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Anybody in Warsaw just now?
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Master Shake



Joined: 03 Nov 2006
Posts: 917
Location: Itabashi, Tokyo, Japan

PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 7:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pooledogg wrote:
Master shake do you live in Warsaw? The only place that pays the salaries you are talking about is The British Council. Also flats for 1500zl in the centre? Do me a favour? Schools are cutting hours and slaries each year to stay in business. Poland is not a great place to come as the market is saturated. If you've got cash you'll be OK though.
Oh, ye of little faith.

Yes, I'm in Warsaw and have been for over three years now. It's not only the BC who pay over 60zl/hour - Mike Mills, Tower and Akademia do too, as well as many outfits who teach mostly in-company. I charge over 60zl/hour for private lessons and don't have too much trouble finding them, though I will admit this academic year I have been spending less time with my privates.

I was paying 1,500/mo. all-inclusive sans internet for a 34m2 studio in Powisle up until June. Now I live in Praga and pay less.

Where exactly are you?
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Pooledogg



Joined: 04 Aug 2010
Posts: 20
Location: England

PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 9:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've heard of Mike Mills but it's hardcore work apparently as my friend is good friends with him and turned down a job there. Never heard of the other 2 places. I charge way more than 60zl for privates. I live out over the river heading towards Sulejowek and pay 1300zl all in for 32m2. My friends in the city start at 1500 without bills.
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Pooledogg



Joined: 04 Aug 2010
Posts: 20
Location: England

PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 9:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Where exactly did you find this studio in Powisle for that price? My friends were looking and moved to Plac Wilsona and are paying 1500 without bills for the same size. I've been here 2 years.
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Pooledogg



Joined: 04 Aug 2010
Posts: 20
Location: England

PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 9:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

oh yeah my mate in Praga pays 2k without bills.
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Master Shake



Joined: 03 Nov 2006
Posts: 917
Location: Itabashi, Tokyo, Japan

PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2012 11:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I left the Powisle pad because my landlady was going to raise my rent 200/mo. I actually like Praga better (fewer hipsters!) and it only takes 10-15 min longer to get to the center.

Finding a decent, reasonably priced flat in Warsaw isn't easy. Loads of places are way overpriced and if you wait until mid-September you're sunk as you have to compete with all the returning students.

Some reasons I think I've had pretty good luck so far are:

-I'm not Polish.
-I have a steady job at a reputable school and am here working legally.
-I've beer here for a few years.

I know several people (Poles and foreigners) who rent out their flats and they all have horror stories about Polish tenants. Some have even refused to rent to Poles ever again. They all have stories of tenants who stopped paying rent and had to be evicted or snuck off in the middle of the night owing months of back rent. Polish law makes evicting a deadbeat a lengthy and complex process - I think you've got to wait two months until you can even start the paperwork to get them out. And then suing to get the money back....

So if you can convince the potential landlord/lady you're reliable, they've often willing to give you a break on the rent, or rent to you in favor of some 20-year-old Jan Kowalski who's going to trash the place and stir up trouble with the nieghbors blasting hip-hop at all hours.
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Daktari



Joined: 08 Mar 2010
Posts: 57

PostPosted: Mon Dec 10, 2012 11:34 am    Post subject: lucky you Reply with quote

'Beer for a few years'.

Lucky you.
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Master Shake



Joined: 03 Nov 2006
Posts: 917
Location: Itabashi, Tokyo, Japan

PostPosted: Mon Dec 10, 2012 9:51 pm    Post subject: Re: lucky you Reply with quote

Daktari wrote:
'Beer for a few years'.

Lucky you.
Thank you for that.

I'm glad to see you have enough free time over there to correct my spelling.
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Daktari



Joined: 08 Mar 2010
Posts: 57

PostPosted: Tue Dec 11, 2012 10:03 am    Post subject: erm Reply with quote

No...I was just warmly contemplating the idea of beer for a few years, tho' I have to say, not Polish beer but Czech.

Currently teaching 1 hour a day old boy for my great wad of cash and my 3-week break is just around the corner.

How cold is it in Warsaw right now? Bought your kids laptops, Wiis and PSP's? Skiing hols for the winter break?Paid the school fees for the next 4 years in advance? Buying a new car for cash?

Must go...off to the gym.
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john123



Joined: 29 Jan 2012
Posts: 83

PostPosted: Wed Dec 12, 2012 5:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

With reference to the arrogance infiltrating the previous post, I believe it is the satisfaction from the job we do over here which stimulates us - not money, fast cars, and fancy gadgets.

Money, money, money. You will be bitten on the bum one day - you see.

