Korean Kids Most Stressed in the World

      March 12, 2015 12:00

      Korean kids are the most stressed about their studies in the world, a study reveals.

      A whopping 50.3 percent of Korean kids are stressed about their studies, the highest proportion among 30 countries surveyed, according to an analysis by Kim Mi-sook of the Korea Institute for Health and Social Affairs.

      Relatively high stress was also recorded in Spain (49.4 percent), Slovenia (48.9 percent), and Portugal (47.2 percent). The least stressed kids were in the Netherlands (16.8 percent), Hungary (18.4 percent), Slovakia (19.1 percent), Austria (20 percent), and France (20.8 percent).

      Only 18.5 percent of kids in Korea said they are "very happy" at school. Korea comes fifth from the bottom after Estonia (9.2 percent), Italy (14.8 percent), Finland (15.3 percent), and Czech Republic (17.3 percent).

      The happiest kids were in Ireland (42.5 percent), Romania (41.6 percent), Lithuania (39.0 percent), Norway (38.8 percent), and the Netherlands (38.4 percent).

      Many Korean kids are generally unhappy, not just at school. When it comes to "satisfaction with life," only 60.3 percent gave more than six out of 10 points, the lowest figure among the 30 countries.

      Overall, more than 80 percent of kids in other countries gave more than six points. The Netherlands again rank very high with 94.2 percent.

      The only countries, where less than 80 percent of kids are happy with life are Poland (79.7 percent) and Romania (76.6 percent).

      "We need to lighten their burden of study and give youngsters more free time and more things to do with it," Kim said. "We should also learn what we can from countries like the Netherlands, where kids are happy and perform remarkably well."

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