Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR ALL!

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Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR ALL!

Unread post by billyshears » Tue Mar 04, 2008 9:40 pm

Gaba English School is off slave-hunting in the colonies this month:

Recruiting Event
Information Session
March 21st, 2008 at 1pm
Downtown Vancouver
Interviewing March 22 & 23


If you are contemplating working for this dire company, please be warned that you will get (even if you work over 200 lessons a month):

NO HOLIDAY PAY WHATSOEVER
NO PAY IF YOUR STUDENT DOESN'T SHOW
NO PAY ON YOUR DAYS OFF
NO PAY FOR DAYS SPENT TRAINING
NO TRANSPORT FEE REFUND (WHICH EVERY JAPANESE COMPANY NORMALLY PAYS)
NO SICKNESS BENEFITS
NO MEDICAL INSURANCE COVERAGE (WHICH IS DEMANDED BY JAPANESE LAW)
1,400 YEN PER LESSON, FOR WHICH STUDENTS PAY OVER 7,000 YEN (GIVING GABA A CLEAR PROFIT OF OVER 3,500 YEN)
A 10% INCOME TAX DEDUCTION (EVEN THOUGH THE ACTUAL TAX RATE IS LOWER)
A CHANCE TO PAY YOUR OWN CITY TAXES
NO VISA SPONSORSHIP (HENCE THE NEED FOR WORKING HOLIDAY DRONES)
NO RENT OR ACCOMMODATION ALLOWANCE

Make no mistake, this is one of the worst kinds of companies that have helped to create the "working poor" class here. Should you decide to work for Gaba, you will be no better than a scab, helping to worsen the already declining standards of employment for foreign language teachers in Japan.
Last edited by billyshears on Wed Mar 05, 2008 8:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR CANADIANS!

Unread post by indoctrin8 » Tue Mar 04, 2008 10:21 pm

but remember, thats just the deal for canadians. everyone else gets much better pay and conditions.

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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR CANADIANS!

Unread post by billyshears » Tue Mar 04, 2008 10:34 pm

OK...a warning for anyone with even an ounce of self-respect (wherever you come from).
BTW, if you are already a gaba slave...how the fuck could you let yourself get ripped off like that ??????
Or do you just like being classed as "self-employed"? :lol:

If you didn't know, that's how gaba (and other fuckers of their ilk) get round Japanese employment laws...they register all their drones as self-employed.

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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR CANADIANS!

Unread post by MonkeyMagic » Tue Mar 04, 2008 11:34 pm

And if the above doesn`t put anyone off from working at GABA, nothing will!
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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR CANADIANS!

Unread post by Wage Slave » Wed Mar 05, 2008 10:20 am

MonkeyMagic wrote:And if the above doesn`t put anyone off from working at GABA, nothing will!
Yes, it should. They are taking the piss as far as I am concerned. Never heard of anything like it anywhere else. Unique :evil:

Shawn, ABs and the OP. Would you consider renaming this thread to include other nationalities and making it a sticky? I think that GABA deserve much more scrutiny than they are getting while we've all been distracted by the farcical saga that is NOVA.
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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR CANADIANS!

Unread post by Wage Slave » Wed Mar 05, 2008 12:22 pm

novawhiz wrote:Gaba is a very interesting topic, particularly in light of how G.comm's resurrection of Nova is going....
.....

- were shown a physically ideal couple, the teacher male, student female
- the two are handcuffed together but if you look closely you will see the students cuffed hand is pulled in closer to her body, the teacher's cuffed hand is pulled away, outside of his control (as though she is about to lead him away)
- She (the student) is smiling ever so slightly, the instructor expressionless

This picture is one of the quintessential examples of the type of contextualized advertisements that play strongly on the emotions of the Japanese female - and it's no wonder that female Gaba students are over represented and generally younger than at other eikaiwa. as time goes on, eikaiwa teachers will be paid less and less for the quality of thier lessons (it's almost not even a factor now) and more and more for their gender, race, age, personality, etc. and NOT for any skills or experience they possess, very much like hosts or hostesses. Things get really interesting when we dissect Gaba's recruitment material (I'll save that for another time). I personally can't decide who is being led down a path of fantasy more: the students or the instructors..... it's a toss up.

