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Are you teaching English in Poland?


FUZZYWICKETS 8 | 1,879
20 Mar 2010 #61
Seanus wrote:

Interpersonal compatibility is often as important as what you know, though.

TEFL is 70% personality, 30% skill.

and I'm fine with it. most professions are the same way.

it always cracks me up when posters boast about qualifications and fancy degrees in this profession. a master's degree in ESL? a DELTA? all that to teach English to some bratty teenagers or some snobby lawyer who refuses to be corrected when he makes grammar mistakes?

i'll never understand it. not in this profession.
rozumiemnic 8 | 3,854
20 Mar 2010 #62
Be a conscious teacher

always a good idea I find, not to be asleep at the desk when the class arrives......
Seanus 15 | 19,672
20 Mar 2010 #63
True enough. A CELTA is more than enough. Teaching has always been about the classroom, not about turning it into some academic elite activity by doing an MSc or DELTA in the background. That's when people start to disappear up their own jacksies and lose sight of leading from the chalk face (or marker face).

Truth be told, my 1-month CELTA was a token gesture as I had already 2 years of contact time with students and a firm grounding in the tenses. Scotland is full of that nonsense, do this course and we'll promise you gold. Here's sth, go f*ck yourself!

No more will any education institution get my cash. Full of 2-bit wan*ers and pseudo-intellectuals who are well wide of the mark.
jonni 16 | 2,481
20 Mar 2010 #64
True enough. A CELTA is more than enough.

No more will any education institution get my cash.

So what happens if you decide you want to teach somewhere other than a bottom feeding language school, in order to save some pennies for your old age?
Seanus 15 | 19,672
20 Mar 2010 #65
I'm already contributing towards my retirement by paying 840PLN ZUS a month, jonni. I've been doing so since Oct last year and paying my own ZUS since Oct 2007. I don't get your point exactly, sorry.
jonni 16 | 2,481
20 Mar 2010 #66
I'm already contributing towards my retirement by paying 840PLN ZUS a month

I've been doing so since Oct last year

I hope by the time you retire Help The Aged are still operating to make sure you get the fuel vouchers.

There's also the issue that it's OK for a twenty-something to be slinging Headway at Agnieszkas and Magdas in their language school FCE classes but after 10 or 20 years doing it you might find you want a little more job-satisfaction, salary, personal development and value in the employment market.

There's also the issue that the EFL market in a given country is subject both to market forces/economic change and government policy. Over the last ten years I've seen a lot of change here in PL, and the international trend towards PYPs has frozen out underqualified teachers already in some countries.

Getting a DELTA, QTS or MA Tesol is one of the best favours you can do for yourself in the EFL profession. That or buy a lot of Lotto tickets.
Seanus 15 | 19,672
20 Mar 2010 #67
I disagree. I've been here for 5.5 years and have taught in many places along the way. DELTA wouldn't make the slightest jot of difference. I am who I am and making new contacts is far more important than punting hard-earned cash into the coffers of a vulture-like institution. I've seen the increments that so-called trainers get. Many more ulcers for fractionally more pay. DELTA is for the vain, jonni.
jonni 16 | 2,481
20 Mar 2010 #68
I've been here for 5.5 years and have taught in many places along the way. DELTA wouldn't make the slightest jot of difference.

What do you see as the next stage in life's journey?

I am who I am and making new contacts is far more important than punting hard-earned cash into the coffers of a vulture-like institution.

A university is vulture-like? Check out MA Tesol at New School in NYC. Or the MA at Sheffield Hallam.

DELTA is for the vain

Or for people who like professional and personal development and want access to jobs with better pay and conditions, not necessarily in bottom-feeding language schools or on company contracts which last as long as the firm's current training policy.

And remember that in Poland you'll soon be 'competing' (and that's how they see it) with well qualified non-natives with near-native levels of English. They are also very prepared to accept 3000zl a year and are overjoyed if they get 4k.

