Thursday, October 14, 2010

Sex crime prevention training for foreign teachers

Asia Today, Asan Ilbo, and Newstown carried the story below, translated from Newstown's article, which has the title:

"2010 hagwon native speaking instructor sex crime prevention training

Asan educational support center carries out sex crime prevention training"

Great, I thought. Considering recent events like these, it's good that one city cared enough to offer a training program for teachers living in a foreign country. However...

▲2010 sex crime prevention training
aimed at hagwon native speaking instructors
The Chungcheongnam-do Asan educational support center (superintendent An Seong-jun) carried out the 2010 sex crime prevention training aimed at hagwon native speaking instructors on October 7 at 11am.

This sex crime prevention training was for 17 hagwon owners and the 27 native speaking instructors registered at their hagwons, and looked at the realities of continually occurring sex crimes against children. In addition, it also provided an introduction to our culture for foreign instructors.

Currently, as demand for English lessons from parents increases, the utilization of native speaking teachers grows in importance every year. As a result, there is anxiety over sex crimes against children by native speaking instructors, and these circumstances require training which can establish a proper sense of ethics in native speaking instructors.

The training curriculum proceeds from an introduction to our culture and present-day English education, to watching a sex crime prevention DVD, to requesting that native speaking instructors devote a great deal of effort to giving an upright English education to our children.

An official at the Asan educational support center said "Although there have been no occurrences [of sex crimes by foreign teachers] in our area, both parents and the local community are concerned about sex crimes against children and want to prevent them, and we hope this training [for foreign teachers] will pave the way for our community’s young students, [who are] our hope for the future, to receive a proper education and become fine, responsible people for our community."
A search for sex crime prevention courses for hagwon instructors in general in Asan turns up nothing but the one for foreign instructors, so either there are none for Korean instructors, or only the one for foreign instructors was considered news. I've asked Korean friends who work in hagwons if they've had to attend classes like this, but the answer has been no (to be fair, I haven't heard of courses taking place in Seoul for foreign instructors either). There is certainly a heightened concerned about sex crimes against children these days, and it's understandable that classes like this are being offered - but one would hope everyone would be made to take them. Of course, when "only two of 299 lawmakers participated in the annual mandatory sex crime-prevention education session held last week at the National Assembly," one wonders how seriously they're taken.


Anonymous said...

"one would hope everyone would be made to take them"

Every Korean public school teacher - and in fact, every government employee - has to take part in these training sessions.

The only thing unusual I can see here is that hagwon instructors are doing it. It's not required for private school instructors, and the article doesn't seem to say, but I suspect it's something the hagwon owners thought would be good to do. Perhaps they thought it would be a reassuring bit of news to put in their brochure / website?

eee said...

do you know?
tony hallmen
i miss him
where is he?

Anonymous said...

I'm teaching in Gwangju and my hagwon received a letter from the Korean government stating that, as a foreign English teacher, I was required to take a sort of course on crime prevention.

My Korean co-worker tersely described it as such and, when I inquired as to why this suddenly became an issue, she just said that the letter says that crimes committed by foreign teachers have recently increased.

I thought, many people have to practice and learn for years how to perfect criminal activity; though I, with no criminal record, must now learn how NOT to be a criminal.

Redundant, bizarre, Korea.

matt said...

Have you attended this yet? I'd be very curious to hear your description of it.