CNA – South Korean parents and teachers groups protested yesterday against a plan to bring forward school enrolment by one year to age five, saying such young kids were intellectually unprepared and the change would increase difficulty in finding childcare.
The Education Ministry said it would lower the age in stages, beginning as early as 2025, if it gained consensus public support. The plan was aimed at expanding the labour force by completing people’s education earlier, it said. The labour force is shrinking, because South Korea’s fertility rate is so low.
A coalition of 36 teachers and parents groups staged a rally in front of the presidential office yesterday, calling for the plan to be dropped.
Many parents have opposed it because of the difficulty of finding ways of looking after the children following the early-afternoon end of the school day.