Maarif Foundation-run schools abroad are well representing Turkey thanks to the extraordinary performances by their students.
Describing the foundation, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan had said, "We have a foundation that represents our country abroad and it will be our door opening to the world."
Erdoğan said the Maarif Foundation has exhibited important success within a very short time. Since the foundation, the Maarif has taken over the Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ)-linked schools in 18 countries and opened new schools in 17 countries.
Speaking to the Turkish language daily Sabah, Maarif Foundation Chairman Birol Akgün said the success of the foundation belongs to 81 million people of Turkey who support the foundation.
"Our high school and university students have accomplished great success worldwide. Although we are a young organization, our students represent many countries," he added.
Underling that these students have gained important honors in many areas including art, sports, culture and academic studies, Akgün said: "The world started to know Turkey with the Maarif and embraces us. The marks of FETÖ have been erased. At this point, our schools are the pride of their countries."
FETÖ has a considerable presence abroad, particularly in the U.S., where it runs a chain of charter schools that serve as a revenue stream for the terrorist group.
The U.S. is home to a large community of Gülenists, including the group's leader Fetullah Gülen, who has lived in a self-imposed exile on a secluded compound in the U.S. state of Pennsylvania since 1999.
While the Maarif Foundation has representatives in 55 countries, it also made official contact with 99 countries for educational activities. It educates more than 30,000 students at 292 schools in 35 countries.
The foundation has also signed protocols with another 41 countries and is soon planning to start educational activities. It also runs 41 dormitories in different countries. Alongside opening new schools worldwide, the Maarif Foundation has been taking control of FETÖ-linked educational institutions after the group orchestrated a coup attempt on July 15, 2016, killing 251 people and injuring nearly 2,200.