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Familiar with the British Institute in Surabaya?

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Joined: 01 Jun 2010
Posts: 11
Location: Indiana

PostPosted: Tue Jun 22, 2010 11:09 pm    Post subject: Familiar with the British Institute in Surabaya? Reply with quote


I am relatively new to this forum. I am looking to teach overseas (recent US citizen with CELTA), and one of the jobs I've been contacted about is teaching in Surabaya through the British Institute.

I've read so many horror stories here that now I'm suspicious about any interest in me (awkward situation). So I ask - are any of you familiar with this organization? Are they trustworthy?
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Joined: 20 Oct 2009
Posts: 10
Location: Canadar

PostPosted: Wed Oct 02, 2013 8:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I hate to bump an old thread (which I realize I recently did in a different section) but it's better than the alternative. Very Happy

I was recently contacted by TBI Surabaya, but can't find much information about that particular branch. Anybody with specific information about this branch that they can share, either on here or through PM.

I appreciate it!
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Joined: 12 Apr 2013
Posts: 310

PostPosted: Mon Oct 07, 2013 6:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have been the most vocal critic of TBI on this forum, but my goal has always been to provide accurate information, not to sensationalize. You may be surprised then to hear me say that by all reports, TBI Surabaya is a lot better than most of their schools. Allow me to clarify why this may be the case.

TBI's franchise system is a disaster. Make no mistake. The franchise agreement does not include ANY penalties for schools which break TBI rules. None at all. That means that Head Office have very little ability contractually- speaking to punish offenders. Therefore, while the manager of TBI Bekasi has reneged on salary promises, reneged on airline promises, allegedly discussed getting a hit-man to murder a former teacher (who had done a runner) and been accused of being a serial sexual harasser, sometimes even of adolescent girls, TBI Head Office has allowed him to stay in his position. "There's nothing we can do," they say, "Really your employer is the franchisee, not us."

Yet while the utter lack of oversight has been a disaster at TBI Bekasi and TBI Kelapa Gading (where the student payments have been stolen multiple times), it has worked out better at TBI Surabaya. Generally, teachers say this is a good place to work and the owners respect their students. One difference is the fact that the owners of TBI Surabaya are Canadian. This is the only TBI franchise school which is expat owned. This fact is probably the reason why the school is so different from the other franchise schools. You are dealing with a "Western mentality" when you deal with these people, which is especially important in the case of TBI, where so many of the Indonesian-run schools have very dubious characters in charge. I am not exaggerating when I say that criminal activities have gone on in some of the other schools.

Nonetheless, you could only add the name "TBI, The British Institute" to your CV with a sense of trepidation. Google their name and you will easily find stories of sexual harassment, embezzlement of student payments, death threats against former teachers who have spoken out and schools that have paid $40 on $80,000 income, earning them a reputation as a "tax cheat" company. Their reputation has now easily sunk below EF Swara (except in terms of teacher pay.) I don't understand why anyone with the right degree would chose these guys over Wall Street- unless you HAD to be in Indonesia. There is a definite bad aroma hanging around the TBI brand these days.
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Joined: 19 Jul 2013
Posts: 23
Location: Bangkok

PostPosted: Sun Nov 03, 2013 7:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bradley is being too kind this time. This company is protecting a school manager at TBI Bekasi who was arrested for sexual assaults on a minor. The charges were dropped but I know for a fact he had hundreds of young girls names in hi BlackBerry. He even encouraged me to date students too. Maybe TBI Surabaya is better but they are still part of a big cover-up. Also do they pay THR? Do they give real tax slips? I'd like teachers to confirm they do because TBI don't follow the law at other school.
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