| <The KFTA and MOE Carries out Plenary Meeting>
The KFTA president YOUN Jong-Gun and Education Minister KIM Shin-Il had the 1st plenary meeting for the first and secondary half of 2006 of collective bargaining negotiations at the Ministry of Education on November 10th. The KFTA suggested 91 items for negotiation, including reducing the paper work of teachers. Both sides agreed to come to a conclusion by the end of December.
The KFTA’s demands are as follows:
* 5-day School Week: Early start of 5-day school week (which is scheduled to be fully enforced from 2009) and a decrease in weekly class hours to a 5-day school week.
* Paper Work: Regulating a reduction in the paper work of teachers which includes the abolishing unnecessary paper work and reducing duty reports.
* Kindergarten Education: Legalization of standard class hours. Initiating comprehensive policies to improve the treatment and secure professional status for private kindergarten teachers.
* Training Expenses: Subsidizing 50% of post graduate school costs, 100% of job training expenses for teachers and increase budget for training expenses on teachers every year.
* Salary: Increase the salary of teachers to the same level of company workers in the public sector. Adjustment in various types of allowances for: teacher, assigned teacher, homeroom teacher, health teacher, and parental leave.
* Reform of relevant laws to enable teachers to work in the secretariat of the KFTA to ensure professional teachers’ organizations.
* Enactment of ‘Special Law on Improving Teachers’ Status’ within 2006.
The KFTA president, Mr. YOUN expressed dissatisfaction, saying that “We made an effort to make respectful teachers such as establishing Professional Ethics, but the Education Ministry shifts the duty of public education back to the teachers”. Members of the KFTA Negotiation Committee delivered an opinion based on real teaching experience. Education Minister Mr. KIM said, “Efforts of the MOE and KFTA generative power in Korean education such as enacting laws to prevent school security accidents and improving the treatment of teachers. I highly value the commitment of the KFTA to contribute to the improving of the status of teachers and developing the professional abilities of teachers”