Gaba makes it look like you're earning money but you never really do.

Most of the English schools in Japan will make the transition to the type of employment - and then they will collapse or implode.
Very interesting post Novawhiz - Thank you. I look forward to the installment on their recruiting materials.

If you are right (and I think you are) and the rest of eikawa moves towards the same model then I agree we can also predict a severe contraction in the industry and the focus of language teaching moving even further to wards children, the public school system, jukus and small to medium size owner operated schools. That may not at all be a bad thing for language teaching and learning in Japan.
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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR CANADIANS!

Unread post by InTheColdLightOfDay » Wed Mar 05, 2008 12:31 pm

Interesting stuff. Never realised Gaba was so shite.
And that ad is just weird. Any punter who falls for that kind of rubbish deserves to get their money taken from them , by Gaba or anyone else.
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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR CANADIANS!

Unread post by sampler » Wed Mar 05, 2008 2:13 pm

Image

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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR CANADIANS!

Unread post by Wage Slave » Wed Mar 05, 2008 3:53 pm

sampler wrote:Image
Brilliant! :rotfl:
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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR CANADIANS!

Unread post by stinkbomb » Wed Mar 05, 2008 4:21 pm

[quote="billyshears"]Gaba English School is off slave-hunting in the colonies this month:

Hey, Billyshears, what's with this WARNING FOR CANADIANS! shite?

Arse to that!

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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR CANADIANS!

Unread post by Tall Tall Tree » Wed Mar 05, 2008 4:27 pm

That is indeed a helluvan ad… Can someone less dumb than me translate that kanji over the photo?

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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR CANADIANS!

Unread post by Lucio Argento » Wed Mar 05, 2008 5:16 pm

It's good to see Gaba getting some scrutiny here. They provide just about the worst set of benefits/conditions for employees and yet seem to bypass some of the scrutiny reserved for other places.

As bad as Nova were, they at least provided better conditions during their heydey. Gaba are basically undermining the industry as a whole and pulling down wages/conditions for everyone else.

I think the 'Warning for Canadians' is because they are currently recruiting in Canada now and not other countries. Either way, it's a shite place to work for.

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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR CANADIANS!

Unread post by Mogura » Wed Mar 05, 2008 5:32 pm

Tall Tall Tree wrote:That is indeed a helluvan ad… Can someone less dumb than me translate that kanji over the photo?
It says, "Own a drone"... :rotfl:
Lick my troll, goosh... :bird:

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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR CANADIANS!

Unread post by billyshears » Wed Mar 05, 2008 6:52 pm

stinkbomb wrote:
billyshears wrote:Gaba English School is off slave-hunting in the colonies this month:

Hey, Billyshears, what's with this WARNING FOR CANADIANS! shite?

Arse to that!
check this out: http://www.careers.gaba.co.jp/overseas/vancouver.html

Of course, as I mentioned in my second post on the subject, the warning will apply to anyone considering becoming a slave to this company. This is something the unions here in Japan (not just the Nova/GConn "union") should be creating a huge fuss about: the total erosion of any employee protection or employer responsibility.
Incredibly, it's sending workers' conditions back over 100 years and if allowed to proliferate, it could effect the whole of foreign language teaching community (even high schools etc. are hiring teachers through these kinds of agencies which skim off huge amounts for themselves while leaving teachers with the usual 250,000). I mean, why pay holiday pay, days off, no-shows, transport fees, or contribute to medical insurance benefits for your employees when you can just adopt the GABA system?
It should be a national scandal and at the moment the first people who need a warning about this unscrupulous company are those poor potential suckers in Vancouver!
BTW, I also think gaijinpot.com hold some responsibility for being the main internet advertising source for GABA. Maybe there should be some kind of campaign on their forums.

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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR CANADIANS!

