WORKING ABROAD / DEC. 27, 2012
version 21, draft 21

Teaching in Korea’s Public Schools

The education system in Korea is extremely advanced and the government has placed a great deal of money into Korea’s public schooling, to ensure that it is of the highest standards.

Public school jobs in Korea are an attractive option for a number of reasons:

Competitive salary

Before commencing with your teaching you will sign a contract stipulating your working hours and your rate of pay. The salaries in Korea’s public schools are extremely competitive and comparable with those of private schools.

Lower teaching hours

Normal public school contracts require teachers to teach 22 classes per week. Teachers are required to be at school between the hours of 8.30am and 4.30pm. Nevertheless teaching often finishes by 2pm, leaving teachers with plenty of time to prepare classes and correct books. In addition to reduced teaching hours, annual leave is typically longer per year, in comparison with the annual leave of private schools.

Korean co-teacher in class

Many of Korea’s public schools include a co-teacher in the classroom accompanying the main teacher. This relieves a great deal of pressure on the main teacher, enabling the co-teacher to give extra attention to those who are struggling so that the primary teacher can focus on the lesson at hand.

Additional factors

Despite offering favorable working opportunities, teaching in public schools can also be strenuous, particularly on new or less experienced teachers. Classes are very large (often 25 – 60 students) and resources are limited. The curriculum is also fairly rigid, meaning that teachers are given less freedom and flexibility to supplement lessons with games and activities. 

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