The Korea Herald (September 17, 2012)
The number of students from multicultural families in South Korea rose more than 20 percent in 2012, growing to 0.7 percent of the country’s total student population. According to the data compiled by the Education Ministry, the number of multicultural students who attend primary or secondary schools in South Korea reached 46,954 in 2012. This is nearly five times larger than the 9,389 multicultural students who attended school in 2006, when the ministry began compiling the data. If the current trend continues, multicultural students will take up more than 1 percent of the country’s total primary and secondary school students by 2014.
The South Korean government has responded by devising diverse measures to help the students better adapt to school, including operating “preliminary schools” across the country to teach them the Korean language and culture for about six months before they start regular schooling, and adding “the Korean as a Second Language” subject to the regular curriculum in schools.
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