School for interracial children to open in March
By Yun Suh-young
A six-year elementary school for children of multicultural families will open next March, the first official such institution in Korea.
The Seoul Metropolitan Office of Education said Nov. 15 that the “Jiguchon Hakkyo” or “The School of Global Sarang” has officially been approved as a full-time elementary school and will open Mar. 1, 2012, in Guro-gu, Seoul. The school is a private alternative school but the school’s graduates will have their academic background acknowledged when they apply for other schools.
It will admit 90 students from grade 1 to grade 6; each class will consist of 15 students with only one per grade. About 80 percent of the student pool will be from multicultural families and the other 20 percent will be filled with Korean students.
“Based on 20 years’ experience on caring for foreign immigrants, I will do my best to operate the school with social responsibility” said pastor Kim Hae-sung who founded the school. “I hope this school will become a trailblazer model for schools for multicultural kids.”
The school tuition and entrance fee is entirely free and all children regardless of their nationality or background may apply. The school is open to students who wish to receive multi-language and multi-cultural elementary education.
The school is currently receiving applications for admission until the end of February. The notice for the application deadline will be posted on the school’s website, www.globalsarang.com.
Those wishing to send their children to the school may call 02-6910-1004 and request for an appointment for interview. An application form is available for download on the school’s website.
“There were many cases of children from multicultural families dropping out of school or being excluded from regular schooling due to economic and language difficulties,” said an official from the education office. “We hope that the school will become a stepping stone for these children ― helping them find their identities, build self-esteem, and grow healthily as members of Korean society.”
A high school for multicultural kids is also to open on the same date, according to the education office.
Seoul Dasom School will be in Jung-gu, Seoul. The school is for students who failed to advance to high schools or dropped out of high schools.
It will admit a total of 120 students. Students who graduate from the school will also have their academic background approved when applying for college. The application period is from Dec. 14 to 16, 2011. For more information, call 070-8685-7602.