Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Teaching for Free - Unexpected Developments

I walked into the ward office about twenty minutes before class this week and was flagged down by the “team leader” and invited into the area of the office where the important meetings usually take place. I exchanged niceties with an expectant looking gentleman who was introduced to me as the director of the local cultural center. As soon as I heard who he was, I must admit that the warning bells in my head started going off. Was this guy going to start asking me to teach somewhere else for free?

As it turns out, the Dalseo-Gu Advanced Cultural Center is looking to add English to the list of classes that they offer to the community and this gentleman was looking for some assistance in that respect. Since I can speak some Korean (woefully little after 11 years) they wanted to discuss it with me. I explained that my schedule was too busy this semester to take on any other commitments for teaching. Then, the “team leader” asked me if I could help them to find another foreigner teacher. I explained that unfortunately between school and family commitments I don’t have very much contact with other foreigners (except my much loved readers and fellow bloggers :) and the others on my campus have E2 (school sponsored) visas. I also explained the visa situation that most foreigners face when trying to teach extra classes of any kind. Anything but an F-2 (family sponsor visa) holder would be hard pressed to get permission to teach such a class. I also explained that, in my opinion, there probably would not be too many foreigners out there who would be willing to teach free classes.
It was then that they explained to me that the classes were not free. Much to the contrary, they are very lucrative to the point of being almost irresistible, but the pay depends on the number of students enrolled as the teacher is paid a (very healthy) percentage of the fees paid by the students. I said that I would post this information on my blog and a couple of other places I know about in hopes that some native speaker out there might be interested in taking it on.

There is a sort of catch though. They aren’t looking for just any foreign teacher. They want someone from the community (Daegu and/or DalSeo-Gu) that has, in their words, “a title” like a foreign professor from a local college or university who would be able and willing. By having a recognizable title, they can hopefully draw more students and keep the class going. Makes sense, right?
SO….if anyone out there reads this and you are in Daegu, drop me a comment or an email and I can try and hook you up since I am currently unavailable for this venture.

1 comment:

EFL Geek said...

I just linked to this post - hope it sends someone your way.