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Unhappy Teacher’s Day?

May 15, 2012

According to this article in the Chosun Ilbo, the majority of teachers in Korea are unhappy in their jobs. As a teacher, I find this interesting and as students, you should, too, as we share the common goals of education and bettering society. The article lists several reasons, including a decrease in respect for authority and stress from trying to provide guidance. Here is a teachers’ survey from last year that says Korean teachers are lost without corporal punishment.


Students: What do you think are the causes of teachers’ unhappiness? Choose one or a few of the questions below and respond. Of course, you may include your own question and answer.


1. Do you agree that students have a lower regard for a teacher’s authority? If so, what do you think are the causes?

2. In the past, teachers had almost absolute power. Nowadays, power has been shifting away from teachers towards students. See this article. However, has the balance of power between teachers and students shifted too far toward students, or is there currently a proper balance between students’ rights and teachers’ authority?

3. Do some parents contribute to undermining (weakening) a teacher’s authority by being unsupportive? Do unsupportive parents embolden students, potentially enabling bad behavior? Does this affect a teacher’s happiness?

5. Should corporal punishment be reinstated? If no, why not? If yes, what guidelines, if any, should teachers follow when meting out punishment? Be specific. For example, a teacher must not administer punishment until after both the teacher and student express their opinions to an objective third party, such as a principal.

6. What are the effects of a weakening of teachers’ authority? Is the weakening of teachers’ authority a myopic policy? Will the classroom environment be less conducive to education if teachers have no/few methods to control unruly students?

7. What do you feel are proper ways to guide misbehaving students, including “indirect” corporal unishment such as push ups or running laps, a demerit system, expulsion, etc?

8. What might be the effects of an expulsion from school on the student, the student’s family, society?

9. Your own ideas


Note: If you would like to share a story related to this topic, feel free to do so. You might talk about a misbehaving student (not you, of course :)) or a teacher misusing or abusing his/her authority.

41 Comments leave one →
  1. Kij(C1) permalink
    May 16, 2012 12:12 pm

    Question 3: Do some parents contribute to undermining (weakening) a teacher’s authority by being unsupportive? Do unsupportive parents embolden students, potentially enabling bad behavior? Does this affect a teacher’s happiness?

    I think the cause of this problem is some of parents in Korea. Parents can easily become overprotective of their children. But In the school, the parents have transfer their roles to the teachers. Because, teacher not only teaching regular curriculum, but also provide valuable life lessons. In other words, teachers can be a good parents in the school. Recently, but teachers did not do this roles, because parents interferes are affecting to the school. For example, violence in schools is very serious problem. And the attackers of this violence should have to pay a penalty by school. But many parents are up in arms about this penalty,
    because parents have eyes only for their children, even their children did wrong. Finally, teachers could not punish the students, because their parents strong opposition of this punishment. What happens next is up is so clearly. Attackers of violence in schools, they did not punished in school, and they will never stop doing bad behavior in school. In this situation, teachers just remained as a spectator. The overprotective parents will make situation getting worse and worse. I think, education must be top priority for all, and also the role of the teacher in the school is most important thing such as parents. But nowdays, most parents invading teacher’s boundaries. Finally, teachers thinks that their’s role has no place in the school. In short, I think the cause of teacher’s unhappiness is overprotective of their children by parents.

  2. May 17, 2012 3:03 pm

    Question1. Do you agree that students have a lower regard for a teacher’s authority? If so, what do you think are the causes?

    I agree a teacher’s authority is continually weakening. Recently, there are news about relation of teachers and students. For example, students played word games with a teacher. In addition, some students fought with a teacher. I think this situation is caused by diverse reasons. However, I think two main causes affect a teacher’s authority. One of main causes is banning physical punishment. Of course, I think a teacher must not severely punish students. Especially, it is not right to munish students because of low grade. However,Many teachers can’t find other ways to discipline their students except for punishment. Thus, teachers are grudually indifferent to their students to avoid any controversy. Finally, it is difficult a teacher corrects students’ fault now. Other cause is improper education system that focuses only on college admission. Through diverse education in school, students grow up right in the past. Compared to the past, students think a school is just a step to go to university. Because of this recognition, students think school teachers and academy teachers equally. Even worse, some students study hard at academy. On the other hand, they sleep during the school calss. Finally, I think because of these two reasons, the authority of teacher is lost.

