November 29, 2023

How North Korea’s education fever has driven a boom in private tutoring

Academic achievement is increasingly important in DPRK for success, leading parents to spend heavily on illegal lessons

Across East Asia, school exams are seen as a life-or-death matter. Children in China, Vietnam and South Korea spend their formative years preparing and sitting for an unending cycle of tests on everything from algebra to history. 

North Korea is increasingly like this too. Many kids from affluent and ambitious families shuffle from one private academy to another in hopes of improving their test scores.