Opening up CSAT scoresIt is anticipated that the government is going to let lawmakers know students’ College Scholastic Ability Test scores.
Ahn Byong-man, the minister of education, science and technology, said in order to help the lawmakers to develop policies the ministry will reveal the scores to the lawmakers.
Ahn’s decision overturns the policy of the former minister not to publicize the data to anyone.
We believe that the government should take the extra step and make the students’ scores available to the whole nation. This would be the right course of action in an era of unlimited competition.
The measure will encourage schools and students to compete against one another, which will eventually help enhance the overall public education system.
However, some officials at the ministry and some teachers’ organizations oppose making public these school scores, claiming that the data would be used to rank schools, a move that will shake the basis of the current policy for university entrance standards.
These worries are old-fashioned, lacking in foresight and ultimately neglect the essential idea of competition.
We already know that from 2010 students in Seoul will be able to apply for the high school of their choice and then draw lots.
What’s more, 150 high schools outside of the capital will be designated as boarding schools for which students will compete to enter.
High schools across the country have already started to see the need to compete.
The publication of scores would offer valuable information to students, which would mean that parents would no longer have to rely on the speculative pronouncements of private educational institutes.
When we look abroad we see that governments in advanced countries such as the United States and France have no qualms about making scores public and ranking high schools to help parents make better choices.
If Ahn follows this course, we would be in a position to drastically change the prevailing education policy.
We hope that the government also re-examines the ban on schools recruiting students who make donations to schools, the idea of ranking high schools and schools conducting their own university entrance tests.
There shouldn’t be any room for prejudice or unnecessary regulations when enhancing the public education system to nurture prestigious schools and talented students.