    • proftodd permalink*
      May 17, 2012 4:47 pm

      You said, “a teacher must not severely punish students.” What does ‘severe’ mean to you? I think that if any punishment is used, the degree of punishment should match the degree of misbehavior; minor misbehavior, in some cases, may deserve some form of minor punishment, but serious misbehavior, characterized especially by excessive use of violence, may deserve a severe form of punishment. For example, if a student beat another student or teacher, severe punishment might be warranted, depending on the totality of the circumstances, which could include the extent of the victim’s injuries, age of the perpetrator, actions of the victim, previous history of violence, mental health, etc. Although I generally disagree with severe punishment, in some cases, expulsion from school or even jail time might be the only way to deal with dangerous students. (BTW, I think that many types of punishment, especially physical punishment, are poor motivators for positive change and should not be used if other more effective methods are available. Ideally, teachers need to find creative methods to motivate students for positive behavioral changes, especially for students who come from families where positive family values are lacking.)

  3. Energizer0105(C1) permalink
    May 17, 2012 5:10 pm

    Honestly speaking, my mother is a middle school teacher and I’ve seen a teaching life of my mother.

    I’d like to talk about why teachers’ authority is getting weaker.

    In my opinion, I think there are a lot of reasons.

    First, so many academies and private lessons.

    These days, students may consider a school as a just sleeping place.

    So, many students sleep during classes and study at academy or in a private lesson.

    They say that teachers of academies or private lessons are better than teachers of public schools and most public schools have slow learning progress.

    This is really big contradiction.

    Next, banning physical punishment in schools.

    By banning physical punishment, students tend to disregard their teachers’ advice or teaching and they do not obey instruscions.

    So, teachers avoid teaching troubled students.

  4. Julie(C2) permalink
    May 18, 2012 9:31 am

    I think the problem of current education system is a major cause of weakening a teacher’s authority. Korea’s education system tends to focus on making students enter the prominent universities. To make students go on to the universities, schools focus on the several subjects that are helpful for a college entrance examination such as mathematics and English. The biggest problem is that public education is not enough to enter the university. Private education market is outrageously growing, so public education can’t keep up with it. Students already learn many things in private lesson or institute before they learn it in school, therefore school is no longer important compared to the past. Private education market already expanded, and public education system is not enough for students. To solve this problem, government is trying to reinforce public education by cooperate with EBS, but It seems that we still have a long way to go.

  5. May 18, 2012 10:18 am

    6. What are the effects of a weakening of teachers’ authority? Is the weakening of teachers’ authority a myopic policy? Will the classroom environment be less conducive to education if teachers have no/few methods to control unruly students?

    It is a fact that many teachers have low authority for thier students because of having not punishment authority. It is quite severe problem. In my experience, many students will not follow thier teacher without punishment. Of course, there are many students who follow well teacher but always some students who do not follow teacher exist. So, I think authority of punishment for teacher is very important. It is unique authority for teacher. Without this teacher is not real teacher. I wish a strong real teacher.

    • proftodd permalink*
      May 18, 2012 1:02 pm

      Why do you think that some students will not follow their teacher without the threat of punishment? Do you think there is a correlation between those students’ misbehavior and the family values, or lack of, they learn form their parents? What can be done with those students who have disciplinary problems?

  6. Laura(c1) permalink
    May 18, 2012 12:00 pm

    1. Do you agree that students have a lower regard for a teacher’s authority? If so, what do you think are the causes?

    My dream was a teacher when I was a child. However, while I’m growing up, the thinking was totally changed because of behaviors of students. Even though I was a student, I couldn’t understand my friends as students. They were so rude to teacher and they didn’t respect teacher’s authority. They even thought a teacher as lower person than them. One day, my teacher called me and I saw her tears while talking about our class students. She told me she was suffering the pains of mind because of my friends and she asked me to care about them through me. She couldn’t control my friends on her power and she needed my help. I was very socked with her tears and surprised about the teacher’s authority. They are several reasons of this phenomenon such as education system, banning punishment, parent’s intervention.

    Nowadays, students prefer to learn something through the academic. They go to the academy after class and finish them by 1 am. At this situation who can concentrate on the class in the school? I guess nobody does. Also nobody can blame these students because they honestly have to do to enter the university. The study from public school is not enough. Then banning punishment is the one reason of this problem. Students almost can’t handle their behavior rightly. They need someone who is able to care of them but they didn’t know at that time so punishment is a necessary factor to teach them. However the government banned the punishment and the teacher lose their authority. In addition, the parents of nowadays generation is too entering into children’s school life. They almost seem to a student of school. They bind personal teaching system of teachers and it leads the low authority.

    Low authority of teacher will make fall out our future. Students have to respect their teacher and it makes the better life and better nation. All of us have to find out the solutions depending on problems together.

