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Ijustwannateach

What I Would Tell My Administration

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Hi first time on this site thanks to my big brother (soon to move to your neck of the woods, what I need to find out is - My wife and I are both qualified teachers with centre approval (city and Guilds) to deliver levels 1. 11. 111. in Hospitality, Teaching awards and Assessor awards, we are also approved to deliver Higher Level Qualifications that could lead to an Honers, who do we contact thanks Herby

Edited by kenkannif

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Hi first time on this site thanks to my big brother (soon to move to your neck of the woods, what I need to find out is - My wife and I are both qualified teachers with centre approval (city and Guilds) to deliver levels 1. 11. 111. in Hospitality, Teaching awards and Assessor awards, we are also approved to deliver Higher Level Qualifications that could lead to an Honers, who do we contact thanks Herby

Herby, in addition to the fact that your post, above, has already been edited by a moderator, I'd like to point out that you've already started a thread on this issue separately, and your brother did an even better job.

Kenk, might you delete this post and about five more directly above, so we can either get on with the topic or close it without destroying it? Thanks.

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I'm running out of steam even on the endless topic of problems in Thai administrations- but we *have* gone over a lot of the *types* of problems here, so maybe we've covered them. I'm hoping to edit and recombine all the suggestions into one long document/article/post at sometime shortly in the future.

"Steven"

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One last thought, perhaps, if it wasn't covered somewhere here already:

RESPECT: If you say you respect ajarns, pay them a living wage, give them translators, give them academic calendars, don't cancel classes at a moment's notice, keep them informed, etc. All of this (to the farang's point of view, culturally, WHICH YOU SHOULD RESPECT AND I KNOW I'M SHOUTING) to the farang teacher means you respect their work. Lack of doing these things is as much of an insult as if the teacher shoved his foot in your mouth.

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Hi first time on this site thanks to my big brother (soon to move to your neck of the woods, what I need to find out is - My wife and I are both qualified teachers with centre approval (city and Guilds) to deliver levels 1. 11. 111. in Hospitality, Teaching awards and Assessor awards, we are also approved to deliver Higher Level Qualifications that could lead to an Honers, who do we contact thanks Herby

Herby, in addition to the fact that your post, above, has already been edited by a moderator, I'd like to point out that you've already started a thread on this issue separately, and your brother did an even better job.

Kenk, might you delete this post and about five more directly above, so we can either get on with the topic or close it without destroying it? Thanks.

He has created two other threads saying the same thing. I think we got the idea that you are looking for a job. Why not go to Dave's ESL Cafe or Ajarn.com and look there.

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Okay, maybe all of the following has already been said on this thread, but count it as my end-of-year rant:

Native speaking programs such as MEP or EP require much more advance planning, and far more coordination between departments, administrators, etc., than a regular program in a Thai school requires. This is due in great part to the foreign teacher (‘farang’). Most farang teachers are verbally oriented, and they expect to be actively and productively involved in two-way dialogue with their boss and their co-workers, as appropriate. Their opinions may be wrong or unwanted, but the farang want their written or spoken words to be read and heard (such as these words here). Due to cultural differences and language barriers, the school won’t get its money’s worth out of the farang’s salary if the school doesn’t communicate regularly and in a meaningful way with the teacher.

The following examples of communication should include the principal people involved in the program, including departments other than the Foreign Language Department, on up to the director and assistants.

Before classes begin, the native teacher should receive the following. It should all be written in clear English for each segment of the teacher’s assigned work. Farang are usually very serious about their professional work, and they think it’s good to be well organized:

A. A full one year course outline, with dates that are accurate within seven days. When do classes start and end in each semester? When are the teacher’s long holiday periods, mid-term and end-term exam dates? The farang probably has to schedule visa runs, family visits, etc. that a Thai citizen would never have to do. Farang must do this, and it requires precise advance planning. Don’t be surprised if the farang is inflexible about this; it’s more important than Thai food.

