SEOUL, May 12 (Korea Bizwire) – President Moon Jae-in on Friday ordered the scrapping of controversial history textbooks authored by a government committee set up under the former conservative administration.
“As efforts to normalize history education, the president has ordered the abolition of state authored history textbooks,” Moon’s chief press secretary Yoon Young-chan told a press briefing.
Starting next year, schools will again be allowed to choose from any history textbooks that have been verified by the government.’
“The decision reflected the president’s firm belief that history education must not be used for any political gains,” Yoon said.
The government began publishing history textbooks this year after the former Park Geun-hye administration accused textbooks authored by private publishers as biased and pro-North Korea.
Many liberals, however, had accused the former president of trying to fill history textbooks with her own biases, including a glorified version of the military dictatorship of her own late father Park Chung-hee. During the campaign, Moon pledged to abolish the state-authored textbooks.
Only some 80 middle and high schools, accounting for 1.5 percent of the total, have said they would use the state-authored history textbooks in their curricula.