Mutual Act

Süleyman Akçay born in 1927 in Muğla. Started to study at Kızılçullu Village Institute. Then he continued to Aydın Ortaklar Village Institute. He wrote poem with his interest in literature lessons. Graduated in 1947. Started working as teacher in Muğla. After working in several villages and towns, He retired in 1976. In one period of time he was active in politics. He quit politic after 1980 coup. He wrote poem about village institutes in some journals after his retirement. He is living in centrum of Aydın city with his 85 years old sick wife. He is taking care of his wife as he still writing poems, keeping his old habit.
Beginning in 1940, the village institutes started to be founded in the fields which are cultivable. In these schools founded at 21 different regions of Turkey, the teachers would teach villagers both how to read and write and modern agriculture methods. Instead of education based on just books, they taught people by practicing things in the right place. With this purpose, all the schools had their own fields, farms, workshops and animals. Until its closure, a lot of fields became useful for agriculture and the production in these fields increased. A great number of warehouses, new roads and buildings were built by the people educating at these schools. Until 1954 when they were closed, 1.308 women and 15.943 men, namely totally 17.251 people were educated as teachers.

The schools were built near the cultivable fields because one of the aims of these institutes is to teach people the new methods for agriculture. The education in village institutes included both practical (agriculture, construction, arts and crafts etc.) and classical (mathematics, science, literature, history etc.) courses. A teacher graduated from these institutes is not only a primary school teacher but also has some practical knowledge about many areas such as apiculture, fisheries, carpentry...etc. Even the buildings for these schools were built by the teachers sent there with the help of the villagers. Their daily routine included morning gymnastics, reading hours and farming. Each student has to read 25 books for each year and learn how to play a musical instrument. They also had weekly meetings in which students can freely criticize teachers and school administration. These institutes became good and rare examples of learning by doing and from this aspect they became the subjects for many studies.
In the end of their service, there were a total of twenty Village Institutes and one Superior Village Institute that trains teachers for the others. They gave about 25000 graduates.

Despite their great benefits, many parts of the society were against these schools. Conservatives opposed the co-ed education in a boarding school. It was very hard to persuade parents at villages to let their daughters to study there. Anti-communist and anti-socialist movements, strong at the time, attacked the schools and lower their reputation in the society. School libraries contained leftist books as well and students were expected to read different political thoughts. Also many landlords that control villages are disturbed by the highly educated teachers coming back. They not only formed primary schools but also educated the villagers both intellectually and about agriculture.

  • Bayram Küçük
  • Bayram Küçük
  • Bayram Küçük
  • Bayram Küçük
  • Bayram Küçük
  • Süleyman Akçay
    Key Cast
  • Project Type:
    Documentary, Short, Student
  • Runtime:
    12 minutes 34 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    June 21, 2018
  • Production Budget:
    100 USD
  • Country of Origin:
  • Country of Filming:
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
    Full Hd Digital
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  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Bayram Küçük

He was born in Erzincan on 11th October 1995. He completed the primary and secondary schools in Erzincan. He studied in Radio Television in Giresun University, followed by Radio Television & Cinema department in the Communication Faculty of Aydin Adnan Menderes University. He created Fiction and Documentary movies. His movies appeared in international film festivals. His documentary movie "Preparation of the Last Journey" received "Top Talent" title in 2019 Adobe Design Achievement Awards.He was the semi-finalist in 2018 Adobe Design Achievement Awards with his documentary "Half a Century".

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Director Statement

Turkish independent filmmaker