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Conflicts among Korean Teachers in Your School
« on: February 12, 2020, 10:17:12 pm »
We usually hear stories of conflicts between a NET and their Korean CT or other Korean teacher / Principal etc.,
but in this question, I want to just ask about conflicts between Korean teachers in your school.

In the time that you have been working in Korea and at your particular school(s), approximately how many conflicts
between Korean teachers have you witnessed/heard about?  It can be between regular homeroom teachers or between
a homeroom teacher and the admin office workers or with vp/principal?   

In the many years that I've been here, I can recall about 3-4.   Only one of those were full-blown yelling matches (it was a homeroom teacher and an office worker) and I remember after yelling at each other, the man slammed the door on his way out.  The next semester they were both gone from the school.

The other 2 or 3 that I have heard or witnessed were just more like grudges and they would not want to eat together at lunch or be in the same room / function.   Another one was actually the Principal and VP didn't quite get along and would keep their distance from each other.  But other than that, it's been mostly pretty good I guess.

I'm asking this question because with all the changes and turnover that public schools must have (it's like max 4 or 5 years per school and they are forced to change schools, some even change faster than that), it seems like the chances that you might get mixed up with someone who just doesn't rub you the right way is very high.  If a staff is getting along really well and is experiencing say "optimal levels", wouldn't you want to keep that staff together as long as you could?  Why change a good setup so much and risk mixing the staff up every year with the potential you match up the wrong people together.  I'd assume based on this constant turnover, you'd get a lot more conflicts between teachers/staff.   It's just a hypothesis.  I'd like to hear you guys share what you have seen or heard in your schools over the years.

Re: Conflicts among Korean Teachers in Your School
« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2020, 01:12:14 pm »
I have witnessed maybe 2 per year. It's usually with the head teacher and the VP.

I've also seen it between students and teachers more often, but still not often. Once, a student was arguing with his homeroom teacher, female teacher, and about 15 teachers just stood and watched. It got very heated and I think the teacher called the student an idiot after a while of yelling. The student picked up a glass jar and made motions like he was about to slam that jar into her head.....all while 15 other teachers just stood and moves to help de-escalate the situation....finall y a male teacher talked the student into leaving the office with him and then police arrived

Re: Conflicts among Korean Teachers in Your School
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2020, 01:32:16 pm »
Oh, yeah, I've seen conflicts, although they try to hide them from me, lmao. The animosity eventually becomes too much, though, and they slip up right in front of me (THE SHAAAAAAAME). Mostly I only see the more passive aggressive sides of them -- the dirty looks, the purposeful snubbing, etc.

One example, a group of KTs had a massive problem with one particular KT because she was too popular with the male KTs (all kinds of rumors started up over this), and she suffered from a lot of office bullying as a result. She received very little to no support from other KTs, even the ones who felt bad for her, and the P and VP refused to get involved, so she eventually left teaching altogether to pursue a different career.

Another example would be the racism that a filipina contract teacher had to put up with from some of the male KTs, especially from one particular guy who would openly criticize her and her country. She would stand up for herself, and she received a lot of support from other KTs, including the P and VP, but there were a bunch who stood with the racists, too, and that was a whole year of tension that divided the office. In the end, they chose not to renew her contract, I guess because they couldn't get rid of the assholes causing the trouble to begin with but still wanted to restore some kind of peace in the teacher's office. Even so, last I heard, there was still a lot of bad blood right under the surface. She was never the source of the problem, and that shit doesn't just go away. When people witness and experience that kind of fuckery, it stays with them.

And then of course I see conflicts between students and teachers, usually in the form of outright insubordination, but there's also been an uptick in physical aggression and assaults. I haven't personally witnessed any of it (although I've had my own personal experiences), but I've heard of about at least two incidences in this last school year that resulted in two students getting expelled and with one teacher choosing to retire early.
« Last Edit: February 13, 2020, 02:33:54 pm by Chinguetti »

Re: Conflicts among Korean Teachers in Your School
« Reply #3 on: February 14, 2020, 08:28:52 am »
Just two that happened back to back in the same school.

First, a new teacher found out that a large amount of items were missing from the school. I'm not sure of the whole process, but basically, the vp wanted it to be brushed aside, but the new teacher informed him it had to be logged a specific way and someone had to take responsibility. They went missing before this new teacher arrived, so she didn't feel it was fair to take responsibility just because she's the one that caught it. Well, it was the principal's first year too, so she didn't want to take responsibility either, so it seemed right for the vp to take responsibility since he'd been there the longest. But the vp didn't want to take the blame, so he pointed it back to the new teacher. It got to the point where they were continuously arguing since the vp was trying to convince the teacher to just take the blame. Even the other teachers turned on the new teacher and said she "provoked" the vp into acting like that, so she should take the blame just to end it. It got to the point where she told the vp that if he didn't fix this, she would quit, and he basically told her yeah, she should just go ahead and quit. Good for her, she stood her ground and finished the year, but I don't think she'll be returning.

Then, shortly after this, the principal was being investigated by the poe. Turns out, one of the other teachers had been (secretly, apparently) planning to report her for months, she was just gathering a thick enough file and recorded conversations. From what I heard (I'm not very in the loop here) every other teacher signed it as well, and the principal didn't even know it was happening or that there was a problem until the complaints were reported. And then nothing happened, the principal stayed and tried to act nicer to everyone, but as far as I know, she won't be returning next year either.