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Moscow schools? Do they exist?
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maruss



Joined: 18 Mar 2003
Posts: 1024
Location: Cyprus

PostPosted: Tue Apr 15, 2014 3:32 pm    Post subject: I'll second Sasha on that point! Reply with quote

Always 'name and shame' bad schools so that others can beware of them-we also welcome praise for the good ones though and are very fair on this forum!
I would also agree that living costs for essentials are not usually much cheaper in satellite towns near Moscow and maybe even more due to less competition in shops for some things? This is a pitfall many fall into when believing the recruiting hype from schools. Transport costs have also increased considerably if you want to get into the city, even on the notoriously slow 'elektrischka' suburban trains and 'marshrutka' mini-buses.
Having visited quite a few satellite towns I honestly found very few of them to be attractive or friendly places and would hate to have to live in them or commute into the city every day! Most consist of Soviet era buildings which are invariably uniform and drab and there is often little to do when you have free time, unless they have a historical site or museum which you can only visit a couple of times anyway. Being a foreigner there could also mean being very lonely unless you speak Russian and have local friends etc.
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alex1970



Joined: 19 Jun 2013
Posts: 17

PostPosted: Tue Apr 15, 2014 3:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah that is it indeed. I forgot to mention that the accommodation provided is absolutely dreadful, threadbare even. No real bed, furniture in a state of disrepair/neglect. Main front door is always open, drug addicts living in the basement, addicts leaving needles outside the entrance to the block of flats.....I could add a lot more but you get the picture!

I will name and shame on Monday, as I am in a perilous state here at the moment!
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maruss



Joined: 18 Mar 2003
Posts: 1024
Location: Cyprus

PostPosted: Wed Apr 16, 2014 4:29 pm    Post subject: We'll be waiting.... Reply with quote

With great interest- but not surprise!
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alex1970



Joined: 19 Jun 2013
Posts: 17

PostPosted: Wed Apr 23, 2014 10:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The 'school' was the British Centre/British Academic Centre in Noginsk, Electrostal and they may have an office in Reutov.

Not sure where to start. Anyway, here goes.

1. The location and pay in the advert is a fabrication. It is around 90mins by train or bus from Moscow to Noginsk/Electrostal not 40mins. They took an extra 5000 roubles a month from me for a 'flat' with nothing that you could really call furniture and based in a dangerous area containing drug addicts, crime and basic degenerates. I have a strong feeling the manager was keeping the 5000 for herself since it was never worth 20000 a month.

2. BC is run by people that are not teachers and have never been teachers. Money is their only concern. Students and teachers are not valued or helped in any way in BC

3. They have some teachers working there illegally on tourist visas

4. The head teacher has no idea on how to manage and motivate people.

5. A former teacher told me that the directors of BC stole the company from a former business associate resulting in some unknown men paying a visit to BC

6. Students are not assessed correctly to see what level they should be at and are often put in groups that are too difficult for them.

I would be very happy to see BC closed down permanently but sadly their shady practice's will continue unless they can be brought down?
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maruss



Joined: 18 Mar 2003
Posts: 1024
Location: Cyprus

PostPosted: Wed Apr 23, 2014 1:18 pm    Post subject: not surpising,unfortunately! Reply with quote

many of the negative points listed are not unusual in Russia or indeed in EFL in other countries: the sole motivation is to make money by hook or by crook and students and teachers are just 'grist for the mill' as far as the owners are concerned.
Stealing business from other people is also common in Russia,but can have serious consequences, as you seem to suggest in your reference to this!
With that in mind this outfit may well either fold-up or change hands quickly, just as many others have done for one reason or another. Being in a satellite town where there is not likely to be much competition though gives them some advantages.
Thanks for warning us about them-definitely one for the black-list!
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alex1970



Joined: 19 Jun 2013
Posts: 17

PostPosted: Wed Apr 23, 2014 2:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I could have added a lot more dodgy goings on there but it would take a while! Another thing is that you get paid in cash only and there is no insurance. They had an open day recently but hardly any prospective new students arrived, only a handful and they expected a lot more.
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maruss



