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Big cuts in public school jobs?
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Threequalseven



Joined: 08 May 2012

PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2013 9:43 am    Post subject: Big cuts in public school jobs? Reply with quote

In the province I live in, Jeollanam-do, nearly all of the public school elementary ESL jobs are being cut in phases over the course of this year. I also received an email from a recruiter who said that a lot of public school jobs in Korea are being cut. Anecdotally, there was a recent post about one of the public programs in Seoul getting the ax as well.

Has anybody noticed cuts to public school ESL jobs where they work? I'm wondering whether these are just isolated incidences, or a sign of bigger changes to come.

I'm mostly concerned because I teach at a hagwon now with my girlfriend, but we really want to work at a public school when our contract is finished. However, our contract finishes at the very end of August, so we would miss the main hiring period for most POEs. This really leaves us in a pickle, because everyone says, "you should definitely work at a public school after teaching at a hagwon for a year. You're already in Korea, it's easy." However, as a couple, with an awkward contract date, and pending job cuts, it seems like this will be very difficult to manage.
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creeper1



Joined: 30 Jan 2007

PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2013 11:34 pm    Post subject: relax Reply with quote

Take a deep breath and relax.

There are tens of thousands of PS jobs available.

No-one I know has been affected by any cuts.

Most schools have their funding from city halls. This funding is untouched and will continue to be untouched.

Rural schools also have their funding untouched. I expect increases in funding for rural schools.

There really isn't anything to worry about.



Smile Smile
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World Traveler



Joined: 29 May 2009

PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2013 11:43 pm    Post subject: Re: relax Reply with quote

creeper1 wrote:
There are tens of thousands of PS jobs available.

Not true. A while ago (sometime in 2012) I saw a stat showing 8,000 something wagooks working in public schools, down from about 9,000 the year before. Now more cuts have taken place. There are only a few thousand public school jobs available now, not tens of thousands.
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ttompatz



Joined: 05 Sep 2005
Location: Kwangju, South Korea

PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2013 11:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

High school and middle school positions are being cut and jobs lost through attrition (not hiring more teachers to replace those who leave).
They were largely inefficient anyway for any number of reasons not the least of which were lack of priority at those levels (more focus on math, science and sports).

Funding for elementary school level jobs appears like it will remain stable in the short term but the focus will largely be targeted at under-served portions of the population.

Regionally, it will depend on 4 factors:
1) national funding
2) regional / provincial funding
3) city funding
4) local parents committees (who control a pretty big pot of funds as well).

If #3 or #4 want you to stay then no worry. They have the money to keep you if they choose to do so.

If #3 and #4 want to divert funds to other activities then your job will be gone regardless of what happens at the national or provincial levels.

If #4 decides they don't like YOU then you are toast regardless of what ever else may or may not happen.

.
.
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daz1979



Joined: 29 Apr 2006
Location: Gangwon-Do

PostPosted: Thu Feb 07, 2013 3:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The entire country is being phased out. GEPIK, SMOE and EPIK will have very few teachers remaining by 2015.

I have seen the EPIK figures, they are cutting teachers by half each year.

The Korean bubble has well and truly burst.
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cincynate



Joined: 07 Jul 2009
Location: Jeju-do, South Korea

PostPosted: Thu Feb 07, 2013 4:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's cyclical.. As soon as there is an exodus of teachers for whatever reason, some parents will think they can give their kid an edge by better English education, another parent will find out that Min-su speaks better english than Ji-Seong, and boom.. The next bubble starts.
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jvalmer



Joined: 06 Jun 2003

PostPosted: Thu Feb 07, 2013 6:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

daz1979 wrote:
The entire country is being phased out. GEPIK, SMOE and EPIK will have very few teachers remaining by 2015.

I have seen the EPIK figures, they are cutting teachers by half each year.

The Korean bubble has well and truly burst.

What kind of numbers are we talking about? pre-2008/9 levels?

