Site Search:
 
TEFL International Supports Dave's ESL Cafe
TEFL Courses, TESOL Course, English Teaching Jobs - TEFL International
Job Discussion Forums Forum Index Job Discussion Forums
"The Internet's Meeting Place for ESL/EFL Students and Teachers from Around the World!"
 
 FAQFAQ   SearchSearch   MemberlistMemberlist   UsergroupsUsergroups   RegisterRegister 
 ProfileProfile   Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages   Log inLog in 

Turkey and Romania teaching comparisons

 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Job Discussion Forums Forum Index -> Turkey
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
ghost



Joined: 30 Jan 2003
Posts: 1335
Location: Saudi Arabia

PostPosted: Mon Dec 01, 2003 9:51 am    Post subject: Turkey and Romania teaching comparisons Reply with quote

One week (Nov. 22-29) was spent in Romania with the aim of finding out about teaching opportunities there.

Some impressions:

PEOPLE: In general the Turks appear more friendly to the outsider. First impressions of Romanians are negative in the sense that there is not a cheerful aspect in the streets etc...In Bucharest in the Metro this poster tried to ask people for directions, but had people walk straight past without answering or offering directions.

The Turks seem more friendly, but that is more to do with culture than really coming from the heart. At least Romanians are honest in the sense that they have no interest in most foreigners and don't pretend to the contrary.

CULTURE: Far superior in Romania. Every town and city has its Theatre, Opera and other cultural amenities. All the towns have numerous book stores with a wide variety of books (both Romanian and foreign). It must be said, though, that the average Romanian salary (80-100 Euros. a month) does not permit most to buy books, but many students pool their resources together to buy books to share. A useful way.

Many Romanian towns and cities have 'British Council' Centres equipped with decent libraries, where you can peruse British papers and magazines and read English language books. You can rent videos and dvd's also. But you have to join. Only rich Romanians can afford the memberships.

In all the parks in Romania you see outdoor chess tables, with people playing (even in sub. zero temperatures).

In Internet cafes in Romania the atmosphere and behaviour of the patrons is far different from the savage, noisy atmosphere one encounters in Turkey. In Romania the patrons in Internet cafes use the Internet for information purposes mainly...not to play those ridiculous 'savaš oyun' games so popular in Turkey.

Romanians tend to be quiet, but the ones who have a decent education (mainly University student types) have good knowledge of the world, and one can have a decent conversation. In Turkey, as all of you know, most conversations come to a halt after the obligatory '5 mins. inquisition' (where are you from? how old are you? what is your job? are you married? how much do you earn?). Romanians have the decency and modesty not to ask those personal invasive questions.

CHEATING: Yes, unfortunately, Romania (just like Turkey) has its fair share of cheating people. Several times this poster was shortchanged (or the victim of an attempt at shortchanging) in places like Railway stations, shops etc. At one Internet cafe in Brasov, this foreigner was overcharged on no fewer than 3 occasions by the skinhead employee. The foreigner kept tabs. on his time consumption with his stopwatch. When the foreigner challenged the skinhead employee stating that overcharging was taking place, the skinhead employee replied 'You have money....you pay' ..when foreigner insisted on paying the same as the Romanians, skinhead invited foreigner to 'step outside to settle matters'...very threatening behaviour.

HOTELS and LODGING: Rather limited and pricey for what you get. Do not use the Hotel Bucba (also called Hotel Andi) at the Gara de Nord area. This foreigner asked the desk clerk to see a room before putting money down. The foreigner was shown a room. Foreigner checked to see whether there were two sheets (as this foreigner has allergy to blankets which do not have an undersheet). When foreigner discovered only one sheet on the bed and told the desk clerk (a middle aged lady)...the desk clerk started screaming 'You are upsetting the system here...you have put the room in a mess....get out!' Extraordinary rude behaviour.

Foreigner stayed at Astoria Hotel (2 star) expensive at 37 Euros a night. The toilet flush system did not work, and the breakfast consisted of 3 tiny slices of white bread (stale) with some ham, cheese, and tea.

In the provincial towns and cities you can stay in Pensions at prices in the 10-15 Euro a night range.

FOOD ROMANIA: Turkey is far superior with regards to choice, quality and prices of eating establishments. In Romania eating out is a luxury and there is very little choice. Most restaurants cater to rich businessmen and tourists.

Foreigner tried the 'Julia Pizza' restaurant in Brasov. The pizza was a disastrous mess of slimy cheese and what looked like ketchup as the sauce. Foreigner was charged 120.000 lei for the priviledge ($3.62).

Most Romanians appear to subsist on a variety of cold cuts (salami, ham and cheeses) with bread, tea and beer....not a very healthy diet.

