The Origins of Science Education and First Senior Middle Schools

first_img RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR The Origins of Science Education and First Senior Middle Schools News Facebook Twitter News Kim Il Sung took a trip around Eastern Europe from May 17 to July 1, 1984. Whenever he landed in a new country, he asked local children, who usually offered him a welcoming bouquet, “What is the hope for the future?”The answers were invariably the same, “scientists.” Furthermore, when he looked around schools in those countries, he could see that the passion for science education among students and teachers was extremely high.After that, when he got back to Sunan Airport in Pyongyang, he asked North Korean kids offering flowers to him the same question. Their answer was “artists.” After visiting the Eastern European countries and receiving disparate replies, Kim Il Sung visited Dadongmun People’s School and the Pyongyang Students’ and Children’s Palace to meet with teachers and students. At those meetings, the students’ hope for the future was, again, “artists.”On July 6, at the 6th Central Committee of the 9th General Meeting of the Workers’ Party, convened in order to report the results of Kim’s trip, the topic of education was on the agenda. Kim sternly rebuked workers in the education field. “If everybody becomes an artist, who will develop science and take care of this country?” Kim demanded.The harsh criticism brought officials out in a cold sweat, not least Kim Jong Il. He, who was known at the time as “the Central Party,” grimaced. In the early-1970s, Kim Jong Il had led a cultural artistic campaign to idolize Kim Il Sung, as part of his competition with Kim Young Ju, Kim Il Sung’s brother, to become the successor. During the campaign, he earned his father’s trust and eventually emerged victorious by sidelining his uncle, his stepmother, Kim Sung Ae, and their supporters. As a consequence of this Kim Jong Il-led revolutionary cultural and artistic wave, the arts and culture field had become disproportionately more popular than the sciences among students. Chastened by his father’s words, Kim Jong Il called a meeting with educational personnel and staff from all over the country on July 20, where he instructed them to formulate progressive educational measures. Kim’s statement to the meeting was one from his own “Kim Jong Il’s Works” called “On developing the education system,” which is considered to be North Korea’s education principles. Through this, Kim Jong Il suggested setting a new purpose for education, “developing science and making the whole society intelligent,” through special education for the gifted.As a result, Pyongyang First Senior Middle School and Kim Il Sung High School of Physics were founded on September 1, 1985. Two years later, first senior middle schools were established in each province. (to be continued) AvatarDaily NKQuestions or comments about this article? Contact us at [email protected] SHAREcenter_img North Korea tries to accelerate building of walls and fences along border with China Entire border patrol unit in North Hamgyong Province placed into quarantine following “paratyphoid” outbreak News By Daily NK – 2009.07.15 3:08pm News There are signs that North Korea is running into serious difficulties with its corn harvest last_img read more