High school student Yang Dae-rim (C) arrives at the Constitutional Court in central Seoul last Friday, to submit a petition challenging the government's plan to expand the COVID-19 vaccine pass program to teenagers starting February. (Yonhap)
The education ministry on Tuesday promised to come up with measures to improve its plan to place cram schools under the government vaccine pass system amid strong opposition from students and parents, officials said.
Education Minister Yoo Eun-hae held a meeting with representatives of the Korea Association of Hakwon (KAOH), a cram school industry trade group, and agreed to present measures related to the vaccine pass expansion by the end of the year.
Starting February, the government plans to require not only adults but also children aged 12 to 18 to present COVID-19 vaccination or negative test certificates at multiuse facilities, including public study rooms and cram schools.
The plan announced along with toughened gathering restrictions has sparked strong backlash from students and parents arguing the measure amounts to forcing vaccination upon minors. A petition against the move has been filed with the Constitutional Court.
KAOH officials stressed it has conducted strict antivirus measures at cram school facilities and actively complied with the government's various pandemic response measures.
Yoo said she understood the concerns by the industry and added the ministry plans to come up with measures after reviewing feedback from authorities, experts and industry stakeholders. The ministry and KAOH agreed to form a joint consultation group to move forward related discussions. (Yonhap)