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  • waygo0k
  • The Legend

    • 3996

    • September 27, 2011, 11:51:01 am
    • Chungnam
For a school that wants IB level eachers, an EPIK style pay scale is definitely not good enough.

Iím sorry to say, but thatís just the facts. It could be great for those trying to get their foot in the door for experience (deadly important in IB schools)...but Iíd imagine teacher retention would be low after the 2 year mark. Especially when similar schools are offering double the salary and sometimes more.

Has the potential to be a great position, but EPIK pay scale!


  • Observer
  • Waygookin

    • 23

    • February 04, 2015, 07:42:35 am
    • Great Lakes
Oh, this brings back memories! I know exactly where this school is, I used to work in Asan years and years ago. It's near this gigantic display factory that's kind of around the corner, so to speak, from Cheonan-Asan station on the KTX main line. I remember when they were still building the huge main factory, I went to take some pictures to send my father, they tried to arrest me for taking them due to the super secret nature of a huge bunch of steel beams and poured concrete. The towers they built for housing the employees are really huge by Asan/Cheonan standards, too, I recall.

Anyway, I agree with the other posters, this is kind of embarrassing given the standards they set, especially the whole 'we'd love to hire a science teacher, who might eventually even teach IB level, at an EPIK-level English teacher salary' thing. As if Samsung Display has to count the pennies. 

I do agree that teaching skilled, motivated high school students with high English ability is worlds away from teaching the typical 'memorize a phrase' crap that most NETs in Korea are stuck doing. I have a HS job in China now and it's so much more fulfilling and satisfying than what I was doing in Korea. I'm not teaching ESL at all, I'm teaching IGCSE and A-Level Global Perspectives, a research and writing methods course that Cambridge Assessment uses, and my students are doing university-level reading and analysis, and it's so much fun to work with them to develop their skills. Like yesterday, we were reading an article from the New Yorker criticizing the some of the ideas of the book Meritocracy Trap by Danial Markovits of Yale Law, and I asked them to prove to me they understood the arguments, and they could do it! Well, most of them, haha. The difference from working MS ESL in Korean PS, in Chungnam, it's night and day.

BUT...26 days? EPIK scale? Deskwarming? Given what they want and the 'value' you'd be giving them, and an F visa, and that's the best they can do? It's just kind of insulting, I think. I know you guys over here like to dump on working in China, but just for comparison, at my school we're getting 35 days off for winter vacation in about one month. Zero deskwarming. We actually get to leave a week before the Chinese teachers do. Then we'll get two months in summer at full pay. Zero deskwarming again. I am not remotely the best paid teacher here, because I don't yet have my qualifications, but I make significantly more than 2.5 a month, net of all taxes and deductions, etc. I get a housing allowance and a much nicer apartment than I ever had in Korea. Science teachers do even better. You don't need to accept lousy pay in order to get to teach smart kids, I don't believe.

I appreciate the honesty of the recruiter/teacher/OP here, and if he/she is happy there then I'm not saying he/she should move, but people considering it, just know the opportunity cost of always staying in Korea. Not to push China, there are lots of other places too. But 'sticking' in Korea, is a really potentially expensive decision!


  • chimp
  • Veteran

    • 125

    • April 19, 2015, 05:16:31 am
    • Zoo
Oh, this brings back memories! I know exactly where this school is, I used to work in Asan years and years ago. It's near this gigantic display factory that's kind of around the corner, so to speak, from Cheonan-Asan station on the KTX main line. I remember when they were still building the huge main factory, I went to take some pictures to send my father, they tried to arrest me for taking them due to the super secret nature of a huge bunch of steel beams and poured concrete. The towers they built for housing the employees are really huge by Asan/Cheonan standards, too, I recall.

Anyway, I agree with the other posters, this is kind of embarrassing given the standards they set, especially the whole 'we'd love to hire a science teacher, who might eventually even teach IB level, at an EPIK-level English teacher salary' thing. As if Samsung Display has to count the pennies. 

I do agree that teaching skilled, motivated high school students with high English ability is worlds away from teaching the typical 'memorize a phrase' crap that most NETs in Korea are stuck doing. I have a HS job in China now and it's so much more fulfilling and satisfying than what I was doing in Korea. I'm not teaching ESL at all, I'm teaching IGCSE and A-Level Global Perspectives, a research and writing methods course that Cambridge Assessment uses, and my students are doing university-level reading and analysis, and it's so much fun to work with them to develop their skills. Like yesterday, we were reading an article from the New Yorker criticizing the some of the ideas of the book Meritocracy Trap by Danial Markovits of Yale Law, and I asked them to prove to me they understood the arguments, and they could do it! Well, most of them, haha. The difference from working MS ESL in Korean PS, in Chungnam, it's night and day.

BUT...26 days? EPIK scale? Deskwarming? Given what they want and the 'value' you'd be giving them, and an F visa, and that's the best they can do? It's just kind of insulting, I think. I know you guys over here like to dump on working in China, but just for comparison, at my school we're getting 35 days off for winter vacation in about one month. Zero deskwarming. We actually get to leave a week before the Chinese teachers do. Then we'll get two months in summer at full pay. Zero deskwarming again. I am not remotely the best paid teacher here, because I don't yet have my qualifications, but I make significantly more than 2.5 a month, net of all taxes and deductions, etc. I get a housing allowance and a much nicer apartment than I ever had in Korea. Science teachers do even better. You don't need to accept lousy pay in order to get to teach smart kids, I don't believe.

I appreciate the honesty of the recruiter/teacher/OP here, and if he/she is happy there then I'm not saying he/she should move, but people considering it, just know the opportunity cost of always staying in Korea. Not to push China, there are lots of other places too. But 'sticking' in Korea, is a really potentially expensive decision!

Oof, New Yorker's a bit middle-brow isn't it?

Back in the day I used to have to do stuff based on those Technology, Entertainment, Design talks and I always felt the urge to shower afterwards.
oo oo ahh ahh