Children of illegals gain more rights to schools

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Children of illegals gain more rights to schools

Starting this fall, children of illegal immigrants will have the legal right to attend secondary school.

The Ministry of Education, Science and Technology announced yesterday that the revised education law will provide children of unregistered foreign workers with three years of compulsory education in middle school.

The children had previously been permitted to attend only six years of primary school. Secondary school had been limited to native Koreans or the children of legally registered foreigners.

Specific documents, such as a housing lease agreement or letter of guarantee written by neighbors or friends, are required to prove that unregistered children are currently living in Korea.

“Revising the enforcement ordinance, the Korean government guarantees the right to education in accordance with the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child,” said Jeon Woo-hong, a section chief for the educational welfare support bureau of the Education Ministry.

Through consultations with the Ministry of Justice, the Education Ministry decided to stop using the children of foreign nationals to track down illegal immigrants, which was condemned by the international community for a violation of a child’s right to education.

About 3,200 children of illegal immigrants between the ages of 6 and 15 are estimated to be living in Korea.

By Park Su-ryon []
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