Wednesday, June 23, 2010

State Testing in Korea: Protest is Futile

The JoongAng Daily published an article on Tuesday (...yes, I'm behind on blogging, what else is new?) about the recent actions of the teacher's union, "Union wages war on teacher evaluations, tests." Unfortunately, I think that the union is fighting a losing battle when it comes to protesting the nation wide tests.  It's difficult to get students and parents to protest the tests with them when the scores will still be a central part of their applications to the next level of schooling (applying to middle school, high school and of course, college). Simply protesting the tests isn't efficacious. As terrible as 'teaching to the test' can be for schools it does allow a standard guideline for education across the nation.

I read an interesting teaching book lately that pointed out that for good teachers, students perform well on the tests, not because they were just teaching to the test but because they were teaching mastery of the subject material.

As for the teacher evaluation system, I don't really know enough to comment though the teachers I have spoken with seem unhappy with it.

Spaz update on life:
I had been getting constant upset stomachs this month. I finally figured out why: my vitamin C tablets are made with milk. Only in Korea people, only in Korea.


reveuse261 said...

teachers at my school are partially rated on whether or not the students AND parents like them. such bs.

~ partial asian ^^

Alex said...

It's a major problem that it's based on arbitrary 'likes' rather than whether or not the teacher is effective. After all, I've hated some great teachers. I might have hated the person but I did learn a lot.

If the union wants to get more support from the non-unionized teachers going after the evaluation system would definitely be worthwhile.

Mr. Awesomecool said...

Everything in Korea has milk in it. I have no idea why.

Alex said...

I forgot that you are a vegan! It's a major pain in the butt for those of us with dietary restrictions.

You can't even just ask your coworkers because they aren't as aware of ingredients as someone with an allergy or veganism needs to be. Half of the time, they are astonished when I point it out to them on the package.