By the way, although DELTA is useful in its way (and I found it valuable), an MA in Applied Linguistics or the MA Tesol (geared up to people doing 75% through distance learning) opens a lot more doors, worldwide.
Seanus 15 | 19,672
20 Mar 2010 #69
You are being cryptic, jonni. Next stage? Tightening the belt and settling down a bit. Is that what you were hitting at?

I was talking about institutions like International House and Bell etc. Those that charge exorbitant amounts for teacher development. I have come to learn that having advanced qualifications can work against you. You are who you are and you put yourself where you put yourself. I cannot put it any simpler than that.

Sorry, I'm a critic of distance learning. I'm a big fan of being in the classroom and showing what you know and can do. It's all about opportunity, jonni, and the combo of teaching exp and a CELTA has done me just fine. I've received awards and praise for my teaching, how would a DELTA change that? What doors, doors to what? I have a wife and stable job here in Poland, what more could I want? Sorry, my letters got me little through the standard application process in the job market. I could work at the local university here if I wanted. As it is, I'm gonna go in for more proofreading work as a side project.
FUZZYWICKETS 8 | 1,879
20 Mar 2010 #70
jonni wrote:

after 10 or 20 years doing it you might find you want a little more job-satisfaction, salary, personal development and value in the employment market.

20 years? in a private institution? so like....when you're 50, start looking for "something else"? who does that for 20 freakin' years?

what kind of job do you think you can land with a DELTA, that a guy with say 15 years experience in the industry can't?

jonni wrote:

Or for people who like professional and personal development and want access to jobs with better pay and conditions, not necessarily in bottom-feeding language schools or on company contracts which last as long as the firm's current training policy.

why would someone be limited to bottom-feeding language schools?
jonni 16 | 2,481
20 Mar 2010 #71
Tightening the belt and settling down a bit. Is that what you were hitting at?

I'm not sure what sort of age you are but it's about where you want to be later in your career. As Thatcher said "jam tomorrow".

I was talking about institutions like International House and Bell etc.

Touch neither. They are parasites.

Those that charge exorbitant amounts for teacher development.

Agreed.

I have come to learn that having advanced qualifications can work against you.

Most people would find that an unusual comment to say the least.

Sorry, I'm a critic of distance learning. I'm a big fan of being in the classroom and showing what you know and can do

Avoid the kind that are all by distance. The better employers don't accept them. The two that I mentioned recognise that you can do the academic part from anywhere and the observed teaching component can be done in two annual sessions at a time of year that mutually suits, usually the summer.

the combo of teaching exp and a CELTA has done me just fine. I've received awards and praise for my teaching,

You and me both, but where do you want to be a few years down the line?

how would a DELTA change that?

By opening a heck of a lot of doors and by leaving less to chance.

I have a wife and stable job here in Poland, what more could I want?

A better more fulfilling job than language school or entry level university work.

s it is, I'm gonna go in for more proofreading work as a side project.

We've all done that. I do translations (the reason I'm sat at the computer so much, looking at PF every half hour) and they are the icing on the cake which pay for my holidays and a few of life's luxuries. But only that. I have about 20 years left of working life, assuming I retire in my mid-60s, and wouldn't want to be doing language school work and translations during all of that time. Would you?

If you really don't want to develop academically and you want to stay for life in PL (I once thought that), you could do much worse than open a language school as I did. But be very aware that the market is changing very fast and PYPs will eventually kill 80% of it here as they have in many other developed countries.
Seanus 15 | 19,672
20 Mar 2010 #72
Jonni, I am in the here and now and am making provisions for all manner of practicalities. You seem to have read some of those God-forsaken career books which aren't worth the paper they are written on. Yes, planning is important but know yourself, not one book written by one author in one period of time.

I don't intend to touch either :) Basil Paterson College in Edinburgh is one of the leading schools in Europe I believe. I did my CELTA there and have amassed a wealth of experience in different methods from then on.

I have other pressing payments (ZUS, flat, accountant and tax etc). I don't have the disposable income to go squandering it on a needless roll of the dice. I don't play such egomaniacal games.

