Toughened Rules on Hagwon Operation
I'd like to comment on an Oct. 20 article, ``Rules Toughened for Hagwon Operation."
For once, I'm welcoming the issuing of new rules, and getting to realize the loose management of cram schools, which are better known as hagwon here in Korea.
The new rules to restrict selfish hagwon operations are needed for not only students but also parents, even if they are likely to be released late.
The government should announce more specific punishments for hagwon not abiding by the law to seek only profit.
Readers want to know if hagwon will be punished for repeatedly engaging in illegal activity. Even though the new rules allow the authorities to revoke licenses without having to issue warnings, it's not a perfect way to restrict them since they might find another way to open and still run them. Therefore, the rules have to enforce stricter punishments so violators can no longer run hagwon. The maximum 2-million-won fine is not enough. They'll be willing to attract students by any means.
The government should get tougher. So far they've been running false or misleading ads through leaflets or other media, cramming students into the compact rooms, operating until after 10 p.m. and collecting undue lesson fees.
The government should carefully consider the influence of the new rules and how they will work properly and help control hagwon effectively.
As long as the new rules don't work well, parents will trust neither education nor the government. Furthermore, hagwon may refuse to follow the rules in order to keep their operation running, albeit illegally.
Now that the new rules will take effect in December, we should try to keep hagwon under close observation, in order to keep them, as well as private tutoring, unnecessary.
Teachers have to make every effort to provide quality education to students to satisfy their needs in school and help them better prepare for entry into college.