Posted March. 30, 2009 09:27,
Korean households spent 39.8 trillion won (29.6 billion U.S. dollars) on education last year despite the sharp economic downturn, or an average of 2.39 million won (1,717 dollars) per family.
According to income statistics released by the Bank of Korea yesterday, household spending on education last year grew 8.2 percent or 3.13 trillion won (2.3 billion dollars). Household expenditures overall grew just 6.3 percent over the same period.
Last years educational expenditures were 2.3 times larger than the 17.55 trillion won (14.4 billion dollars) spent in 2000. The country had an estimated 16.67 million households last year, according to the National Statistical Office.
Consequently, the share of income spent on education by household rose from 5.4 percent in 2000 to 7.5 percent last year.
The increase in education spending was largely due to rising college tuition at a rate much higher than inflation and income growth, and to the Korean emphasis on private education for children regardless of a decline in household wealth, experts said.
Last year, households spent 18.72 trillion won (13.8 billion dollars) on private education, up 1.33 trillion won (963 million dollars) year-on-year. Each family spent 1.12 million won (815 dollars). As a result, the share of private educational costs grew from 35.1 percent of all educational costs in 2000 to 47 percent last year.