Thursday, January 31, 2013

MoE ponders plan to hire British, American teachers

MoE ponders plan to hire British, American teachers:

‘High school students weak in English’

KUWAIT CITY, Jan 22: In an unprecedented move to improve public education in the country, Ministry of Education has been considering the recruitment of British and American male and female teachers to teach the English language in public schools after results of the TOEFL exam revealed that high school students are weak in the language, reports Al-Seyassah daily.

At a workshop on quality education held recently in the presence of World Bank representatives, the Minister of Education Dr Nayef Al-Hajraf discussed the issue with officials of the British Council and asked for the general salary scale in Britain, indicating report will be reviewed to determine if the ministry could recruit teachers from there.

The minister is said to have criticized the unified secondary education system, noting the system enables students to obtain high grades without commensurable standards, which makes a review of the system necessary.

He also said majority of high school students obtain weak grades whenever they sit for the TOEFL in university, stressing the country spends lots of funds while the students are taking preliminary language courses for one year in the university.

“It is unfair for teachers and students to introduce teachers to teaching immediately after graduation. Thus, it will be nice for them to obtain teaching license renewable after five years,” the minister recommended.

Let's see, any Western teachers who think about working in a government school should first learn judo, take a self-defense class and have some protective gear to wear at all times. Get ready for children to talk back, children who become violent and children who really have no human feelings. The only way this would work is if they let teachers carry a stick and have the permission to whack the kids when they get out of line.

I remember when I was in elementary school in Pensacola and we had a scary vice principal who had Elvis pork chop side burns and slick back hair, he also carried a big paddle with him and was given permission by parents to spank their kids. Let's take schooling back to the old days when children feared teachers and out of that fear came respect.


  1. Wow, that's an intense critique. Is it really that bad?

  2. Hi! I'm reading this with interest, as I'm an ESL teacher in the States. I have taught in Detroit (in Dearborn, which has the largest group of Middle Eastern people outside of the Middle East), and in Los Angeles, both in high school and college/university levels. I have seen a lot of underqualified international students from Kuwait, and I do think a lack of professional (TESOL), native-English teachers overseas does a disservice to these students who come to the States. They are largely unprepared and have experienced a lot of grade inflation at home. These students are quite lucky to have their education paid for by the Kuwaiti government (as I will be paying off my student loans for the rest of my life), but it's still a worthy goal to become fluent in English, even if it means taking a bit longer. I'm afraid that learning academic English is not even so easy for native speakers! As I've seen my ESL classes grow, so have my below-101 English classes for native speakers. Good readers and writers come from lots of practice reading and writing, homes with high literacy, and schools with good teachers. Just as you say some parents aren't doing a good job parenting (your kids' big wheels getting stolen, for example), those same parents probably aren't spending a great deal of time reading to their little ones (in any language). If hiring more teachers is the government's only solution, it's only part of the equation. They need to stress good literacy and early literacy at home, as well as adequate curriculum in the schools. PS: It sounds like your gov't schools are a lot like the ones I taught in, in Detroit and LA! I could've used a big stick, too!


Comments are welcome! Personal attacks are not. Thanks!