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South Korea's Ministry of Education

In the South Korean government, the appointment of Seo Nam-soo as Minister of Education was a surprise. Though the president's choice of Seo to become minister came as a surprise, aides to Park Geun-hye were expected to make their appointments. Seo is the first "orthodox" education official to become minister. He is known for his initiatives and ideas. While the position is far from his home base, he has the support of the president and his party.

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Djoerd de Graaf is Head of Education at SEO Amsterdam Economics

Djoerd de Graaf has a wide range of expertise in educational issues, having previously worked as a researcher and project manager at SEO Amsterdam Economics. Over the past two decades, he has worked as a researcher and project leader in several fields of science and education. Djoerd has extensive experience in both quantitative and qualitative research, as well as educational matters.

Currently, he is working on a dissertation on the economics of the highly-gifted in primary education. His research interests include international economic policy and the role of the Dutch government in the Netherlands. He is also an external doctoral candidate at the University of Maastricht and a member of the Board of Directors of Airneth Seminar. In addition to his role as a lecturer, Djoerd de Graaf is the director of the institute's educational program.

Shane Coleman is a Senior Advisor in the Education Network Team at the Ministry of Education

Shane Coleman is a Senior Advisor with the Ministry of Education's Education Network Team. Prior to this role, he ran an Alternative Education programme in Auckland. He believes that education is the key to liberation. As such, he sees his work as promoting a community of progressive educators and an interest in the history of science education. In the coming years, he hopes to complete his doctorate and become a member of the New Zealand Society of Educational Administrators.

Seo Nam-soo is the first man to hold the top education post in South Korea

The country's burgeoning educational success is inspiring - and intimidating. According to PISA, South Korea's 15-year-olds ranked fourth in science, second in math, and first in reading. However, Mr. Seo and his government are struggling to keep up with the demand. Despite the challenges, Seo Nam-soo's education policies are proving to be a success.

The appointment of Seo was unexpected, as Park Geun-hye had expected to select aides for the position. But, his ties to the president's party do not seem to have affected his appointment. He previously served as vice education minister from 2007 to 2008 before leaving to become a professor. Seo now leads the Uiduk University in Gyeongju, which is a major academic hub for the nation.

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After the Korean war, the government imposed a new vision for education. The new vision envisioned an education system that offered lifelong learning for everyone and guaranteed equal access to high quality education. Despite the change in the government's vision, critics note that most classroom practices haven't changed. In addition, policy is still based on a four-tiered hierarchy and heavily weights teacher and parent input.

The new education ministry has shifted the mindset of parents in Korea toward higher education. While some parents wanted to give their children a better education, many did not. However, the cost of higher education may have deterred some. Currently, parents spend a lot of money preparing their children for university entrance exams. In fact, education accounted for nearly 12% of all consumer spending last year.

Seo Nam-soo has also shifted the way the country thinks about educational success. Many young people now consider themselves "overqualified" for top jobs. However, if they are educated enough, they are willing to wait a long time for a job. In fact, many South Koreans age fifteen-to-29 are currently preparing for various professional exams.