This is the photo of students taking classes after the start of school in March.
/Photography extracted from the Dongguk Post
Do you know why the new semester always starts on March 2nd? The reason why the first semester starts in March is simple. This is because the school’s fiscal year begins on March 1st. Fiscal year refers to the separation of the start and end dates of accounting on a yearly basis in the management of accounting operations by the state or company. The school’s fiscal year is set from March 1st to the end of February of the following year. To properly use the school’s finances, the academic schedule must be aligned with the school’s fiscal year. Therefore, the school starts on March 2nd in time for the school’s fiscal year.
From the beginning, Korea did not start a new semester in March. Looking back on history, the curriculum was not institutionalized during the enlightenment period. Therefore, the primary school, which can be said to be Korea’s first modern school, did not have a separate opening date. It was during the Japanese colonial era that the semester system was legalized and settled. Japan decided that each school year would start on April 1st and end on March 31st of the following year. Therefore, according to Japan’s new semester system, Korea also started school in April and decided on a three-semester system. Immediately after liberation in 1945, it was the United States (U.S.) military season, so according to the opening day of the U.S. Korea also implemented a two-semester system that opened in September and started the second semester on March 1st.
Since then, the April school year system, which had been maintained for ten years, has been changed to the March school year system when former President Park Chung-hee, the 5th to 9th president, took power in 1961, which has continued to this day. At that time, the government introduced the March school year system to facilitate office work such as entrance exams and graduation ceremonies, eliminate the harmful effects of the suspension of learning due to vacation, and save winter expenses during the extreme winter vacation. Accordingly, the school opened on March 1st in 1962. As such, the opening of schools in March in Korea was decided through many changes. Unusually, there were cases in which schools could not be opened in March. The school opened in late May after delaying the opening of the school due to the COVID-19 pandemic situation in 2020, and in 2021, all schools in Yeongdong, Gangwon- do, postponed the opening by one day to March 3rd due to record snowfall. Then when is the start of the new semester in other countries? Like Korea, Argentina and Chile are the countries that start school in March, Japan and North Korea are the countries that start school in April, and the Philippines and India are the countries that start the school in June. Most countries start school in September. Most countries, including the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, China, Taiwan, Russia, and Vietnam, start school in September. In Korea, some in the education community also insist on the introduction of the September semester system, but to push for the introduction of the fall new school year system, many problems caused by confusion in the parents, students, and education community must be solved.
Now, a winter vacation has passed, and a new semester has begun. The Dongguk Post hopes all Donggukians will cheer up and achieve all the things you want in 2023.
Jung Ji-yeon email@example.com
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