Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Corporal punishment to be banned

According to the Joongang Ilbo, corporal punishment is to be phased out in Gyeonggi-do schools.
In Gyeonggi, students who were to receive corporal punishment will instead receive “knowledge and virtue-based punishments,” such as writing book reports, completing community service projects or doing extra assignments.
They're also to be phased out in Seoul Schools as well, but no concrete steps have been taken in this direction. This is interesting:
Examination of students' belongings without prior notice, regulation of hair length, verbal abuse and school violence will be prohibited. The teacher’s duty to monitor students' dress code and conduct of behavior at school gates will be removed. Measures will be taken to raise awareness of student rights and student councils will be given greater autonomy.
Regulation of students' appearances has been relaxing for some time now, but not everywhere. A Korean friend of mine who teaches at a private high school in Gangseo-gu told me his school has become more strict over the past year due to the pronouncements of his principal, who has hired a roving band of enforcers who, instead of checking students at the gate, enter classrooms - while a class is in progress - and check students' hair and clothes, cutting their hair on the spot if it is deemed too long. He's pretty pissed about this, wondering if they're "living under yusin" (the name of Park Chung-hee's dictatorial constitution under which he ruled from 1972-79) again. One wonders this would change if Seoul adopts these measures, or if it will mostly continue with business as usual (with the hope that students won't be videoing any 'lapses').

Also on the topic of education, via Korea Beat comes a story of a girl who posted a notice that she had quit university, not wanting to be a part of the rat race (much like the student seen here who protested taking the university entrance exam).


brent said...

Examination of belongings helps keep cigarettes down. It's really hard to catch the kids otherwise. I hate them stinking up the bathrooms. Kids say about 5% of girls and 35% of boys smoke at the school regularly. That's hundreds and hundreds of kids.

Darth Babaganoosh said...

In that case, it's time to bring back the restroom attendant.

Nusquam Humanitus said...

Young kids smoking in the bathroom is a good thing in the sense that the "freedom" to do so is a sure sign of this country heading in the direction of a true democracy.

Just like Matt's Korean friend who is angry at the principle for allowing his minions to enter a classroom at will and cut student's hair. This actual event is far from "Democratic" in a sense, but Matt's friend anger is this clincher. In a true democracy, freedom of hair style should not be an issue.

Does anyone know how much educational bathroom attendants make in this country? I only ask because my skills as an instructor are undervalued.

Jens-Olaf said...

Our two children are attending school in Korea. In a Korean school. And I am teacher here. In my country corporal punishment is banned and if you do you porably will lose your job as a teacher. There is no inch to discuss about this issue. Ban it now!

Darth Babaganoosh said...

Ban it now!

It WAS banned, already, in 1999(?) and again in 2003(?). It never sticks more than a few months, and teachers are never seriously punished, although the latter is SLOWLY beginning to change (but only if it's brought to the public's attention).

This is more lip service to placate parents, but will still come to nothing.