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Little Help finding out right to leave 1 yr contract.


Bobabacca 1 | 2  
17 Nov 2008 /  #1
Hi my names Phil,

I moved to Poland 5 months ago with my Polish girlfriend Alex and we live in Zory near Rybnik.

Things were going great at 1st till I started my job Teaching English using the Callan Method at my new place of work. I love the method and the way of teaching but my boss who was a gr8 guy till i signed my contract is a pratt & he makes mine and the rest of the other Teachers life a misery.

I was wandering if anyone knows of any Schools within the area or if anyone knows my rights as an employee as my contract is for a year & though i like the students i dont really think i can hack it.

Thanks for your time & I hope i've put this in the correct area if not i'm really sorry :)
SeanBM 35 | 5,808  
17 Nov 2008 /  #2
Hello Bobabacca
And welcome to the Polish Forum.
I used to teach Callan years ago ha ha ha,
Where is master Brown?
Where is master Brown?
Master Brow....is ....be...hind...the...house.
ha ha ha
It is a great method for book one and to a relativly good conversation level.

Sorry to hear about your boss being a gobshite.

I don't know about any schools.
Perhaps private lessons? there is loads of free material on the net.

Best of luck
OP Bobabacca 1 | 2  
17 Nov 2008 /  #3
Thanks for replying so quickly! Yeah i know what you mean about the method only been 2 months & i hate the sight of a pen, a pencil, a book & Mr & Mrs Brown!!!

But i love teaching & i love meeting new people all the Polish seem so enthusiastic about learning a new language (wish i was the same about Polish but i just cant grasp it) but my boss makes it hard for me & i would like to work in a better enviroment.

Yeah got loads of materials here as my girlfriends fluent in English & was a English teacher so she has all the books Polish - English and vice versa.

Whats the best way of advertising for private lessons etc esspecially without my boss findin out as hes the type of person who doesnt want people earning outside of what he gives us & I would love to give private lessons as i'm new to teaching i was a chef b4 i moved to poland and i only have a TEFL Certificate to back me up.
vndunne 43 | 279  
17 Nov 2008 /  #4
In relation to your contract, what does it say about termination of emplyment. Nornally there is some clause for both parties to get out so long as a certain amount of notice is given. I would be very surprised if you were 'forced' to work for the full year of the contract.
OP Bobabacca 1 | 2  
18 Nov 2008 /  #5
Hi

My contract states that either party can terminate the contract giving 3 months notice at any time. However my contract also says i should be getting 20 hours per week and since the start of the school year i've done 18.5 at most. There is not enough classes to teach and i feel i was lied to as this is our main income and were not picking up what we were budgeting for. So i dont know whether i can get out of the contract relating to that as he promised me 20 hours and in 3 months i still have not done 20 hours per week.
vndunne 43 | 279  
18 Nov 2008 /  #6
Its a tricky one....If it says that you should be getting 20 hours a week then that might be a way of getting out. Not a lawyer here so dont want to say it is for definite. Unless you give in your notice stating that you want the 20 hours per week. And if that is not forthcoming, you are leaving in a month. It all depends how much of a nasty individual the guy is....do you think he would come after you? Failing that, just be rude to all the students so he sacks you. Best of luck.
delphiandomine 85 | 18,254  
25 Nov 2008 /  #7
To be honest, the contract probably wouldn't be worth enforcing, either on your part or the school's part. It does depend how much less hours you're working - if it's contracted for 20 and you're getting 15, it's not really worth kicking up a fuss about. But I can understand if it's contracted for 20 and you're only getting 10 - so you really have to weigh it up. I'm not familiar with where you're from, so you have to consider that it might not be so easy getting another job too - at the very least, I would stay in your job until you land another one.

Are the other teachers getting their contracted hours? It might very well be that they just can't afford to pay you for more hours - many schools will overpay their native speakers (wrongly, in my opinion) compared to the locals, only to realise that there's no real benefit in having a native speaker around.

But another thing - what kind of director would put a 3 month break clause into a yearly contract? Seems absolute nonsense!

As for private lessons - if it's not in your contract that you're exclusive to the school, tell them to get lost, particularly if you're doing it to make up the hours that he's not giving you.
dtaylor 9 | 823  
25 Nov 2008 /  #8
sorry but nice wise crack at the native teachers here. Not everyone in an english speaking country speaks with the queens english, so how are students going to understand dialect? most of the Polish workers who came to work in my hospital never understood a word of Scottish. I think you fail to understand the concept of knowledge and UNDERSTANDING...