Joined: 18 Mar 2003
Posts: 1024
Location: Cyprus

PostPosted: Thu Apr 24, 2014 3:02 pm    Post subject: Noginsk/Elektrostal... Reply with quote

I don't know which of these places the school is situated in but there was a report recently in the media that people there had complained that the mains drinking water was contaminated! There are a industries in some of these satellite towns dating from the Soviet era which are often dilapidated and do not conform to modern environmental standards so it is no surprise !I passed through Noginsk about 10 years ago and from what I remember it looked non-descript and uninspiring, the best part being some old wooden 'izba' houses on the outskirts and even they looked run-down!
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LAR1SSA



Joined: 02 Nov 2013
Posts: 35
Location: Memphis

PostPosted: Sat May 17, 2014 7:55 am    Post subject: Re: I'll second Sasha on that point! Reply with quote

maruss wrote:
Always 'name and shame' bad schools so that others can beware of them-we also welcome praise for the good ones though and are very fair on this forum!
I would also agree that living costs for essentials are not usually much cheaper in satellite towns near Moscow and maybe even more due to less competition in shops for some things? This is a pitfall many fall into when believing the recruiting hype from schools. Transport costs have also increased considerably if you want to get into the city, even on the notoriously slow 'elektrischka' suburban trains and 'marshrutka' mini-buses.
Having visited quite a few satellite towns I honestly found very few of them to be attractive or friendly places and would hate to have to live in them or commute into the city every day! Most consist of Soviet era buildings which are invariably uniform and drab and there is often little to do when you have free time, unless they have a historical site or museum which you can only visit a couple of times anyway. Being a foreigner there could also mean being very lonely unless you speak Russian and have local friends etc.


True story, I currently work in a kindergarten in a satellite town in the Moscow region. That is definitely not a place I would want to live despite the "fresh air". Its basically a bunch of dachas and few drab soviet buildings. It not all that pretty and definitely not any less cheaper than say south Moscow where I used to live. It was much cheaper for me to live near the center in Moscow and have them pay ME to commute to there by elechtrichka in the morning than to work the other way around. I think my round trip ticket is like 175 rubles, not including the metro ride. The drive me to the train station and back once I am there so if I had to make a minibus that would be even more money. Thus, I can work private clients at night and other jobs in the city without paying too much for commuting. In fact, the shops there are a bit more expensive because of the lack of competition.
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fijuman



Joined: 25 Aug 2014
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Thu Aug 28, 2014 7:03 pm    Post subject: Lies, lies, damn lies Reply with quote

It may be Johnny-come-late reply but let me add perspective and context to these claims I absolutely felt compelled to answer. I have been employed as ESL teacher for 2 years with British Centre until this past June and have known this individual, Alex1970, putting me in fair position of happy medium to provide insight into what REALLY goes on in school and who this person complaining REALLY is. Let me go over his distorted claims point by point, for it's really worth it.