  7. Nasri(C1) permalink
    May 18, 2012 1:49 pm

    Teacher’s authority is weaking than before, 5~10 years ago teachers authority was high enough to control students, however physical punishment was a huge problem. Nowadays the government has prohibited physical punishment officially. Then there should be another solution to enhance teacher’s authority, unfortunately there aren’t right now.
    In my point of view, government had to make solution and prohibit. Government made teacher’s lower authority eventually and should find a solution as soon as possible.
    Physical punishment is basicaly wrong, however the bigger problem is they knew it was bad
    but lead them to do that and later just prohibited without solution. This kind of bad routine should be stopped for the future

  8. Zakk (C1) permalink
    May 18, 2012 1:55 pm

    In my memory, from the elementary school to high school, whenever I told my parent that I was punished by my teacher, they always scold me. At that time, I could not understand them. I felt unfair so I wanted my parent to be by my side. But later, I realized that I was wrong. Due to the punishment, I could change my behavior and become better. But these days, It seems different from the past.
    In the past, the most important concern of parents is teaching their children. Not only getting intellectual knowledge but also having upright personality. As time goes by, people are putting their interests on earning for living. Their concerns for their kids have been decreased because they are too busy. Parents hardly teach children that they should obey to teacher and respect their authority.
    And the current education system also has made this situation. Students have to study for the good score to enter the university. They seem to study not for learning but for test. This makes students regard teachers not as to be respected but a tool for getting knowledge. They only are interested in scoring good grade. They only look for teachers can be benefit for them.
    Situations are getting worse. If these problems are unsolved, our education and teachers’ future won’t be bright.

  9. May 18, 2012 3:39 pm

    Sleeping on the desk, using their smart phones and talking each other during class, students take a class. It is not a comic scene of drama but a real scene. As a middle school extra-time teacher, I recently felt doubt about scene of school today. Yesterday when I was preparing my class, I heard of teachers’ complain from caucus. They worried about their authority for their problem-making students.

    In my case, I experienced unbalance between student right and between teachers’ authority. For example, to make their more attend class, I spend ten minutes on collecting students’ smart phones because they reject giving smart phones temporarily enumerating their right of student.

    It is not only makes me hard to lead my class but also make me give up doing that. I can clearly see the power that has been shifting towards students. The right for student is not made to give students absolute power but makes the school where student and teacher both can be owners.

    Many parents and officers who support right of students always say that there are lots of good way to control student without corporal punishment and any special punishment but I want to say them before do that how about considering students’ immature mind. Good results are from good cooperation. I dream of the school where students and teachers can be in harmony but one-way right of students must be fixed and be rectified for teacher and students for the better education environment.

    • Gee(T) permalink
      May 18, 2012 3:43 pm

      Hrace87 is me. Please consider it..

  10. Gee(T) permalink
    May 18, 2012 3:42 pm

    Sleeping on the desk, using their smart phones and talking each other during class, students take a class. It is not a comic scene of drama but a real scene. As a middle school extra-time teacher, I recently felt doubt about scene of school today. Yesterday when I was preparing my class, I heard of teachers’ complain from caucus. They worried about their authority for their problem-making students.

    In my case, I experienced unbalance between student right and between teachers’ authority. For example, to make their more attend class, I spend ten minutes on collecting students’ smart phones because they reject giving smart phones temporarily enumerating their right of student.

    It is not only makes me hard to lead my class but also make me give up doing that. I can clearly see the power that has been shifting towards students. The right for student is not made to give students absolute power but makes the school where student and teacher both can be owners.

    Many parents and officers who support right of students always say that there are lots of good way to control student without corporal punishment and any special punishment but I want to say them before do that how about considering students’ immature mind. Good results are from good cooperation. I dream of the school where students and teachers can be in harmony but one-way right of students must be fixed and be rectified for teacher and students for the better education environment.

  11. Ohmygoodness (c2) permalink
    May 18, 2012 5:31 pm

    First of all, I would like to tell you my experience about this topic. I was graduated a private high school, my teachers were so strict and they punished students severely. At that time we complained about it everytime. And when I was in high school, while a music teacher punished a guy student, he hit student’s legs awfully. The student got a limp forever….. It was terrible issue of my school. The teacher was finally fired. I have a critical view about teacher’s punishments, but I think that teacher’s punishments is necessary to lead students to right direction. What I mean punishments is not to hit students, but it’s alternative way. For example, a teacher can let a student write a letter of apology or clean classroom. I understand that in recent times the students don’t listen teacher’s orders well(this is a main problem of this issue), but teachers try to make students to think what it’s wrong and why it’s a bad acting instead of just punishing them.

  12. Cold(C1) permalink
    May 18, 2012 7:01 pm

    Main reasons for teachers’ agonizind days are because problems in Korean education system and teachers altitude for a lond period. When I was a primary and secondary student, I always have to follow teacher’s command. There is no reason for the excuses, sometimes I could not understand teacher’s decision but I had to follow it without any complains. For instance, I had certain excuses that I have been to the hospital but I got physical punishment due to being late at school. Not only this case, but several things happened when I was young. This unlogical treatment to students make students feel angry about school and teachers. They sometimes express their angers to teachers in wrong way which is resulted in social problem.

