[LETTERS to the editor]Gender balance needed in teaching
Controversy is mounting these days about the rapid increase in the number of female teachers. In education, human resources are crucial for achieving efficiency. However, if education authorities place too much emphasis on hiring female teachers, some side effects will come up. Male teachers usually play a main role in various school events, such as sports meets and camping. When violent crimes involving students break out, the presence of male teachers is more important. That’s why we have to keep a balance of male and female teachers in hiring.
Some people critical of the system insist that advanced countries do not worry about bringing such a balance in the teaching force. However, that claim does not reflect reality. In those countries, there are not enough people seeking teaching jobs because the teachers’ pay and status are not satisfactory. As a result, they do not care about the sex ratio of teachers. Their primary goal is to recruit teachers, period.
In addition, opponents of a balance between male and female teachers say it is based on discrimination between men and women. This is a false assumption. Under the system, gender equilibrium among teachers will be achieved when more male teachers are appointed.
I suggest that the government give men additional points during the process of hiring. Currently, men are given preferential treatment when they take the entrance examination for a teacher’s college. However, it is meaningless because admission to the college can’t guarantee them employment after graduation.
Opponents respond that more and more women entering the working world is a trend in Korean society. They add that even though there are more women employed in most companies in Korea, they are not considering a system of balancing male and female workers.
But the field of education is totally different. It has particularities all its own. Schools do not just produce products. Schools are where learning takes place.
Lee Eun-ju, vice principal, Jeunggwang Elementary School
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