Big Mac, Fries, Coke - 87.000 lei ($2.62)

Greasy meal in Restaurant (pork with potatoes and beer) 130.000 lei ($4 dollars).

Beer: This is cheap and good with prices ranging from 12.000 to 30.000 lei depending on whether bought in a shop or restaurant (0.40-0.90 cents).

DANGER: The 'street kids' in Bucharest and Brasov are surprisingly harmless, because they are so 'high' on glue and other noxious substances they inhale that they have no energy to attack or run after foreigners. They will merely ask you for a few coins. They are dressed in a pitiful state, and it is shocking to witness the complete passivity of Romanian passerby to the fate of these poor kids. The substances they inhale help them ward off hunger and keep them from feeling the cold. There are also many gypsies, but if you keep your wits about you, they are not a problem.

TEACHING ROMANIA: Compared with Turkey (which has an 'open door policy' with foreigners) teaching in Romania is a nightmare, and the chances of landing employment are slim to none.

New rules have come into place:

1. Go to the Office for work force migration.

2. Clean police record (both employer and potential employee).

3. Proof of 'Legal Selection' for the job.

4. Resume for the foreigner.

5. Police record for the foreigner (second copy).

6. Medical exam (full).

7. Notarized statement that foreigner has a working knowledge of the Romanian language.

8. Copy of border entry stamp.

If you manage to get all the above, you might be approved to work for 3 months (yes approval for 12 weeks...not one year as in Turkey).

PRIVATE SCHOOLS: They are not interested in employing foreigners in Romania. Owners were approached and the response was always negative 'We do not have positions.' Other excuses inculded 'You need Romanian language to be able to teach English in this country.'

SCUALA HILDA: Advertises all over Brasov with glossy posters of what appears to be an upmarket language school. The reality is that this 'school' is located in a three bedroom apartment located in a seedy neighborhood close to the railway station. Foreigner phoned the school (with the help of a Romanian friend) and told to come for an interview at 6 pm. Foreigner showed up...school was closed. Phoned the owner to be told to come back the next day at 1pm. Showed up at 1pm, to be told by the secratary that the manager was busy. Told to come back at 3pm. At 3pm...told by secretary that foreigner needs to know the Romanian language to teach at the school. At this point (after wasting 2 days running around the town of Brasov) foreigner gives up quest to land Romanian job.

GABRIELA CHEFNEUX (gabriela.chefneux@rdsbv.ro): Dr. Chefneux (Ph.d University of Iasi) is an authority on teaching in Romania. She states that foreigners have little or no chance of landing employment in Romania whether in the public or private sectors. The Ministry does not take a favourable attitude to foreigners taking jobs away from Romanians.

Moreover, in the unlikely event of being offered a job, the pay (50.000 lei per hour/ equal to 1.5 Euros) would not permit a living wage for a foreigner. There is no free or subsidized accommodation in Romania, as is the case with Turkey. Rents for foreigners would be at least double that given to a Romanian (around 300 Euros a month at least). Your salary would only cover a fraction of the cost of your expenses in the country.

Romanians cannot understand how ESL teachers in Turkey are paid twice the salary of the local teachers in Turkey. In Romania the opposite is true...the feeling is that foreigners should have no advantages over the locals.

VOLUNTARY ORGANIZATIONS: Yes ...you might have the priviledge of teaching in Romania if you join one of these organizations...but in that case you (the teacher) have to pay for the priveledge of teaching in Romania. Typical prices are around 900 to 1000 pounds British for a one to three month stay. A scam you might say.

SUMMATION: In Turkey the opportunities for teaching are numerous and generous compared with Romania. Romania is not open for teaching.

The only decent jobs might be found through the British Councll. But competition for those jobs is tough. And the 'average' roving teacher on this forum would not stand a chance of getting on board.

The only question is whether Romania will change their policies toward foreign teachers when/if they join the European Union in 2007.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
richard ame



Joined: 16 Jan 2003
Posts: 319
Location: Republic of Turkey

PostPosted: Mon Dec 01, 2003 11:12 am    Post subject: not so bad here, innit?? Reply with quote

So after your little adventure you may realise that this place is not so bad after all .Could it be time to try some humble pie ?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
yaramaz



Joined: 05 Mar 2003
Posts: 2345
Location: Not where I was before

PostPosted: Mon Dec 01, 2003 11:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi ghost, and welcome back to the land of savages that we know and love so well! I just wanted to comment on your post, nothing major... just that I disagree with you yet again. However, I dont want to repeat myself yet again.