Well, you have to see where I am coming from. Ask delphiandomine, he's from my home city. He'll tell you that it's hard to get work there without being in certain sectors. My qualifications quickly lost their value and I had to broaden my horizons. The setup in Scotland is different. There are old boy networks and it's very cliquey. It's a small country and I wasn't ready to enter into that without first having seen a bit of the world. Thanks to me only having a CELTA and 7.5 years exp as a teacher ;0 ;) ;), I have seen a lot of new countries. Besides, I often use some of my Masters knowledge in discussions with my more academic, private students. One is an international speaker with a PhD, one is a senior legal adviser and the other is a sharp cookie :)

My academic parts of learning were done in seminars on a face-to-face basis. In my European law subjects, my Prof who led the discussions was/is one of the most eminent in Europe and is widely published. There is no escaping or ducking in that format, he found out for sure what we knew and what we didn't know. No offence but an LLM is a much more rigorous and chanelled program than some distance learning done without human contact. I know that distance learning wants to provide flexibility but those that want higher-level degrees must be prepared to undergo intensive studying and continuous mentoring with the Profs/lecturers at your side. You have to chart development, not peek at it from afar.

I see myself branching out into university teaching. There will come a time when the method I teach at present gets too tedious and I will look for sth more challenging. University teaching presents that challenge.

What doors? It's a hackneyed phrase, so cliche at times. I have been a trainer already and it's nothing to write home about.

What is unfulfilling about a language school? The range of topics is broad. Universities follow national curriculums too. If I had input into a syllabus then I'd be happy but most foreigners are not well-positioned to do that.

What are you doing now, may I ask? Translations show a mature level of development, that I understand Polish well enough to do it. Also, it is but one string in the bow of quivers. Many are in the translation industry and that must be monotonous at times.

Jonni, I enjoy reading your posts and you know the game but some disillusionment shines through in your posts. I sometimes wonder if your questions should be self-directed, no offence. I know a super teacher here who is approaching 50 and he has no pension and no job anymore. Things can quickly change and sometimes we should be glad to have a job due to the turbulence of life. I may want to return to Scotland at some time down the line and what use is my teaching and quals there? That's a matter of conjecture.
Trevek 25 | 1,699
20 Mar 2010 #73
DELTA is for the vain,

It's also a must if you decide to go abroad and work with places like BC affiliated schools, from what I hear. Likewise, if you want to do management in British summer schools when the work dries up during the summer... DELTA's a must (not got one, myself).
Seanus 15 | 19,672
20 Mar 2010 #74
I'm not a yes man who will blindly carry out an agenda but I accept that a DELTA may be of assistance to a limited group, yes. There's summer work here and it has been arranged already so I have nothing to worry about.
delphiandomine 88 | 18,116
20 Mar 2010 #75
why would someone be limited to bottom-feeding language schools?

Because the better jobs will have DELTA/QTS/MA in TESOL or equal as a minimum requirement. Experience will count for nothing, because all of those qualifications are about more than just teaching.

And as mentioned, if you want to go to another country to earn serious cash for a couple of years, you haven't got a hope in hell of landing something exceptionally good if you don't have it. Personality doesn't come into it - they simply won't shortlist someone who hasn't got the desired qualification. With the DELTA becoming modular, there's even less excuse not to have it.

what kind of job do you think you can land with a DELTA, that a guy with say 15 years experience in the industry can't?

A real university job, jobs teaching very high powered clients, jobs with the BC, management jobs, teaching in the Middle East for a ridiculously high salary, the list is endless. Experience means nothing if you don't have the piece of paper confirming that you can do more than just teach some kids grammar.

Even some language schools are now demanding the DELTA from their native teachers - which is insane, but it's a sign of how competitive the market is.
Trevek 25 | 1,699
20 Mar 2010 #76
There's summer work here and it has been arranged already so I have nothing to worry about.

Lucky guy, Seanus. The work dries up in Olsztyn, and the courses cost and pay less. Going to UK for a couple of months tax-free is the best option for some of us. Considering a DELTA just so I can consider DOS jobs etc.

