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Ohhhhh......EPIK!!!!
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Anda



Joined: 16 Jan 2003
Location: South Korea

PostPosted: Sat Jun 14, 2003 3:44 pm    Post subject: Um Reply with quote

I have been watching ESL Law with interest and posting their link for some time. They are posting the shortfalls on the EPIK contract but sad to say as per normal EPIK isn't clearing things up fast.

As all in EPIK know EPIK has for five or six years written a 50 week contract to get out of paying severance pay on those that leave at the end of their first contract. For a goverment department to do such a thing with a program that brings university educated foreigners here that will take home afterwards their impressions of Korea's dishonesty with them is beyond me. This is a sad thing as the average Korean isn't like their goverment and those in big business here. Tradesmen here like car machanics and plumbers charge little and are very honest as a rule.

Personally I wouldn't bother putting up a fight over the raise as in true EPIK style they are going to add tax to us along with hiting us for half out medical insurance to start along with the raise. Exchange rates are going down all the time nowadays also on the won to most currencies. I am now earning less here than I was in 1990 back in Oz and yes I was also getting accommodation thrown in. But sorry to say Oz isn't what it used to be nowadays.

The thing that is worth fighting for now is clearing up the two week extra holiday thing that some Education Offices / EPIK supervisors are backtracking on.
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Mody Ba



Joined: 22 May 2003

PostPosted: Sat Jun 14, 2003 11:31 pm    Post subject: Comments to Long-term Player and Anda Reply with quote

Long-term-player, you guys are to be commended for at least trying to defend your rights.Anda,whether the raise is worth fighting for or not may be an individual issue important to some,not important to others.Their attempt to backtrack on the two weeks vacation is one more example of their deviousness and manipulation.Personally,I would be greatly surprised if it is their last.

In my opinion, some of these problems are caused by the confusion and lack of organization due to the fact different bureaucrats in different provinces make their own petty interpretations of the contract,whatever is convenient and suits their agendas.
In my opinion,t here is also a darker factor at work sometimes.I think some of them just resent EPIK teachers and are looking for opportunities to "stick it to" EPIKs.

And now we come down to the ultimate question..is working for EPIK worth all the hassle?Of course, this is an individual choice,but it appears increasingly that the EPIK option is becoming less and less attractive. God help us all! Rolling Eyes
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long-term-player



Joined: 10 Feb 2003

PostPosted: Sun Jun 15, 2003 1:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Two areas where EPIK has now committed themselves in writing - now on efl-law.com.
http://efl-law.com/epik_pages.html
I wonder if Epik KNUE tells the poe supervisors though? It would b worth telling the NEW intake about this, if any one knows how to succeed in that?


(1) Accommodation
# Question. What do I do if I arrive at my new POE and find my accommodation to be unsatisfactory?
Answer: You must deal directly with the POE and ask to be relocated to accommodation that is satisfactory. You should make every attempt to determine your situation before you enter your proposed accommodation - ask questions of your future POE before you get there. If the POE does not help you find suitable accommodation, ask EPIK at KNUE to assist you. EPIK did advise us in April 2003 that, if an EPIK member does not find the accommodation provided for him/her acceptable, he/she can decline the offered housing and discuss the matter further with the P.O.E. that he/she is working for.

http://efl-law.com/epik_redzone.html
(2)Article 10.(2)
In the case of renewal of this Contract pursuant to the foregoing (1) , Employee shall be given two weeks for a home leave which shall take place 2 calendar weeks prior to the contract end date specified in Article 5 hereof until the day immediately preceding the commencement of the renewed term. This two-week home leave will be counted as part of the contract term, and accordingly salary will be paid.

Comment: Is this two weeks two working weeks (10 days) or two calendar weeks (14 days) and how is it distinguished from Article 14 (vacation). Does the employee get a total of 24 working days holiday as seems to be suggested? We have now received written advice from EPIK that this means in Article 10, the time period between contracts for renewing EPIK member is, indeed, ten business days. Therefore, yes, it would be 24 paid working days per contract holiday, only if the EPIK member renewed.
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Anda



Joined: 16 Jan 2003
Location: South Korea

PostPosted: Sun Jun 15, 2003 2:20 pm    Post subject: Um Reply with quote

Things seem to be on the improve at last. By this I mean that we aren't having to wait years to get a change made.


Now there is one area left that should be cleared up and that is fares for travel schools. EPIK used to pay an extra 20,000 for each day that an EPIK had to travel away from their main school. Some schools do give their EPIK extra to cover travel costs but others don't. I know at my first location with EPIK that I used to have to wait quite a long time up to one and a half hours for a bus on my travel schools. But taxi were available for 5,000 won, one way. It wasn't much fun being stuck having to wait so long in the winter in a small boring country town. It shouldn't be expected for EPIKS to have to come up with travel costs when they are stuck having to travel to such places for their POE.


Last edited by Anda on Sun Jun 15, 2003 2:23 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Mody Ba



Joined: 22 May 2003

PostPosted: Sun Jun 15, 2003 2:22 pm    Post subject: Yes, Long-term Player...A Good Post Reply with quote

Your post was very cogent.Not only that,you use good English grammar and spelling in your posts.

Well,anyway,yes, I believe that your interpretation regarding the 24 days total vacation (if the EPIK renews) is correct. Apparently, various provincial officials,etc. had no problem with that at first.Then(apparently),someone decide to try and pull a slick fastie on some of the EPIKs and "reinterpret" that section of the contract. They are nothing, if not devious.,

I agree with most of your comments on the housing, too.It is only reasonable that,if a school wants a native speaker badly enough and knows far enough in advancethat acceptable housing will be arranged by the time the EPIK gets to his or her POE.But in numerous cases, this has not happened.

