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North Korea

Secondary Education

The secondary school is named "The Higher Middle School of Six Years." As its name suggests, the "Higher Middle School" provides six years of schooling. The Higher Middle School has two levels: four years on the lower level and two years on the higher level. The lower level is called the middle school class for students from the ages of 10 to 13. The higher level is named the high school class for those from the ages of 14 to 15. Official documents indicate that there is a selection process at the end of the first four years of schooling. However, it is assumed that automatic promotion to the second fall term is practiced in most schools.

Secondary education is also focused on political education, basic science and technology, physical education, and music and arts. Major topics for political education include the revolutionary activities of the Kim Il-Sung and Kim Jung-Il, the Party's major policies, and communist morals. The pedagogical practices recommended by the thesis of socialist education are applied systematically. Time allocation of subjects is: political education, 12.5 percent; language, 15.8 percent; math, 18.6 percent; and science, 18.5 percent. These four subjects take 65.4 percent of all instruction time. Foreign language instruction starts at secondary level and takes 9.3 percent of regular instruction time. Other subjects are physical education, 4.6 percent; music and arts, 4.1 percent; and social science, 9.7 percent (Han Man-Kil 1997).

In secondary education, there were 3,276 schools in 1965; 3,861 in 1975; and 4,842 in 1996. The number of enrolled students in 1965 reached 717,000, and it increased rapidly to 2,322,000 in 1975; 2,655,000 in 1985; and 2,915,000 in 1996. The number of teachers was 27,000 in 1965; 80,000 in 1975; and 98,000 in 1985 (Han Man-Kil 1997).

In North Korea, basic foundational courses for vocational and technical education are taken during secondary education. In addition to this, secondary school students are expected to develop vocational techniques by participating in the production process as part of their after-school program. There is no vocational secondary school in North Korea. However, there are many kinds of specialized short-cycle institutes for technical education. Large-scale vocational and technical education is conducted on the job for all workers.

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Education - Free Encyclopedia Search EngineGlobal Education ReferenceNorth Korea - History Background, Educational System—overview, Preprimary Primary Education, Secondary Education, Higher Education