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Korea lacks citizenship education, says Japanese journalist

Lack of citizenship education has led to Koreans having a negative view of their country, journalist says. / Yonhap


By Eom Da-sol

Korea needs stronger “citizenship education,” which could strengthen patriotism and sense of citizenship, a Japanese journalist has suggested.

On Feb. 19, journalist Mu-keong Shin said on Yahoo Japan that Korea had low sense of citizenship compared to other countries.

The third generation Korean-Japanese said, “Clearly there is a need for citizenship education, but it is not taught in the schools yet.”

According to the Korea Institute of Curriculum and Investigation, 18.4 percent of Korean elementary school students said they learned social rules from school and obeyed them. This rate is only a third of the number among students in the U.K. and France.

Shin wrote that lack of citizenship education was building Koreans’ negative views of their country.

Shin compiled a survey on “the most favorable citizens in the world,” conducted by JoongAng Ilbo and Kyunghee University in August 2015.

The researchers chose the adjective to explain the subjects’ level of faithfulness and fondness toward their nations.

The survey showed Korean respondents considered German citizens as the most favorable. The respondents rated Germans highly because of their “mature citizenship.”

Respondents placed Japanese second because of their “considerate attitude” and “the law-abiding spirit.”

Korea was not in the top 10.

The journalist stressed that citizenship was one of the factors that decided the national identity.

“Appropriate citizenship education in school should be discussed seriously in Korean society,” he said.


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