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  • oglop
  • Hero of Waygookistan

    • 1892

    • August 25, 2011, 07:24:54 pm
    • Seoul
Re: Korean teacher's wage and foreign teacher's wage.
« Reply #20 on: February 23, 2019, 10:45:41 am »
Yeah. There's a teacher at my old school who has amazing qualifications in English, wanted to teach English, and has done for years. She was made a homeroom teacher, and a teacher who has very limited English and no experience was made the English teacher - even though she clearly didn't want to be assigned an English teacher. Literally made no sense..


  • pkjh
  • Hero of Waygookistan

    • 1487

    • May 02, 2012, 02:59:44 pm
Re: Korean teacher's wage and foreign teacher's wage.
« Reply #21 on: February 23, 2019, 04:08:17 pm »
Yeah. There's a teacher at my old school who has amazing qualifications in English, wanted to teach English, and has done for years. She was made a homeroom teacher, and a teacher who has very limited English and no experience was made the English teacher - even though she clearly didn't want to be assigned an English teacher. Literally made no sense..
Sounds like you're in an Elementary. Virtually all Elementary teachers have to graduate from one of those Education Universities, and major in early education specializing in a certain subject. Usually the subject is by choice, but if the number don't allow, sometimes you're forced to specialize in a subject you don't want to. Once working in a school, Elementary teacher teach virtually all subjects to their homeroom. Unless they school decides to teach a subject with a 'specialized' teacher. Usually, it's English, Music, or PE that are the specialized subjects, if they decide to separate it from the homeroom teacher. Completely up to the school though.

I only realised this after being at the same school for a few years (high school so it might be different in middle or elementary), but as well as moving schools after four years, teachers also get rotated around different departments within school as well.

So there are teachers who have their regular teaching schedule, then they might have a homeroom class and all the responsibilities that go with that, and then on top of that they have their extra assigned duties depending on what department they're in. 

Then, after working in that department for a year (having learned their new assigned duties) they just get moved somewhere else and replaced by a new person who obviously has to learn the new stuff.  It makes NO sense.  So many times I've seen teachers switched to new departments come over and ask for help from the person they replaced.

Going back to the thread topic...while all the above is going on, I'm sitting at my desk staring out of the window safe in the knowledge that I'm earning more money than most of the above teachers.  It doesn't make me feel good at all  :-[
In Middle, and High, schools teacher stay in their specialized subject they've graduated in. Although I have encountered teachers with double majors, and actively teaching both subjects in one school. But usually they stick to one subject. Teachers aren't rotated subject departments, but are rotated administrative responsibilities. Example a teacher can be the Event Head then the next year become the Student Affairs Head. Or one year be a homeroom teacher, then the next year get nothing. The reason they're moved around is because each responsibility is worth different points (points to get promoted). And to keep it fair, they generally elect the positions, or the the principal/vp goes around appointing people, then asks if there are any objections. If there are objections, they'll either settle it, or vote on it. Generally the older you are, the more likely you'll get a spot you want. But I've also encountered teachers that just want to ride the teaching gig to retirement with as little responsibility as possible.

If you understand Korean well, attend a meeting, or so. I've seen outright punching fights, and things being thrown at arguing teachers. Not so much at the Elementary level, but middle/high school teachers are a very argumentative bunch. I think it's due to the more diverse working background of ms/hs teachers. When they go out for hwaeshiks, and the alcohol gets really flowing, you often get to observe workplace politics at its best (fights, arguments, etc...).

And I doubt you're earning more than most teachers on your school wages alone. Maybe some of the younger ones, but not the ones who've worked like 10+ years.


  • oglop
  • Hero of Waygookistan

    • 1892

    • August 25, 2011, 07:24:54 pm
    • Seoul
Re: Korean teacher's wage and foreign teacher's wage.
« Reply #22 on: February 23, 2019, 05:12:22 pm »
yes. the schools i worked at would have subject teachers and homeroom teachers. teachers would be switched around - seemingly at random - so you'd have a music teacher who had no idea how to teach music, and english teachers that couldn't really speak english. then the next year they might be a homeroom teacher. most teachers want to be homeroom teachers, i guess


  • Nokcha
  • Super Waygook

    • 301

    • August 22, 2012, 02:37:27 pm
    • Seoul
Re: Korean teacher's wage and foreign teacher's wage.
« Reply #23 on: February 24, 2019, 07:06:05 am »
At the elementary level, teachers change their teaching assignments every year, change schools every five years, and vice principals and principals change schools every three years. I was told schools are ranked A, B, C and heads rotate between ranked schools. If a principal was at an A school, the next school will be a C school. This was from my former principal. Iím on my third principal.