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Everything You Need to Know About Ulsan

Are You Working Illegally?

According to the Korea Times, if you’re working at an English Kindergarten, yes, you are. But just as many Koreans ignore traffic lights, signals and lanes, so, too do they ignore Ministry of Education rules on Kindergartens.

Fueled by parents’ desire to have their little snowflakes be the best and have the utmost education, and therefore brightest future the illegal hagwons are flourishing.

The Korea Times states two problems with the schools:

…the surprisingly high cost and educational worries. Because the cost per hour for a hagwon is limited and must be registered at metropolitan offices before it officially charges the rate to students, it cannot overcharge to the extent where it becomes ridiculous.

The other problem is founded on faulty thinking.

The current kindergarten program guidelines from the ministry do not include teaching English. This was because experts believed that it was more important to learn Korean as one’s mother tongue and some believed that learning two languages at the same time at a school or institute would confuse very young children.

Numerous studies have shown that children acquire language best at an early age and are easily able to distinguish languages and even persons to whom they should use which language. They aren’t confused, the parents are. And apparently so is the MOE.

A mother the KT interviewed revealed the true reasons:

“I didn’t send my first child to an English kindergarten and I felt she was left out among her friends who did go. So I sent my younger daughter. The price was pretty high, mostly in the 800,000 won range, but we sent her anyway,”

Keeping up with the Jones (Kims as the case may be) is the real reason. Being left out of the lemming pack is more important than the language itself it would seem.