Further lunacy from the Taiwan govt

New mandate says teachers to work full-time in recess
Thursday, Oct 23, 2003

School administrators and teachers are required to work full-time during winter recess and summer break, starting from the winter recess of this school year, the Ministry of Education announced yesterday . . .

The announcement has agitated many teachers and strong objections have been voiced. . . “Professors at college might do their research during recesses, yet teachers and administrators at elementary and high schools have nothing to do in that time but are forced to show up on campus, which does not make sense” . . .

www.taipeitimes.com/News/taiwan/archive … 2003072998

they’re all a bunch of overpaid undertaxed neverdowells anyway. make them show up all year round.

[quote=“formosa”]they’re all a bunch of overpaid undertaxed neverdowells anyway. make them show up all year round.[/quote]I’ll tell Mrs Fluffy you said that. :x Trying to make all new enemies with the new moderators now eh ? :unamused:
Yes, they have long holidays, but she still has to work for several weeks during the summer, especially just before school starts again. There are some times she has to just turn with nothing to do just to put the hours in, surely that’s not a good use of taxpayers’ money either ?

Let me get this straight – I put in X years getting a Ph.D., and then I’m supposed to work 12 months a year, 40 hours a week, for US$24,000 a year?

NT$60K x 12 = $720K / plus 1.5 months “bonus” assuming THAT is still offered to foreigners (they’ve already drawn a distinction between foreign and local teacher in terms of contract length, health test requirements, etc. etc.) = US$23,800 a year.

I’d do better at a kindergarten. At least the students would draw cute pictures for me. (Wait, no, they used to do that in college, but unfortunately it was to substitute for a complete lack of content in their research papers for which the pictures formed the cover…) :unamused:

When I was teaching university, I went abroad during “vacations”, but I ended up working (writing textbooks, doing research, collecting materials for class, etc.) and spending a lot of my own money on things to use in class. I can’t say I miss it that much.

dealing with the oversupply of teachers in Taiwan.

To discourage people from entering the profession.

Some people decide to teach at local schools because of connections, others have their own reasons. The fact remains, that there are too many local-system teachers in Taiwan, esp 1st-12th grades.

This is not related to teaching english, where it seems there are never enough teachers to meet supply.

it a known fact that newly graduated TEACHERS have trouble finding public schools to teach in. This is because of several factors:

In recent years, the government opened up regulations that allowed anyone with a bachelor’s degree to enter the teaching field, as long as they met a few easy to acheive requirements. Previously, only graduates of 2(?) institutions were allowed to teach. One of these institutions was SHI DA(the original teachers university/college).

With so many ‘more’ people opting to become teachers, the ‘real teachers’, those who went to SHI DA majoring in education found it very difficult to find places to teach. Hence the ‘wandering teacher(liu lang lau shi)-syndrome.’ Young, twenty-something’ teachers, having finished their apprenticeship traveling the country, north south east west, in search of teaching jobs, picking up substitute jobs along the way with no permanent teaching jobs in sight.

Too many older teachers hang on to their positions, because there is no money to pay for their retirement pension. Yes, many older teachers do in fact wish to retire, but many local government coffers are too strained to allow for this to occur. To allow the teachers to retire, the local government would have to begin to pay the old teachers pension, and pay additional money for the new replacement teachers salary. The way things are set up, very few local govts can afford to allow their teachers to retire early.

To land a job at a local primary school outside of Taipei, you need to pay a large hong bao to the reviewing committee that looks at your application and performs the interview. Basically, you buy your position at a local school. It is a well known fact that many very qualified applicants are turned away just to show that ‘the committee has seen many applications,’ in favor of either a candidate who has connections to the committee, or simply the highest bidder. Sometimes the bidding process is even handled by local gangsters, to ensure a fair bid process… :unamused: …rarely is this money used to pay for the retirement package for older teachers…

So…to make teaching less appealing…new rules…longer work hours during the off-season…

its too bad they had to resort to this…


How do you come to make these accusations?

My wife landed a job at a primary school outside of Taipei. There were no hongbao or gangsters involved. To the best of my knowledge, these were not involved in the hiring of any of the many other teachers I know, either.

sources: mostly friends who are soon-to-be-teachers currently apprenticing. That is the 6 month-1 year period after they graduate from college, in which they intern at a school. After this internship, they will try to find jobs. i wish them luck.

other sources are local teachers(elementary, high school and univ-level) who currently have jobs at local schools. ask ur wife cranky, if she doesn’t know, ask her colleagues. not everyone is aware of the dark side of teaching in taiwan. some people will never encounter the situations that i mentioned. :?:


There are many stories floating around about hong baos for teaching jobs, but if you ask people about you will usually find out they have no direct personal experience. Taiwan is a low trust society, meaning that everyone simply assumes that there are secret deals being made. Sometimes there are, often there aren’t.

My wife says taht unlike the US, teachers are actually well paid in Taiwan compared to other professions. True?

Starting wages are relatively high, my wife says, at 38,000 NT a month, compared to 25,000 at the average job, and 35,000 NT at electronics firms.
The biggest advantage of course is the complete absence of taxes for teachers.
The government has been talking about abolishing this obviously unfair advantage, but Taiwan has so many elections and teachers so many votes that it hasn’t happened yet. Perhaps after the legislative elections at the end of next year.

