A few weeks ago I recall being at a bar when one of my friends mentioned a GEPIK coordinator gave notice that there were massive budget cuts, and all schools in Goyang with more than one teacher would lose half of their budget.
Didn't hear much about it since then, until yesterday.
Apparently they want to slash the number of NETs in Goyang down to 20 for all elementary schools, as there isn't a budget for English like there was 2/3 years ago.
For all the nay-sayers that will claim this is a bluff, that they will not 'fire' us, that isn't what they are doing. Instead they will phase us out and not renew our contracts. In doing that, they can tell the moms anything they want.
Has anyone else heard of this? I know I only mentioned Goyang but are there other cities that are also affected?
The thread continues with news and rumors about budget cuts and non-renewals elsewhere in the province.
Waygook.org's "The end of Native Teachers" thread beginning on November 24th looks at other provinces and cities. jehall writes:
Hey my co-teacher just told me that she got word today from GEPIK that they will begin decrasing the Native English teachers they bring in as they are now near the point where they believe they have enough Korean teachers in the system who speak fluent English. She said next year's batch of Native English teachers will be much less than this years and the plan is to phase them out completely in the next 3 years.
Yes, I had heard that by 2014 Busan will stop hiring foreigners to work in the public schools. Ulsan has already started training Korean teachers to replace foreign teachers but will probably wait until Busan stops hiring before they do anything. Last year, I did my open class alone and was told that it was the same for the part-time "English Language Professionals"
We will see what happens. Again, by not hiring foreign teachers the school systems will saving a lot of money and you know where most of the MOE's heart are. Certainly not with the quality of language acquisition.
We in Gangwon-do recently had a talk from our regional coordinator. She said there will be a 10% decrease in teachers next year, I think 30% year after and 40% year after (total reductions).
I've written about the phasing-out of native speaker English teachers [NSETs] a few times, and pointed to things like the hiring of Korean English "lecturers" with greater English proficiency; the future adoption of a "practical English" exam; the use of less expensive English teachers from outside the "Big Seven" countries; the wide gap between the "teach for tests" method and what NSETs bring and represent to English education; and the general complaints among academics and journalists about NSETs' ineffeciency, unprofessionalism, and cost, all as evidence of the trend. If this proves to be correct, and the number of sources from across the country leads me to believe it is, than this severe lack of future job security for NSETs---in an industry already greatly lacking in it---will serve as motivation for inexperienced applicants to either boost their credentials or qualifications for positions that even value them, or to reconsider a year abroad in South Korea altogether.