1. The location and pay in the advert is a fabrication. It is around 90mins by train or bus from Moscow to Noginsk/Electrostal not 40mins. They took an extra 5000 roubles a month from me for a 'flat' with nothing that you could really call furniture and based in a dangerous area containing drug addicts, crime and basic degenerates. I have a strong feeling the manager was keeping the 5000 for herself since it was never worth 20000 a month.
1. Without traffic Noginsk to Moscow is indeed 40 minutes affair, although in Russia, truth is closer to 70 minutes. Sounds laughable from this very person who accepted job located 3 hours from where his wife lived and worked. Didn't see his place, however, knowing well the city of Noginsk (regularly visited my best friends there) who had no more or less dangerous areas than any average Russian (or venture to say any period) city. Did Alex1970 raised any complaints about his housing while in BC? Nope, but in his 2 months at work during our 'teacher time' between classes devoted his utmost energy to confide in me how badly he was treated overall by DOS and Principal. Oh yeah, 'strong feeling' surely can be written under ALL of his insinuations he places without any intimate and REAL knowledge of how matters work in BC.
2. BC is run by people that are not teachers and have never been teachers. Money is their only concern. Students and teachers are not valued or helped in any way in BC
2. Another judgmental statement devoid of any proof. Certainly couldn't have been, given Alex1970 is an incompetent and bitter person without an iota of self-confidence. Sadly, it's what I gleaned by listening to his incessant complaining about the whole range of issues not leaving him with energy (although I suspect knowledge and passion is what he was really missing) to conduct even remotely engaging and meaningful class for his students. Perhaps he was referring to his own needs connecting concern and money. I surely hadn't seen any passion about teaching in him and again, I've seen him up close and personal in all of his incompetent shame. Oh yeah, and incidentally, I returned back for my second year in BC surely due to two things – tremendous support of staff within BC and desire to build-on and expand BC's initial fledgling operation into new area of Moscow Region, beyond the capital into permanent and well-run language-teaching operation. In my branch in Elektrostal enrollment surged from 40 students when I came to around 160 when I left in June. Once more, Alex1970 is distorting reality based on his own unsuccessful short-term stint where he first showed no competence, while now is the turn to show no class either.
3. They have some teachers working there illegally on tourist visas
3. Another of untruthful claims, for NO teachers and I have been there the longest, have EVER worked in BC without being issued visa. Again, if he had any knowledge of such law-breaking, why did he tolerate it? Perhaps to leave himself with something to do in free-time, such as satisfy his own bitterness and baselessly tell lies about legal and legitimate school?


4. The head teacher has no idea on how to manage and motivate people.
4. This time, it was turn for Alex1970 to represent 'people', speaking for everyone, he thinks. While I am pretty sure that much about his lack of motivation is indeed absolutely true, so is the fact of inability our Academic Director to manage a person who devoted all and every energy to worry and fret about any task, schedule she may entrust him. Those very tasks he agreed to when he signed the contract indicated he was ready and willing to do them. So much for his credibility once more.

5. A former teacher told me that the directors of BC stole the company from a former business associate resulting in some unknown men paying a visit to BC
5. What would the hearsay be without another of Alex1970 insinuations? Now, he's privy of classified information a former teacher relayed to him. Was it a cause of his dismissal (since he still needed money too much to quit and walk away from these 'pains') from the school? Far from it, it was back to his incompetence, the one and only woe Alex1970 had during his brief attempt to be a teacher. As for stories about School's history, perhaps it was one of those wintry tales surely nothing to do with BC's reality.
6. Students are not assessed correctly to see what level they should be at and are often put in groups that are too difficult for them.
6. Student assessment isn't 100% accurate in BC, but only to the extent of isolated cases of students.. Sure, I've had handful of students that would've benefitted in upper/lower classes than were originally placed, but in statistics covering tens, if not hundreds of people, there is always statistical error, right? Another baseless allusion and generalization that simply doesn't stand closer look. By and large, British Centre placed students where they belonged. Nothing more and but certainly nothing less.

I would be very happy to see BC closed down permanently but sadly their shady practice's will continue unless they can be brought down?[/quote]

At the risk of turning this into soap opera, I simply felt compelled to dispute and hopefully disprove a person, who's neither competent nor truthful. Rather, he, in his bitterness simply tried to exact his petty revenge, rather than accept responsibility and look himself in the mirror. I wish, and surely hope, he has found a job. Somewhere dealing with items, rather than with people. For no matter what, you can bring a person to class, but you can make him teacher there. Such was the sad and REAL case of Alex1970 in his 2 months at British Centre.
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Sashadroogie



Joined: 17 Apr 2007
Posts: 9694
Location: Moskva, The Workers' Paradise

PostPosted: Thu Aug 28, 2014 8:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not commenting on the claims, or counterclaims on offer here, but are you really an EFL teacher in BC?
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