As for BC, it's a joke. I had to seek their approval for work in Skopje one year. Then when I got the job it turned out they made no contribution to the wages or anything. They just like the look of it all.
Seanus 15 | 19,672
20 Mar 2010 #77
Let's confine the focus to Poland here. There may come a day when bilingual teachers take the jobs from native speakers. There are already signs that work is drying up in some places. Those with Philology or teaching degrees here may get more of a look in.

I know a guy who teaches in the ME without a DELTA or even a CELTA, delph. It's just reality.

So, delph, what magical components does a DELTA offer? Where I'm sitting, I can do anything that a DELTA holder can and would gladly test that claim out.
delphiandomine 88 | 18,116
20 Mar 2010 #78
As for BC, it's a joke. I had to seek their approval for work in Skopje one year. Then when I got the job it turned out they made no contribution to the wages or anything. They just like the look of it all.

I've heard the same sentiment from plenty of people - but then again, the BC as an organisation is a complete joke - transparency? what transparency?
Seanus 15 | 19,672
20 Mar 2010 #79
Those at the higher echelons are teaching's equivalent of corporate puppets, delph. I'm sorry but I see the function of teaching very well. Imparting info and facilitating participation is so important. I don't feel that I've come up short for not having a DELTA. Being well-educated, flexible and demonstrating your experience is key.
jonni 16 | 2,481
20 Mar 2010 #80
Jonni, I am in the here and now and am making provisions for all manner of practicalities. You seem to have read some of those God-forsaken career books which aren't worth the paper they are written on.

Which books do you mean? As an aside I haven't read any 'career books'.

Basil Paterson College in Edinburgh is one of the leading schools in Europe I believe.

Respectable enough.

nd have amassed a wealth of experience in different methods from then on.

That's just dandy, great on a CV, but better if you've got the little embossed bit of vellum to prove it.

a needless roll of the dice. I don't play such egomaniacal games.

A masters' degree or a DELTA is an 'egomaniacal game'?

Thanks to me only having a CELTA and 7.5 years exp as a teacher ;0 ;) ;), I have seen a lot of new countries.

You and me both, and it's nice to have enough money to enjoy the best of them.

I know that distance learning wants to provide flexibility but those that want higher-level degrees must be prepared to undergo intensive studying and continuous mentoring with the Profs/lecturers at your side. You have to chart development, not peek at it from afar.

Very much so. Those aimed at EFL teachers (the better ones - choose carefully) indeed have 'intensive studying and continuous mentoring'.

I see myself branching out into university teaching. There will come a time when the method I teach at present gets too tedious and I will look for sth more challenging. University teaching presents that challenge.

We're coming from the same place. In my case I want to make damn sure it works. Entry level jobs in fourth rate tertiary sector institutions are no paradise.

What is unfulfilling about a language school? The range of topics is broad.

Groundhog day after a few years and even the good ones can feel like sweatshops after a while. And increasingly you will have to compete for lessons with Poles who speak near perfect English, have better qualifications than you and lower salary expectations.

What are you doing now, may I ask?

I have a language school in Warsaw :-)) I like it all, the selling, the hiring and I teach some of the lessons myself too. But the business is only as valuable as the value of the in-company contracts which can (and sometimes do) go in a puff of smoke. And the margin on an in-company lesson (ten years ago at least 100% less overhead charge, now closer to 20%) means a lot of selling for small rewards. I'm ready for a change, and grateful that I have the paper qualifications to give me a choice in this.

Translations show a mature level of development, that I understand Polish well enough to do it. Also, it is but one string in the bow of quivers. Many are in the translation industry and that must be monotonous at times.

Agreed. A company report Pol to Eng can be grindingly dull, a 100 page technical specification Eng to Pol quickly becomes a chore.

but some disillusionment shines through in your posts.

Right now yes, meaning the state and direction of the market in PL compared to other places. I've also seen far too many people here that I don't want to become like.

I sometimes wonder if your questions should be self-directed, no offence.

