29 May, 2015 AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook            

Help AsiaNews | About us | P.I.M.E. | | RssNewsletter | Mobile






mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
e-mail this to a friend printable version


» 08/21/2008
SOUTH KOREA
Violence and school failure drive young people to commit suicide
by Theresa Kim Hwa-young
Each month about 20 teenagers between 10 and 19 take their lives. High competitiveness and selectivity in university entrance exams are among the main causes. Teachers and experts complain the problem is not receiving the necessary attention and instead is too often swept under the carpet; they call on schools and educational institutions to adopt specific programmes geared towards young people.

Seoul (AsiaNews) – A highly competitive educational system, an extremely selective process for university entrance, violent hazing and bullying in schools and poor family relations are driving too many young South Koreans to take their lives. Indeed suicide remains a serious problem in South Korea and the second cause of mortality among teenagers.

About 20 teenagers kill themselves a month as frustration and anxiety are rising among young people. But countermeasures and follow-up steps taken by schools and welfare agencies are wanting.

In many cases, deaths are simply covered up by schools and local departments of education to keep the news from spreading to the outside world. Suicide prevention programmes in schools are a mere formality; counselling infrastructure is profoundly insufficient

Official figures about youth suicide are alarming. According to National Statistical Office data, 233 young people between the ages of 10 and 19 committed suicide in 2006. Every year, more than 200 teens kill themselves—264 in 2000, 297 in 2003 and 279 in 2005.

Hanyang University College of Medicine Professor An Dong-hyeon said teens require particular attention. Since they have yet to form their identities, they are insecure about a lot of things, and unlike adults, they often kill themselves fairly impulsively. Unlike adults who commit suicide after thinking it through, young people follow their emotions and state of mind.

School failure is among the top causes of youth suicide. In one case last December year, the nation was shocked when twin sisters jumped from an apartment building in Changwon, South Gyeongsang Province, because they were upset about their university entrance exam scores.

Expectations by parents, who invest a lot in their children’s education, and students’ sense of duty towards their parents, which is typical in many Asian societies (like China and Japan) drive young people to a high level of competitiveness; in turn this becomes a huge source of stress and in cases of failure can lead ‘to extreme consequences.”

For experts when suicides do occur, schools should not keep the matter quiet, but rather take active measures aimed at other students.

One expert warned that if a friend commits suicide, teenagers at the height of their sensitivity can fall into depression or, more dramatically, attempt copy-cat suicides.

Making matters worse schools lack the means to cope with the issue, a problem often denounced by teachers. Growing violence inside the school system is another problem.


e-mail this to a friend printable version

See also
04/07/2004 south korea
Suicide, poverty and desperation among children
by Pino Cazzaniga, PIME
07/28/2005 south korea
Suicide rate of elderly soars in past two decades
05/02/2015 SOUTH KOREA
Korea, suicide leading cause of death for young people aged 9 to 24 years
09/27/2006 SOUTH KOREA
Seoul set to eliminate TB by 2030
by Theresa Kim Hwa-young
05/04/2005 INDONESIA
Indonesia: tsunami, earthquake new school subjects

Editor's choices
ASIA
Vigil for persecuted Christians, our teachers in the mission in the West
by Bernardo CervelleraThe "wall of indifference and cynicism" and the silence and apathy so often denounced by Pope Francis have become almost a fortress. Such persecution reflects confessional manipulation, which slams Islam as such, and ideological manipulation, which forgets what is happening in North Korea or China. An increasingly post-Christian Europe seems disinterested in Christians.
RUSSIA – CHINA
Moscow Patriarchate: China authorises the ordination of Chinese Orthodox priests on its territory
by Marta AllevatoMetropolitan Hilarion, the Moscow Patriarchate’s ‘foreign minister’, made the announcement after a visit to China where he met the leaders of the State Administration for Religious Affairs. The first priest should serve in Harbin. Two more ordinations are expected. With a new Cold War as the background, the Moscow-Beijing strategic alliance also has a Church connection with the People's Republic recognising the latter’s 'political' role in Russia.
VATICAN
Pope: We and the four new saints, witnesses of the Resurrection "where forgetfulness of God and human disorientation are most evident "Francis proclaims four religious sisters saints: one French, one Italian, two Palestinians: Maria Alfonsina Danil Ghattas, the foundress of the Sisters of the Rosary, and the Carmelite Maria of Crucified Jesus (nee Maria Bawardy). Mahmoud Abbas, President of the Palestinian Authority present. "Abiding in Christ" and cultivating “unity among us" are essential signs of witness. Maria Bawardy, "instrument of encounter and communion with the Muslim world".

Dossier

by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
Copyright © 2003 AsiaNews C.F. 00889190153 All rights reserved. Content on this site is made available for personal, non-commercial use only. You may not reproduce, republish, sell or otherwise distribute the content or any modified or altered versions of it without the express written permission of the editor. Photos on AsiaNews.it are largely taken from the internet and thus considered to be in the public domain. Anyone contrary to their publication need only contact the editorial office which will immediately proceed to remove the photos.