  13. wipa(c2) permalink
    May 18, 2012 8:19 pm

    I think that there has been always issue about students’ rights and teachers’ authority. In past time, about 20years ago, it was common that teachers punished students when students did wrong things. For this reason, most students usually tended to follow teachers’ guidance, although, of course, there were still a few students who disobey to teachers. However, recently in Korea, punishment toward students became illegal action in school. That is, teachers must not punish students even though students disobey to teachers and do wrong things. So, I think this leads students to think that they can ignore teachers’ guidance because they will not be punished by anything. Therefore, I insist that there should be proper punishment for both students’ rights and teachers’ authority.

  14. Molly(c1) permalink
    May 18, 2012 8:33 pm

    I want to be a teacher. So I am very interested in this news. When I heard like this news, I worry about my future. I think the reason of weakening teacher’s authority is because of policy of education. Students all already studied at privite academy before school lesson.And then students and their parents said school teachers are incompetent. Of course some of teachers are little bit incompetent. But not all of them. Also some teachers are not do their best to teaching. Moreover the atmosphere of society make teacher just teach technic for korean sat. Students can not respect their teacher. They can’t. The education system has problem.

  15. Dalin(T) permalink
    May 18, 2012 9:43 pm

    It is true that many teachers don`t satisfy with their career. According to Chosun Ilbo, 80% of teachers feel unhappy about their work. Some teachers are even leaving their work. This situation happened recently. It is because a number of teachers feel powerless to their students. 70% of teachers quitted their jobs because of weakening of their authority. I agree with the statement that students have a lower regard for a teacher`s authority. First of all, the reason why teachers feel powerless is that punishment is no longer available. Students who are delinquent do not follow teacher`s instruction and ignore what teachers said. In the past, teachers gave several punishments to this kind of students. However, nowadays, what teachers can do is just giving a warning. For above reason, students often look down on their teachers. Thus, teachers feel helpless and unhappy about their works. The second reason is that parents contribute to weakening teachers` authority by being unsupportive. Unlike the past, parent`s power outdo teacher`s power. Consequently, students rely on their parent`s power when they got a trouble or conflict with their teachers. For example, when I was a high school student, one of my classmates skipped supplementary lessons without permission. Therefore, she received a punishment from her teacher. It was absolutely her fault to get that punishment because she violated school law. Nevertheless, next day, her mother came to school and shouted to her teacher. The teacher apologized to her. Similarly, lots of teachers act cautiously toward their students because they are afraid about parent`s power. As a consequence, numerous teachers feel unhappy, sometimes miserable, with their duty.

  16. Jack(c2) permalink
    May 18, 2012 10:01 pm

    I visited high school to see teachers and my juniors in 2011 November after graduating. Junior’s hair was dyed and permed and skirt was shortened. Teachers told me students are getting rude. Teachers and juniors say this situation is caused by Banning physical punishment.
    Banning physical punishment does not does not mean all for teachers’ authority but it represent teachers’ authority. The representing figure of teachers’ authority disappears and students get freedom that they can not handle. Moreover they wander and abuse their freedom. It is evident in article ‘ 80% of teachers avoid troubled students after banning physical punishment.
    In addition, another cause of disregard teachers is education system that focuses only on college entrance exams. In the old times, teachers are not just caring score but also caring life. They are real mento and different meaning of parents. They become just teaching people not teachers.
    Teachers have to be respected to be happy. In that aspect, Unconditional banning physical punishment is too early choice. However we can’t remove banning physical punishment now, so students and teachers shouldshare many aspects and respect each other.

  17. Jasmine(C1) permalink
    May 18, 2012 10:47 pm

    I strongly agree that students have a lower regard for a teacher’s authority.
    As above articles show, the primary cause of this phenomenon is not only the ban on corporal punishment, but also the parents’ aggressive interference in their children’s education.
    These days, many parents are too indulgent with their children. Most parents think that if their children have done something wrong, their children are definitely right. Moreover, parents are enthusiastic about their children’s education, and they find fault with everything teachers do. From the school system to teachers, parents meddle in everything related to their children rather than the principal.
    In addition, another main cause of this is the faith of private education. Parents think that the school education is too insufficient to meet children’s study. So, they underestimate school teachers and send their children to a private institution. This has a decisive effect on their children. To be specific, children also look down on their teachers as their parents do.
    For these reasons, students have a lower regard for a teachers’ authority and many teachers leave the school which is their job.

