Lots of nonsenseTwo international middle schools to open next year are planning to implement a peculiar way of recruiting new students.
In the first step, the schools look at recommendation letters from school principals and awards at English competitions. In the second step, school behavior records and interviews are used for screening.
The last step is to draw lots.
Drawing lots was the request of the Seoul education office, which grants the right to set up international middle schools. The education office explains that the measure is aimed at preventing overheated private tutoring from spreading.
This is nothing but a cheap trick.
It is a lazy idea to believe that drawing lots in the last step of recruitment will have an impact on private tutoring.
How can drawing lots possibly help that purpose?
As students are not allowed to draw lots if they fail the first two stages, they will still be using private tutors to prepare for the first two steps of the recruitment process.
Of course, it is not good if the private tutoring market is overheated by competition to get into international middle schools. But a sloppy measure such as drawing lots can’t stop private tutoring. The city education office must appreciate the reality of the situation.
Drawing lots to get into international middle schools is not fair. The first two steps should be the basic factors in student admissions.
How should students accept the fact that their admission depends on pure luck instead of competence?
A student who passes the first two steps clearly has the competence and qualifications. But if that student fails at the last step, he or she will feel the system is unfair, and rightly so.
However, it will be even more absurd to draw lots from the first step, as if recruiting new students in private elementary schools.
The city education office must immediately withdraw its request that international middle schools draw lots when recruiting students. How to select students should be left to each school.
Each school knows the best way to recruit its own students.
International middle schools are established in order to train talented students who can confidently work in the international arena.
We hope the city education office’s bizarre measure of drawing lots won’t debase the purpose of international middle schools.