One more thing, i know plenty of native speakers who actually know what there talking about, why would natives be asked before lessons meanings of words, or pronounciations? You can learn as much as you'd like from a book, but understanding a language is a very tough thing.
delphiandomine 85 | 18,254  
26 Nov 2008 /  #9
Wise crack? It was as much aimed at myself as it was aimed at others.

I know some Polish teachers earning less than me, who, in my opinion, are far superior teachers. Their accents are absolutely spot on - in one case, I was convinced she wasn't Polish. Should they really earn less, when their language skills are probably higher than 90% of people living in the UK and definitely higher than quite a few native speakers I've met?

Of course, you have to pay the big wages to attract the good native speakers in the first place - but I'm not wholly convinced that there's actually a need for them.
sunnyboy  
29 Nov 2008 /  #10
Hi Phil,
I would like to come to poland to Zory, and advice or help if i can find a job, i speak english and french fluently i would be happy if you could reply back.

thanks a million
plk123 8 | 4,150  
29 Nov 2008 /  #11
I would be very surprised if you were 'forced' to work for the full year of the contract.

i wouldn't

My contract states that either party can terminate the contract giving 3 months notice at any time. However my contract also says i should be getting 20 hours per week and since the start of the school year i've done 18.5 at most. There is not enough classes to teach and i feel i was lied to as this is our main income and were not picking up what we were budgeting for. So i dont know whether i can get out of the contract relating to that as he promised me 20 hours and in 3 months i still have not done 20 hours per week.

definitely an opening.

As for private lessons - if it's not in your contract that you're exclusive to the school, tell them to get lost, particularly if you're doing it to make up the hours that he's not giving you

good idea
Seanus 15 | 19,706  
29 Nov 2008 /  #12
Sometimes it is stipulated in a contract that you can't leave. Well, you can, but you'd face a hefty fine. Trust me, I signed this provision.

I think I know the Callan school in Rybnik. I live quite near you and have fairly extensive experience of contracts, I hope I can help you.

Eh, good native speakers really bring a new dimension to teaching. Sometimes Polish teachers can't quite express sth as clearly or make careless mistakes.
mafketis 24 | 8,916  
29 Nov 2008 /  #13
The real value in having native speakers (for any language) is that they live in the language and don't regard it as a set of grammatical rules to be navigated and vocabulary to be built up. They also have information that can be useful that even the most impressively fluent second language speakers lack.

On the other hand, most native speakers function best when dealing with more advanced students who are more likely to benefit from the particular knowledge they have (and students can also benefit from the knowledge the native speaker doesn't have). But sending out a native (with no command of Polish or real knowledge of how things work in Poland or how most Polish people learn) to work with beginners is ..... not wise.

ABRUPT CHANGE OF TOPIC CAUSED BY StOOPID FORUM POLICIES ABOUT DOUBLE POSTING!!!!!

(wish i was the same about Polish but i just cant grasp it)

I don't buy it. You're just being lazy.

Just remember the less Polish you know the more defenseless you are and the more dependent you are on the mercy of people like your boss....

Lack of interest is no excuse, sit down with your textbooks and make the effort and the interest will come.

Plus you set a horrible example for your students and colleagues. How are they supposed to respect you as a language teacher if you're incompetent at language learning?
Seanus 15 | 19,706  
29 Nov 2008 /  #14
True enough, a sound working knowledge of Polish really helps me here.

There are certain topics that only native speakers should teach, like articles. No Polish teacher I've met has convinced me that they understand them well enough to teach them with precision.
delphiandomine 85 | 18,254  
2 Dec 2008 /  #15
Plus you set a horrible example for your students and colleagues. How are they supposed to respect you as a language teacher if you're incompetent at language learning?

Actually, I've had quite a good laugh about this with my students - we share our painful experiences together :)

But sending out a native (with no command of Polish or real knowledge of how things work in Poland or how most Polish people learn) to work with beginners is ..... not wise.

I know of schools doing just this - and it's a dreadful thing to do. I don't even teach grammar in my school - even though half of it is Callan, there's a strict rule that I don't teach grammar on the grounds of it only existing to confuse people if they can't get it explained in Polish too. And it works - I concentrate on teaching people the artistic side of the language with all the beautiful ways that English can make absolutely no sense, and the Polish teachers do the nitty-gritty technical aspects.

As for the articles - do any Slavic people full stop have a complete grasp of them? I know some people who have done a masters in English and they still make mistakes with them - despite having the most beautiful accents and ability in the language.

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