KBS regards it a core duty to reflect the diverse voices of Korea through the distinctiveness of its programs, while bringing the world home to its audience through speedy and impartial news reports.It may be worth keeping all of that in mind while watching and reading this KBS report from July 3, 2009 (found through a link on Anti-English Spectrum's site; the video of this 6 minute news report can be watched at the KBS link):
In today's environment of multi-faceted communication and media with a flood of information and sensationalized commercialism, KBS strives to fully satisfy the people's right to know and quality programming through honest and transparent management. By airing accurate and reliable news as well as high quality programs, KBS leads the way in setting the standard for Koreas journalism and broadcasting culture.
A public opinion poll conducted in 2002 showed KBS to be the most influential among the domestic press and electronic media circles. [...] The Korean people have come to trust in KBS to consistently deliver reliable and straightforward programs.[...]
KBS fully embraces the diversity as well as the cohesion of the various cultures of the world.
'Out of Control Foreign English Teacher' Teaches Class while High and Commits Sexual Molestation
The number of native speaking English instructors working in Korea is increasing, and so are their crimes.
At school they are sincere teachers, but outside class they constantly go off the rails. We have the story of their two faces.
Choi Seo-hui - have foreign instructors also been caught for habitual gambling and drugs?
Yes. Yesterday more than ten English instructors were uncovered. During the day they taught students and at night they lived lives stained by drugs and gambling.
Incidents in which students have been molested have also occurred one after the other. We've covered the truth about how some native speaking instructors go off the rails, making one uncomfortable about entrusting their child's education to them.
[Shot of web profile; under 'Most precious thing' is [untranslated], "Seeing the light glisten off the sweat on the curve of a woman's breast, thigh, back, butt, or almost anywhere on a woman's body."]
This was written on the internet by a foreign English instructor living in Korea. He said he came to Korea for money and the pleasure of women and boldly put up photos of himself.
An English instructor at a hagwon in Seoul who had been in the US army posted nude photos of women on the internet which he said were of his students.
It was revealed he posted nude photos he'd taken of his coworkers and racing models he'd picked up and even posted photos of his students. The deviation of native speaking instructors like this is becoming more serious by the day.
Yesterday in the Itaewon area police caught 13 foreign instructors for habitually smoking hashish (a kind of drug) and gambling.
It's come out that since January they've met 113 times to gamble and smoked hashish 100 times. Most of the suspects work in Seoul or Gyeonggi-do as public school teachers, with some working as instructors at well known English hagwons in Gangnam.
Kim Gi-yong (Detective, Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency Foreign Affairs): "The group was made up of language hagwon instructors, and at home they wagered millions of won habitually gambling and taking drugs. They currently maintain that they are completely innocent."
They put up the gambling time and place on a well known overseas website to recruit accomplices and avoid being caught.
Also, it was revealed that at an ordinary house in Itaewon, they went so far as to set up a poker table and habitually gambled. Every month, a picture of the winner and the amount they won was put on the wall of the gambling house and on the internet site.
We visited the English hagwon in Gangnam where a teacher who was caught works.
Hagwon official: "Our hagwon? This is the first we've heard of this. Please speak clearly. Who is this?"
The hagwon declared there was no such teacher.
We also visited the elementary school in Gyeonggi-do where another teacher worked as an English teacher for the after school program. At the school they were completely unaware of the same facts.
School official: "We confirmed this properly through the embassy and later the visa was issued but it was checked to see if crimes had been committed in New Zealand, and only people with no crimes were given permission to work by the embassy so we know that there was absolutely no problem.
When parents heard the news, they were also shocked.
Parent: Are you serious? That happened? How could it be - really? Your teacher is ____ [the teacher's name], isn't that right?
Child: "Today the English teacher was sick and didn't come to school."
Parent: "I went to an observation class but even then there was nothing that stood out, and it was fine."
However the reaction of people who have encountered native speaking instructors close up is that this kind of thing is nothing new.
