A few quick notes.

A few quick things because I'm running late as shit to get myself together and get out the door for what's going to be a pretty amazing night. Why? Because I, as I had already expected, I wasn't able to find the bus stop OUT of the way I went in, because it was my first attempt at doing so. And I suck at that. So now, without further ado:

1. Roboseyo and Gomushin Girl.... so nice to meet you! I really wish I had the time to stick around and shoot the shit. But I need to come back sometime when we can really settle in, because I'm too shy and reserved the first time meeting new people. Lovely to put faces with names. I hope to see those faces again very soon.

2. Blackout Korea blog nonsense..... look. It's fucking stupid what they've done. I know it is. But it was kind of all stupid in the first place. A lot of people are talking out of both sides of their mouths now: Those Koreans who passed out drunk in public shouldn't have done that! Didn't they know something like someone taking their photos and posting them on the internet could happen?

Well. Yeah. Where was that reasoning process when you decided to submit your photo to someone for the sole purpose of posting it on the internet in a country where you know nationalism and psychotic netizenism go hand in hand way too often?

I mean. I'm just saying.

3. The drunken foreign teacher suicide article calling for stricter and more effective screening processes for foreign teachers..... I'm sorry. I agree. I have no illusions about this resulting in anything more than more useless paperwork, rather than an actual improvement in the interviewing practices and processes, but anything to keep children safe. You have to be particular about who you allow to work with children. You do. And I will support anything that makes that possible, even if it results in more hassle for me personally. Always.

Now I'm off! Possibly not back until Monday. But I do have a lot I'm holding off on saying personally. Hwaeshik was enlightening in a lot of ways, and it seems there will be a lot of changes coming my way this year. But I'll get into it later. Take care until then, lovelies!


Tuttle said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tuttle said...

"I have no illusions about this resulting in anything more than more useless paperwork, rather than an actual improvement in the interviewing practices and processes, but anything to keep children safe."

Sorry, but this sentence hurt my neck, it doubled back on itself so quickly.

Gomushin Girl said...

It was lovely to meet you, too, and hopefully next time we'll have more of an opportunity to chat, rather than having you as my captive audience for an hour as I babble on about my own personal hobby horse.

I'm not so sure about screening because a) I'm not sure how it'd be feasable and b) that it won't be discriminatory towards people who are dealing with their problems in responsible ways already. By and large, Korean society does not deal positively with mental illness, and there's very little understanding of things like depression. This is going to turn away responsible people who've been diagnosed and are dealing, while others will slip through because they haven't sought treatment. Some people develop problems while here, or their problems are triggered by the stress of being overseas, and they're certainly not going to be screened out.
There's no blood test or quick check to see if somebody is or could become an alcoholic. Essentially, the only way they'll be able to do it is to ask for doctors to report on it during the regular health check, and I can't see it becoming a real and useful screen.

I'm no Picasso said...

GG -- Maybe I misunderstood the article in question. To me, it seemed the author was saying, we already check this, this and this and it's still not good enough and it's still not working and we need to figure something out. That much, I very much agree with. An AIDS test, a drug test and a criminal background check do not make someone "okay" to work around children. Of course you can't account for any whackjobs who may slip through the cracks, but surely the fact that no one from the education office, or my school, or ANYWHERE other than the recruiting agency (who have a vested interest in getting as many teachers over as possible) even so much as communicated with me via email (let alone on the phone in an actual proper interview) before I came means that more can be done on the ground to "screen" foreign teachers before they arrive.

Furthermore, I am really, really curious as to how it got to the point where someone was in such a state that they would get drunk, remove their pants and jump from a building without anyone noticing that his behavior was maybe a bit off. Sometimes these things do come out of nowhere, but not usually. The failure of absolutely any other staff at the school to either notice or deal with the situation at hand is unacceptable to me. For the sake of human kindness for one, but also for the sake of the children the man was working with.

Will this probably just result in more "screenings" and paperwork? Yeah. Probably. But it shouldn't. It's not acceptable for the media to keep pointing the finger at the English teaching community when they don't even bother to have a single conversation with employees they are bringing in from overseas to teach children before they do so.

Gomushin Girl said...

You're absolutely right in that the "screening" should really be a more rigorous interview process. Unfortunately, my suspicion is that it'll be more boxes to check or some bs form to get signed by a doctor, and will just end up weeding out qualified people. That puts the burden on the applicant, rather than on the system and the people hiring.