A week from now, 490-thousand South Korean students will head to local testing centers to take the national college entrance exam known as "Suneung".
With new COVID-19 cases rising by the day, the government is under pressure to ensure test-takers have a safe environment leading up to December third.
"As Minister of Education and the one responsible for the Suneung exam, I ask everyone to pause all daily social activities for a week for test-takers and their families."
High schools and testing sites nationwide have all shifted to remote learning as of Thursday and are now making final preparations to safely host test-takers on exam day.
One teacher in Seoul said that the shift to remote learning, although necessary at this time, may widen the gap between some students and others as many will be left to rely on their individual capacity to study at home, without school resources.
On the other hand, those in the private education sector say the obstacles students have had to face throughout 2020 will likely take a toll on all of their grades.
"Opportunities for students to get academic help from school or from private academies have shrunk and I believe its inevitable that this will have a negative impact on their performance."
A special virus control period designed to safely manage the upcoming exam has been in place since last week
And the Education Ministry has advised cram schools to halt in-person classes.
Han Seong-woo, Arirang News.