“Unlike” the US???

Which “US” are you talking about? Or, perhaps, which planet are you from??

The average wage in Marysville, WA, for a teacher – nine months of work – is US$54,000. This has been publicised extensively lately, because the Marysville school district has been on strike for a month and a half (the fsince the schools were supposedly going to open for the year) and are currently on a “we’re present but aren’t going to do a damn thing but read Cosmopolitan during classes” in-place “strike”, where they get paid for showing up but aren’t going to bother doing any teaching. (A judge apparently ruled their strike illegal some time in the last week, so rather than pay fines, they cancelled their picket lines.)

The Marysville “teachers” are demanding 4% annual raises for the next five years, which would take them to an average of US$66,000/year in 2008.

FYI, the average HOUSEHOLD income (that might mean two or more salaries) in WA ws US$37,000/year, last I heard, and is FALLING (half a percent in the last year, and it’s going to get worse this year). The teachers are thus getting paid significantly higher wages than the median, and for only nine months out of the year. Hell, I know science Ph.D.'s – people who are doing vaccine research and other serious work, not dimwits who are writing research papers on “Feminism and Sadomasochism in Shakespeare” – who are making only around US$35K.

Think it’s an anomaly? Washington state has a statewide payscale for most schools, no matter which part of the state, which averages $51,000. (The Marysville district elected not to use the scale, and pays a bit more to “attract quality teachers”, who then go on strike and refuse to work.)

“Unlike the US”. Unbelievable.

You have obviously never taught in a public school in the US. Those teachers deserve every penny of that money. It’s far more than 8 hours per day during hte school year, in case you don’t know it. You go teach high school for a year and THEN come back and tell me you felt overpaid. :imp: :imp: :imp:

(Yes, I have taught high school in the US. Also in Taiwan.)

What are the going salaries for this kind of employment anyway? How many students are in a class?

My mother was a teacher in Arkansas for over 20 years (she retired after the pension-point) and the entire time she was making roughly half of that $43,000 per year salary you’re tossing about. That is one anomalous school district you must be talking about. Perhaps it’s that my Mom taught in the 2nd poorest state in the nation (mostly poor, black retarded kids from families full of alcoholics and career criminals - you try doing that and tell me my mother is overpaid. She should be have been paid twice as much as half of those corporate criminals are paid, and she’d still be underpaid.) Where I come from, teachers are definitely underpaid, compared to the shit they have to put up.

Have you ever tried teaching at a highschool in the U.S.A.? It was fucking nightmare for me when I did it for a year. I had kids on crack, their eyes as red as Mars and bug-eyed, throwing chairs in the middle of class…underage floozies flashing their tits at me in front of the whole class (and you know if I reacted at all, I’d get my ass fired for sexual harassment)…potheads using the football stadium as their “breaktime” area…kids slashing my tires because I was being “too mean” that day as a teacher (as in, expecting them to do their homework, actually do more in class than just sit on their ass and gossip with their friends). Why do you think I’m in Taiwan in the first place? Taiwanese students are a godsend compared to American pothead burnouts at your typical working class “Vocational” highschool, like the one I had to teach at… (they got me 'cause no one else would take the job, to be honest about it…)

Do you mean me, mentioning Marysville and $54K? (Not sure where you got $43K, I’m guessing a typo.)

It’s not anomalous for the area. The Seattle area’s average is only a couple thou less.

Sympathies about all the crap from the crackheads – you knew the job was dangerous when you took it, Fred.

Regarding pay rates, everyone is “underpaid”. I got shit from a Delta Airlines pilot who insisted that his $150K/year (approx) salary was outrageously low, because after all he might some day face a life-threatening situation for his passengers, and be the only one who could possibly save them all!!! !!! No, make that !!! – he was quite vociferous about it.

Janitors are underpaid because they have a mucky job, teachers are underpaid because they have to deal with a bunch of little shits, software engineers are underpaid because . . . oh, wait, we’re not paid at all any more, nevermind, doctors are underpaid because they’re responsible for people’s lives, lawyers are underpaid because they’re out there making sure society is just, corporate CEOs are underpaid because they’re making important business decisions that affect millions of shareholders’ investments.

So suck it up and muddle on. You’re underpaid, just like every single other person on the planet.

My colleague here used to be high school Engligh teacher (in MN), it has to be one of the worst jobs out there. Pay is low, school board is full of politics (well that’s everywhere), her work is unappreciated, job is very demanding (they want the best yet they pay you $%^t), not to mention putting up with kids these days. In fact many cities (NY, Phillies) offer medical school students to teach a few years and the city will pay for their tuitions (on top of their salaries).

MaPoDurian, you’re probably talking about teachers/professors at college level, which is different story. My mom graduated from Taizhong Nu Zhuan and taught elementary schools until retirement, back in the 70s/80s it was one of the most attractive professions, on the surface, the pay is OK but people wanted the stability, plus you get a huge retirement funds when you get out (back in the 80s). Also most teachers wanted to teach in Taipei rather than the rural areas and other cities. I know many supplemented their incomes with night schools (buxiban) by holding tips on exams/finals so those who wanted the best grades had to attend night classes.

No, I am talking about the Marysville public school district, running classes from kindergarten through high school, approximately exit 200 off I-5 in Washington state.