Who's insulting who?

Who's insulting who?

I've just been reading through the ajarn letters page for the first time, and it seems that the current topic is the 'insulting' wages offered on the site. This is my take on it... As many people have pointed out, we are all free to choose what jobs we apply for, and those of us lucky / well-organised enough to have a teaching degree or plenty of experience can choose to apply only for the better-paid jobs, confident that we'll get offered at least one of them. But those of us who don't yet have experience need to start somewhere, and work up the experience-and-salary ladder. Think about the following:

1) Some of these schools can't afford to pay a lot. Some writers on this site seem to imply that they therefore are insulting foreign teachers. I would argue that we are insulting their school by dismissing their wage offers so callously.

2) There are plenty of foreign teachers who consider 15-20K a reasonable wage. Yes, most of them are not native speakers - so? They need jobs too, and if they are happy with these wages, then so be it. It seems to me to be an insult to them to call their wages 'insulting'.

3) The wages foreigners are paid to teach are higher than most or all of the Thai teachers in the same institution, and yet these Thai teachers are more qualified than almost all of the foreigners, and spend more time at work than the foreigners, too!

4) To those who say they expect a good salary for the years of experience they have, I say well, only go for the higher-paid jobs then. Leave the lower salaries for those trying to get on the ladder. And don't insult those with 'only' a TEFL certificate - for a start, they're not responsible for the child's entire education, just their English classes - if they're not a super-teacher, it's not really earth-shattering.

Secondly, there are a lot of fantastic teachers out there (and over here...) who have no teaching qualifications at all. In short, if you are lucky enough to have choices, make them, and don't look down on those less fortunate.

Lucie


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