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Oxford Centar Montengero

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Joined: 02 May 2009
Posts: 1
Location: Oslo, Norway

PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2012 3:39 pm    Post subject: Oxford Centar Montengero Reply with quote

I was actually intending to respond to a previous thread about this language school, but wasn't able to locate it again. I worked at this school on a 4-month contract. They have several locations throughout the Balkans, which are all centrally managed. I accepted the job based on a complimentary post from another former teacher on this site, but I wanted to refute what that former teacher stated in hopes of warning others who may accept this position based on a false impression. I created a list of objective information about what it's like to work in Montenegro for this employer.
Did they pay your salary on time?: YES, in cash usually around the 5th of the month
Did they help you find accommodations?: YES, a colleague did
Were you happy with your accommodations?: NO, can't afford anything good on that stipend, expect to come out of pocket if you want a halfway decent place.
Was the housing stipend enough to cover your rent?: NO
Does cost of living reflect the salary you received?: YES (if you don't have debts)
Was it easy to make friends in Montenegro? : NO
Were your colleague helpful?: NO (each teacher does their own thing, no integration, expect to be on your own, I got the impression no one knew what was going on anyway)
Did you have any help from the head teacher?: NO, there is currently no head teacher
Did you receive a handbook?: YES
Was the handbook helpful? : NO, not up-to-date, practices not followed
Lesson Plans? You must write them, I doubt anyones looks at them.
Split Shifts: YES
Planning time: Done on your own time.
Health care system?: ok, affordable, employer paid as needed, easy to fill prescriptions
Nightlife: Depends on the location, but generally boring
Beaches: Excellent!
Weather Mild, usually sunny
Clothes/ Shoe: Very expensive, and low quality, ship everything you'll need from home.
Days off? Officially no, but possible if the lesson is made up later.
Public Transport: depends, but somewhat limited, mostly buses, timetables non-existent
Students: Horrible! Worst behaved students I've taught. (Adults were fine though)
Class Size: generally too big to manage (because of behavior issues)
Facilities: Ok, nothing special,not enough board space/ bulletin boards, small rooms
Testing: You won't be told, but the students will take a standardized test, you can't see it ahead of time, but will have to somehow prepare them for it.
Private Lesson permitted? NO. The school has a monopoly and intends to hold on to it
VISA: Very, very easy process, you'll take care of it at the airport.

General Impression: It's a English factory; like many schools out there. Management is totally detached and seemingly indifferent about what is happening in the classroom, as long as the students are happy. Management is not attentive to teachers needs unless you don't push them.The best part of the job is no one is looking over your shoulder, the worst part is the abusively long hours without a break that comes with only teaching 4-days a week.

I'm not suggesting that you decline an offer from this employer, just be aware of what you're getting into and DON'T take them at their word- challenge inconsistencies in the contract. This post was not intended to denigrate the franchise or its employees since I can document every one of these points. My colleagues were nice people on a personal level, as were the directors. This is not personal, I just want to help my fellow teachers make an informed decision.
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Joined: 19 Sep 2011
Posts: 6

PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2012 10:53 am    Post subject: Oxford Reply with quote

If I were you, I would post on the relevant section of the Interbational Job Forums board. More traffic there and probably where you saw the other post.
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