Elementary and middle school native speaking assistant teachers 'half-heartedly' prepare classes and only chat during class.It seems NoCut News has another article to add to its large collection, of which these examples are a tiny fraction:
"We have to look after them" - an explosion of complaints from some support specialist instructors
Native speaking assistant teachers, who have been drastically expanded by the current government in order to strengthen public English education: According to Ministry of Education, Science and Technology statistics, 9,300 native speaking assistant teachers have been placed in schools nationwide.
At each school there are as many as two people placed there to teach English speaking. There are many advantages such as giving students who cannot afford private education a chance to get rid of their fear and speak with foreigners.
For this reason, a survey conducted by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology in large cities such as Seoul, Busan and Daegu found that there was a 90% satisfaction level [in regard to having foreign teachers].
However the assessment on the ground is different.
Due to the poor Korean ability of native speaking assistant teachers, Korean interpreter teachers have been put into class during lessons but, because of this, complaints by students about their difficulties in class have come to light.
Ms. Gwon, a first year student at a middle school in Yangcheon-gu, said, "The foreign teacher's pronunciation is really odd so I can't understand what he/she is saying." "The Korean teacher also doesn't understand and doesn't translate properly, and because he/she lists the words he/she hears, the class does not go properly
Because the students are confused by frequent changes in teachers, poor class preparation, and classes in which [the teacher] kills time, many students lose their desire [to learn].
Another middle school student, Ms. Lee (14), said, "The native speaking teacher jokes around and half-heartedly passes the time." "If you have class you should create a proper atmosphere, and when this doesn't happen we feel let down."
The dissatisfaction of some [Korean] English conversation specialist instructors who help native speaking assistant teachers is on the verge of exploding. This is because, though they are overloaded with work, their duties have even come to include finding places to live for the native speaking assistant teachers.
Mr. Ahn, an English conversation specialist instructor working at an elementary school in Uiwang, Gyeonggi-do, complained that, "My role extends to the native speaker appointment process, and so I have to contact the agency, recruit them, find them a house, and fill it with household items." "I feel like I'm a servant or a secretary."
Mr. Kim, an instructor working at a middle school in Chungcheongbuk-do, vented his frustration, saying, "Because they are poor at our language, they can't even deal with various documents and have problems with tests." "We are busy taking care of even the native speaking teacher's work, and when I actually see him/her playing games or chatting every day I burn with anger."
An average of 40 million won per native speaker is invested throughout the country every year, but doubts about the usefulness of native speaking assistant teachers are being put forward while such institutions as the Gyeonggi-do office of education plan to gradually reduce the number of native speaking assistant teachers from next year.
Delinquent foreign instructors, "Freeze!" (about AES)
"In Jeju as well, case after case of foreign instructors smuggling pot"
'Troublemaker' native speaking teachers being governed through visa
Ever-increasing native speaking teacher crimes ... [better] verification urgent
There needs to be a hearing on Native speaking instructors
I couldn't see the phrase "explosion of complaints" regarding Korean conversation instructors in the subtitle without thinking of the New Daily article about GEPIK drinking parties published almost exactly a year ago. In fact, there is a pretty clear similarity between this line - "The dissatisfaction of some [Korean] English conversation specialist instructors who help native speaking assistant teachers is on the verge of exploding" - and this subtitle from the New Daily article: "the dissatisfaction of Korean instructors who kowtow to native speaking teachers in school is on the verge of exploding."
New Daily: 원어민 교사에 굽실대는 학교에 한국인 강사 불만 폭발 직전
No Cut News: 원어민 보조교사를 지원하는 일부 영어회화 전문강사들의 불만도 폭발 직전이다.]
If I had to guess, I'd imagine NoCut News reporter Kim Yeon-ji cribbed from the New Daily article (which itself was inspired by Anti-English Spectrum). One wonders if she used the same or a similar forum for Korean instructors as the one mentioned in New Daily as a source.
As I started reading, I thought of this March 1 Korea Times article I discovered the other day:
In a 2009 survey conducted by the Seoul Metropolitan Government, more than 90 percent of 5,500 parents, students and teachers said that they thought the program was helpful, while 93 percent of Korean teachers were very satisfied with the foreign teachers’ qualifications and class performance.I wouldn't mind finding the results of that survey (or the one mentioned in the above article). It's fascinating that there are so many negative articles about foreign public school teachers when there is apparently such a high level of satisfaction with them, something reiterated in the above article. That 90% figure came to mind as I started reading the above article, so I was surprised to see that this high level of 'satisfaction' was brought up, but then was not surprised to see it followed by "However...". It truly is impressive that the reporter was able to mention that there is "90% satisfaction" with native speaking teachers and then write an entirely negative article. As always, factual distractions from the 'truth' about foreign teachers must be discarded or ignored, in order to tell the age-old story: Koreans are victimized by foreigners.
I certainly enjoyed the part complaining about foreign teachers because they don't speak Korean, as well as the Korean instructors assigned to help recruit or translate for their foreign teachers blaming the teachers for existing instead of their superiors who gave the assignment (or themselves for taking the job in the first place).
As for the final sentence -
[D]oubts about the usefulness of native speaking assistant teachers are being put forward while such institutions as the Gyeonggi-do office of education plan to gradually reduce the number of native speaking assistant teachers[.]- the reporter makes it sound as if Gyeonggi-do represents a trend, when in fact it is the exception. As I pointed out here, most provinces continue to hire more native speaking teachers (though I imagine the saturation point will be reached before long, if it hasn't already).
In other news, at a news conference for High Kick 3 (will it also feature white guys who speak English being attacked and threatened with death for hitting on Korean women?), Yonhap and several other articles had titles such as "I am a native speaking teacher" in reference to actor Julien Kang. It's not uncommon to see a flurry of articles appear when an actor speaks English well, touting the person as speaking at a "native speaker level."