After ‘Dogani,’ 1 million teachers to be probed

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After ‘Dogani,’ 1 million teachers to be probed

The Ministry of Education, Science and Technology has embarked on a massive investigation of more than a million employees of schools in Korea to see if they have histories of committing sex crimes.

The investigation was prompted by a national uproar sparked by a recent film, “Dogani” (“The Crucible”), which is based on a true case involving the rapes of hearing-impaired students at a school in Gwangju.

Teachers or other school employees with records of committing sex crimes will face harsh punishments, including termination.

The education ministry, the Ministry of Gender Equality and Family and the National Police Agency launched a comprehensive investigation on Wednesday of up to 1.03 million instructors and administrative officials of 189,759 educational institutions, including special schools for the disabled, kindergartens, elementary, middle and high schools, private cram schools, and public science museums.

The investigation actually started in May.

According to the education ministry, 85.2 percent (or 874,552 officials) of the total education workforce have agreed to be investigated and completed the authorities’ personal background checks.

Of the remaining teachers, some have just started cooperating, but 17,891 education officials (1.7 percent) have refused.

The education ministry decided to request that local education offices force them to cooperate.

“Education superintendents in all cities and provinces have the right to check personal histories of their staffs in order to make clear whether sex offenders are working in the education field or not,” Oh Seung-geol, an official from the education ministry, said.

Convicted sex offenders will be fired from schools, and sexual offenders against juveniles, in particular, will be prevented from holding education-related jobs for the next 10 years.

The authorities said that offenders who received harsh punishments in the past will still be fired.

Education Minister Lee Ju-ho emphasized that all offenders will be immediately fired from schools regardless of the severity of their crimes.

An official from the ministry said the names of teachers with records of sexual offenses will be made public on the Internet and in the press.

The ruling Grand National Party is also pushing for a revision of the law in order to ban teachers convicted of sex crimes against children from returning to work in schools.

The education minister said the legal reforms will be made law within a year.

By Park Su-ryon, Song Su-hyun []

한글 관련 기사 [연합뉴스]

"교과부, 교사 성범죄 전과조회에 미온적"

교육과학기술부가 아동ㆍ청소년 관련 업무 종사자 전원에 대한 정부의 성범죄 전과 조회 방침에도 불구하고 이를 제대로 이행하지 않은 것으로 나타났다.

국회 여성가족위 김유정(민주당) 의원이 3일 여성가족부로부터 제출받은 자료에 따르면 올해 8월31일 현재 교과부 산하 각급 학교 교원 58만6천명 중 성범죄 전과 조회가 이뤄진 교원은 47만3천명(80.7%)이었다.

유치원(96.7%)과 학원ㆍ교습소(90%), 과학관(99.5%) 등 교과부 소관 다른 시설들이 90%를 웃도는 조회율을 기록한 것과는 대조적이다.

부처별로 비교해도 교과부 소관 아동ㆍ청소년 이용시설 종사자에 대한 성범죄 전과 조회율은 85.2%로 국토해양부 98.1%, 보건복지부 99.5%, 여성가족부 90.3%에 비해 낮은 수치다.

특히 교과부가 별도 제출한 자료에 따르면 지난 7년간 각종 성범죄로 징계를 받고 학교로 복귀한 교원이 82명이나 됐지만 이들은 조회 대상에 포함되지 않은 것으로 보인다.

교과부는 다수 교원이 성범죄 전과 조회에 동의하지 않는 상황에서 이를 강제하기는 어렵다는 견해인 것으로 알려졌다.

김 의원은 "법제처 유권해석 결과, 개인동의 없이 각 감독기관에서 성범죄 전과조회가 직권으로 가능하다는 결론이 난 만큼 교육청 등 감독기관에서 미조회자들의 조회를 즉시 해야 한다"고 지적했다.

여성가족부는 앞서 작년 12월 아동ㆍ청소년 성보호법의 실효성을 높이기 위해 아동ㆍ청소년 이용시설 24만6천여곳에서 일하는 136만명 전원에 대한 성범죄 전과를 올 상반기부터 조회하겠다고 밝히고 관련 부처에 협조를 요청했었다.

이번 조회에서 드러난 성범죄 전과 근무자는 국토해양부 소관인 공동주택 관리사무소 직원 6명, 보건복지부 소관인 어린이집 직원 1명으로, 조회가 시행된 이후 7명 전원이 해임됐다.

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