July 21, 2014 11:30
The cost of crammers and other extracurricular programs, often considered vital by parents in Korea, is rising much faster than incomes, according to a state-run think tank.
The Korea Institute for Industrial Economics and Trade said Sunday that the average monthly household income rose 4.5-fold since 1990 from W940,000 to W4.2 million last year, but average education expenses rose 5.8 times over the same period from just W50,000 to W292,000.
As a result, the ratio of spending on education to household income rose from 5.3 percent in 1990 to seven percent in 2013.
Education expenses accounted for 11.7 percent of household spending last year, compared to just 8.2 percent in 1990.
The trend is even more marked in low-income households because they tend to spend any income increase on child education rather than anything else.
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