Unread post by strongbad » Wed Mar 05, 2008 7:11 pm

Gaijinpot also bear some responbility as Gaba's recruiting ads on Gaijinpot are absolutely fictitious. They claim they pay as much as 3000yen an hour, and the minimum is 2000. When, in fact, 1300 yen is standard with all of the lack of benefits you've listed above.

Don't think a campaign would do any good though - the Gaijinpot moderators would be all over you like Sahashi on my wages.

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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR ALL!

Unread post by billyshears » Wed Mar 05, 2008 9:09 pm

found the following here: http://gaba.generalunion.org/

I guess absolutely nothing happened after (or maybe even "on") 18 October
As usual the demands are for "union members" (so just sod the rest of the other poor slaves?)

General Union Demands -
Bargaining Starts 18 October

1. Create a paid holiday plan for union members. Details

2. Pay union members for all time worked after 10:00PM at a premium rate and back pay union members for all past time where GABA did not pay a premium.

The Labour Standards Law requires all employers to pay a premium of 125% for all work between 10:00PMm and 5:00AM.

3. Pay union members for all work time outside of lessons and back pay union members for all past worked that was not paid.

The Labour Standards Law requires that you are paid for all your work time, not just lesson time. At GABA this would mean extra pay for meetings and training sessions and any work that you are required to do before, after, or between lessons.

4. Raise the per lesson rate to \1900 for union members.

The union believes that since Berlitz part time teachers (who have not set schedules) are the most comparable industry standard, we ask that GABA not reduce standards by offering less than this.

5. Pay all transportation costs to and from work for union members.

This is the standard for most workers in Japan and we ask that GABA follow this standard.

6. Enroll all union members onto unemployment, health and pension insurance, back enroll to a maximum of two years, and GABA pay all back premiums including the workers' premiums. Details.

7. Discuss with the union prior to making any changes to union members' working conditions.

8. Establish a grievance procedure in cooperation with the General Union which union members can use to resolve individual problems.

Demands 7 and 8 are regular demands that we make to employers in order to protect members' day to day working conditions. These two procedures are also common agreements that we hold with most of the major language companies.

The union has also submitted to increase union rights in the workplace. These include; union posting rights, access to GABA schools for union officials, etc.
 

Demands

What you're missing out on.

What can be done?

Downloads & Links

Join Now
 

http://gaba.generalunion.org/

GABA: the future?
  In recent ads GABA has called itself the future of English education in Japan, but what's so futuristic about GABA and their working conditions? GABA contracts offer:

* NO paid holidays.
* NO unemployment insurance.
* NO health and pension insurance.
* NO set salary.
* NO job security.
* NO right to challenge unfair dismissals.
* NO right to negotiate with your employer as an equal.

 
Since 1991 the General Union has won the following rights for teachers and staff at most major language schools and a host of smaller ones.

* Paid holidays.
* Unemployment insurance benefits.
* Health and pension rights.
* Pay increases.
* The withdrawal of unfair dismissals and contract non-renewals.
* Grievances procedures to deal with everyday problems.
* The right to sit down with your employer as an equal and negotiate the conditions for which you are willing to teach.

General Union: the future!

General Union GABA Branch
Telephone 06-6352-9619 Fax 06-6352-9630 Email gaba@generalunion.org
http://www.generalunion.org

ゼネラルユニオンは,日本語での労働相談も行っています.日本語ページはこちら.

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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR CANADIANS!

Unread post by gomen » Wed Mar 05, 2008 10:09 pm

strongbad wrote:Gaijinpot also bear some responbility as Gaba's recruiting ads on Gaijinpot are absolutely fictitious. They claim they pay as much as 3000yen an hour, and the minimum is 2000. When, in fact, 1300 yen is standard with all of the lack of benefits you've listed above.

Don't think a campaign would do any good though - the Gaijinpot moderators would be all over you like Sahashi on my wages.
Yeah, anyone remember Gaijinpot's response to criticism of NOVA and warnings about their financial position (at least until NOVA stopped paying their advertising bill)? Posts taken down in a flash. I hope anyone stupid enough to consider relocating to Japan for that kind of money (especially when the Canadian dollar is so strong, not sure what the minimum wage is in Canada but Gaba musn't compare too favourably!) comes across a website like this and not just Gaijinpot.

