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What is with all the "Fired" posts?
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thegadfly



Joined: 01 Feb 2003

PostPosted: Thu Aug 28, 2003 6:46 pm    Post subject: What is with all the "Fired" posts? Reply with quote

I'm just curious...I mean, I have had to work with folks over the years that should have been canned in a New York minute, but instead they kept their jobs...I thought it was nearly impossible to get fired from most hakwans unless you had done something horrendous...now folks seem to be getting fired more....

Is this actually a new trend? Are schools firing folks with less reason now? Are terminations becoming more frequent, or is it just cropping up on the board more often lately?

Also, there seem to be a lot fewer posts about midnight runs...has the pendulum swung the other way? Are schools firing the teachers they think might do a run? Just curious if it seems like a trend, or just an odd concentration of posts at this point...and if it IS a trend, what changes in the ESL teaching market that might account for this new trend?
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SanatKumara



Joined: 27 Apr 2003
Location: Seoul Sister

PostPosted: Thu Aug 28, 2003 9:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My take on it is that it's about the economy, the competition and that fact the hagwon's bottomline is profit and not education. I was recently fired because enrollment was down and they had to get rid of someone. I am in contact with the other teachers and know for a fact, all my classes were either combined or taken over by other teachers (several teachers have no breaks now as a result) and the owner has made it clear they are not replacing me now or in the future. In addition to that, I did not recieve a whole months pay because the owner said I owed him for my plane ticket and Visa run. Koreans suck!
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thegadfly



Joined: 01 Feb 2003

PostPosted: Fri Aug 29, 2003 5:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

SanatKumara:

Yes, that situation sucks, your boss definitely sucks, but I would not say all Koreans suck as a result -- the same thing happened in Clark County schools in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA -- district wide hiring freeze, new teachers let go, current (growing) student population redistributed to overloaded classes, teachers' schedules reworked without breaks to cover the increased need for classes...not just one teacher or school, the whole friggin district (and not a small district at that...).

Thanks for you input, and you have my sympathy for your bad experience....
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Skarp



Joined: 22 Aug 2003

PostPosted: Fri Aug 29, 2003 5:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It is a mistake to represent this as a purely Korean thing.

It happens all the time - all over the world. Anywhere the employers have more power than the workers.

Seems strange they do this SO much in Korea when there is a shortage of foreign teachers. Seems to make bad business sense. But management in many countries make bad decisions.

People have short memeories. It was like this all over western Europe and the US/Canada within living memory.

Some of the countries with the strongest Unions and cooperative managements are the most successful economically. (Denmark/Sweden/Norway) Of course - there are other factors at work too in these countries.


Skarp
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VanIslander



Joined: 18 Aug 2003
Location: Geoje, Hadong, Tongyeong,... now in a small coastal island town outside Gyeongsangnamdo!

PostPosted: Fri Aug 29, 2003 8:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Chalk the multiple threads up to copycat posters each deciding that a thread about 'getting fired in Korea' is just too general for their personal situation.

I don't think Dave's ESLCafe is an accurate reflection of Korean waygook sarum society; nor do I think that five posters, each deciding to begin a new thread rather than joining another, is a representative sample of poster experience.

This thread deserves to be weaved into the others, each forming part of a single, stronger thread or patchwork quilt.

Do the mods have the power?
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bucheon bum



Joined: 16 Jan 2003
Location: DC area

PostPosted: Fri Aug 29, 2003 9:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Skarp wrote:


Some of the countries with the strongest Unions and cooperative managements are the most successful economically. (Denmark/Sweden/Norway) Of course - there are other factors at work too in these countries.


Skarp


Uh key phrase there: "cooperative managements." Germany has VERY strong unions and look at the rut its been in for the last few years. ditto with France. strong unions aren't necessarily a good thing.

Anyway, OP, I think the Korean economy has just slowed down a bit, some students are dropping out, pushing hogwon business down so bye-bye english teachers- well at least a few that is.
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rapier



Joined: 16 Feb 2003

PostPosted: Sun Aug 31, 2003 7:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm with bucheon bum: the korean economy's depressed, student numbers are lower, there's actually fewer hagwon jobs, and more foreign teachers to fill them( running from unemployment in the U.S).
This is also why average salaries for teachers are dropping.
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eamo



Joined: 08 Mar 2003
Location: Shepherd's Bush, 1964.

PostPosted: Sun Aug 31, 2003 10:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

bucheon bum wrote:
Skarp wrote:


Some of the countries with the strongest Unions and cooperative managements are the most successful economically. (Denmark/Sweden/Norway) Of course - there are other factors at work too in these countries.


Skarp


Uh key phrase there: "cooperative managements." Germany has VERY strong unions and look at the rut its been in for the last few years. ditto with France. strong unions aren't necessarily a good thing.

Anyway, OP, I think the Korean economy has just slowed down a bit, some students are dropping out, pushing hogwon business down so bye-bye english teachers- well at least a few that is.


