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Retired Leftist Professors Benefit from the Temporary Directors System

Retired Leftist Professors Benefit from the Temporary Directors System

Posted March. 10, 2007 07:45,   


While university professors, presidents and economy organization officials call for the liberalization of the universities, Professor Kim Gi-seok, the professor of the department of education at Seoul National University, leveled harsh criticism at the left-leaning government of its deep interference in admissions and the phenomenon of left- leaning professors being appointed as chief directors.

At a forum for specialists in education on the subject of “The future of Korean universities and the governance of education” on March 9 at the Grand Hilton Hotel in Hong-eun dong hosted by the Korea Dialogue Academy, Professor Kim stated, “The Korean government has been too dependent on restricting extracurricular lectures, which instead has built tolerance and immunity against the government policies.”

He also added, “Now, private education has turned into a product with the highest price in the market, and has blurred public and private affairs by encroaching upon the public education area.”

Professor Kim pointed out, “As power is concentrated in the center, the governance of public education is in fact wrecked. In particular, the central government’s education body, which needs an overhaul, has instead transformed itself into pretending to be a pioneering body and has been exempted from any evaluation process for a long time.”

“Due to the left inclination of the current administration, with the ministry of education at the forefront, Cheong Wa Dae attempts to regulate all details of university admission policies. The ministry of education has intervened into every detail of individual professor duties including strict grade policies, while neglecting their own responsibilities.”

Professor Kim’s indication is seen to be related to the remarks made by Cheong Wa Dae and the Uri Party for criticizing Seoul National University (SNU)’s admissions plan to give more weight to writing tests on its admission exam and the possibility of the university closing.

He also said, “The government has placed some incumbent officials in the education ministry in the scholastic foundation, which was established by forcing funds from Samsung. This phenomenon is due to the instinct of self-preservation of the giant bureaucratic organization and congestion in personnel promotion of senior officials.”

Professor Kim furthered, “The current practice of government-appointed trustees is to bypass difficult challenges ahead and settle scandals surrounding private colleges.”

He pointed out the problems of the temporary directors system by mentioning, “Due to this, recently some obsolete student activist-turned professors are appointed as chief directors, directors, auditors and presidents, and now, those professors who have been longing for wealth and prosperity are enjoying their golden days. The ministry of education, which has abandoned this situation, should also be responsible for the consequences.”

The professor continued, “The strong alliance between the education ministry and private colleges can be realized when you look into a bestowal of an order of educators of merit. Those who rank on the top of the decoration list are from private universities.”

Kim Gwang-ung, a professor emeritus of Seoul National University, said in a session for establishing a new relationship between government and universities, “According to a survey on 104 incumbent presidents of the 52 national and public universities, 15 presidents, which accounts for 14.4 percent, turned out to be ex-government officials.”

Professor Kim asserted, “As the government tries to control every detail of the admission policies, which include not only financial policies, but also school organization and revision of the school rules, the university has no other choice than to rely on a network with the government.” He added, “Fielding ministry official figures as potential presidents is designed to help smooth the progress of universities’ budget issues.”