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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR CANADIANS!

Unread post by MonkeyMagic » Wed Mar 05, 2008 10:57 pm

strongbad wrote:Don't think a campaign would do any good though - the Gaijinpot moderators would be all over you like Sahashi on my wages.
I`ve started a thread about that advertisement on GP, so I guess we`ll just have to wait and see how long it stays up.

http://www.gaijinpot.com/bb/showthread. ... post596502
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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR ALL!

Unread post by MonkeyMagic » Wed Mar 05, 2008 11:29 pm

This thread has been made a sticky! Nice one. :cheers: Let`s hope prospective employees of GABA do a search on the net and find this first.
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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR ALL!

Unread post by inflames » Thu Mar 06, 2008 1:06 am

I work for Gaba now and I can say a decent amount of the stuff posted isn't true.

And anyone who has tries to make a living off of the Gaba salary is crazy and a fucking moron (unless they're using it as a gap between full-time jobs). The place is good because it's flexible so they don't care if you work one day or if you take off (I know several people that have just taken vacations for a month and management never blinked). But you're absolutely crazy to try to turn Gaba into a living wage. As some money on the side it's pretty easy.

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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR ALL!

Unread post by strongbad » Thu Mar 06, 2008 1:42 am

inflames wrote:I work for Gaba now and I can say a decent amount of the stuff posted isn't true.
Could you enlighten us as to which parts aren't true?

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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR ALL!

Unread post by inflames » Thu Mar 06, 2008 2:06 am

strongbad wrote:
inflames wrote:I work for Gaba now and I can say a decent amount of the stuff posted isn't true.
Could you enlighten us as to which parts aren't true?
Sure, although it's a bit messy.

No consultation from the management - it´s “up to you to check your status” which can change on an hour by hour basis.
What does this exactly mean? My supervisors there have been fine people and have been willing to give advice on students and the schedule (if they want more instructors or not).

Expect to wait 2 months for your first paycheck from starting to work.
Payday is on the 25th of each month. People might bitch the first month but after that everyone gets used to it.

A CHANCE TO PAY YOUR OWN CITY TAXES
Did I miss something here? Am I and almost every other eikaiwa teacher getting conned? You mean the company has an obligation to pay my taxes for me? Holy shit thanks for letting me know.

Teachers at Gaba don't get paid unless they teach (1350 yen per lesson)
As of now, the minimum for a lesson is 1400 yen and as of April 1st it's 1500 (it's fairly easy to get a raise to 1700 yen). You do get paid if you don't teach. If a student cancels after 6:00 the day before you get to do office work (usually grading homework or signing birthday cards). If a student no-shows, you get paid for surfing the internet.

No bonuses.
There are bonuses based on the number of lessons you teach (I think they start at 100 lessons and if you're crazy and teach like 200 you get a 20,000 yen bonus).

No advancement opportunities but plenty of lies about potential benefits.
If you want, you can get try to get a full-time position there. They're not too hard to get as the pay is usually crap (like 250,000 for a full 40 hours).

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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR ALL!

Unread post by strongbad » Thu Mar 06, 2008 2:14 am

um, ta for that. Apart from the city taxes - which I couldn't understand was such a big deal in the first place, although they make me want to smash things every time I get the bill, every company expects you pay them yourself - you actually managed to make Gaba look even more bleak. 20000 yen bonus?!
ov
Good Grief.

I'm happy you've had good supervisors and you see the job for what it is - all filler - but you should really head on over to http://www.senseibank.com if you want a higher wage with better regularity.

Although you'll still have to pay your own city tax...

