Alabama officials go to South Korea to find teachers

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ALABAMA (WIAT) — Alabama elected officials are trying to solve the teacher shortage issue we’re seeing in the state and around the country.

Recently, Alabama state superintendent of education Dr. Eric Mackey and a group of educators and elected officials went to Seoul, South Korea.

This was all organized by the Ministry of Education in South Korea and the Department of Foreign Affairs.

Senator Jim McClendon was one of the people that went to South Korea.

He said in Alabama, we have a shortage of high school math and science teachers. They’re hoping to find newly graduated South Korean teachers to come to Alabama and teach subjects like physics and chemistry in their public school system.

“We simply do not have the applications to fill the slots as they empty and one of the reasons for this and primary reason for this is the industry, which is also approaching full employment, is attracting our math and science teachers and giving them better benefits and pay packages,” said Senator McClendon.

He said they would like to hire Alabama teachers, but there simply aren’t any to hire, so they are looking abroad for skilled teachers.

The average salary for teachers in America is about $60,000.

According to the National Education Association, the average salary for Alabama teachers in 2017-2018 was $38,000.


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