Sunday, December 28, 2008

The doors seem to be opening

After what seems like years of talk and rumors, the Korean government is finally opening their doors to native English speakers from countries other than the big 6 (Canada, USA, S.Africa, Aust, NZ, UK) and allowing those from India, Singapore, Malaysia and the Philippines. Check out this post from the Marmot Hole for more information. It seems like the restrictions for people from those countries will be more stringent, in that they actually must be a trained teacher. This could potentially be quite a good move I think in terms of the quality of English education here in Korea.

I'm curious to see how it all plays out...I despair somewhat at the potentially massive influx of teachers from all these other countries who would be much more willing to work for a much lower wage and do essentially the same job that I do. I hope I'm proved wrong :) If not, Taiwan and Japan will be looking a lot more attractive.

Korea doesn't really have many benefits in terms of teaching English, except for the salary, airfare and housing, which are considerably better, all things considered than any other Asian country. I try not to bash on Korea, I generally like it here but let's just say that Korean people and Korea in general don't exactly make it an easy place to live. The dirtiness, corruption, rudeness and Confucianism can start to wear you down after a while I guess. Add to that the almost daily stress of getting screwed out of money at many of the places you work and it's not a pleasant experience for a lot of people. I can't help but think this new development may be the catalyst for an exodus of the big 6. I'm a small thought growing bigger by the day in the back of my mind.

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