Extra! Korea

May 20, 2009

Hire a Filipina housekeeper, get an English tutor for free

Filed under: economics, education, expatriates — extrakorea @ 1:32 pm

The Korea Times brings us the story of Kim Ji-ae, a working mother who killed two birds with one stone when she hired a Filipina housekeeper/nanny. Ms. Kim’s eight-year-old son has learned English from the Filipina.

“She speaks a little Korean, but I specifically asked her to speak in English to my son,” said the mom, who is starting to get worried that he would experience linguistic confusion from getting exposed to too much English before learning Korean fully.

Despite some concerns that may rise, education-frenzied mothers like Kim are becoming increasingly open to hiring foreign helpers to get the best of both worlds.

“The demand is enormous,” said Kim Seok, who runs an Internet site (www.nannyjob.co.kr) that helps connect parents and jobseekers. He explained that Filipinos are most favored because of their English fluency, but Chinese caregivers are also growing popular with moms wanting to teach their kids Chinese at an early age.


  1. I think this makes perfect sense. And it kills three birds with one stone for professional parents: an affordable way to get the house clean, save money on hagwons, and still have that population replacement sustaining second or third child. It’s a lot cheaper to get an apartment with an extra room for the nanny than to send your kid to a hagwon.

    Comment by kushibo — May 20, 2009 @ 6:27 pm

  2. Only in Korea would that be cause for debate. It’s no different than American couples who hire a French or Cuban nanny.

    Comment by Bwe — May 21, 2009 @ 9:43 am

  3. Bwe, I think it’s mostly generating news rather than debate.

    Comment by kushibo — May 21, 2009 @ 5:21 pm

  4. Kushibo,

    I’ll admit, English education is not as politically charged under the Lee administration as it was under the supposedly anti-American, New Jersey home owning, pseudo-egalitarian, Roh.

    But, have a look at how it is covered in other articles, and pay close attention to the connotation of the words. Heck, in this article the writer uses ‘frenzied’ to describe the mothers, and she seems relatively open to the idea.

    Comment by Bwe — May 22, 2009 @ 12:57 am

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