Regards
John
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Richfilth



Joined: 24 Sep 2007
Posts: 225
Location: Warszawa

PostPosted: Wed Dec 12, 2012 6:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, I do it for the money but I don't feel the need to prove my value with Apple products and gym membership. After all, no-one's impressed by this guy:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AHo2pXO_XAI
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john123



Joined: 29 Jan 2012
Posts: 83

PostPosted: Wed Dec 12, 2012 6:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, I just wanted to emphasise my point...

Nice video - it may just have revived my interest in HE.
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AliceB



Joined: 13 Apr 2011
Posts: 11

PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2012 6:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi guys, I wonder if anyone here can give me a bit of advice. I'm about to move to Warsaw to join my boyfriend, who's been there since summer. I'm planning to stay for about six to eight months. I have about two years of TEFL experience (mostly in China, which I know isn't highly regarded). Celta qualified, degree, British, good references, neutral accent, good with kids, experienced. I don't need to make a lot of money, just enough to cover my living costs - I'm not moving to further my career. My boyfriend is only just getting settled himself, so he can't really help me out much.

A lot of people on this forum seem to make most of their money from private classes. As this is only a short-term move, I thought it might make sense for me to focus on private students rather than contracted work. How easy is it to pick up private students? Are they more trouble than they're worth? (cancellations, ridiculous demands, haggling over price, etc.) How much money should I demand? I've been told 40zl/hour is usual, but it seems like people on this forum make much more.

Another question is about kindergarten work. (I know it's been thoroughly panned in this thread, but I enjoy it!) Is there much kindy work available in Warsaw, and how should I go about finding a job?

The final thing is just a general cry for help. Are there any tips you can offer to someone who's moving to Poland for the first time? Anything I should be wary of in a job offer? Any schools to recommend, or avoid? I've been working in TEFL for a while but I've never even visited Poland, so I have no idea what the working conditions will be like.

As you can tell, I'm totally unprepared for this move. Any advice at all is welcomed!
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Master Shake



Joined: 03 Nov 2006
Posts: 917
Location: Itabashi, Tokyo, Japan

PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2012 11:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Alice,

If you're willing to teach kids you should have little trouble finding work, whether it be teaching in a kindergarten or at a school which offers additional English lessons for kids.

As for privates, it takes time to build up a bank of reliable, well-paying private students. So you're better off working for a school initially. Don't charge below 60zl/hour for privates as this is the absolute min. a qualified native such as yourself should be earning.

Here is a list of literally hundreds of schools in Warsaw:
http://www.ang.pl/edukacja/szkoly_jezykowe/mapa/miasto/warszawa You can find some recommendations for specific schools on Dave's if you search.

A few words of caution:

Obviously, before you sign a contract, make sure you read it carefully -there should be an English as well as a Polish copy. Make sure it is clear from the get-go whether the amount the school is offering is gross (brutto) or net (netto) and whether a 'teaching hour' is 45 or 60 minutes. (I don't know why, but some schools in Poland have 45 minute 'hours').

Avoid Bell as, though they used to be a great school to work for, they have not been paying on time for well over a year now.

Best of Luck and Merry Christmas (It's a 3-day affair over here. Cool)

-Shake
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AliceB



Joined: 13 Apr 2011
Posts: 11

PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2012 11:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's great, thanks for the tips and thanks for the list. Most schools I've worked at have 50 minute 'hours': I didn't realise that wasn't standard practice in every country.

One last issue: are Polish schools generally trustworthy? China is like the wild West when it comes to employment rights, and anyone who signs a contract expects the other party to break it, so I've got used to suspecting tricks from any employer. I know there are good and bad schools everywhere - but, generally speaking, do Polish schools pay on time, treat their teachers well and stick to their word?
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Master Shake



Joined: 03 Nov 2006
Posts: 917
Location: Itabashi, Tokyo, Japan

PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2012 10:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

AliceB wrote:
One last issue: are Polish schools generally trustworthy? China is like the wild West when it comes to employment rights, and anyone who signs a contract expects the other party to break it, so I've got used to suspecting tricks from any employer. I know there are good and bad schools everywhere - but, generally speaking, do Polish schools pay on time, treat their teachers well and stick to their word?
Schools are not as unscrupulous here as they are in China. You do, however, need to be careful, particularly if you're working for a smaller outfit. I think the most widespread problem here is that many Polish-run schools care only about making money and cut corners wherever they can. But compared to China, you may well find the students quite keen and demanding here.

Before taking a substantial number of hours with a school:
- Ask for the contact details of past and current teachers. Ask these teachers what their experience working there was/is like. The school should willingly give you this info if they're legit.
- Look up the school on Dave's and Google it searching for any criticism.
- Talk to as many people at the school as you can to get a feel for what working there will be like.
- Be crystal clear about what resources and support they're offering; some schools in Warsaw only do off-site lessons and may expect you to provide your own materials.

In general, trust your instincts. If something about the school or it's offer just feels wrong or too good to be true, it probably is.
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