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Castle English Language School

 
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FrankieSaysRelax



Joined: 10 May 2012
Posts: 15

PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 6:35 pm    Post subject: Castle English Language School Reply with quote

Hello,

I was wondering if anyone has heard of or had any experience with this school. Here's a link to their website:

http://www.castle-english.cz/index_english.html

As a newbie to TEFL, I would love to hear what anyone with experience has to say.

Thank you!
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spiral78



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
Posts: 9639
Location: On a Short Leash

PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 11:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't know the school (it is new and I expect has hired very limited numbers - if any - of outside teachers before) and I've got just a passing acquaintance with LIberec.

But as you're not wading through lots and lots of directly knowledgeable responses, I'll throw in my two cent's worth of educated guesses, having taken a few minutes to scan the website.

The owner's stated qualifications seem pretty basic, but I would say that the website and plan of adult courses looks pretty logical and effective. I think they're doing well to employ Czech teachers for the lower levels, though I think it's a pity that they openly charge less for lessons with a Czech teacher. This smacks of prejudice: a non-native speaker with appropriate qualifications and experience brings as much to the table as a native speaker, in different respects. Both types of teachers should be valued.

I'd guess that they are probably legit - Liberec isn't among the most popular destinations in the region and they may well have trouble luring teachers out of the bigger/prettier cities, and therefore need to hire from abroad.

There will be some upsides to Liberec - better opportunities to learn some Czech language, make Czech friends, and the surrounding countryside's got some nice features to offer, I think. There's always the great train network to get you somewhere interesting on off days as well.

I would hazard a guess that they're interested in you, Frankie, because you've got experience with children. Having a native English speaker in the kiddie schools is likely a popular idea, and I guess this segment of their business has grown. But I'll also hazard a guess that the school's small enough so that they will want you to work all the way across the range of courses they offer. Good and bad - a lot of shifting gears and possibly prep (it's unclear how much material they supply - this is a question I'd ask them in an interview!), but less chance you'll feel bored or stifled by being stuck in a single role.

If the pay and benefits package is reasonable, and they don't expect you to live in a room in their house or anything else weird, it could be a decent job, assuming that you're interested in children, don't mind having a limited social life (there won't be lots of other expats in Liberec and while Czechs do make friends, they aren't usually quick to do so), and that not too much prep is involved. I would have accepted such an offer in my own first year of teaching (except for the kiddie part; I'm allergic to them).

We'll be interested what you learn in your interview!

čau
spiral
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FrankieSaysRelax



Joined: 10 May 2012
Posts: 15

PostPosted: Wed May 16, 2012 11:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Spiral!

I will be sure and ask them about the materials they supply. I'm glad to hear that you would have accepted an offer like this in your first year (your comment about kiddies made me laugh). I know you've been at this for a while, and I value your opinion.

I'm really excited about my interview and I hope all checks out ok. Will keep you posted!
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FrankieSaysRelax



Joined: 10 May 2012
Posts: 15

PostPosted: Fri May 25, 2012 1:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quick update: I had my preliminary interview and things went well. I made it through to round two which is where I'll have the opportunity to ask questions. Hoping things continue to go well. Thanks again for your input and I'll continue to keep you posted!
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spiral78



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
Posts: 9639
Location: On a Short Leash

PostPosted: Fri May 25, 2012 1:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Will be interested:-)
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opilec894



Joined: 20 May 2010
Posts: 20

PostPosted: Mon May 28, 2012 11:23 pm    Post subject: Liberec Reply with quote

I spent 3 years in Liberec and absolutely love the place. My school was also on Masarykova Street near Castle English. It is a great location -- not even 10 minutes from the town centre.

If you get the job and take it, I hope you love Liberec as much as I did. My Taiwanese wife and i even got married there.

Please feel free to e-mail me if you want a little info about places to visit.

Charlie Warth
opilec@yahoo.co.uk
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FrankieSaysRelax



Joined: 10 May 2012
Posts: 15

PostPosted: Tue May 29, 2012 3:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Charlie! I've taken you up on your offer - message sent.
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FrankieSaysRelax



Joined: 10 May 2012
Posts: 15

PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 6:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, after nearly a month of waiting, I'm finally able to post an update. My first heartbreak in the field of TEFL - I didn't get the job. Oh well. If nothing else, I gained some interview experience. Thanks for the advice and support, it was much appreciated!!
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spiral78



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
Posts: 9639
Location: On a Short Leash

PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2012 6:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rats!

Thanks for keeping us posted- it's always useful to hear how things work out.
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