  18. May 18, 2012 11:16 pm

    For the question 1

    I agree that students have lower regards to teachers now than the past. I think it is related with the punishment. Human beings are selfish originally, if someone always say good words, they behave without thinking another person. Severe punishment with nonsensable reason is absolutely problem, but i think the punishment is needed. Students are young, so they don’t know what is right and what is basic manner for
    older people. They have to learn this in school
    and teacher is not a teacher for subject. Teacher
    have to teach the right manner to live a life. The most important thing is that if teacher has no love for student, they don’t punish them.

  19. Jess(C2) permalink
    May 18, 2012 11:56 pm

    I think it’s important for both teachers and students to understand their roll as a teacher and a student. This means teachers should understand the true meaning of having authority over their students. On the other hand students should accept the fact that they need to obey their teachers. To further discuss about teacher and student’s relationship, being in the teacher’s position simply doesn’t mean that they have power to run the class or treat students in the way they like. Teachers should respect their students’ thoughts and share ideas with students to make a enjoyable class. While, students these days seems very disrespectful to their teacher, this should stop and they need to be guided to the right way by their parents. In this case, parent’s role is important. Parents should teach their children to respect their teachers and listen to what they require of them, as they are there to teach them the things they need to know. Understanding and considering about each other’s role as a teacher and a student will surely change their behavior towards each other.

  20. savanna (c1) permalink
    May 18, 2012 11:56 pm

    These days, some teachers have been reported to be beaten by their students or students ‘s parents. The saying , ‘don’t even step on your teacher’s shadow’ was frequently referred to in the past, but nowadays this saying seems to lose its point that teachers should be respected.

    Some people say that this is because of the ban on corporal punishment in school and therefore use of corporal punishment by teachers should be allowed again.

    However, I strongly disagree with this view because basically inflicting corporal punishment in order to discipline students is no other than training animals .

    This view ignores free will of students . Although this can be an immediate way to discipline students, there remain questions. Do the students really repent their fault ? Won’t they commit the same wrongdoings because they ‘re convinced that they were wrong? Or because they’re merely afraid of physical punishiment?

    And direct corporal punishment can lead to uncontrolled violence to students because no rules are set and emotions are involved.

    So I object to any direct corporal punishiment no matter what the cause is.

    The problem is not the absence of corporal punishment but the absence of proper discipline by teachers.

    Teachers have been authoritarian and traditianlly in Korea students’ human rights have been neglected so naturally.

    So I think teachers and education ministry and society need to seek better way to discipline students.

  21. May 18, 2012 11:57 pm

    I want to introduce my experience in highschool. there was a mother of student who frequently come to school. She donated large sums to school, so she was intimate with principal and vice principal. Her son was not exemplary student. However most of teachers could not touch him because of his mother. She had practical power that could exercise influence in school. Therefore that student naturally ignore his class teacher. In Korea, some parents had wrong way to express their attention about child’s education. Of course their intention is not negative thing ,but it works negatively. this is not absolute reason to collapse of education. it is just one case. However that kind of parents should change their way for good educational environment and their child.

  22. SUN(T) permalink
    May 19, 2012 9:44 am

    1. Do you agree that students have a lower regard for a teacher’s authority? If so, what do you think are the causes?

    I totally agree that teachers have a lower regard than before. Several causes include the change of children education students these days and special educational market in Korea. Nowadays, people usually give birth to one or two kids, and take care of them like a prince or princess. Because parents overprotect their children, children are becoming more selfish and don’ know the meaning of “others” but think of only themselves. The objective of children education shifts from “raising just and right kids” to “raising smart and superior kids”. Not only do parents overprotect their kids, but also they tend to only teach how to live smartly, not how to live rightly. Therefore, these kind of educational thoughts ultimately make a teacher’s authority lowered.
    Another reason is a special education market in Korea. Everyone knows that Korea has tremendous educational fever on their children. From elementary students, most of children go to academy to go ahead with their study. Because private education market is very developed in Korea, parents and students don’t regard “public school” as a true meaning of learning place, but regard it as a just means of entering university. In other words, students may only need the diplomas and report cards of school to go university. In the circumstance of large private education market, students don’t need to listen carefully teacher’s saying, but private teacher’s saying has more influence than that of public teacher. As far as this special education market is not fixed, I think the fall of teacher’s authority is being intensified.

  23. HJE(T) permalink
    May 19, 2012 8:58 pm


    Nowadays, we can easily read an article that a parent came to her child’s school and assaulted a teacher just hearing the child’s words. Some parents even do violence for collecting their child’s cell phone during retreat. They did this in front of young children. Watching this, children feel that teachers’ authority has been weakened and look down on their teachers. Moreover, although it is students’ fault, the parents insults teachers without considering their children’s bad behavior. This results in students’ disobedience when their teacher gives them an admonition to remedy their misbehavior. For these reasons, teachers would feel powerlessness that they have no ability to lead their students in the right way. At this uneasy time when teachers’ authority has been declined, teachers are unhappy.