:mrgreen:

edit - just remembered a friend of mine had an interview with Gaba and on his callback was intimidated by the interviewer who was shocked my mate hadn't done the assigned homework (yes, really.) My friend apologised but explained he had been busy, to which the interviewer replied it wasn't good enough - Gaba's customers expected quality. My friend laughed at him.
Needless to say, he didn't get the job. How do these dolts get these ideas? We'll pay you an eighth of what we charge the student, and then expect you to dance for us?!

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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR ALL!

Unread post by inflames » Thu Mar 06, 2008 2:47 am

strongbad wrote:um, ta for that. Apart from the city taxes - which I couldn't understand was such a big deal in the first place, although they make me want to smash things every time I get the bill, every company expects you pay them yourself - you actually managed to make Gaba look even more bleak. 20000 yen bonus?!
ov
Good Grief.
The 20,000 yen bonus is per month.
strongbad wrote:I'm happy you've had good supervisors and you see the job for what it is - all filler - but you should really head on over to http://www.senseibank.com if you want a higher wage with better regularity.

Although you'll still have to pay your own city tax...

:mrgreen:

edit - just remembered a friend of mine had an interview with Gaba and on his callback was intimidated by the interviewer who was shocked my mate hadn't done the assigned homework (yes, really.) My friend apologised but explained he had been busy, to which the interviewer replied it wasn't good enough - Gaba's customers expected quality. My friend laughed at him.
Needless to say, he didn't get the job. How do these dolts get these ideas? We'll pay you an eighth of what we charge the student, and then expect you to dance for us?!
I honestly don't care about the regularity part. I go in once every other week now just to keep myself there, but I can change that whenever I want. If I want more money, I tell them I want more money, I work more. Some schools have trouble filling lessons but most don't. If you're doing it regularly, you really should be looking for something else that pays better, but if you know how to use it, it can be pretty good. I taught privates before and they were just too much of a pain in the ass.

I'm sure we all combined have some interesting stories about how incompetent recruiters are. I know I do (from AEON, ECC, NOVA, and about half a dozen private schools). Maybe we should start a thread on it? Although the stuff about Gaba wouldn't be too surprising. The LS managers are pretty good people but the corporate people (including trainers and recruiters) can be pretty hit-and-miss.

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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR ALL!

Unread post by strongbad » Thu Mar 06, 2008 2:57 am

inflames wrote:
strongbad wrote:um, ta for that. Apart from the city taxes - which I couldn't understand was such a big deal in the first place, although they make me want to smash things every time I get the bill, every company expects you pay them yourself - you actually managed to make Gaba look even more bleak. 20000 yen bonus?!
The 20,000 yen bonus is per month.
That's probably dandy for someone like you who goes in for a laugh now and then but the problem is that they want to bring in people from overseas.
inflames wrote:I'm sure we all combined have some interesting stories about how incompetent recruiters are. I know I do (from AEON, ECC, NOVA, and about half a dozen private schools). Maybe we should start a thread on it? Although the stuff about Gaba wouldn't be too surprising. The LS managers are pretty good people but the corporate people (including trainers and recruiters) can be pretty hit-and-miss.
Very good point, that. Some scary people tend to do every interview I go to. Even when the company is nice.

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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR ALL!

Unread post by MonkeyMagic » Thu Mar 06, 2008 8:56 am

Here`s one of their recruitment ads:
http://www.eslcafe.com/joblist/index.cgi?read=16758
We are looking for customer-service oriented and self motivated individuals to teach in our stylish Learning Studios. Since 2001 Gaba has grown strategically, and currently has over 35 studios, 490 full time staff and over 1000 Instructors. We are a progressive, innovative company and an equal opportunity employer committed to building bridges across cultures.

We offer: flexible schedules, short and long term contracts, Japanese lessons, competitive pay, professional development courses, future career opportunities in management and the chance to gain valuable overseas business experience. Build a powerful resume that will help you in Japan and beyond.

Applicants must be highly motivated, customer-focused, professional in attitude and attire, proficient at time management skills, possess superior organizational abilities and have a genuine interest in Japan and Japanese culture.

Qualifications:
A University Degree or 3 Years of ESL Teaching Experience

Must hold a Canadian/ US/ Australian/ New Zealand/ South African or UK passport
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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR ALL!

