[LETTERS TO THE EDITOR]Insufficient education policyThe Education Ministry, trying to cut spending on private education, is attempting many new policies. Private institutions are restricted from having class after 10 p.m., EBS, the government-owned education channel, is broadcasting more lectures with more teachers. Questions on the Korean college-entrance exam are to come from the EBS lectures. Impressive efforts to minimize the influence of private institutions and maximize that of public schools are being made.
However, not all problems can be solved by the outer changes that the government is making. In reality, the EBS textbooks were made in such a hurry that it is merely a combination of earlier textbooks. Private institutions are looking for ways to stay open past 10 p.m.
Education is a very sensitive issue especially in Korea, where the desire for learning is so intense. Instead of the ineffective changes that only affect the surface, it needs a fundamental change of the way the public views the public schools.
Fundamental changes cannot be accomplished in a short period of time. It can only be accomplished with the combination of a slow change in educational policies and an improvement of school systems.
The government must provide constant economic support to public education and have patience. The quality of public education, by way of better facilities and teachers, will gradually improve and fewer students will feel the need for extra assistance.
by Kim Soo-min