  24. gom0509(C1) permalink
    May 20, 2012 3:30 am

    There are uncountable teachers who are suffering from students’ and parents’ physical and verbal abuse. From the past, most of the problems were about negligent accident or conflict between teachers, however recently there are 4 out of 10 issues were about teacher’s authority. Most of the parents are supportive, but there are few who think this job (teacher) is not so high occupation. To talk about these parents, they talk down on teachers even right on their faces. When students listen and watch that, (talking down on teachers) they will atomically think similar to their parents. Here, now I think parents should be aware of what they say weather their children are around or not.

  25. watson (T) permalink
    May 20, 2012 4:32 am

    I think a teacher’s authority has been weakened therefore many teachers feel doubts about their jobs. Because teachers have absolute authority in the past, it is inconceivable that students rebel against a teacher. Actually, there is an old proverb “Students should not even step on teacher’s shadow.” Today, however, we could often hear the news that a student beats up his teacher. It is very shocking and unthinkable but it happens in our society, now. These days, students don’t respect their teachers. Also, enforcing regulation of banning corporal punishment undermines teacher’s authority. Various problems have been arisen since the ban on corporal punishment in schools. Some students rebel, defy and talk back to their teacher by abusing this regulation but many teachers find it difficult to discipline students in other ways.
    Most schools implement demerit system and serving in the school system as an alternative to corporal punishment. However, they are not very effective. I think corporal punishment is not the best way to discipline students and particularly, severe corporal punishment must be banned. But given the situation, reasonable corporal punishment may be needed. This topic has been controversial and more deep discussions are needed.

  26. May 20, 2012 10:34 am

    There are few reasons why teacher’s authority has weakened.
    First, due to decrease of child population, many parents are over-protecting their children. They do not scold, or teach them how to behave. And children grow with no respect to elders.
    Second, teacher’s authority has weakened because students have plenty of other sources to study. Majority of students are going to institutes, and they can even study with internet. They no longer have to respect the school teacher for the fount of knowledge.
    Third, losing teacher’s authority is partially teacher’s fault. Since the authority of teacher was so huge in former days, few teachers took advantage of their authority and took bribe from parents. some of them even harassed the students to extort from their parents. In some cases, they were caught and broadcasted, which led the drop of teacher’s authority.
    For these reasons, teachers are losing their authority in Korea. Will it be restored? I do not know…

  27. YSY(T) permalink
    May 20, 2012 7:35 pm

    There was a static that students have become ruder after making the regulation not to punish students in Korea. Instead of punishment, some schools in Korea adopt the regulation called ‘Green mileage’. However many students have lots of dissatisfaction about this regulation, because this regulation is not clear enough. Some students said that this regulation only brings out disobedience between students and teachers. As a result, this regulation weakens the teachers’ authority. These disobedience and teachers’ weakened authority will make the classroom environment less conductive. In short, the ‘Green mileage’ can’t be the right way to control unruly students. It only makes teachers estranged from the students and students disobey more. Then, what is the right way to control the blackships? Correct instruction is the best way, but sometimes proper punishment is key to give the students right way.

  28. Elena(T) permalink
    May 20, 2012 9:59 pm

    I agree that students have a lower regard for a teacher’s authority.
    In my opinion, this is because of students’ preview study in academy. Many students in Korea go many kinds of academies to get a good grade and go famous university. Anyway, they study all contents of school study at academy, so when they listen the teacher’s lecture at school, the students already know well about that. Then they don’t concentrate at teacher’s lecture naturally. For this reason, the students do not respect their teachers. Furthermore, after the removal of corporal punishment, this phenomenon is getting worse.
    The students already know that the teacher’s can not punish them.
    To enhance the teacher’s authority, we should make a strong rule in school like America. Then the students will obey at the rule without corporal punishment.

