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일부 학교 입학찬조금 수수 논란

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주영한국교육원
Date
19:05 03 Apr 2008
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2146
일부 공립학교들 입학찬조금 수수 논란
□ 학기당 £900까지 찬조금 받아

- 종교계열 학교(faith school)를 중심으로 인기있는 공립 초중등학교에서 입학대상 학부모들에게 입학 찬조금을 강요한 것으로 조사 발표됨

- 런던의 한 유태교 학교에서는 입학신청시에 학기당 £895의 기부 약속을 받은 것으로 드러남

- 정부는 학생입학규정(admission code)를 철저히 준수하도록 하기 위하여 독립적인 학교 심판관(adjudicator)의 권한을 강화하겠다고 말함



□ 입학규정 준수 위반 실태

- Manchester, Northhamtonshire, Barnet 지방 학교에 대한 조사에서 여섯 학교 중 한 학교의 비율로 입학규정을 어기고 있음이 밝혀졌다고 학교가족어린이부가 발표

- 규정을 어긴 학교 대다수(96개교)가 faith school 이었음

- 조사 대상 학교 중 29개 학교가 최소한 2개 이상의 입학규정 조항을 준수하지 않음

- 가장 흔한 위반 사례는 보호대상 어린이와 특수교육대상자 우선 입학 조항 위반임

- 6개교에서 입학의 조건으로 기부금을 받음 : 유태교 학교 5개 교 , 영국정교회 학교 1개 교

- 자발적(voluntary) 기부라는 학교 측의 주장을 인정할 수 없다는 교육당국의 입장



□ 종교계열 학교에 대한 마녀사냥이라는 비판도

- ED Balls 학교가족어린이부 장관이 종교계 학교에 대하여 마녀사냥을 하고 있다는 비판이 해당 지역교육청, 종교집단, 야당에 의해 제기됨

- 소수 학교의 일부 사례를 전체 종교계열 학교에 해당된다는 식으로 발표하는 것은 종교계열 학교에 대한 탄압이라고 비판

- 유태계열 학교와 관련자들은 유태계 학교 운영에는 다른 공립학교와는 달리 정부지원금 이외에 추가적인 예산이 필요하며, 기부금이 입학 결정에 아무런 영향을 미치지 않았다고 주장

- London의 Barnet 지역교육청은 장관의 선정적인 주장은 근거가 없으며 자신들의 조사에 의하면 대부분 입학규정 준수에 대한 기술적인 오류 수준이라고 반발



□ 출처: The Times (08.04.03) 「Top state schools hit by cash for places row」



□ 기사원문

Faith schools were accused yesterday of forcing parents to pay for places at the best state primaries and secondaries.



  One Jewish school in London asked parents to contribute £895 a term when they applied for places for their children.

  

  Yesterday the Government pledged to take action against the cash-for-places scandal, giving new powers to the independent schools adjudicator to enforce the admissions code. However, Ed Balls, the Schools Secretary, came under immediate fire for waging a “witch-hunt” against faith schools, with local authorities, religious groups and opposition politicians disputing his findings.



  Yesterday Mr Balls made public a report into schools in Manchester, Northamptonshire and Barnet, North London, which found that one in six was breaching the admissions code, introduced last year to ensure fair access to pupils from all backgrounds. Mr Balls said that the vast majority of the 96 schools found to be abusing the code were faith schools, which have control over their own admissions.



  A total of 29 schools in the survey failed to comply with at least two requirements of the admissions code.



  There was no reason to think that the picture would be different elsewhere in England, he said. The most common abuse involved schools failing to give priority to children in local authority care or refusing to take children with special needs.



  But in six instances schools asked parents to make “voluntary” contributions as a condition of entry. Five of these are Jewish schools and one a Church of England primary.



  Other schools were offering places to children on the basis that a grandparent had once attended, asking for personal information about parents’ marital status, giving priority to children of employees or selecting children by gender.



  Of the 87 faith schools in the three areas that breached the admissions code, 42 were Church of England, 32 Catholic and 13 Jewish.



  One Jewish school, the Beis Yaakov primary in Barnet, asked parents to agree to make a contribution of £895 a term on its application form. With 437 pupils on its roll, the donations could bring in more than £1 million a year, roughly half the typical budget of a primary school of that size in London.



  Another, the Mathilda Marks-Kennedy Jewish school, asked for a contribution of £670 per term.



  Mr Balls said that thousands of parents would be put off applying when faced with such demands, even though the donations were supposedly “voluntary”. “What you can’t do is ask on the application form for parents to sign a declaration that they will pay a voluntary contribution.



  “In my judgment as a parent, parents would not think of that as voluntary. I do not think it is consistent with free state education to Continued on page 2, col 3 sign commitments to pay hundreds of pounds per term,” he said. Mr Balls came under fierce criticism for naming and shaming individual schools.



  Tom Peryer, of the London Diocesan Board for Schools, accused Mr Balls of playing to the gallery of secularist backbench MPs in his party who “have it in for faith schools”.



  He added that many faith schools were unfairly tainted by the Secretary of State’s remarks. “It is like telling off all the children in a class when just five have been naughty,” he said.



  He added that the accusations against several schools were simply wrong. St Mary’s Church of England School, had, for example, been criticised for failing to give priority for places to children in care simply because its application form said that documentary proof had to be provided to show that children were in care.



  The Board of Deputies of British Jews said it was looking into the cases of schools asking for hundreds of pounds. A spokesman said that Jewish faith schools had to secure additional funding to pay for security and intensive religious instruction as these are not covered by the State.



  He added that a certificate of Jewish status might have to be created to by-pass the need for schools to ask for proof of Jewishness through the production of birth certificates, which may also contain other personal data.



  He admitted that “there should be no mention of voluntary contributions on admissions forms”, but insisted that in most cases the admissions rules at Jewish schools would require “only minor changes” to become compliant with the new admissions code.



  Michael Gove, the Shadow Children’s Secretary, said: “Ed Balls started a witch-hunt against schools which were alleged to be handing out places for cash. But there’s no evidence that money played any part in determining admissions in any of these schools.”



  The London Borough of Barnet, where the offending six schools were located, rejected the minister’s “sensationalist” claims as “totally false”. A spokesman said: “Our investigations have shown that the majority relate to technical issues regarding the wording of admissions forms or to areas where the admissions code is unclear.”



  Manchester said that only eight of the 17 schools named by the Government were in breach of the code. “These errors have been acknowledged and will be changed for 2009 admissions,” it said in a statement.



  The new admissions code, which came into force last year, aims to stop schools giving preferential treatment to middle-class parents. It banned interviews and requests for personal information such as parental occupations. It also put a halt to requests for money as a condition of admittance, and obliged schools to secure places for children in care.