My point: Turks are not genetically stupid or mindless or vacuously and cunningly welcoming. They are not savages. My friends play chess, just not in public. They also play backgammon, which requires some thought. They do read books- I know this because our sidewalks are covered with possibly illegally copied books being sold by the same folks who brought you used mobile phones and 12 packs of batteries (coming soon to a sidewalk near you). My boyfriend (a Turk) just worked his way through Hemingway's For Whom the Bell Tolls with a dictionary and a lot of patience. My students all read as well. I know this because we discuss what we have read.

There are good people out there. I wouldnt be here if there werent. I have been treated very well. I have had great conversations too, well beyond the 5 questions you list....
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
scot47



Joined: 10 Jan 2003
Posts: 12380
Location: Ultima Thule

PostPosted: Tue Dec 02, 2003 9:52 am    Post subject: ghost Reply with quote

My prediction ist that "ghost" will eventually see reason and go for another line of work. In the world of EFL he is unhappy. Maybe he should take up that "summer catering opportubnity" in Ontario (Selling ice cream ?)
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
ghost



Joined: 30 Jan 2003
Posts: 1335
Location: Saudi Arabia

PostPosted: Tue Dec 02, 2003 12:39 pm    Post subject: reply Reply with quote

[quote]My prediction ist that "ghost" will eventually see reason and go for another line of work. In the world of EFL he is unhappy. Maybe he should take up that "summer catering opportubnity" in Ontario (Selling ice cream ?)

Yes...and as long as one has to put up with tired, cynical individuals like the above, the thought of other endeavours is indeed tempting.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
daveryan



Joined: 20 Aug 2003
Posts: 40

PostPosted: Tue Dec 02, 2003 5:14 pm    Post subject: Your Favourite place Reply with quote

Very Happy Just as a matter of interest Ghost, I would be intrigued to know what is your favourite place and why? Surely there must be some corner of this planet that you like? Albeit not neccessarily one that would appeal to mere mortals such as myself.

Cheers
Dave
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
ghost



Joined: 30 Jan 2003
Posts: 1335
Location: Saudi Arabia

PostPosted: Tue Dec 02, 2003 7:56 pm    Post subject: Favourite places Reply with quote

No specific favourite place, but there are places where one could be reasonably happy.

1. Brazil - This would be the country...if it were closer to family connections in Europe. Unfortunately this country has a difficult system for foreigners to live and work there. They give limited time for foreigners to stay there (max. 6 months) and fine one for every day (yes every day!) over the limit...also it is very difficult to get a work permit for Brazil.

Two months were spent in that vast country in 1994, in the impoverished North Eastern region, starting with Salvador do Bahia, and moving on to the provincial towns of the interior (Senor do Bonfim, Juazeiro do Norte, Paolo Afonso etc...). One was able to subsist by buying baseball caps at the wholesale markets and selling them door to door and in the streets. Popcorn was also sold at the beaches in Salvador, but this proved to be a very risky exercise with permanent risk of robbery and assault in that dangerous city.

Compounding the problem - foreigners cannot open bank accounts in Brazil so one had to travel and stay in cheap hotels with big amounts of cash - dangerous in Brazil.

2. Philippines - Two months spent in Jan-Feb. 1999. Starting in Manila and moving around all the towns on Luzon (Angeles, Santa Cruz, Lucena City, Cabanatuan, Baguio, Naga City, Daet etc...).

Of course there is no chance of teaching there...but if finances permitted it would be a decent place to stay. The culture is flexible enough to incorporate both Western and Eastern values...and one can choose either or make a jumbo sandwich of both if one so desires. The people, in general are extremely friendly and bright. Did you know, for example, that most housemaids who work in Western countries are Philippine University educated? Bright people...but the politics are a mess which keeps the country poor.

3. Dominican Republic - but not in the tourist parts. Nice way of life, friendly people (outside the tourist centres) and an outdoor way of life if that is something of interest to you. Unfortunately the money for teaching in that country is very little.

Worked in the city of Higuey for 4 months in January to May 1993. There was enough to do to keep one happy on a daily basis despite the poor salary. Better opportunities in the provincial city of Santiago. The best place to teach there is the 'Kennedy school of languages'. You can make enough there to cover your costs but saving money is not possible.


4. Spain...probably one of the best countries in Europe for 'quality of life' but difficult to make a living there as an ESL teacher (poor pay and an over supply of teachers).

There is no 'ideal place' - one has to weigh up the 'pros. and cons' and then decide. But all the above places provided one with a better 'happiness index' figure at the end of the day.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
FGT



Joined: 14 Sep 2003
Posts: 761
Location: Turkey

PostPosted: Tue Dec 02, 2003 11:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Question for "Ghost": How long and where is the longest time you've ever stayed in one place (since graduating)?

I ask this because, in answer to the question "what is your favourite place?" you sited Brazil but then listed several places there, ditto other places mentioned by you. Unless you spend AT LEAST a year in one village/town/city/country I don't think you are in any position to cast judgement.

