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Discussion in 'Teaching abroad' started by mr1303, May 4, 2020.
Go ask your bursar...
ROFLOL. I think newbies to the international circuit need to remind them selves that recruiters from agencies post here, and their income is almost exclusively derived from commission paid by schools. They are currently desperate, more so than usual with C19. It has been the same for at least 30 years, but they will tell you repeatedly and post here that you can be blacklisted internationally, you cannot break contracts because you'll be sued, the school / recruiter will always look after you if there's a problem etc etc.
And it's all rubbish.
They will always tell you what you want to here. Never trust anything anyone from an agency tells you. Contracts are not like UK contracts and mean nothing more than 'maybe we might take you on but here's a piece of paper with a signature on to make you feel like we are to be trusted'. With C19, look after number 1. Try to hold three or four job offers, definitely not one, in different countries. Pick the one you will honour when you know you can get a visa, can fly, the job is still there, your medical insurance is valid, there isn't a second C19 wave etc etc.
Trust no one.
I call your experiences and knowledge in the ME a load of BS.
Runners (teachers) have been caught transiting in Dubai and Abu. One was on his way to Thailand from the UK. In 2017, a British teacher ran away with the 19,000QR furniture allowance. She was in jail until she maxed her partners credit card.
The advice that you're providing is dangerous and inaccurate. If you sign a 3 year contract of employment in China and don't follow through with it then your school can legally recover the costs of employing you.
Furthermore, if you sign up for multiple jobs then recruitment agencies will blacklist you thus reducing your chances of finding employment later on.
I would suggest that you do some research before you make inaccurate comments because there are people out there who are looking for credible advice, not the BS that is coming from you...
Did you actually read the background to these reports? It's nothing to do with teachers breaking contracts, leaving because the school didn't hold up their end of the bargain or a teacher leaving because they didn't like the job for some reason.
It has everything to do with a whole family involved in huge (alleged) loans for an (alleged) business and then (alleged) fraud involving a bank, and then trying to do an (alleged) disappearing act.
Another commission-based recruiter posting, trying hard to keep newbie teachers in line, perhaps?
I don't know about you chaps, but I've never signed a contract of employment prior to arriving in the countries I've worked in, they have all been 'intention letters' or 'offers'.
Did you forget to read the last paragraph about teachers thinking they are untouchable?
Similarly, are you not aware that there's a good % of students in the ME whose fathers own businesses funded by bank loans. The initial conversation was not being able to pay fees.
You ruffle the correct set of feathers; the schools whose owned/part onwned or sponsored by the coreect local individual can make your transit anywhere in the ME uncomfortable.
Agencies choose who to take on. If you take a business point of view, the number of schools is likely to drop in coming years - which means that it will become more competitive to get jobs. Luvsskiing, if you behave as you have suggested then be in no doubt that agencies will blackball you, that headteachers do talk to each other informally about candidates, and that you will struggle to get in to a good school. But I guess if you're happy working in a dodgy school in sub-Saharan Africa (eh, 4019775) that's fine.
"then your school can legally recover the costs of employing you."
Really? So you are sitting in London, Bangkok or wherever you escaped and ran off to, and a school in China is going to sue you? Firstly, it would be 'he said, she said' if the teacher alleged that the school didn't keep their side of the bargain, for whatever reason. Then they of course have to actually locate you and the beach you are lazing on. Then they have to serve you with papers. Then they have to get you back in China to answer questions, gather proof, deal with counter arguments, deal with the very bad publicity that the teacher could decide to post online if a school got overly zealous etc etc etc.
You can see how silly this post quickly starts to sound, can't you?
"Furthermore, if you sign up for multiple jobs then recruitment agencies will blacklist you thus reducing your chances of finding employment later on."
I see. Just so I'm clear, in the cut-throat business of commission-based international recruitment, you'd like us to believe that agencies are working together, and once a week swapping names and addresses of people on their books who they fell out with, with other, rival agencies? And all these agencies and one man band recruitment agents, every one of them, operate some kind of credit brownie point database of potential teachers which they all without fail subscribe to? Apart from breaking the DPA Act, are there any other things recruitment agencies are doing with everyone's personal data that you aren't telling anyone about?
A very silly post IMHO.
'Try to hold three or four job offers, definitely not one, in different countries. Pick the one you will honour when you know you can get a visa, can fly, the job is still there, your medical insurance is valid, there isn't a second C19 wave etc etc.'
No. Don't do this.
Not true for some countries in the ME and China, particularly the better schools, who ask for an offer letter to be signed and then a contract of employment once all of the reference checks have been completed.
Your lack of understanding is incredible especially for someone who is supposed to be an experienced, international teacher. If you break contract in a country such as China then what makes you think that you'll ever get a work permit to work in China again? The same logic applies to schools in the ME. They can actually block you from working in the same country for two years.
