Education Ministry Lacks ForesightThe recent decision to legalize private tutoring ("kwaweh") by the nation's Constitutional Court has divided the country. Schools worry over the future of public education and parents worry about the implications that the court's decision will have on the cost of private tutoring.
The tutoring market has already started to expand in the wake of the court's decision. Parents of students are worried because they do not know what steps the government will take, and they are not sure what the future holds.
Nevertheless, the Ministry of Education has yet to offer a comment. One possibility is that the Ministry doesn't have any countermeasures. As the judge from the Seoul Court handed down the first unconstitutional ruling 18 months ago, the ministry should have prepared some type of response.
The process of creating a comprehensive response to a complicated problem like private tutoring is not a simple one. The ministry should have begun formulating countermeasures to the court's decision some time ago. President Kim severely rebuked the ministry for its failure to prepare for the decision. The people responsible should take responsibility for the situation.
It is bizarre that such a ministry is scheduled to be upgraded to a vice-premier level system. The Education Ministry is simply not capable of handling its current responsibilities, much less any future ones.
The most important aspect of the current educational crisis is the lack of any tangible policy from the Ministry of Education. The government banned private tutoring twenty years ago, but what has it done in the meantime?
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