You've almost hit the nail on the head. My professional journey has always been upward, and I really want it to stay that way. Call it ambition, call it a fear of being stuck in a rut, call it anything. I would still advise anyone who wants to make a serious and rewarding career in EFL to not stop with just the CELTA.

I know a super teacher here who is approaching 50 and he has no pension and no job anymore.

My point exactly. I'm approaching 45 with a business that could vanish at the stroke of a few finance directors' pens. At least at the moment I'm making a bit more money than I really need - there's a hell of a lot of people in a far far worse situation, including many in PL. Prague and Vienna are full of them. I wouldn't want that for myself, and I'm sure you wouldn't too.

I may want to return to Scotland at some time down the line and what use is my teaching and quals there? That's a matter of conjecture.

Wouldn't you want to return there with a nice nest egg in an offshore bank? A safety net that gives you free choice about when to return, where to live and what to do. That takes either exceptional drive, exceptional luck or very solid professional skills backed up with proof on paper.

I like living in Warsaw. I go to the theatre every week, the opera every month, the philharmonia too. I eat out at the country's best restaurants, have weekends in good hotels, live somewhere nice. I'm lucky. Either lucky or very driven. Most EFL teachers aren't in that situation.

I know a lot of EFL teachers both here and elsewhere. Without exception the ones who live in sub-optimal accommodation, eat at burger bars and have to be very very careful with money and are in dead-end underpaid jobs have only the CELTA and often not even that. The ones who live well and happily have either got real estate back home, higher qualifications, an absence of ambition, a rich spouse or a combination of those factors.

Maybe I sound preachy and patronising. If so I apologise. My point is that doing the DELTA was one of the best decisions I made - it has given me the flexibility to up and leave when I want (important in our profession) and was great professional development as well as being intellectually stimulating. I know a lot of teachers, married with kids, who've gone to the Gulf, to West Africa, to Central Asia (basically anywhere with oil) for their and their families' future. The ones with minimum qualifications had to leave their families back home and remit money like a third-world citizen; the ones with that extra bit of paper could get jobs with family accommodation, health insurance and school fees provided.
scottie1113 7 | 898
20 Mar 2010 #81
Seanus:
I was talking about institutions like International House and Bell etc.

Touch neither. They are parasites.

Why do you say that?
Seanus 15 | 19,672
20 Mar 2010 #82
Those books that try and tell you what to do and what's what with your career. They tend to be written by paranoid and repressed individuals looking to carve out a new niche for themselves.

They have a solid rep and are accredited so that'll do me nicely. Besides, I prefer to look to the near future, not back to April-May 2004.

It's embossed in my mind. Given that I'll only live with one person my whole life, that'll do me nicely. I feel no need to prove myself.

What I meant by egomaniacal game is the often selfish lure of 'advancement' ('ambition makes you look pretty ugly', Radiohead). I prefer to make use of the tools I have. Working with a Polish legal adviser is really teasing out what I studied and having that avenue is useful. It's about putting yourself in the loop and I found that contract through enquiring.

Travelling became a priority some years ago and having a wife as a manageress of a travel agency doesn't hurt either ;)

As long as the objectives of distance learning are clearly spelled out, it has a place. You just need to know where you can be realistically placed and coached through. Undertaking such a scheme for box-ticking or money is the wrong way to go about it. I wonder what Harmer would have to say about it, I'm gazing up at his seminal book on teaching now. Damn, too many books around me ;) ;)

Exactly, jonni. You have to be careful of going too far down a certain road. 'Choose wisely' cannot be overstated.

I hear ye. Still, I've shuffled at the right times. I did one year of Callan too many (3) but that's behind me now. Plus, I did Business English and was a FCE/CAE mentor too so a few more things were thrown into the mix.

Stick with your Warsaw commitments, though. There is no getting round the fact that teaching is laden/fraught with pitfalls when it comes to contracts. Contracts come and go and that's just the way it is. Lord only knows I've had to adjust and bide my time on some.

Like most native speakers who have reached a certain level of proficiency, I only do Pol-Eng. Anything else comes from the help and clarification of my wife.

