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Pres. Lee Urges End to Corruption in Education

Posted February. 24, 2010 08:07,   


President Lee Myung-bak yesterday urged his administration to remove corruption in education.

“It is important to improve the university entrance system, but failure to eradicate corruption in education will prove to be a major stumbling block for Korea’s future,” he told a Cabinet meeting.

He also urged the government to pour all of its efforts into rooting out corruption in education and municipal and provincial governments.

Citing a series of bribery scandals in education, the president said irregularities at public schools are becoming “organized and systemic.”

“It is heartbreaking that the education community’s corruption is becoming widespread and accumulated,” he said.

President Lee also ordered the Education Ministry and other government agencies to do everything they can to end corruption in education.

Presidential spokeswoman Kim Eun-hye told reporters that the president’s comments aim to “ring the tocsin” for the educational sector at a time when reform of national education is being initiated. She said his words suggest his belief that educational reform is impossible without an end to corruption.

She also quoted the president as saying, “If Korea loses this opportunity to move toward the future, it would’ve lost a chance at national prosperity.”

President Lee also said U.S. President Barack Obama’s comment that his country will become a second-rate country holds more meaning for Korea than America.

On municipal and provincial administration, the chief executive also said he will have each city and province brief him on regional affairs as early as possible. He asked his ministers to pay more attention to projects to build “innovative cities” in the provinces.

President Lee is scheduled to visit Daegu and the Gyeongsang provinces next month.