Saturday, October 14, 2006

Archives January 2005 - Economy having an effect on English Teachers in Korea

Korea is still suffering through an economic downturn. The rich can still afford to send their kids to the better schools and camps. The recently un-employed, still not employed and the under-employed are living on credit cards and eliminating all excessive luxuries.

This means that all hogwans have less than usual enrollments so are firing Foreign teachers, cutting back foreign teachers hours, using NNS Korean teachers at less salary or using unqualified or even illegal teachers for the few students that they have. Many hogwans are not buying books, supplementary teaching materials, tapes, CD's, work books and other items expected by students and yet not supplied by the cost cutting businesses.

Parents should talk to the teachers to determine if they are going to get the English education that they are paying for. The real qualified teachers will usually answer directly and honestly about any shortcomings.

Potential teachers should get an opinion from the existing teachers at a hogwan to make sure they are not undercutting an existing teachers contract and the school is actually paying the agreed to contract terms.

The only good thing about a down turn is that more bad schools than good schools usually fail so that the selection improves overall. Korean parents deserve far better than they receive from the current selection of businesses offering English lessons.

I think the best way to eliminate a lot of the fraud in English Education is to make every English teacher NNS or native a self-employed professional that issues a tax deductible receipt to Korean students and parents and is able to teach anyone at school or in an office.

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