Job hunting this time is bringing in some surprises. For one public schools are looking to hire people with teaching credentials or a degree in English or education. How do I know this? Well I have already seen schools in my area hiring teachers with these backgrounds, and today a recruiter told me that the positions I applied for all want someone with "real" experience.
Now, don't get me wrong. I do feel it is a good turn in the right direction to start hiring people with actual backgrounds in teaching. This might help teachers adjust here more and also bring new develops to school's English programs. But of course it also means that I am now up against a certain kind of competition that I can't do anything about. In my opinion, my two years experience at public schools should be equivalent to someone's teaching credentials. Mostly because I have learned what works in Korean classrooms and have worked hard through trial and error to get the students excited and learning. But I can see why a school would want a person with actual teaching experience as opposed to the regular just-graduated person.
I did ask the recruiter, whether I had a chance of getting a job next year and she did say yes. I am still going on the hypothesis that it is still too early for most independently hiring public schools. However, if most of the schools out there desire a teacher with an education background I have to wonder if there is enough in supply. But given the current job market in America and other parts of the world, I would say that there are probably a lot of applicants in that category.
I suppose this all means that I have to stand up taller and fight for a job out there and work harder at it. In the past, I think, most people are use to just kicking back and waiting for the recruiter to ring in with a position. I am definitely noticing, this time, that you have to call them up or email and remind them you are still out there. Of course not in an obnoxious way.
**Update: I want to say that this post is my nervous response to being on the job hunt. Knowing that I am not as qualified (credential wise) does make me worry. But I wanted to make the point that schools are starting to want more than just your "native" voice, which I actually feel is a good thing. My only wish is that no matter who they hire more proper training would be provided for the cross-cultural workplace. **
Well it isn't all gloom out there, and there are plenty of other schools. Also I have been considering going back to hagwons. Just thought this recent development was an interesting aspect of the job hunt.