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Balance brought to liberal-led educational field with rise of conservatives

Balance brought to liberal-led educational field with rise of conservatives

Posted June. 03, 2022 07:40,   

Updated June. 03, 2022 07:40


Eight conservative candidates and nine liberal candidates were elected in the elections for education superintendents across 17 cities and provinces on Wednesday. This year’s local elections have put a stop to liberal education superintendents’ dominance in the two previous elections where 13 and 14 liberals in 2014 and 2018, respectively, bringing balance between conservative and liberals to the educational field.

Five regions – Busan, Gyeonggi Province, Gangwon Province, North Chungcheong Province, and Jeju Province – changed their liberal superintendents to conservatives in the June 1 local elections according to the National Election Commission on Thursday. For the first time since 2010 when citizens started casting their votes for education superintendents, conservative candidates – Lim Tae-hee (54.79 percent) and Shin Gyung-ho (29.51 percent) - Gyeonggi Province and Gangwon Province, respectively, won the elections. In Busan, North Chungcheong Province, and Jeju Province, the incumbent superintendents, who are liberals, ran for re-election. However, they were outcompeted by their conservative contenders – Ha Yoon-su (50.82 percent), Yoon Gun-yong (55.95 percent) and Kim Gwang-su (57.47 percent), respectively. The Korea Federation of Teachers’ Associations assessed that voters put the educational leadership swept by liberals on trial.

Meanwhile, 51.11 percent of votes turned out to be invalid or blank ballots in this year’s elections, the largest portion since the direct superintendent election system began in 2010, meaning that some 22.65 million out of 44.30 million electors did not vote at all or joined the vote but ended up casting invalid or blank ballots. The rates of such voters were 48.2 percent, 46.18 percent, and 42.07 percent in 2010, 2014, and 2018, respectively. The rate this year exceeded 50 percent for the first time. Indeed, this year’s elections had the most uninformed or ignorant voters since citizens started directly voting for their education superintendents.

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