Unread post by Stick-Swinging Incident » Thu Mar 06, 2008 11:26 am

MonkeyMagic wrote:Here`s one of their recruitment ads:
http://www.eslcafe.com/joblist/index.cgi?read=16758
We are a progressive, innovative company and an equal opportunity employer committed to building bridges across cultures.


Must hold a Canadian/ US/ Australian/ New Zealand/ South African or UK passport

Hmmm, Equal opportunity, but... only for the above passport holders. (yes I know, native speakers of English, but what about Ireland??? or people from above countries that DON'T speak English so well, ie French Canadians... The Scots!) :D

JUST kidding, most French Canadians aren't so bad at English. :twisted:


Edit: Gotta correct my very bad spelling. The Scotts have left the building! in there place, there are some Scots.
Last edited by Stick-Swinging Incident on Fri Mar 07, 2008 4:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR ALL!

Unread post by Lucio Argento » Thu Mar 06, 2008 11:38 am

It's been interesting reading the posts above. No matter how you try to look at it, Gaba is bad for the industry as a whole. A place that doesn't supply something as minimal as paid holidays is shite.

As pointed out in another post, some other schools might see the 'Gaba' way as the way of the future. And that will negatively affect all of us who work in the industry.

I understand that people might be caught between jobs or have an empty day on their schedule and the like. I really do feel that Gaba should be a place of last resort and avoided if at all possible.

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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR CANADIANS!

Unread post by MacGyver » Thu Mar 06, 2008 1:22 pm

Mogura wrote:
Tall Tall Tree wrote:That is indeed a helluvan ad… Can someone less dumb than me translate that kanji over the photo?
It says, "Own a drone"... :rotfl:
LOL awesome translation. I was about to say it means "Have the teacher all to yourself" but your translation is way better. :wnw:
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Re: Gaba English Schools: WARNING FOR ALL!

Unread post by MacGyver » Thu Mar 06, 2008 2:12 pm

inflames wrote:A CHANCE TO PAY YOUR OWN CITY TAXES
Did I miss something here? Am I and almost every other eikaiwa teacher getting conned? You mean the company has an obligation to pay my taxes for me? Holy shit thanks for letting me know.
Sorry splitting hairs here. I'd imagine eikaiwa wouldn't do it but every non-eikaiwa related company I've worked for has. That is, they take the ward tax out of my wage and pay it for me. Sure I pay it, but I don't have to deal with it. So I think the point here is that most companies in Japan deduct it from your wage and pay the ward/city so you don't have to deal with it. Eikaiwas on the whole, in this case GABA, don't. Granted you may think doing it yourself is no biggie but for a lazy bugger such as myself who is busy enough as it is, this is one less hassle I don't have to deal with.
inflames wrote:Teachers at Gaba don't get paid unless they teach (1350 yen per lesson)
As of now, the minimum for a lesson is 1400 yen and as of April 1st it's 1500 (it's fairly easy to get a raise to 1700 yen). You do get paid if you don't teach. If a student cancels after 6:00 the day before you get to do office work (usually grading homework or signing birthday cards). If a student no-shows, you get paid for surfing the internet.
2 things:
1. Technically whoever said that the wage is Y1350 is wrong, but even if "its fairly easy to get a raise to 1700 yen" Y1700 ain't exactly a huge amount above Y1350. Y1700 for a private lesson? You're joking aren't ya? Slave labour anyone?
2. As far as not getting paid for not teaching, granted you may get paid for no-shows or late cancellations (I wouldn't know one way or the other) but once again the point here is that if you say you want to work from 3pm to 10pm and sit in the office but only teach 2 classes during that period, you only get paid for what you teach. You're not a salesperson. It isn't your job to find the teachers. You're paid for your time and if GABA can't find you the students its not your fault. They should pay you.
"Yous guys talk a lotta shit. I'm much more smarter than all a yous." - Samurai Jerk after being owned by the Let's Japan crew.

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