Syrian refugee student achieves perfect score in Turkey-wide exam

Muhammet Halil came up with the correct answers to all of the questions in the High School Entry Exam.

    Halil and his family fled to Turkey at the beginning of the civil war in Syria more than eight years ago [Izzet Mazi/Anadolu]
    Halil and his family fled to Turkey at the beginning of the civil war in Syria more than eight years ago [Izzet Mazi/Anadolu]

    A Syrian refugee boy achieved a perfect score in a countrywide exam in Turkey that qualifies students for high school.

    Muhammet Halil, the son of an architect father and a teacher mother, came up with the correct answers to all 90 questions in the High School Entry Exam, which consists of mathematics and social sciences sections. 

    The exam took place on June 1 across Turkey and the results were announced on Monday.

    Speaking to state-run Anadolu news agency, Halil said he and his family fled to Turkey at the beginning of the civil war in Syria in 2011.

    The family lived in the city of Gaziantep, in southeastern Turkey, for a while before moving to the neighbouring province of Kilis after Halil's parents found out the level of education was better there.

    Halil started to study in a temporary school in Kilis as a fourth-grade student, as part of a project that aims to integrate Syrian children into Turkish schools.

    He moved to a regular middle school in the city for Grade 7 and 8, after which he took the exam.

    "I was pretty weak when I first started studying for the exam. However in time, I improved myself with the help of my teachers," Halil told Anadolu.

    Turkish teacher Halil Avcu said he was proud of the teenager's work effort. 

    "I am grateful to God for making it possible for me to meet such an exceptional student. This is Halil's effort, we just tried to be a guide," Avcu said.

    Young population

    More than 400,000 Syrian children have been born in Turkey since the start of the civil war, according to the government.

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    "The population of Syrians in Turkey is a young one," said immigration official Abdullah Ayaz.

    He noted only about 100,000 among 3.6 million Syrians in Turkey are older than 60.

    "Since the start of the crisis, more than 415,000 Syrian babies have been born in Turkey," Ayaz said.

    The current schooling rate of refugee children in Turkey stands at 96.3 percent, according to Turkish media.

    Statistics show some 520,000 refugee children currently go to public schools in the country.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and news agencies