Filipino Teachers Shine in Cambodia

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Seeking better opportunities outside their country, 257 Filipino teachers have found jobs in private schools in Cambodia as of Dec. 31, 2010, the Philippine Embassy in Phnom Penh said. They are doing very well and receiving good reviews from their students.

Most of the teachers work for private schools and universities at levels ranging from pre-school to post-graduate studies, reports Ambassador Noe A. Wong. Some Filipino teachers also occupy academic supervisory posts like principal or dean, he said. Their salaries pinesvary depending on the school and teaching level, the embassy said.

Take the case of Jayson Umaquing, who left the Philippines six years ago for a teaching job that was to give him higher pay in U.S. dollars, part of which he could send back home to his parents and two sisters. He also wanted to embark on an adventure and a life of independence from his family.  He teaches math and English to Grades 9 and 10 pupils of the Pannasastra International School, and Business and English subjects to college students of the Pannasastra University and the Western University of Cambodia.

Umaquing went through the stage of being lonely, doing all the work at home and in school, and facing a language barrier in a country where only a few speak English. But after learning the Khmer language, he was able to mingle with the local population and found that “they are a friendly and enthusiastic” people. He said he has adapted to the Khmer culture, which he described as “very rich and interesting.”

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