I came in almost a decade ago and they had 2 orientations. In both there were maybe 150-200 teachers for the entire country (including Seoul). So a max of 400 epik teachers in the whole country. Most likely you'd be the only foreigner in a public school in your town. If you wanted to hang with another epik teacher you'd have to travel the next town over. And also had to do at least 2, or more schools. Also, out of the 400 people, maybe 30 wanted to renew, 5 would get reject for whatever reasons and 25 would get renewed. Really loved those days.
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kinship



Joined: 24 Jan 2013

PostPosted: Thu Feb 07, 2013 7:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

daz1979 wrote:
The entire country is being phased out. GEPIK, SMOE and EPIK will have very few teachers remaining by 2015.

I have seen the EPIK figures, they are cutting teachers by half each year.

The Korean bubble has well and truly burst.


I would say it is due to a realization that their own teachers can do the job.
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Benjamino



Joined: 21 Apr 2012
Location: Samcheonpo

PostPosted: Thu Feb 07, 2013 7:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You think? my school has three 'English teachers' who can't speak English. I actually thought they were teachers of another subject till they joined us for my first departmental dinner.

I'm not sure how they teach as they don't do so with me. But from walking past their classrooms it seems to be a case of dictating words from a book.

Korea isn't alone in this however. I've come across other countries who employ people as language teachers without the teacher having a good enough grasp of the language to be taught.
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newb



Joined: 27 Aug 2012
Location: Korea

PostPosted: Thu Feb 07, 2013 9:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Back to 여러분 선생님 따라하세요. 와쓰 요어 네임? 마이 네임 이즈 민수. 참 잘했어요.
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comm



Joined: 22 Jun 2010

PostPosted: Thu Feb 07, 2013 9:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

kinship wrote:
daz1979 wrote:
The Korean bubble has well and truly burst.


I would say it is due to a realization that their own teachers can do the job.

That's cute.
I fully expect computer programs and/or telepresence to replace the "fly a native speaker across the world" system at some point in the future.
But you're not going to get the same conversational/pronunciation/usage education from a non-native (and generally non-fluent) speaker who spends 99% of their time outside the classroom using a different language.
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Tyshine



Joined: 04 Apr 2011

PostPosted: Thu Feb 07, 2013 11:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

kinship wrote:
daz1979 wrote:
The entire country is being phased out. GEPIK, SMOE and EPIK will have very few teachers remaining by 2015.

I have seen the EPIK figures, they are cutting teachers by half each year.

The Korean bubble has well and truly burst.


I would say it is due to a realization that their own teachers can do the job.


If by doing the job you mean reading into a book and every once in a while saying an English word with a strong Korean accent then they are doing an awesome job. I'm talking about HS level. Maybe they are better at your school, but based on the classes I have seen and level of my students I wouldn't say they do a very good job. Now as to wether NETs are the answer is another issue.
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kinship



Joined: 24 Jan 2013

PostPosted: Fri Feb 08, 2013 1:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I fully expect computer programs and/or telepresence to replace the "fly a native speaker across the world" system at some point in the future.


they could have done this at any time over the past 20 years

Quote:
But you're not going to get the same conversational/pronunciation/usage education from a non-native (and generally non-fluent) speaker who spends 99% of their time outside the classroom using a different language.


Yet they have done this and still do this in the west all the time. Why is it okay for the western schools to do this and not the Korean ones?
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kinship



Joined: 24 Jan 2013

PostPosted: Fri Feb 08, 2013 1:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
If by doing the job you mean reading into a book and every once in a while saying an English word with a strong Korean accent then they are doing an awesome job. I'm talking about HS level. Maybe they are better at your school, but based on the classes I have seen and level of my students I wouldn't say they do a very good job. Now as to wether NETs are the answer is another issue.


I have been here a long time and I have seen a steady improvement over the past 10 years. Yes there may be some holdout older Korean English teachers but the younger ones are vastly better.

You also have to remember most Korean English teachers are not teaching conversational English like westerners are supposed to teach. They focus on grammar, sentence structure and other technical points that demand explanation in Korean so the students can understand English a lot easier and better.
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newb



Joined: 27 Aug 2012
Location: Korea

PostPosted: Fri Feb 08, 2013 1:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

[quote="kinship"]
Quote:

You also have to remember most Korean English teachers are not teaching conversational English like westerners are supposed to teach. They focus on grammar, sentence structure and other technical points that demand explanation in Korean so the students can understand English a lot easier and better.


Yeah, while most can't even put one correct sentence together.
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