Korea: Teachers tell kids to cheat

In parts of Korea, including Seoul, the teachers’ union is trying to invalidate national tests by urging students to cheat and scheduling field trips for testing days. Chosunilbo editorializes:

. . . the KTEWU opposes the tests, claiming they are both painful for the students while encouraging excessive competition, as well as prompting parents to send their kids to expensive private crammers.

The KTEWU abhors how the tests reveal which schools, and even which teachers, have been ineffective in educating their students. This is why the KTEWU has opposed steps to evaluate teachers’ performances. The union is also demanding the equal distribution of performance bonuses paid to outstanding teachers. If the KTEWU’s demands are met, teachers may be less motivated to improve the quality of their lessons. But what about those students who suffer under lazy teachers?

Teaching is very political in Korea, writes Brian Deutsch, who teaches English there.

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  1. Dick Eagleson says:

    Teacher unionism is the new Esperanto, no translation required!

  2. Thanks for the link. That particular union is strongly, and vocally, opposed to President Lee Myungbak, and if you visit their homepage—eduhope.net—you’ll find them going on and on about something or other he’s done. They are also very involved in political issues, most recently the protests against US Beef. Those barely registered on the radar in the US, but it was the biggest story in South Korea for two months. The links in my post will give you some background on teacher union involvement, and if you browse the “Mad Bull S**t” category you can get more information on the protests and the issues. Truely a frustrating time to live in one of the US’s “allies,” that’s for sure.

  3. Well thats what has been hapenig in India for a long time too. We have board exams that are held nation wide and small schools that have actually got their registrations by bribing officials atually have this nexus where its like you let our kids cheat and we will let your kids cheat too. Its general understanding between tthe gaurdians and schools and very accepted trend nowdays.

  4. I sometimes get kids who openly cheat and are shocked I have any objections whatsoever. Not from Korea though, so far.