  29. goldrena(C1) permalink
    May 20, 2012 11:12 pm

    Do you have any person who you respect or you would want to be? According to one survey in Korea before several years, The anwser was ‘no’. Unfortunately, asking the second question, ‘What kind of person do you want to be in the future?’, they answered ‘The rich’.
    In the past, ‘The teachers’ were always linked on the top as a respectful group. Nowadays, however, there was no anchor and respectful person in korean society. In my case, I didn’t respect most of my school teachers except some, I always wondered whether they were people who deserved students’ respects. One of the reasons is that I think they didn’t consider what teacher was, what teacher get in their life. I could see that they want a stable life, not a devoted teacher for their students. I could see the differences as I was getting old.
    I don’t think, however, the lower respect is the fault of only teachers. In schools, students don’t have classes to build upright character by their teachers like the past. It’s because of the education system of Korea. It’s not a problem between just students and teachers

  30. Austin(C2) permalink
    May 21, 2012 12:04 am

    I have a sister who used to teach at a high school. She has cried and showed me her text message. When I saw the text message, I was shocked. I’ve never seen such a horrible word. It was definitely from her student who had a set on my sister. In any case, what I speak a bad word to teacher is almost unimaginable. Someone might ask me ‘Don’t you have a bad word to your teacher ever?’ I have a similar experience, but I have never sent a message as her student’s text message. Even thought I was very angry, I couldn’t do anything for my sister. Then, I thought that nowadays awareness of teacher students have got changed a lot. Furthermore, we should admit it and try to think from the standpoint of students so as to establish educational authority. Educational authority is not only for the teacher. The teacher should let students know that their sense of ownership at school.

  31. Amy(T) permalink
    May 21, 2012 12:13 am

    Question 2
    I think the balance of power between teachers and students shifted too far toward studets. The teachers have been losing their own authority. New rules about the school life which established recently are only focused on the right of the students. The Ministry of Education walks on eggshells around the students and their parents. In the result, the right of the students is getting bigger, on the other hand, the authority of the teacher is getting lower. As this situation lasts, the students have a tendency to look down on the teacher who have a lower power related to them. So the students start to act up, talk back, and even hit their teacher. That’s why the teachers are feeling unhappy these days.

  32. Chaily permalink
    May 21, 2012 1:37 am

    I’ll try to answer the question number two: Do you agree that students have a lower regard for a teacher’s authority? If so, what do you think are the causes?

    Yes, yes, absolutely! Under the guidance of my both parents, who have been in teachership for almost 30 years in intermediate and high schools, I’ve got chances to empathize myself into both students’ side and teachers’ side. Well, in a time like, the 70’s and 80’s, teachers could behave in an a lot more aggressive manner. (I was physically punished when I was going to school in the 90’s too.) NO!!! I don’t think that was the right way to treat students as any type of violence cannot be justified. However, authority does not necessarily involve physically oppressing the subordinate members of a community. Respect does not come out of whiplashes, and a school is not military.

    (It’s really convoluted and I don’t have the slightest idea how to start to solve these sorts of matters.) I think, a twisted form of ‘individualism’ taken place is the most serious problem that we have deal with hereafter. A child’s mother would wish her son would get into a good college, so that he could get a nice job, and so that he could be paid well. I mean, this has been the solid goal worldwide for all citizens, but Koreans still too fanatic about self-interest. They don’t value morality or relationship with others the most. They don’t neeeeed schools teach children how to bear themselves or how to cooperate, or even how to respect the elderly. They just need instructors who would bring them better grades – that’s why they’re so focused on private education like hakwons. Their egoistic minds block them to see their teachers as the ones who have authority and knowledge to guide them to the better future. And their parents are actually inciting this mindset. I mean, can you believe a student beating up her teacher or sexually assaulting? This kind of thing really happens these days. When all the troubles occurring at school are blamed on teachers, what people really need to check is how they are raising their children at home, because RESPECT towards the others is naturally taught by parents from when they were toddlers.

  33. IDGOMIN(T) permalink
    May 21, 2012 11:26 pm

    I think students have a lower regard for a teacher’s authority compared to the past. In case of my parents’ generation, it is said that out of reverence for one’s teacher, one should not even step on his or her shadow. When I was in middle and high school, I tried to behave politely toward my teacher and pay attention to everything the teacher was saying. However, as I watched TV nowadays, I was so shocked to find out that students ignored their teachers and even used swung at them. I think there are three causes to why students have a lower regard for a teacher’s authority: learning from private tutoring, parents’ changing attitude towards their children, and too much exposure to violet or cruel media.
    One cause is that learning realizes from private tutoring. Most students may heavily depend on private education. They are able to learn major subject such as mathematics and English in advance. And then they tend to sleep in class, talk with their friends, and do private tutoring homework. Their teacher might try to make them participate in class. But students neglected teacher’s instruction and just do their own work because they feel that the teachers are not needed for they have already learned the curriculum during tutoring.
    Second cause is changed attitudes of parents’ towards their children. Parents are apt to expect to too much of their children as well as treat their children in cotton wool. Their children might have high percentage of becoming a selfish person. Also, they might not think that it is important to keep good relationship amongst others, causing the children, or the students, to act out whatever, whenever, and wherever they want to, without giving a thought to their surrounding environment.
    Last cause is that students are overexposed to violet or cruel media. There are a lot of violent games and movies that are easily accessible to students who are underage. Through those violent games, they learn to lash out violence to those playing the game. And this course of action could have negative effects on students. Additionally, in cyberspace, they have equality regardless of age, so they might speak carelessly to someone. The problem is that students aren’t inclined to distinguish cyberspace and reality. Thus, it causes students to use their words not only online, but in class, as well as their teacher.
    The three causes that I mentioned, the effects of private tutoring, parents’ attitude, and exposure to violent media are ones that I think have the biggest effect on why students have a lower regard for a teacher’s authority days. However, there could be more causes than the ones that I mentioned. We should consider what other causes effects children’s behavior and try to find the key to solve this growing problem. In near future, when I become a teacher, I hope that there will be a higher regard for teachers from my students.