English hagwon operator: "When socializing with the teacher, I've heard him talk freely about doing drugs many times. (Do they do drugs and come to class?) He looked spaced out and taught very simple, basic things, which is why I thought he was on drugs while teaching class."
There are also endless sex crimes by foreign instructors.
Recently there was an incident at a well known hagwon in Seoul where parents complained after two native speaking teachers molested female elementary students.
The 'Citizen’s movement to expel illegal foreign language teachers' cafe manager: "At the hagwon that received the complaint, the hagwon and the native speaking teachers said, "It was just a simple misunderstanding due to cultural differences and we did nothing wrong."
Also, in Seoul a native speaking teacher working for a district office-run foreign language program was charged for molesting a grade one elementary school student under his care last December, but last week was cleared for lack of evidence.
Crime by foreign instructors like these is never ending but the fact is that the number of native speaking instructors in Korea is continuously growing.
A parent: "Korean teachers have some limits. There are many cases where they do not know real life vocabulary. This is because they simply learn language in a technical sense, without an appreciation for the connection between language and culture."
Due to the perception that native speaking instructors are unconditionally better, even hagwon owners break rules and are trying as hard as they can to hire native speaking instructors.
English hagwon operator: "Our hagwon instructors said native speakers are 'decorations,' as the saying goes. Because of the strong preference for native speakers by the mothers and parents of students at most hagwons, most have native speakers."
However, in truth, background checks for these native speaking instructors are not being properly carried out.
The 'Citizen's movement to expel illegal foreign language teachers' cafe manager: "A foreign instructor responsible for sex related crimes against children and minors and assault against police in Canada was stripped of his teaching qualification there. This person is now in Korea working as an English instructor at a county office in Gyeongsangsnam-do and participating in a summer camp by teaching young students.
Native speaking instructors themselves say that the native speaking teacher qualification check should be strengthened.
Alex (23, American native speaking instructor): "There are a lot of people who are either not qualified or who, in a sense that they have no teaching experience only a bachelors degree or are not qualified in the sense that this is not something they enjoy doing. Not necessarily ESL but teaching English – teaching in general rather – is not something that they enjoy doing. They're here just sort of passing time."
[Translated as: "There are many cases where native speaking teachers have only a university diploma or are inexperienced. They have no interest in teaching, let alone English education. There are also people who just want to kill some time."]
Under the English education craze, an increasing number of native speaking instructors, who are treated like VIPs, act abnormally and without scruples, and there is an urgent need for strict qualification checks in order to prevent our children from being exposed to this.
The title is a bit misleading, with "환각 수업에 성추행" sounding more like "molestation during stoned lesson," or that the teachers molested students while high.
The personal website shown at the beginning of the report was linked to here and the subject of an AES-aided Breaknews article in August 2006, which shows just how far back KBS was reaching to construct their narrative. As can be seen from the screen shot above, they mistranslated the part about racing models.
The 'poker ring' bust was the subject of several KBS reports at the time of this report, and is covered in more detail here and here.
The Anti English Spectrum-based story about the molestation taking place at a hagwon was never reported as having been investigated by the police and was the subject of this Chosun.com report posted three days before this KBS report (and was the first of five negative articles about foreign English teachers by Chosun.com intern Choi Hui-seon: 1 2 3 4 5 ).
More about the "native speaking teacher working for a district office-run foreign language program" who was charged with molestation can be read here and here (from January and February 2009). This KBS report actually confirms that the charges were dropped for lack of evidence. Between this story and an unconfirmed tip from AES, it seems hard for KBS to justify the statement that "There are also endless sex crimes by foreign instructors."
KBS obviously decided the 'AES manager's story about the Canadian teacher stripped of his credentials back home warranted further scrutiny, as it was the subject of another KBS report less than two months later.
As for this:
By airing accurate and reliable news as well as high quality programs, KBS leads the way in setting the standard for Koreas journalism and broadcasting culture.If this report is considered "accurate and reliable," then one certainly hopes that KBS is not "setting the standard for Koreas journalism and broadcasting culture."