About SMOE (Government Public School Teaching Job in SEOUL)
[SMOE ORIENTATION VIDEO September 2009]
[SMOE ORIENTATION VIDEO March 2009]
Greater Seoul Area Districts w/ Han river
1. STATUS OF SCHOOL
As of 2004, Seoul Metropolitan Office of Education accommodates 2,210 schools with 1,573,684 students and 72,711 teachers.
To meet the industrial needs, the ratio of students attending vocational high schools to those attending academic high schools is steadily increasing.
2. EDUCATIONAL FINANCING
In drawing up an educational budget, emphasis is put on maximizing revenues and maximizing current expenditures. Priorities are given to school operational expenditures, improvement of educational facilities and aid to private schools.
3. EDUCATION SYSTEM
The basic school ladder is a singular track composed of six years of elementary school, three years of middle school, another three years of high school, and four more years of college or university schooling. Primary education in Korea is free and compulsory providing the general rudimentary education necessary in life. Enrollment rate at primary schools is as high as 99.9%. The quantitative expansion of primary education is due to the high public zeal for education and the educational policies of the government.
The sudden increase in the number of students and the migration of the rural population into cities has prompted the government to create an education tax in 1982 to finance the expansion and modernization of physical facilities and to improve the socio-economic status of teachers. As a result, the number of students per class dropped to 34.8 in 1990. Overcrowded schools have been divided into smaller ones and the double shift system of classes has been terminated.
With the revision of the regulation that prohibited children under six from entering primary school, even five year olds who are thought to have the ability became eligible to enter school if there is space.
In addition, to expand foreign language education, English has been taught as a part of the regular curriculum starting in 1997, one hour per week for third and fourth graders, two hours per week for fifth and sixth grade students.
The purpose of middle schools is to conduct standard secondary education on the basis of primary education. Since 1969 there has been no limitation placed on entrance to middle school and all who wish to enter middle school have been assigned to the school nearest their residence. Free compulsory middle school education began in 1985 in remote island areas and has been expanded to county areas between 1992 and 1994. All cities across the nation have adopted the compulsory education system since 2002.
High school education is mainly aimed at providing secondary and basic advanced education based on middle school education. High schools are divided into general high schools, vocational high schools, and others (foreign language, art, and science high schools).
Graduates of middle schools or the equivalent may enter high schools. The period of study is three years and students bear the expenses of education. Admission into high school used to be based on the grades of a selection examination, but there has been some variance in the admission process between equalization-applied areas and non-equalization areas since 1974, when the equalization policy for high schools went into operation. In other words, applicants for vocational high schools are given the opportunity to choose their school and to be selected by a selection examination or based on achievement in middle school, while applicants for general high schools are not given the opportunity to select their school but are assigned to a school in their residential district.
However, according to the revision of the education law in 1995, there are various ways of selection, such as recognition of the "school activities records" where the three-year life of middle school students is recorded as well as the entrance test score; subsequently, the choice accorded to students has broadened since 1996.
General high schools provide regular high school education. Students choose their major areas in their 11th grade. Depending on their aptitude and interests, humanities/social studies, sciences, or vocational training are offered as options. Most, however, choose to enter fields that would allow them to enter college.
Vocational high schools offer general secondary education and specialized courses including those in the fields of agriculture, industry, commerce, fisheries/maritime, and home economics. The government is striving to devise measures to develop and support vocational high schools and to expand their roles as industry has become very scientific and highly sophisticated.
Focus of education was placed on offering a variety of on-site education services to train skilled personnel that can adapt to the rapidly changing industrialization and globalization phenomena in the 1980s.
Foreign language high schools, science high schools, and art high schools were established to train promising students in the respective fields. With active government assistance, such schools are able to identify gifted students at an early period to maximize the students' potentials.
One school year is divided into two semesters. The first semester lasts from March 1st till the end of August, and the second from September 1st till the end of February.
Primary & secondary Education Law stipulates that six years of primary education and three years of middle school education is mandatory, but as a transient measure, only elementary school education is compulsory in Seoul.
4. EDUCATION STRUCTURE
The school ladder system, the backbone of the school education system, is unified structure connection the different school levels. Korea has a single-track 6-3-3-4 system which maintains a single line of school levels in order to insure that every citizen can receive elementary, secondary, and tertiary education without discrimination. The main track of the system includes six years of elementary school, three years of middle school, three years of high school, and four years of university education.
Article from SMOE (http://etis.sen.go.kr)
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