We are talking about Korea here, not the Central African Republic.There is no reason they cannot arrange acceptable housing for all EPIKs,except sometimes they are just plain cheap or they resent the EPIK and want to palm off some dump on the EPIK.

I could tell you some of the horror stories(housing) I have actually seen that have been assigned to EPIKs,but I will not bore you In a couple of cases ,you might not believe me.Some of the assigned housing can only be characterized as disgraceful.

By all means,new EPIKs, if you are assigned unacceptable housing,refuse it.Do not believe them if they tell you it is "Only temporary and we will move you to a better place in a few weeks".Once they have you in the dump; well,they figure you are there to stay.
Good post,long -term player.But I really don't know how much KNUE would help with the housing issue.My impression of them is that they are always thankful to wash their hands(ala Pontius Pilate) of the EPIKS once they have shoved the EPIKs through their so-called "orientation". Unless of course,KNUE has changed.But I rather doubt that. Rolling Eyes
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Anda



Joined: 16 Jan 2003
Location: South Korea

PostPosted: Sun Jun 15, 2003 2:32 pm    Post subject: Um Reply with quote

Yes Mody Ba is right in that it is unlikely that KNUE will have changed.

The other thing is reguardless of what is written or said never move into an unsuitable place. By this I mean not even for one night as once you move in you will find it ten times harder to get a better place than if you refuse and stay in a hotel untill they get better accommodation for you. A promise here is just a polite way of saying sorry but this is what you get.
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adventureman



Joined: 18 Feb 2003

PostPosted: Sun Jun 15, 2003 3:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Seoul Skye, Such an on-line community already DOES exist.
Check out:


http://groups.msn.com/EPIKKorea/_homepage.msnw?pgmarket=en-us

From what I can ascertain, everyone on that member list seems to be having a relatively positive experience. Just look at the pictures...everyone is all smiles! Very Happy Perhaps underneath all the good cheer they are ready to postal however. Evil or Very Mad Hey Mosely, isn't that you in the Kangwon Album... Very Happy

Also, Anda quick question, my contract, the website, and the EPIK head office have all told me that as long as I have been working in Korea for les than two years (which I have) and come from a tax-treaty country that my salary will still be tax free, Have you heard differently?

I am already aware of the sneaky medical insurance thing.

Funny, I heard that the commute is worse in the cities than the coutryside for getting to work...

Rest assured, I will head your advice and be polite but firm about the accomodation thing, while at the same I will "be all that I can be...." in the whole teaching thing...Just like the U.S. Army Rolling Eyes

Mody, I didn't realize you we are a religious man...with all these biblical refrences ("ponteious pilout"..."God help us all..."), perhaps it is your faith in prayer that has helped you to survive EPIK all these years! Laughing

Have a wonderful WEEK, gentleman Wink
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Mody Ba



Joined: 22 May 2003

PostPosted: Sun Jun 15, 2003 4:16 pm    Post subject: Religious?Me? Reply with quote

No.Some people have characterized me as "irreligious",however. Smile

I could not resist making the Pontius Pilate comparison.It does not take much more imagination to proceed on to"some people get crucified".Perhaps, I am verging on blasphemy now...

Anyway,guys,watch your backs out there.Take care of yourselves.I would not trust them too far. Manipulation is their stock in trade. Rolling Eyes
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Anda



Joined: 16 Jan 2003
Location: South Korea

PostPosted: Sun Jun 15, 2003 4:16 pm    Post subject: Um Reply with quote

This sounds right but this has always been this way. This is the first time that EPIK has inforced their two year then tax, tax law on us. I don't have a problem with this.

My school has already told me that I will be taxed after the new raise comes through.

The tax problem is very much a back home thing, as nothing is black and white with tax laws. For instance if you have investments and a home etc back home then you can be taxed reguardless of how long you spend overseas. If you own nothing back home (INCLUDING INVESTMENTS) then you are tax free after a certain time spent overseas. About as clear as mud. Spend your money and have a good time is good advise otherwise the tax man will do it for you!
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Mody Ba



Joined: 22 May 2003

PostPosted: Mon Jun 16, 2003 11:52 am    Post subject: Taxman Reply with quote

Well,at least this thread has not been locked yet. Smile

What Anda says about tax law being"clear as mud" is true,of course.And of course,tax laws in the US,Britain,Canada,etc,etc,are different.
Briefly,I would suggest you find a GOOD accountant to do your taxes.Do not try to cheat the IRS or whoever the government agency is in your country.They may not be as stupid as you might think,and there is no statute of limitations on taxes,at least in the US(I do not know about other countries).They can call you up years later and ask you about those years 'way back then when you were footloose and fancyfree and teaching in Korea.Forget about using people like H and R Block to do your tax return. Mody Smile
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Mosley



Joined: 15 Jan 2003

PostPosted: Mon Jun 16, 2003 7:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A-man: Sorry to disappoint you-I've never even been to Kangwon-do. It (the site)looks like a propaganda set-up though. Check out their "hot issues " board- mundane nonsense. I'd like to know who's REALLY behind that site.
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long-term-player



Joined: 10 Feb 2003

PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2003 12:25 am    Post subject: NEW PAY FOR OLD EPIKs Reply with quote

I wrote to http://efl-law.com about the starting pay date for my new contract pay _ it should, I believe, start when the new contract starts in August..
I wrote to Epik but got no reply and my supervisor was useless....
efl-law got answers in one day.. the gist of which was told to them by EPIK was that -- () the new contract pay starts in September - that ALL EPIKs had been told this - that old EPIKs (like me) whose contracts started in July and August had all been orally advised by their supervisors that the new pay was NOT until September and that is was prominently displayed on their web site...

all I can say is that my supervisor never told me -
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