Ask a Korean! News: Seoul Public Schools to Phase out Foreign English Teachers

Here is a piece of news particularly relevant to a lot of the readers of this blog. Seoul's public school system (Seoul Metropolitan Office of Education, or SMOE) is set to gradually phase out native-speaking English teachers by 2014, citing the preference of the students and parents for a Korean teacher teaching English. SMOE currently employs 1,245 native-speaking English teachers (NSETs). By next year, 707 positions will be eliminated.

Lest there should be any misunderstanding -- this does not mean that there will be no place for non-Koreans to teach English in Seoul. They simply won't be able to work at a public school in Seoul. Each educational district makes its own decision on this topic, and whether the rest of the country will follow suit remains to be seen.

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