I think it's a bit rich that a teacher working in the ESL business in Korea should diss the role of unions. If any industry in the world needs a strong union its the ESL industry in Korea.
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thegadfly



Joined: 01 Feb 2003

PostPosted: Sun Aug 31, 2003 11:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I disagree Eamo -- I am glad there are no ESL teacher's unions in Korea, personally. The conditions here do not require a union -- teachers do not live in a "hakwan compound" that forces them to buy goods and services at inflated prices from the hakwan, effectively making slaves of the teachers. The teachers that feel "enslaved" by their schools are actually enslaved by the debt they owe elsewhere, and their inability to take care of themselves financially. The fact remains that if you are in a bad teaching situation here and have airfare home, you can leave. End of story. Beyond that, even bad contracts are still pretty good, really. As a professional in Korea, I am free to negotiate my own contract based on my own abilities -- my pay is not madated by a union, which I definitely prefer. I can take care of myself, and I do not feel a need to donate a portion of my pay an organization so that it can take care of "professionals" that can not take care of themselves. There are legal means to redress issues when an employer behaves in an illegal manner -- there are already things that can be done, no need to make a union to do the same things and eat more money....

Now, if you want to suggest a self-regulating professional organization, like the AMA, I would be all for it. If this organization were to raise the standards for teachers and set guidelines we all willingly chose to follow, it would have a similar effect on the market...instead of forcing hakwans to pay every teacher X amount, it would force every teacher to be WORTH X amount, which would be the new baseline....
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bucheon bum



Joined: 16 Jan 2003
Location: DC area

PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2003 6:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

thanks gadfly, saved me the effort to respond Smile.

I wasn't saying unions were a bad thing anyway. Sometimes they are, sometimes they aren't- just like almost everything else in the world.
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TECO



Joined: 20 Jan 2003

PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2003 8:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

[quote="eamo"] I think it's a bit rich that a teacher working in the ESL business in Korea should diss the role of unions.

If any industry in the world needs a strong union its the ESL industry in Korea.

I totally agree with you, Eamo.

All you *beep* should go hop around on the Japan, Taiwan forums and see how often people get bent over in those places from their employers compared to a country like Korea!

Korea is the worst bar none for jerking us on contracts, housing, accommodation, etc, etc.

In fact, as you all know, the U.S. government advises people against even working here in the EFL business because of the number of complaints they receive from teachers.

Japan is also superior to Korea in this regard in that teachers are permitted to form/join labour unions. And the Unions have been able to help migrant workers in Japan.

Generally speaking, Unions are sorely needed in Asia and not just in the EFL industry.
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thegadfly



Joined: 01 Feb 2003

PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2003 11:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Generally speaking, Unions ARE needed in Asian countries -- I agree with you that far, Teco. I don't think Unions are needed in the English teaching sector....

Korea IS one of the more difficult places to work for EFL and ESL teachers, but here we disagree about WHY. I think the problem is that just about any moron from an English speaking country with any 4 year degree can get a job as a teacher. Many people that are EMPLOYED as teachers refuse to even admit that they ARE teachers -- they call themselves babysitters and say that no teaching CAN occur in Korea, then blame the industry and the schools for this.

I blame the schools too -- the problem is that there are a lot of them that will hire whoever is cheapest, and the cheapest folks are the -- what was your term? --*beep* -- that give this industry a bad name. Perhaps I have missed the posts, but the majority of people complaining about being "skrood" by management are people that lack background, experience, training, and certification in the profession.... Certainly, there are also some professional teachers with valid gripes about their situations...but I haven't heard one claim that a union would fix the problem.

The professional climate needs to change -- I agree. Japan and Taiwan are said to have better professional climates...and they also have higher standards for teacher selection. The reason so many people put up with the "bad" conditions in Korea is that a *beep* can make far more money here being a bad teacher than anywhere else....

Being a crappy teacher is a good job when you can find it -- being a good teacher is a lot of work, regardless of where you chose to work. Problem is, it is too easy for crappy teachers to get a job in Korea. You really think a union would make it HARDER for crappy teachers to find work? I think it would be the opposite -- which is why I am all for a self-regulating professional body to police itself, but am against a union...I want the same things you want, but we disagree about how we can achieve those things...
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TECO



Joined: 20 Jan 2003

PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2003 9:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
a *beep* can make far more money here being a bad teacher than anywhere else....


Japanese EFL salaries kill Korean and Taiwanese salaries.

The only other place to make more money than Japan is probably the Middle East.

Taiwan and Korean EFL salaries are pretty much on par with each other though.

Lots of bad English teachers in Japan making twice what you do in Korea.
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thegadfly



Joined: 01 Feb 2003

PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2003 10:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

...and paying for their own apartments...and paying $50 to get into a nightclub if they even go out....

When I consider how much money you can make, I look at net, not gross...assuming the same standard of living, engaging in the same kind of activities, one can save more money in Korea than in Japan.

Now, the salaries in the Middle East are very high...but I have heard that costs vary widely...depending on your placement, you may well save lots more than Korea, or you may actually have a hard time saving any money. The contracts, placement, and cost of living are variable enough to make it a bit more difficult to compare....
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kiwiboy_nz_99



Joined: 05 Jul 2003
Location: ...Enlightenment...

PostPosted: Tue Sep 02, 2003 1:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Japanese EFL salaries kill Korean and Taiwanese salaries.

Gadfly is right. I have several friends teaching in Japan, they have higher salaries, but I save more. They don't get free housing, or airfare, and the cost of living is higher.


Last edited by kiwiboy_nz_99 on Tue Sep 02, 2003 1:59 am; edited 1 time in total
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