Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Incheon Metropolitan Office of Education announces foreign English teacher cuts

According to the Korea Herald, Incheon Metropolitan Office of Education has cancelled its  recruitment plans for native speaking teachers for this fall, even though EPIK stated that there had been plans for them to recruit teachers for IMOE. An IMOE official says that though teachers are "needed" and proficient, it's due to budget problems, and the article hints it's related to the incoming superintendent:
Lee Cheong-yeon, the newly elected education superintendent-elect for Incheon, has made it clear that his office will be run on a tight budget. He said in a recent press conference that the IMOE needs an additional 100 billion won ($98.8 million) to carry out all the programs that it had scheduled for the second half of 2014.
It also adds that
The IMOE was not the only education office short on cash. The Seoul Metropolitan Office of Education recently announced that its budget was 300 billion won short.
The Herald claims the news came to light at Waygook.org, and states that one teacher posting there was asked to resign by her employers, indicating that the cuts may affect current employees.

The article then describes "angry responses from foreign teachers" at Waygook.org:
One said that teachers in Korea are being “used as pawns in a game” and are never provided enough protection from authorities’ decisions, which can devastate their lives.

Another disdainful native English teacher claimed that Incheon was “never a good destination for EPIK teachers,” and said that the education office there hires too few and its practices are “shady.”
Is is just me, or do these quotes undermine using Waygook.org as a source at all?

I won't pretend to know much about Incheon politics (other than to say I've heard these cuts have been in the offing for some time now). If any knowledgeable readers want to add their thoughts, feel free.

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