New Brunswick to the rescue for South Korean student teachers
19 students were placed in New Brunswick schools after program in Nova Scotia cancelled due to labour dispute
New Brunswick saved the day for South Korean student teaching interns who were looking forward to an overseas internship in the Halifax area in January.
When it became unlikely that the Nova Scotia Teachers' Union's work-to-rule job action would end before their placements were meant to begin — something that prevented schools in that province from accommodating interns — New Brunswick's Atlantic Education International jumped in to salvage the 19 internships.
"We were thrilled that these students could be placed so quickly and so happily," said Pam Sheridan, Atlantic Education International's district administrator in Moncton. "It was a quick turn-around."
With only a few weeks to try to find homes and classrooms for the students, they asked principals and teachers to step forward.
They were able to accommodate all the interns in schools in the Moncton and Fredericton areas.
Good learning opportunity
Tyler Wood is one of the teachers who invited an intern to join him at Riverview East School, where he teaches several subjects to students in Grades 7, 8 and 9.
"I was asked to do it and I thought it would be a great experience so I just said sure," he said.
His intern, Sihwa Song, is a second-year university student who hopes to teach math.
"I knew that Canadian education is really different from Korean education so I wanted to see and experience it," she said.
"In Korea, in most places, teachers just give them information and the students just accept. But in Canada, students are always looking in books and finding the information and organizing by themselves."
Another intern at Riverview East shared that curiosity.
"I'd like to learn about Canadian teachers etiquette and their values toward their students," said Juhee Yoon, who plans to teach English one day.
And students are excited about their visitors too.
"She asks if we need to talk. She's very nice," said Grade 6 student Jaylin Steeves.
And Grade 7 student Ryan Benoit-Tracey recognizes it's an opportunity to learn.
"I know we are going to learn a lot."
The interns will be at the schools for six weeks before returning to their university in South Korea.