B.Names, nicknames, and phone number(s) of the Thai teachers that the farang needs to be in contact with. Each semester, provide an accurate academic schedule of these teachers (including times and room numbers, of course).

C. A curriculum or syllabus that clearly describes what subject material must be covered, and what things will be covered on the final exam for that subject. It must be in clear English. It cannot be in Thai, or some crazy attempt at translation.

D. Textbooks and workbooks for the entire year that will be issued to the students. Also, any teacher’s books that are in English.

E. For entire year, or at least for one month in advance, student worksheets that students will use in class. Don’t expect the farang to help you translate next Monday’s worksheet on Friday.

F. Job description that explains what the foreign teacher does or doesn’t do. To whom he reports (bosses). Who to go to with problems (yes, farang will come to you with problems because they think that’s how problems are solved. You can’t change this cultural tendency; it’s hard-wired into farang brains until they die or get Altzheimer’s). Who to call when he can’t get to work today. Who to ask for a day off, such as for a visa run because the school didn’t help him to get the proper documentation (yes, it’s the school’s fault sometimes, and the farang expects you to openly or silently admit that).

G. Emergency data: what to do if the building is on fire, or Pongsakorn jumps out the third story window. How to handle extreme discipline cases (which Director or Assistant Director gets to explain to Nattaphon that he can’t undress in class? Where is that administrator’s office, and his mobile number so he or she can come get Nattaphon?). Where the clinic is. Where a farang teacher can urinate or defecate, preferably with a Western, sit-down toilet.

H. An explantion of the teacher’s scope of professional responsibilities – what he will or won’t be blamed for or praised for. Farang expect you to tell them when they do good or bad, what’s important (such as eating at faculty luncheons) and what’s more or less mai bpen rai (academic standards?).

I. Information about supplies. Chalk, whiteboard markers, paper, computers and printers that actually work most of the time. Where to get more. What to do if there aren’t any. Seriously. Really, farangs don’t take the same things as “mai bpen rai” as you do.

J. Start your contract negotiations for the next school year before the current term ends (such as late January if the new term starts in mid-May). The farang gets nervous, and will find another school if you wait too long. Foreigners may expect some improvements in their contract if they’ve done a good job: a small salary increase; twelve months’ pay instead of ten; reduced contact hours; or being promised they’ll have significant input into certain phases of the program. They may expect teacher’s license, work permit, and the right kind of help to get the right kind of visa. Don’t treat British and Canadians as you might treat illegal Burmese or Laotians.

K.Finally: if your school thinks the above suggestions aren’t serious or important, and your response amounts to ‘mai bpen rai,’ your EP or MEP will fail, and it will be YOUR fault, not the farang’s fault. And before you say, "This is Thailand, not the West, look at what the letter "E" stands for in EP and MEP. It's a bicultural and bilingual program, not just Thai-Thai. Thank you for your attention.

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Thanks to ijustwannateach and PB.

All the little problems i've experienced in Thailand nicely summed up in one thread.

Sometimes this mai bpen rai stuff is useful but in almost all cases you are delaying the inevitable confrontation, and it always starts over something we in the west think is normal. :o

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There were a lot of good points and posts on this thread, and it should also be bumped up for hiring season. Beware the minefield that is Thai education!

I'll even add a new point, though I have no idea now what number it was:

N. If a foreign teacher instructs a student to behave in a certain manner, even if it is not exactly what you as a Thai teacher would do, do NOT let your Thai teachers undermine his authority by countermanding him directly in front of the student. The student must obey the teacher (in reasonable measure). If you object to the foreign teacher's methods, speak to him about it AFTERWARDS, PRIVATELY, AWAY from any students to resolve this issue.

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I was supposed to make a summarised list of these things at some point- perhaps that's a project for the new term. Anyway, bumped for the benefit of job hunters.

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What I Would Tell My Administration, If I Could Do It Without Being Fired? You're a big poo-poo head and a smelly yukky!

Edited by robitusson

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