Friday, March 09, 2012

Yongin to hire more native speaking teachers

Or, at least, that's the idea one gets from reading this article, titled "To realize advancement of public education, Yongin will expand native speaking teachers by 3 times." That may not be entirely true, however.

According to the article, Yongin city is undertaking a number of measures for the 'realization of people-oriented educational welfare,' one of which is to invest 2.8 billion won on native speaking teachers to help cut private tuition fees by having them teach regular and after school classes. This will support the personnel costs and program operation costs of hiring 70 teachers, placing 18 in elementary schools, 36 in middle schools, and 16 in high schools.

It becomes clear that the title is misleading when we're told that 'This is an expansion by almost three times compared to [the number of NSETs hired] when the native speaking teacher support program began in 2006.' The article offers no statistics for the number of NSETs hired last year (or even last year's budget) to make any comparisons to more recent figures. (In fact, Seoul could have sold its cuts by making a similar announcement, if it was to compare the remaining teacher numbers to 2006 figures.) Still, it would seem Yongin is going against the trend we're seeing in Gyeonggi-do, Seoul, Gangwon-do, and Busan, in that, while they may not be hiring that many more teachers, they certainly don't seem to be cutting teachers.

One of the native speaking teachers working in Yongin is in fact the first foreigner to be made a homeroom teacher in Korea, as this Donga Ilbo article reveals (hat tip to I'm No Picasso). I'll have a translation of that article up in a few days.

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