It's all about weathering inevitable storms and taking the bad with the good. Having a school is a great project and worth pursuing.

Well, it all depends on how satisfied you'd be with the options that delph outlined. They are not for me, much as plum jobs in the EU weren't after graduating LLM in International and European Law in Nov 2000. My work colleagues are important and I don't think that I'd relish the prospect of working with some DELTA people.

Absolutely not, jonni. However, the ball is often not in our court. Other people can control out destiny to some extent and we just have to defend our corner and strive to bring to fruition what we started. It's more cut throat in Prague and Vienna from what I have heard, yes.

True, it all hinges on your circumstances. I'm not prepared to go beyond LLM and CELTA, that's investment enough for me. It's a question of desire.
jonni 16 | 2,481
20 Mar 2010 #83
Why do you say that?

They mostly earn money by taking a franchise fee from language schools who use their name. They have a reputation among newbie teachers but among students their reputation is only as good as their local franchisee. Changes in visa requirements (plus expansion of the EU) have dinted their profits because London-based courses (with visas allowing their students to work) was a big part of what they do. Of the two mentioned, one is close to losing its charitable status and has already had to sell its London headquarters and the other is dependent on a couple of precarious income streams and has lost its Chief Executive among other problems. Of the two, Bell is probably better - they have a wider spread of operations than IH, but again, they're OK as a recruiter but the actual day to day operations depend on the local franchisee over whom they have little control.

those books that try and tell you what to do and what's what with your career. They tend to be written by paranoid and repressed individuals looking to carve out a new niche for themselves.

Never read one. I'm intrigued,

Given that I'll only live with one person my whole life, that'll do me nicely. I feel no need to prove myself.

I thought that back in the UK. Until a tragedy changed everything and I found myself grieving and desperate for a change of scene.

I wonder what Harmer would have to say about it, I'm gazing up at his seminal book on teaching now.

Harmer's good. All EFL teachers should not only have a copy but also read it and refer to it. I like Wright too.

I hear ye. Still, I've shuffled at the right times. I did one year of Callan too many (3) but that's behind me now. Plus, I did Business English and was a FCE/CAE mentor too so a few more things were thrown into the mix.

That will help you. I still urge you to get some concrete proof on paper. You know you have the skills - the important thing is proof.

It's more cut throat in Prague and Vienna from what I have heard, yes.

Thirty-plus thousand Americans in Prague, and half of them short of work. A language school in provincial Czech (I think Ostrava, the Scunthorpe of Czech and a long long way from the capital) advertised a full-time vacancy a month ago and got 250 CVs.

Stick with your Warsaw commitments, though. There is no getting round the fact that teaching is laden/fraught with pitfalls when it comes to contracts. Contracts come and go and that's just the way it is. Lord only knows I've had to adjust and bide my time on some.

I've a strong suspicion that in ten or fifteen years' time Warsaw will be unrecognisable. The schools that will be doing well will be either the ones with huge marketing budgets or ones outside the capital doing korepeticja and FCE from the ground floor of the owners' homes and declaring only half the income to the tax man. And then PYPs will come and then only korepeticja, U3A and evening classes will be left.

I'm not prepared to go beyond LLM and CELTA, that's investment enough for me.

It's a good thing to have, but don't you want to study further? If I wasn't thinking so strongly about leaving I'd be looking at studying an unrelated subject just for the joy of doing it.
Seanus 15 | 19,672
20 Mar 2010 #84
Jonni, I'll stay on the further study point. There are so many internet options for study these days. It wouldn't make sense for me to pay more. I can learn about almost anything I want by typing keywords into a search engine right here and now. The most important thing is how the industry will go as you alluded to above. There's only so much we can do in that regard. Also, outlets for your knowledge. Outlets come and go so you have to predict what future needs universities and schools will have and be versatile.

Poland doesn't need proof half the time. I know teachers here who never should have been teaching with what they have on paper (or don't as the case is).
jonni 16 | 2,481
20 Mar 2010 #85
There are so many internet options for study these days. It wouldn't make sense for me to pay more

I was thinking of studying and deducting it from my tax. If you are a Director of an Sp z o.o. this is possible; if you operate a Działaność Gospodarcze there are some options too.

