The people who visited the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea say that the country has a bright and optimistic future. They take its educational policy as an example.
The country introduced universal primary compulsory education, the first of its kind in the East, in 1956 and then universal compulsory secondary education and universal free education in 1958 and 1959, respectively.
The country has also built and operated many extracurricular educational bases at state expense.
Subsequently, the DPRK enforced the 11-year free education in a comprehensive way in September 1975, the most advanced education system in the world in those days.
Entering the new century, the country has achieved further advance in the education sector; the Supreme People’s Assembly enacted the law on the introduction of universal 12-year compulsory education in September 2012.
Once UNESCO made an analysis of the interrelation between the term of education and the rate of economic growth, and expressed the view that the increase of one more year in the term of education leads to 9% increase in the rate of economic growth.
Even though they are aware of this, many countries hesitate to increase the term of education because it presupposes a huge investment. However, despite the difficult economic conditions owing to the challenges and blockade by the hostile forces, the DPRK enforced the law with an eye into the distant future.
The refresher course has long been enforced for those on active service in their jobs.
President Kim Il Sung (1912-1994), founding father of socialist Korea, put forward in his work, Theses on Socialist Education, published in September 1977 the theory that all the members of society should be educated throughout their life.
It is noteworthy that only in this century, decades later, many countries adopted the principle of continuous education for the people for their sustainable growth.
Today, the DPRK sets high standards to attain by education; it has set forth the line of making all its people well-versed in science and technology in order to prepare them as intelligent workers with the level of a university graduate. To this end, many technical colleges have been set up and online education expanded. The newly-built Sci-Tech Complex disseminates the latest scientific and technological data through the network, encouraging all the people to raise the level of their scientific and technological knowledge continuously and proactively apply them in their work.
The prospects of the DPRK enforcing the future-oriented educational policy are bright.