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"Oxford Lecce Group" scam

 
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Defenestrator



Joined: 06 Jan 2015
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Sat Jan 10, 2015 1:51 am    Post subject: "Oxford Lecce Group" scam Reply with quote

If you responded to an ad on the job board in December for positions in Italy with "ASEISchools" you probably got en email from someone purporting to represent Oxford Group Lecce, a real school in Lecce, Italy. The ad is a scam. Whoever is behind it just took the information from a real ad on another website, got some details wrong, and upped the salary.

From searching around, it appears to be a visa scam. The ad encouraged Americans to apply (red flag), probably so they can hit them up for visa fees.

Be warned!
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thicknmeaty



Joined: 14 Jan 2015
Posts: 1
Location: Japan

PostPosted: Fri Jan 16, 2015 11:26 am    Post subject: Oxford Group Lecce Scam Reply with quote

OK, this IS indeed a scam. I called to Italy and spoke directly to the contact (Ms Glynis Thomas) and confirmed this is a scam that the school is dealing with right now. They give you a Skype "interview" which consists of typing questions back and forth with no face-to-face and they then "hire" you! Mind you they asked for my Name, Nationality three separate times throughout the interview and in various e-mails. Also, the contact listed was Mr Glynis Thomas when it is indeed a Ms. everything that the above poster said was correct. I just wanted to inform people that it is a scam and to be warned.
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shonrand



Joined: 10 Mar 2011
Posts: 13
Location: UAE

PostPosted: Sat Jan 17, 2015 8:32 am    Post subject: Oh, Crap. Reply with quote

Here I was, getting excited because the "Mr. Glynis Thomas" character contacted me. Hm, guess I'll not waste my time with the Skype "interview."
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aades



Joined: 12 Jan 2015
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Tue Jan 20, 2015 3:58 pm    Post subject: Oxford Group Lecce Scam Reply with quote

I too experienced this! Just got off the phone with the real Ms. Glynis Thomas at the school after I suspected a scam. She confirmed the scam and says they are working to rectify the situation. Stay safe!
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ca.lewis



Joined: 04 Dec 2012
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Sat Jan 24, 2015 5:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

deleted.

Last edited by ca.lewis on Sat Jan 24, 2015 11:08 pm; edited 1 time in total
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spiral78



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
Posts: 11498
Location: On a Short Leash

PostPosted: Sat Jan 24, 2015 8:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh, good heavens everyone!!!

A scam isn't so difficult to spot, frankly.

1. If they are offering visas for US or Canadian or Australian citizens for Europe, it's a SCAM.

2. If they are hiring from abroad for positions in the EU, it's a SCAM. The job market here is soaked with teachers standing in the offices of the schools, CVs in hand, ready to start tomorrow.

3. Jobs in this region are Sept/Oct through June, with the occasional exception of a short-term summer school. There is no big hiring wave in January/February/March/etc. Placing a big ad for teachers starting outside Sept/Oct is a good sign of a SCAM.

And, of course, if they ask you to send money, it's OBVIOUSLY A SCAM.
US/Canadian/other citizens cannot buy a work visa for Italy - or other western European countries. Nor can any type of agent do this on your behalf.
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ca.lewis



Joined: 04 Dec 2012
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Sat Jan 24, 2015 1:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

deleted.

Last edited by ca.lewis on Sat Jan 24, 2015 11:08 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Louisdf



Joined: 05 Feb 2013
Posts: 60

PostPosted: Sat Jan 24, 2015 3:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ca.lewis wrote:
Umm, could you be a bit less condescending? I was just scammed and feel pretty shitty about it. You can be a jerk and all, I'm sure I deserve it for being such a sucker, but I'm already trying to keep cheer up the wife after the whole "too good to be true" thing.

There were a lot of red flags that either I or the scammers rationalized. Please, for the sake of my emotional state, be gentle when you tell me how much of an idiot I was.

Anything I can add to help anyone else avoid similar follies?


Unless you have exceptional qualifications (for example a PhD) and decades of experience, stop wasting your time researching about working legally in Italy. It has been discussed many times already, private language schools which employ people legally, generally only employ EU/EEA citizens.

Of course, you may wish to get a study visa which will allow you to work part-time. This will involve you paying tuition fees and attending classes daily. However, it is likely that any money you make from teaching will be cancelled out by your tuition fees, visa fees, books etc.
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spiral78



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
Posts: 11498
Location: On a Short Leash

PostPosted: Sat Jan 24, 2015 3:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry if it comes across as condescending. It's very important for people to know exactly what the red flags are.

Further, sorry, but it is a bit silly for anyone to be all gung-ho to enter any TEFL job market without having done even the most basic research about what the job in that region entails.

Even the most cursory of research into 'TEFL teaching in Italy (as a non-EU citizen)' would have waved all the very red flags I've noted above.

Decades ago, TEFL was a far freer and more open opportunity for everyone; this has changed considerably over the past 20 years. A few bits and pieces of the myth of 'anyone can do it' remain out there, but again, even very, very basic inquiry into today's realities would show clearly that it is indeed only myth.
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spiral78



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
Posts: 11498
Location: On a Short Leash

PostPosted: Sat Jan 24, 2015 3:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Unless you have exceptional qualifications (for example a PhD) and decades of experience, stop wasting your time researching about working legally in Italy. It has been discussed many times already, private language schools which employ people legally, generally only employ EU/EEA citizens.


Louis is correct, but I'll elaborate a bit to be really clear. A related PhD (or other very high level quals), not just any old PhD. The school must be able to make a legal argument that 'you' have necessary skills for the job that no EU candidate for the position can offer.

This possible 'in' would only apply to state run schools like proper universities - or real international schools, where job openings are very rare and most often go to teachers with local reputations and connections. In the case of international schools, certification and experience in teaching core subjects in one's home country are normally required. Again, very rare openings.

Private language schools do not have a legal option to petition for an exemption for non-EU citizens. The only way to legally work for a private language school is to be in the EU on a student visa, as Louis points out.

Alternatively, marry a local.
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Defenestrator



Joined: 06 Jan 2015
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Sun Jan 25, 2015 2:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Do any of the schools provide suitable locals to marry for visa purposes?
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spiral78



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
Posts: 11498
Location: On a Short Leash

PostPosted: Sun Jan 25, 2015 3:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the sticking point would be the shades of meaning behind 'suitable.' Cool Laughing
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