Saturday, March 11, 2006

Why is membership on the decline?

It's the start of a new school year, full of hope and promise. And of a dozen new teachers threatening and cajoling kids in classroom and hallway, only ONE is KTU. Thankfully, the ONE is an activist (I see him at the Incheon office, he does technical stuff) and he likes to drink.

It seems many teachers are simply not renewing their memberships when they transfer schools.

The members I talk to say it's an Image Problem. And while it's true that the Grand National Party and its allies in the unholy media triad are ruthless, reckless and relentless, the union simply doesn't have any coherent strategies designed to influence public opinion. Leaders have sit-ins and hunger strikes, but the union doesn't buy space on billboards, radio, or on websites! I've seen the budget, and NO funds are allocated for "public perception" agencies. (And of course, the "public" includes the rank-and-file.) It's no surprise we're taking a beating.

We at KTU like to praise "purity of intention" ... which is fine. But at the moment, parents have no idea what those intentions are.

I hope other team members will respond?


Anonymous said...

Great news! Serve you right, admirers of dictators, eulogists of killers, cheerleaders to Kim Jong Il the Mass Murderer!

Just a piece of advice: after Korea is unified, you should consider taking new identities, or look for a toilet cleaner jobs somehere in Vietnam. There will be too many North Koreans around, and they will remember how you were helping starve, torture and kill them, how enthusiatic you were about keeping 23 million fellow Koreans in poverty and hunger.

Somebody who used to live under Communism and know what it means...

Anonymous said...

Indeed. Perhaps if KTU cease trying to do so damn radical left-wing, and just settled for something a more moderate, people can actually listen to them without get chills.

With the rabid nationalism, racism and yearning facism I get from your demands, I guess this is not likely happen anytime soon. Which is probably a good thing - it is likely lead to your extinction.

I've always consider myself pro-union, and I am, but not when they are run buy people who demand like intellectual undeveloped uni students. Not to mention the disgrace is your active efforts in influence to the ideological views of children.

Andrew Thomas said...

anon 11:21, I don't feed trolls. Unless you enjoy pan-seared penis.


If you know anything about education, you'll know it's inherently political and thus necessarily involves ideology. Teachers always-already influence the views of children, it's their job to do so.

It's just that ideologies that differ from those that are dominant appear polemic and "radical."

I suspect that you know this, and that when you say you're "pro-union" you mean that a union should be an obedient lapdog, like e.g. the NEA?

And why do Marmot readers consider the KTU fascist? What the fuck? Where is this coming from? I know the Marmot doesn't attract the most politically astute of readers, but could someone kindly explain this?

Anonymous said...

Nothing wrong with opposing the government. But when teachers are painting threats against non-union teachers on school walls and teaching students to draw pictures of Koreans killing the Japanese... well... I don't think there is any need for me to illuminate the point.

To the New Teacher: Join the Fucking Union

You don't like teachers who don't like your union? Considering some union members' past performances I don't quite understand how you can criticise them for wanting to steer clear.

It's all a mute point anyway: until the Korean education system exits the Dark Ages what is there to fight for? Korean teachers have been sitting on their laurels for about fifty years too long. It's high time they got with the international program and stopped using the nation's xenophobia (or any other excuses they can manufature) to cover their unwillingness to progress and improve.

Do you think the mothers of Korean students are really clamouring for foreign teachers out of some ignorant belief that a native speaker can mystically pass on their language abilities to those who interact with them? Or, in this country, is it better-known than I imagined that those who have been educated outside of Korea have a much better understanding of what teaching is all about? could be confusing to have exposure to the native language and foreign language simultaneously, especially for young learners aged six to seven whose native language is not yet systematically organized.

This is just a sample of KTU's ignorance in their attempts to hide their own failings. It is recognized internationally, and supported by all contemporary studies, that earlier introduction to an L2 is favourable, and some say essential to the attainment of true fluency.

But the poor old Koren teachers. How are they to know this? Might they be expected to do a little research on a topic before they spout opinions about it? Absurd.

If someone truly loved Korea, and truly cared about Korean education, they would try their damndest to stop these people from justifying teaching English through the grammar translation model. Korean teachers who speak perfectly well, certainly well enough to teach English dynamically, are still doing it today. Why? Because it is easier for them? It keeps their classes quiet? I can see no other justification for it. Yet that can't be how they learnt to speak proficiently, so they should realise they are doing their students and their nation a disservice through their utilization of archaic methods.

I never would have said it was necessary for Koreans to learn English anyway, but how else are they going to discover developments in educational methods? Given the state of their universities, it sure ain't likely that they are going to make any themselves.

KTU should be focussing on these issues - educations issues. Not the invasion of the U.S. Sure, that is a concern in need of opposition. But it's not the concern of an education body.

sam59527 said...