[Letters] Seek partnerships for education

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[Letters] Seek partnerships for education

I was very pleased to read your editorial, “All together now” [April 4 about local public-private partnerships for education]. Financial support from residents is very effective in helping improve the quality of education in rural areas, but most rural or city districts cannot easily raise funds. The government and Ministry of Education need to cooperate and make unified plans. For example, the Artist in Schools program was jointly devised by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism and the Ministry of Education. It provides schools with art instructors in areas such as Korean music, dance, filmmaking and animation. Schools in poor areas have priority in being chosen for the program.

There are also numerous benefits in using human resources in schools and local organizations. By joining their efforts they can provide students the opportunity to experience a variety of activities. For example, Seoul Dongmyeong Elementary School has had an after-school project in collaboration with a local organization for two years, in 2004 and 2005. Parents, retired teachers and [hagwon] teachers from the area joined together for the project. Students participated in a variety of classes such as exercise, writing, art and English, and teachers enjoyed teaching and sharing their talents.

It would be ideal to have both financial support and human resource contributions. Seoul Changlim Elementary School had a two-year art project based on a working relationship with a local organization since 2005. The Seoul Metropolitan Office of Education supported the school, and art museums and artists in the area supported the project. The school reported the program was excellent. It also influenced and stimulated interest in art among the people in the area.

Jung Nae-young, iwithgod@hotmail.com
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