Outlets come and go so you have to predict what future needs universities and schools will have and be versatile.

Agreed. And the changes will be radical. People have been saying the 'glory days' of Polish EFL are over for years. The market is maturing. A useful exercise is to look at the state in other countries. It can't ever be an exact comparison but is worthwhile reflecting on. Will it turn out like Spain, like Finland like Argentina, like Turkey? None of those possibilities bode well. Kids have been coming out of better schools already with FCE for a while now and the level of English in Polish schools is really improving. Plus Europe-wide changes in the way universities operate will come sooner or later.

Poland doesn't need proof half the time.

That's true, but getting harder.
Seanus 15 | 19,672
20 Mar 2010 #86
I have my own działalność gospodarcza so all kinds of things are tax deductible. In recent months my tax has been super low due to all the things I've claimed for.

I agree with all that you said on the second point. The boom has certainly subsided but private students are another way to keep options open and make a little extra cash on the side.

We all want concrete options. Noises were made about me teaching LCCI but nothing came of it. I'd like to move into EAP and ESP (not the voodoo stuff) but Poland hasn't really got off the ground yet as far as fully flourishing courses go.
jonni 16 | 2,481
20 Mar 2010 #87
Noises were made about me teaching LCCI but nothing came of it.

This is a doddle and the new syllabus is more fun to teach than the old one. BEC Higher too.

I'd like to move into EAP and ESP

I came here to do ESP (Military English as it happens) and quite liked it. EAP is less interesting IMHO but more useful on the CV.

Poland hasn't really got off the ground yet as far as fully flourishing courses go

There's a lot of 'soft' ESP here has been for years but on a more concrete level I agree with you, it has yet to get off the ground.

EAP is going to be really very big and in a worst-case market scenario, the best practical option for teachers who are under about 40-45 and want to work here until retirement.
lowfunk99 10 | 397
20 Mar 2010 #88
How does one set up a company in Poland?
delphiandomine 88 | 18,116
20 Mar 2010 #89
Easily - two trips to the Urząd Miasta, one trip to the Urząd Skarbowy and the job's done. Your accountant (yes, you need one) can deal with ZUS.

There are some fiddly aspects to it, but it's quite easy. Nothing mindblowingly complicated anyway.

However, it's crucial to get the right accountant. A bad one can completely screw you up - as no doubt Seanus and Jonni will both attest to.
Seanus 15 | 19,672
20 Mar 2010 #90
I've taught some BEC Higher :) It's a dawdle too :)

EAP and ESP can be nothing more than shiny titles in the hands of those that don't know what they are doing. I do many elements of such courses already, just not in a formalised context (in terms of following a syllabus).

You just have to look around you. Here in Gliwice, options are scarce relative to the number of native speakers in the region. Sometimes you have to be less fussy and just get on with what you are given. It's easy for me to type stuff here but going out and getting plum contracts is easier said than done. For now, I am honouring my commitments and work for 3 schools (2 of which I only have one contract so it's a manageable workload).

The final point I'd like to make is scheduling compatibility. I'm prepared to be flexible but less so now. Fitting new arrangements into currently existing ones sometimes takes a bit of doing but I've been lucky to squeeze in sizeable PT loads (mainly from Oct 2007-July 2008). I worked then for Britam and Profi-Lingua. Now I work for EMPIK, Speak Up and Level (EMPIK and SU since Aug 2008). Teaching is still quite a broad church and my schedule, though not choc-a-bloc, is enough for me at the moment :)

Jonni, it's all in the sell. However, based on the MMA KSW XII promotion debacle (selling tickets with no opponents, LOL), Poland has a long way to go. Nonetheless, Callan's 4 times faster gimmick has worked wonders in the past with unquestioning minds.

Delph, spot on. My accountant is highly qualified but he is snowed under with work and is mistake prone as a result. I'd be like a fish out of water without him, though.


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