  34. Celine(T) permalink
    May 25, 2012 1:26 pm

    In Korean society, the fact that the authority of teachers are getting weaker has no value to make people astonished any more. Given the fact that 80% of Korean teachers said they are unhappy in their jobs, we can assume how severe the stress and the difficulties the teachers are suffering with. In fact, absurd story of articles outpouring from medias support these ideas. Even few days ago, I read an article which tells about the affair that a male student of a middle school in Gyeonggi-do beat his female teacher. One sad thing is that students actually have a lot of rules and policies made by institutions protect them from punishment. However, on contrary, there aren’t many legislations which protect teacher’s status and their authorities. It contributes to the students to ignore the school’s guideline and become out of control indeed. In my personal experience, only less than ten years ago, I used to be punished by teachers at school and my alumnus did as well but no one dared to defiance against teachers. And we considered it as a natural duty but things are completely changed these days. I think our society needs to intensify the policies to strengthen the control upon students. For instance, admission of indirect punishment such as push-up or running the play grounds. And also, un urgent thing is the parents should change their ideas and attitudes towards school education. That would be the genuine way to lead our children to a right path of their lives.

  35. Heather(T) permalink
    May 25, 2012 5:24 pm

    When I was a student, it was almost impossible to snap at one’s teachers because teachers of at that time had somewhat powerful authority. My friends and I had to obey their orders without any complains. Of course, we sometimes got an undeserved scolding from out teachers but I guess we didn’t really think that they were absurdly oppressive and thus we were unwilling to disobey them. However, we now often hear the news that many students nowadays do not respect their teachers and follow their instructions. In other words, students have a lower regard for a teacher’s authority. There are several factors which contribute to this trend and the most notable one is the abolishment of corporal punishment as the second article says. Young students are rather impulsive so they need someone who can control their behavior with effective method. However, there are no other proper punishments available after banning on physical punishment. Teachers can not do anything when their students misbehave at school. Without few restrictions, students act as they please and further they slight their teachers and disobey them. Furthermore, many students are well aware of the actual conditions of the loss of the educational authority because mass media channels report it more frequently than before. Some students are inclined to mimic what their peers do because they think being disobedient to their teachers is not a big problem because this is happening a lot around them already. To better this bad situation, teachers should play stronger roles in classrooms by using corporal punishment wisely and reasonably.

  36. soojpoo(c2) permalink
    June 1, 2012 6:58 pm

    Back in elementary school years, I remember my teachers as scary figures with absolute authority. There was no student who would dare to sleep on their desks and to talk back to teachers’ instructions and orders. Each teacher had their own ways of giving students with physical punishments and some were even carrying sticks or baseball bat to hit students who would not follow their commands and misbehave. It is true that teachers back then had most power over students at school and received much respect from the society. However, I personally do not think this kind of power balance between teacher and student was proper because many educators used to consider the matter of corporal punishment very lightly. Rather than punishing the students who had ill-behaviors only, some of the teachers were in a habit of hitting and exercising physical punishments even when students made small mistakes. Today, many people find the problem of increasing unmannered students as a very serious social issue. Students swore foully to their teachers and adults and display inappropriate attitudes with bad manners. I also think that too much power shifted to student is a critical issue  but i do not believe that taking corporal punishment back into action is not a wise solution. Adults should be aware of how physical abuse can have negative effects on youngsters’ developements of self-esteem and sense of self. 

  37. angela11( CR2) permalink
    June 21, 2012 7:34 pm

    I also think that teachers are loosing authority than many years ago.
    I think its because of low birh rate that parents are becoming more protective than in the past . So the parents dont want to punish their precious children so they decide to complain to their teachers. Few years ago I read a new article that in one elementary school student was keep talking loud during the class time so the teacher said to him be quite and surprisingly is that the kid said if you ask me to be quite I will kick you. I was really shocked when I read this new article. I think this problem is from the parents. If the kids are doing wrong they have the right to punish their children. So I hope my generations become parents we hope that we respect teachers and train the children to the right direction.

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