hundreds of teachers were brought over from abroad to Tajikistan by Erimez to help set up operations.
To read the full story