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Shiny websites, but are they relevant to us?

 
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misteradventure



Joined: 18 Aug 2003
Posts: 243

PostPosted: Sat Jan 15, 2005 3:17 am    Post subject: Shiny websites, but are they relevant to us? Reply with quote

This is a copy; I accidentally posted it as a 'reply'.

I've waded through many of the postings in this forum and don't see how most of them apply to most of us.

The posting on customs is handy, I agree. Other than that...

I'm sorry; I don't get it. I don't belong to the greater group of Non-Governmental Organizations and I'm not a donor or grantee.

Most of this area seems to be filled with gratuitous posting (by one member) promoting the activity in the Balkans that has ABSOLUTELY NO relevancy with the actual teaching or studying of English as a Second/Other/Foreign Language.

I'd like to hear why it's unreasonable to have to wade through three levels of public relations to find a page that has SOME postings for the employment of English teachers while finding nothing relevant to the actual teaching (or learning) environment and nothing even on grammar!

If I wanted to read about politics, I could read http://whatreallyhappened.com or any of the other politically-themed websites, not Dave's nice ESL site.

I'm here to discuss ESL on a personal level, as it relates to the job, not global politics on the multi-national/corporate/governmental level.

Has this new forum been overtaken by a spammer?

Anyone?
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TRCourage



Joined: 04 Jan 2005
Posts: 29

PostPosted: Sat Jan 15, 2005 5:17 am    Post subject: Questions and Answers Reply with quote

misteradventure wrote:
I've waded through many of the postings in this forum and don't see how most of them apply to most of us.


Well, I'm new to this forum, and maybe I'm not "doing it right", but as someone who is diligently investigating the ESL situation in Macedonia (both current and potential), I am pursuing a multi-faceted approach that might not appeal to everyone.

When I first began all this, I was unable to find any data on any traditional ESL teachers in MK other than Macedonians teaching English as a foreign language.

My investigations to date have found that there is/was a 1995 law that no foreigner could teach ANY child, Macedonian or foreigner. Simply against the law. A non-national could also not hold any sort of administrative or support position, nor would a non-national even be allowed to own a language school.

At one point, in September 2002, the entire faculty of a parochial school were cited for breaking the law. It wasn't until several months later that they were granted visas they could teach under and were allowed to stay. Thankfully, under pressure from the UN, things have lightened up.

I have now found a number of all-day private schools taught in English, with foreign-born teachers, and will soon be posting their contact information. This will put people on a direct line to teaching employment.


Quote:

I'm sorry; I don't get it. I don't belong to the greater group of Non-Governmental Organizations and I'm not a donor or grantee.


Well actually, the point of posting those listings and those of charitable concerns already operating in Macedonia has to do with knowing who to contact. One can choose to investigate educational ventures where one might get a job.



TESL jobs are generally found with "Privately Owned Language Schools", "Private Full-Curriculum Schools", "Public Full-Curriculum Schools", "Schools of Higher Education" and tutoring classes.

But Macedonia is early enough in the transition from backward Communist Country to a country on-track for the ECU to have the attention of a number of NGOs that are pumping money and manpower into the country. Their goals are ensure that all minority children get an education, to upgrade the level of education, and to promote peaceful productive relations between the various cultures and ethnicities.

It is these organizations that can provide a linking step for those people who will want to come here and "knock on doors".

These sorts of stepping stones can vary.

Some of the private full-curriculum college-prep schools mainly teach foreign born students and the children of the wealthy. I am currently tracking down what their employment procedures entail so I can provide that information here.

One of these schools, I have found, holds regular employment interviews yearly in the United States and Canada.

For those interested in a Christian mission, they can use their home church to help puchase their airfare and perhaps even provide a stipend. Then the mission provides housing and your job commitments will be for half-days, giving you the opportunity to scout for jobs.

The Peace Corps has just begun a mission in the last couple of months. This sort of placement can include teaching jobs for TESL. Housing, insurance, airfare and other benefits come from these postings. A number of Peace Corps volunteers go on to live in their posting countries, able to find work because they have proven themselves already.

For someone willing to work in some other position besides classroom teacher, the NGOs can sometimes be the source of a job which again will get here. Alternatively, they can provide a direct link to people "on the ground" here who can provide the needed insider contacts towards landing a job.

And, when someone considers going to a country where the primary job will be knocking on doors, resume and references in hand, it is best if one understands the people and culture -- they need to know the lay of the land.

Macedonia, tho, is a little-known country, and is often considered to be as war-torn and dangerous as many of the surrounding portions of the former Yugoslavia. So this too is my aim - to let people see what the people are like.


Quote:
Most of this area seems to be filled with gratuitous posting promoting the activity in the Balkans that has ABSOLUTELY NO relevancy with the actual teaching or studying of English as a Second/Other/Foreign Language.

I'd like to hear why it's unreasonable to have to wade through three levels of public relations to find a page that has SOME postings for the employment of English teachers while finding nothing relevant to the actual teaching (or learning) environment and nothing even on grammar!


If I could have posted everything on one day, I would have -- give me time. Very Happy

Also, I will be adding a thread on the teaching/learning environment and what I have found said about the Macedonian children.

And grammar? Well, I should hope I would teach the same grammar in MK as I do anywhere else. Wink


Quote:

If I wanted to read about politics, I could read politically-themed websites.
I'm here to discuss ESL on a personal level, as it relates to the job, not global politics on the multi-national/corporate/governmental level.


Poland is a very stable country, unlikely to experience a sudden outbreak of war. Macedonia, on the other hand, had a travel warning posted by the US in the last few months and had all unnecessary Embassy staff and dependents evacuated. When such a political situation exists (and will continue to exist for some time) it behooves us to know about it before we find ourselves hiding from gunfire.

It was only this past year that a German citizen was detained by Macedonian security services at the border, handed over to US troops, and was subsequently held for some months in an undisclosed location without access to an attorney, all because his name was similar to someone on a watch list.

So, that's what's going on -- I am trying to make this forum a resource place. And I am hopeful that people who teach in the other varous Balkan countries will post in time, too.
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Chasgul



Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 168
Location: BG

PostPosted: Thu May 05, 2005 7:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I live in the Balkans and can assure you that much of the politics here is relevant if you want to work in this region - lots of Americans only heard of Bulgaria because they sent troops to Iraq, most Bulgarians know that they have lost half a dozen men to US 'friendly fire incidents'. That means that people here are none too impressed with the US right now. If you're looking for a job, that kind of information can be fairly valuable.
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scot47



Joined: 10 Jan 2003
Posts: 12303
Location: Ultima Thule

PostPosted: Thu Sep 08, 2005 6:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Chasgul has got it right.
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