kulturelle Bildung

20.5.2011 | Von:
Seo Min-Jung

Länderbeispiel Südkorea: Kulturelle Bildung auf vielen Ebenen stärken

Example South Korea: Strengthen arts education on different levels

Since 2004, South Korea has made great efforts to boost arts education in order to improve the public´s cultural quality of life and to strengthen the nation´s cultural capacity. The government agency KACES has been dedicated to operating and promoting arts and culture education projects on various different levels.

Movie production project for community in rental apartments for low-income families, Photo: artEzine, KacesMovie production project for community in rental apartments for low-income families (© artEzine, Kaces)

History and Purpose of Korea's Arts and Culture Education

In South Korea, the number of cultural facilities including libraries, museums and art galleries rapidly increased after the 1990s along with the full-fledged implementation of the local autonomy system. Since the late 1990s, the cultural policy expanded so that such cultural facilities could act as a local intermediary and helped to further facilitate activities of artists and arts and cultural organizations.

However, demand for arts and culture continues to be weighted towards the highly educated or financially comfortable upper classes centering in Seoul, the capital city of Korea. The Korean government began to design the arts and culture education policy since 2003, given the fact that the policy only benefits certain segments rather than benefiting all taxpayers, and that arts and culture education is confined to classrooms and not enjoyed in everyday life due to Korea´s entrance exam-oriented education.

The Ministry of Culture, Sports & Tourism and the Ministry of Education, Science & Technology announced the "Basic Plan to Activate Arts Education" in 2004 and the Korea Arts & Culture Education Service (KACES) was founded in February 2005. As a government agency, KACES has been dedicated to operating and promoting arts and culture education projects in Korea following the establishment of the "Arts Education Supporting Act".

The concept of 'arts and culture education' aims at shifting focus from school-based arts education which center on fragmented and functional teaching to student-based arts education which center on self-directed and creative learning. "Improvement of the public´s cultural quality of life" and "strengthening the nation´s cultural capacity" is prescribed as the purpose of arts and culture education under the "Arts Education Support Act"., which implies that the focus is on enhancing the public´s quality of life through arts and culture rather than training professionals. The law also underlines that arts and culture education should be provided to everyone regardless of their situation.

As can be seen, the Korean government sets to realize a harmonious development of character and sensibility by creating an environment in which the entire public can actively enjoy arts and culture education during their lifetime, rather than just focusing on training arts and culture professionals.

KACES´s projects which are operated according to such government´s objective can be largely divided into education (in school and community), professional training, research & development, and promotion & international cooperation.

School Arts and Culture Education

School arts and culture education is provided to pre-school, elementary, middle and high school students. As of 2011, 4,164 arts educators are dispatched to 5,772 elementary, middle and high schools nationwide, including isolated and remote areas. KACES provides non-formal education support in eight subject areas such as crafts, gukak (Korean traditional music), design, cartoon & animation, dancing, photography, theater and film, and plans to newly develop literature and musical education programs this year. As subjects like art and music are included in school curriculums, teachers who completed relevant courses are assigned to teach classes in schools whereas for the eight subjects provided by KACES, they are taught by arts educators selected among artists with a relevant university degree and certain amount of field experience. KACES provide 200 hours of arts and culture education per school on an annual average basis, and the Ministry of Culture, Sports & Tourism and 16 municipal & provincial education offices provide the budget. Educational materials and equipments such as cameras and camcorders are provided to each school for arts educators.

Furthermore, KACES has selected 25 small-sized elementary schools nationwide with less than 400 students as the ‘art flower seed school´ (art education pilot school) so that all students can participate in the arts and culture education program. The aim is to enable schools to provide their own arts and culture education programs, and thus building public arts and culture education capacity.

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