| <KFTA president(center) explains KFTA's opinion to Education minister(right)>
On August 10th, KFTA held 2009 KFTA Representatives Workshop and announced its public acceptance of the Teacher Evaluation System (TES) bill now pending at National Assembly.
With over 400 teachers, KFTA approved the purpose of TES to promote teachers professional development and agreed to make own efforts as educators for that cause.
KFTA's public announcement of TES support has caused significant repercussions in the society but is expected to have positive effects on the passage of related legislations.
"We do not want teachers to lose public confidence because of the pending legislation," KFTA president Lee Won-Hee said. "We decided to accept TES with no strings attached if it is to promote teacher professionalism."
"Not all teachers agree on TES, but we determined that it is time to make a choice," he added and urged Korean Teachers & Education Worker's Union (KTU) to "participate in the teacher assessment without fear."
After the public announcement, KFTA executive board had an interview with Education minister. "As TES is intended for professional development of teachers, assessment results should not be linked to personnel decision or compensation." It asked the government to "accept KFTA's realistic teacher assessment approach soon to be proposed to the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology (MEST) to help a gradual implementation of TES." In response, MEST minister Ahn Byeong-Man said, "the government will seriously consider the proposal to reflect KFTA opinion as much as possible." KFTA also asked the government to lead improvements in education environment such as the introduction of sabbatical year program for teacher research, decrease in sundry duties and reduction of the existing 10-year job assessment period to help teachers focus on student teaching.