In regards to your incredibly stupid comment about recruitment agencies, one of the biggest recruitment agencies (SA) will blacklist you from using their website, especially if you have three or four jobs arranged, as you've unprofessionally suggested. This also applies to other reputable agencies such as TH. Schools will not want to use agencies who provide unreliable, unprofessional and unethical teachers. I genuinely hope that you can understand this very simple logic.
Luvssking, please don't post legal advice. Its painfully obvious you have literally no idea what you are talking about.
This would be a civil case where the burden of proof is 'on the balance of probabilities,' - which essentially translates to who the judge believes more. The 'beyond all reasonable doubt' burden of proof only applies in criminal cases. So no, a school doesn't have to prove anything; they merely have to be more articulate and convincing in front of a judge than you are.
No, they don't. They would submit a moneyclaimonline (MCOL) form for the small claims court using the last known address of the defendant (which would reasonably be the address you put on your application form). The court sends notification out to the defendant (although it is standard practice to also send a letter before action to the defendant as well). If you don't receive the letter, or don't turn up at court on the given day, you lose the case and judgement is made against you in your absence. This is a necessary process but its also how people who move home find they have a CCJ against them for a £10 mobile phone bill from 4 years ago...
'Serving with papers' shows you have been watching too many american legal TV shows...
There is no requirement to get a candidate back to China if they applied to a Chinese school from the UK; a school could just use the UK courts. There's also no need to ask (or force answers to) any questions. Proof? Well, verbal contracts are binding (as are email exchanges) so I assume this would be trivially easy to 'prove' as there is probably some sort of exchange between you and the school after the interview which would speak as to what was discussed. Again, note the first response concerning the requirement of proof - it isn't as high as you believe.
The only reasonable counter argument would be that the costs were not foreseeable or not proportionate. I think both of these are unlikely to succeed.
As this thread has demonstrated, I believe public opinion would be against the teacher who accepted 3 different positions in different countries. If you want to go down the route of posting incorrect information online about a school then there are other legal remedies available for that too.
Caveat for all the above: Any reasonable school would probably not want to go through the time and expense of taking an applicant to court and will probably act fairly if you are fair with them - but lets not question whether it *could* be done.
"please don't post legal advice."
What a bizarre thing to write. I haven't.
This is a forum. It's a place where people post opinions. I've posted mine based on 30 years as an international teacher, telling it like it is from the teacher's POV. You are welcome to post alternative views, and then people can make up their own minds like grown-ups. I hope you are mature enough to discuss opinions not the poster.
Remember, newbies. Trust no one. Look after number one. Have a back up plan in case your job is cancelled in August. Schools cannot possibly know how many teachers they will need after this pandemic. Neither can you be sure you can get your documents verified, a work visa from the embassy, a flight to the country, can avoid quarantine, your medical insurance will cover C19 abroad and a second C19 wave doesn't strike. Don't give up a permanent job or hand in your notice unless you have a safety net of finances behind you and somewhere to stay in an emergency in August. Do not trust recruiters, ever. They work for schools and are paid by them, they will tell you anything to ensure their commission is paid. They are a conduit to jobs, can help you navigate procedures, but they do not work for you, ever.
Being an international teacher is brilliant, it really is. But now is not the time to gamble. The world will be there for you next year.
Whilst I can not condone Luvssking's suggestion of holding two or more job offers, this is a year where you really do need to look out for yourself and not give up a secure job on an empty promise which is not made with YOUR best interests in mind. And the agencies are also not working with your best interests at heart. They work for the schools.
As I have said before, I am pretty certain my job will still be here in August we have good enrollment figures and I am currently in the country, but all could change by August. Therefore my paperwork and finances are all in order for a quick change of plan if I end up having to leave the country and lose my job.
With reference to the OP's original post - it stinks, but was bound to happen in some places and is evidential of the fact that many schools are, of course, more than prepared to shaft their staff, and those schools who behave that way will be more common this year than in previous years.
Yet another thing that might go badly wrong if you give up one job and accept another. Neither the school nor the agency who placed you are going to help you. Neither do they care about professionalism, ethics, morals and all the other nonsense spouted on here. - these only apply to teachers apparently!!
Remember, 30 years of international teaching says, trust no one.
I was just pulling Dumbell's leg (as I hope he knows). He is prone to exaggerate somewhat, but good luck to him. He's found somewhere he's happy and I guess that's the goal for any of us expats.
Sadly @4019775 is sitting alone very bitter, using multiple usernames to spread their made up international experience. Its so sad, so so so sad.
But it makes me smile how irritated they get because they weren't good enough to get on the circuit.
Can you two get a room, bang, and just get it over with. Tired of seeing your flirting in just about every thread on this forum.
@Mitochondria1 hear hear. It’s so tedious. @dumbbells66 @Duraz and @4019775 - I’m sure you would all get along over a nice lemonade if you met.