I await your comments with interest.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
naturegirl321



Joined: 04 May 2003
Posts: 9012
Location: home sweet home

PostPosted: Wed Dec 03, 2003 9:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't know. I"m going to give Romania a try. I think that people are friendly and will to help. There are organisations that place teachers for free. Anyways, every country has its bureacracy that you have to go through, because you as a foreigner are taking away jobs from the people who are citizens.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
FGT



Joined: 14 Sep 2003
Posts: 761
Location: Turkey

PostPosted: Wed Dec 03, 2003 10:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dear Ghost,
I'm still waiting for a reply. I note that you posted more condemnatory remarks on another thread but haven't (yet) said where and how long is the longest time you've spent in one place since graduating. It shouldn't be a difficult question to answer. Why are you choosing to ignore it?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
ghost



Joined: 30 Jan 2003
Posts: 1335
Location: Saudi Arabia

PostPosted: Thu Dec 04, 2003 9:23 am    Post subject: Reply Reply with quote

5 years in Canada (Montreal, Windsor and Whitby). From 1998 to 2002.
Teaching in Language schools and doing my B.Ed. at the University of Windsor and Post graduate Certificate in Second Language Teaching at McGill.

Also taught for half a year in Whitby in the Durham Catholic school system (French as a Second Language) - grades 4-8 (nightmare...but kids not as bad as Turkey...at least in Canada they have the ability to 'rationalize'...not the case in Turkey with the half brained twits.)

Teaching in Canada has good benefits, but as an FSL specialist (French) it was high stress and not worth the hassle.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
FGT



Joined: 14 Sep 2003
Posts: 761
Location: Turkey

PostPosted: Thu Dec 04, 2003 11:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ghost - so I would guess that since you finished your B.Ed and certificate in Canada you have only spent weeks or months in any one place. Since you left Canada, what's the longest time spent in one place?

You previously specified 2 months in Brazil and named 4 different places there. That barely gives you time to unpack, let alone get to know the culture/people etc. You came to Turkey (I guess) about 4 months ago and have spent time in (?) 2 cities in Turkey and had time out in Romania. When are you going to stop and digest and allow a place to work on you?

In other parts of "Dave's" there is reference made to the 3 month on "blues" period. You've never stayed anywhere long enough to even know what that means. Stop trying to achieve academic goals. How about a life goal? Academia can be a way of escape.

Sorry if my tone sounds harsh, but I strongly believe you should reassess, for your own sake.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
saliero



Joined: 02 Dec 2003
Posts: 6
Location: Australia

PostPosted: Fri Dec 05, 2003 9:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

For everyone's sake, never fetch up in Australia expecting to teach . . . they will no doubt use the 'excuse' that you need to be fluent in English! Tricky devils, those Rumanians.

Bedsheets: yes, every time I am in England it drives me nuts when I am only provided with a bottom sheet and a duvet (under which I get too hot). Barbarians. No doubt the Rumanians have learned everything they know from the savage Brits.

Rolling Eyes
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
scot47



Joined: 10 Jan 2003
Posts: 12380
Location: Ultima Thule

PostPosted: Fri Dec 05, 2003 6:33 pm    Post subject: Migrant Labour Reply with quote

"ghost" is one of many who have dificulty in settling into the weird world of TEFLing.

Life as a migrant pedagogue is not for everyone. For me it is tool at to look for a change of career, but I have lasted in some places. Record was 6 years in one job.

I have seen the cv's of others who have done a year at a time in 20plus schools ! Awful !
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
ghost



Joined: 30 Jan 2003
Posts: 1335
Location: Saudi Arabia

PostPosted: Sat Dec 06, 2003 10:10 am    Post subject: A year at a time Reply with quote

Nothing wrong with working in 20 different places over 20 years. One year in each place would be a fair amount of time.

Also, the experiences gained in a multitude of settings would make a very interesting teacher...who would have many things to tell her/his students. After all, in language teaching a great deal of time is spent conversing with the students (especially when the students reach intermediate level and above) and all that knowledge should make a very eclectic and multi faceted teacher, who has many teaching techniques up her/his sleeves which could be put to good use in the classroom.

It may look like the teacher is 'unstable' on paper (the resume/c.v.) but a teacher who has taught in 20 different places has a lot more to offer than a teacher 'just going through the motions' of teaching who has taught in the same place for umpteen years using the same boring lesson plans.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Job Discussion Forums Forum Index -> Turkey All times are GMT
Page 1 of 1

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum


This page is maintained by the one and only Dave Sperling.
Contact Dave's ESL Cafe
Copyright © 2011 Dave Sperling. All Rights Reserved.

Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2002 phpBB Group

Road2Spain - TEFL and Spanish with one year student visa
EBC