Interview with Marjorie Rosenberg

Interview description

Marjorie talks about her new role as president of IATEFL and her career route through various teachers’ association activities. She also talks about the importance of creativity in the language teaching process.



Excellent interview. Marjorie touched on the topic of Associates.

The huge income differential between teachers in higher-income economies and those in IATEFL Associate organizations in the many poorer economies, including in EUrope, is a major challenge for the profession. Relatively few members of IATEFL Associates in Eastern Europe, for example, can afford to attend the UK conference unless they are sponsored by their home association. The wage differential between experienced EFL teachers at secondary level in Germany and Bulgaria or Romania is ca. 1200% and that gap is widening.  Read this: 

Some of us think ministries of education in lower-income economies have to be urged to find specially earmarked support for teacher development, meaning assistance (maybe even from private corporations) to specifically help better fund local teacher associations and also provide support for teacher participation at more distant international conferences. Of course, it's a matter of budget priorities for hard-strapped governments. But Bulgaria, for example, is being pressed by NATO to substantially increase its military budget while education suffers and teacher salaries remain the lowest in the EU -- take-home for many teachers not even reaching 300 Euros equivalent monthly, with few options for extra income. 

There are no easy solutions. More multifaceted interaction in cyberspace (rather than in RL/ real life) is one option.  But this differential generates inequity at the very heart of the profession and inside IATEFL. Perhaps Harry Kuchah's plenary 14 April on 'ELT in Difficult Circumstances' will touch on this as well -- the extremely difficult circumstances of many of the planet's EFL teachers, members of Associates, even here in EUrope, not just their students.

Here a better link to the article on wages and wage differentials if the above link doesn't work:

Surely the president should be asked about IATEFL's general policy and direction, rather than her new book. What's IATEFL going to do to promote the interests of its members? What's it doing about improving pay and conditions; about NNESTs; about the domination of the grammar-based coursebook; about supporting grassroots initiatives; ...??