South Korea's private education spending per child edged up in 2014 from a year earlier, led by increased expenditures for music, art and physical education, a government survey showed Thursday.
Local parents spent an average of 242,000 won ($220) a month per child on private education last year, up 1.1 percent from a year earlier, according to the annual survey by the Ministry of Education and Statistics Korea.
The survey was conducted on 78,000 students and parents of 1,189 elementary, middle and high school students across the country last year.
The average amount spent on private education for elementary students remained unchanged at 232,000 won, while the spending for middle and high school students increased 1.2 percent to 270,000 won and 2.9 percent to 230,000 won, respectively.
There was a sharp year-on increase in spending for music, art and physical education.
Per-capita spending on private education for the subjects increased from 47,000 won in 2013 to 50,000 won in 2014, marking the second consecutive year in which spending in these areas has increased.
Although the nation's economic slowdown shrank consumption last year, high-income parents were found to have spent more on private education than in the previous year.
Parents in the average monthly income bracket of between 6 million won and 7 million won and those who earn more than 7 million won spent 2.2 percent and 3.1 percent, respectively, more on private education for their children. Spending by parents who earn less than 6 million won a month fell 0.5-7.8 percent on-year.
"Demands for private education are shifting into the fields of culture, physical training and arts from major school subjects as parents came to have more interest in helping students find their own specialties and aptitudes," an education ministry official in charge of the survey said.
Money spent on private education was the highest in Seoul, followed by its surrounding Gyeonggi Province and Daejeon. (Yonhap)