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Founded and sponsored by Turkish Women’s League of America (TWLA) since 1971, New York Atatürk School has hundreds of alumni and is the oldest established weekend Turkish educational institution in New York. As a forerunner institution promoting the educational ideals of Atatürk, New York Atatürk School was founded in 1971 with President Ayla Erdamar’s diligent work and endeavor and with the support of Consul General Sait Sahipoğlu. At the time, the classes were held at the Turkish Consulate at Rockefeller Center in New York and the school had only 30 students. With the increase in number of students the following year, the classes were held at the leased classrooms in New York Theological Seminary Building. Between 1974 and 1977, the education continued at the United Nations International School. With the support of Permanent Representative of Turkey to the United Nations İlter Türkmen and Consul General Sıtkı Coşkun, Atatürk School moved to New York Turkish Center after its acquisition in 1977.

During the renovation of the Turkish Consulate Building in New York, Atatürk School continued to provide education by leasing classrooms from public schools in the Manhattan area. Since 2017, the school operates its education, cultural and social activities at the P.S. 6, the Lillie Devereaux Blake School at 45 East 81 Street, between 10am-4:15pm every Saturday from September through June.

During the Covid19 pandemic that has shaken the whole world, New York Atatürk School’s education continues online without interruption. In this process, it has expanded its education spectrum with students who participate in online education from other states and countries.


This program, in connection with the International Mother Language Day, celebrates the contribution of New York Atatürk School, which has been providing continuous education in coordination to the 5 year primary school education program on Saturdays in New York City for 50 years. International Mother Language Day has been celebrated annually on 21 February worldwide, under the leadership of UNESCO and by United Nations programs since 1999. Its main purposes are defined as follows:

• Promoting linguistic and cultural diversity and multilingualism.
• Showing that languages are the most powerful tools for preserving and enhancing our tangible and intangible heritage.
• All movements promoting the spread of mother language aim not only to promote linguistic diversity and multilingual education, but also to serve the development of a wider awareness of linguistic and cultural traditions in the world.