Parents obsessed with private tutoring
By Kim Bo-eun
Seven out of 10 parents are worried that their children may fall behind if they do not get enough private tutoring, a study showed Tuesday.
The finding was based on a survey of 517 parents by Yoon’s English Institute, one of the nation’s largest privately-run English education academies.
The poll discovered that 72.1 percent of the respondents were obsessed with the education for their children that takes place outside of school.
The survey indicated that parents have been heavily weighed down by rapidly changing education policies as well as the private tutoring craze.
Eighty percent of parents in the affluent southern Seoul, where fervor for education is sky high, answered that they are extremely preoccupied with private tutoring for their children.
In northern Seoul, 71.9 percent of parents said that they feel stress about private tutoring. And 71.3 percent of parents in Gyeonggi Province and Incheon City responded the same way.
About 23 percent said they send their children to cram schools, believing that private tutoring would improve their academic capabilities. Another 22.5 percent said they let their children get private tutoring because other parents do so.
And 18.5 percent said they pay for private tutoring for their children to enter prestigious universities and land decent jobs after graduation.
Some parents (11.5 percent) said they longed for the satisfaction of seeing their children receive a better education than they did. Others (11 percent) responded that they felt guilty that they were only able to provide the minimum for their children.
As for the impact of such an obsession, 29.5 percent said they expect better grades from their children, and 29 percent responded that they are under significant levels of stress. Some said they felt they weren’t providing enough for their children, at 25.7 percent.
Another repercussion cited by 18.2 percent was that parents increase expenditures on private education even if it is a strain on themselves. A mere 2.9 percent said they are too preoccupied with their children’s education.
The high levels of stress caused by private education for their children are having harmful effects on the health of parents.
Survey results showed 22.5 percent had experienced physical symptoms from stress regarding private education, and headaches were the most common of them, taking up 27.4 percent. Another 22.6 percent suffered depression and 17.9 percent experienced indigestion. Other symptoms included apathy (13.1 percent), insomnia (9.5) and hair loss (7.1).
Obsessed parents were found to spend an average 345,000 won on private tutoring for their kids, about 1.5 times the amount spent by parents who were not obsessed.
When asked whether their children’s grades would rise in proportion to the money they spent on private education, 61.2 percent responded “yes” while 7.9 percent disagreed.