Primary School Education

Information about primary education in South Korea, including details of how to enrol and the vaccination requirements…

Primary school consists of six grades, which begin after one or two years in a pre-school. Children study a range of subjects including languages, maths, arts and physical education.

Once children turn five, parents automatically receive an enrolment letter (chui hak tong ji seo) for admission to a government primary school from a neighbourhood representative (tong jang), who is in charge of a local area. Children generally go to the school in the district where their parents are registered.

If children are enrolled in a private school, parents should inform the local district office that their child does not need a place in a government school.


Before children can be enrolled at a primary school in South Korea, they must be vaccinated against the following:

  • Diptheria, Tetanus and whooping cough
  • Polio
  • Japanese Encephalitis
  • MMR (Measles, Mumps and Rubella)

These vaccinations are free in appointed hospitals and government clinics or local public health centres (Bo Gun So).

Since 2012, school teachers can check a child's vaccination history on a government website.

After-school care

Before- and after-school care in South Korea is called cho deung dol bomi. Before-school care starts at 06:30 and after-school care finishes at 22:00.

The Korean Ministry of Education, Science and Technology supports before- and after-school care programs in about 1,000 primary schools. The service is for children from families with lower incomes and working parents.

International Primary Schools