I mean, if a Korean does very poorly in (say) 1st-grade of high school (=10th grade in the USA), failing all tests, and shows not even a basic understanding of the material taught, he will still go up to 2nd grade of high school with the others of the same age. There is also no "summer school", as we have the in the USA, to make up failed classes.
What is the incentive to learn, if you will just advance to the next grade no matter what?", I asked.
Two answers were forthcoming: "Making parents happy" and "getting into a good university".
I found these answers uncompelling, and it reminds me a lot of what I wrote in post-73.