A third of English teachers imported to brush up local students' language proficiency have decided to quit after completing their contracts this year, it has emerged. Some have been discouraged because of a lack of support from local teachers, while others have found Hong Kong's students too unruly. At yesterday's Legco education panel meeting, legislators heard about 100 replacement English teachers needed to be imported under the Native English Teachers (NET) scheme when the contracts of 300 teachers expire in August. Education officials conceded some overseas teachers could not adapt to the local teaching environment. NET teachers are sometimes required to attend school meetings which are held in Cantonese, according to an Education Department report tabled to the panel yesterday. Some were assigned to so-called 'band five' schools - where academically weak students are admitted - and have difficulties in classroom management. There was also a communication problem with local English teachers, making exchange or co-operation impossible. Depending on their qualifications and experience, the imported teachers can expect to earn $17,000 to more than $30,000 a month, with other allowances and benefits. The Government wants to extend the NET scheme to primary schools in the coming school year. That demands another 400 NET teachers. Democrat Cheung Man-kwong said he was shocked by the huge attrition rate. 'The department must address the problem. We are losing one-third of the teachers,' he said. Fellow panellist Emily Lau Wai-hing of The Frontier also questioned whether the department's targets were too ambitious. 'We need a total of 500 NET teachers for the next school year. Is the Government preparing to look at other means, including [higher] pay, to attract the teachers?' Director of Education Matthew Cheung Kin-chung said the pay package for NET teachers was adequate and it was too early to talk about increasing salaries. He also said Hong Kong was an attractive place to work. He also said measures were being worked out to give NET teachers more support. Non-affiliated legislator Audrey Eu Yuet-mee suggested allowing jobless people or returning emigrants with good English proficiency to teach.