We thought families and scouts might like to know a bit more about Korea, so this week we’ve had a look at the Education System.

Primary school is optional in South Korea and most parents prefer to keep their children at home as long as possible. However, at age 6 their child must move on to 6 years compulsory ‘chodeung-hakgyo’, elementary education.

There are then 3 years of middle school. The transition here can be difficult because studies are taken far more seriously. Discipline is stricter too with uniforms, haircuts and punctuality rules enforced.

Places in secondary schools (called high schools) are awarded by lottery and everybody gets an equal chance. Some schools are state owned and some are privately run. The quality of their results is legendary. Standards are high.

The aims of education at the high school level are very serious and stated as:

• to foster each student’s personality and ability needed to preserve and strengthen the backbone of the nation

• to develop students’ knowledge and skills to prepare them for jobs needed in society

• to promote each student’s autonomy, emotional development, and critical thinking abilities to be brought to bear in and out of school

• to improve physical strength and foster a sound mind.

At the end of high school 75% of students go on to University by passing a college scholastic ability test. University is another level again with whole families involved in helping a student pass. At exam time businesses open shorter hours to facilitate this.

Do you think you could study in Korea?