S. Koreans' spending on private education falls in 2020 over COVID-19

2021-03-09 07:35:58 GMT2021-03-09 15:35:58(Beijing Time) Xinhua English

SEOUL, March 9 (Xinhua) -- South Koreans' spending on private education fell last year as the COVID-19 pandemic reduced household income, a government report showed Tuesday.

Expenditure on private tutoring for primary, middle and high school students totaled 9.3 trillion won (8.2 billion U.S. dollars) in 2020, down 11.8 percent from the previous year, according to the joint data from the Ministry of Education and Statistics Korea.

The ratio of participants in private education to the total students was 66.5 percent in 2020, down 7.9 percentage points from a year earlier.

It came as the pandemic roiled the domestic economy, lowering the income of households. The opening of a new school year was delayed last year to help contain the virus spread.

The per-student monthly average spending on private education came in at 289,000 won (253 U.S. dollars) in 2020, down 10.1 percent from the prior year.

Among private tutoring participants, the per-student monthly average expenditure on private education added 0.3 percent to 434,000 won (380 U.S. dollars), indicating an increased burden for educational expenses.

The difference widened in the private educational expenditure between the low and high-income households.

Households, which earn more than 8 million won (7,000 U.S. dollars) per month, spent 504,000 won (440 U.S. dollars) on private education per child on a monthly average basis last year.

It was about 5.1 times higher than 99,000 won (87 U.S. dollars) spent by households with a monthly average income of less than 2 million won (1,750 U.S. dollars). Enditem