Tuesday, November 29, 2005

School Daze: The 220 Day School Year

Korean students will soon be getting two Saturdays off per month:
All students attending elementary, middle and high schools nationwide will have two Saturdays off each month, starting next year.

The Ministry of Education and Human Resources Development Tuesday announced a plan to expand the five-day school week system from once a month to twice in March.

The ministry has collected various opinions through a survey of students’ parents and a public hearing from educational experts, along with a pilot program.

The plan was designed to keep abreast of social demands as a growing number of workplaces operate the five-day workweek system.

Under the plan, the number of school days will be reduced, on a flexible basis, by an average of 10 percent or 22 out of the 220 days required by the law.

Students attending elementary, middle and high schools nationwide have every fourth Saturday off once a month.

The ministry also plans to extend the period of giving two Saturdays off each month for an additional year, or to give every Saturday off from 2007, when the five-day school week system begins next year.

In line with the extended five-day school week system, the ministry also came up with measures to take care of children whose parents work on Saturdays.

Under the measures, about 2,500 elementary schools will operate the after-school programs by the end of 2008 for poor children and children whose parents work.

Currently, some 639,300 students voluntarily attend more than 13,900 after-school programs at elementary schools nationwide on Saturdays.
Heh. I wonder if this longer school year has anything to do with Korean students scoring well on tests?

It would be interesting to know if Korean public school teachers experience a higher level of job-satisfaction than their American counterparts.
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