Simple question: would you have done what this person did to try and get a job in the Gulf?
She flew me to Qatar on a 1-way ticket (despite my several written requests for a return ticket since it seemed to be only an interview), refused even to pay for my Entry Upon Arrival Visa (when I gave her my visa receipt she said it was not part of the deal even though I flew there for an interview with her school), failed to utter any truths during my meetings with her, lied through her teeth about everything, contradicted herself on several occasions and treated me in a condescending manner throughout our entire exchanges. Get this. She would not even nail down a time for the interview and when I asked for a written confirmation of my interview before I flew to Qatar, she flatly refused. I had asked her several times in writing and verbally; “Is this an interview?” She threatened to call the whole thing off as soon as I asked her a few very routine questions about the teaching assignment and to clarify whether my visit was an interview or for me to start the position. Her exact words were; “You are making demands.” This was in response to my questions about whether I would be attending an interview, details on teaching assignment, the time of the interview, commencement date of position and terms/conditions of position. I did not receive any documentation from her about the subject or grade level to be taught. The whole thing was very vague and when I asked politely for a few basic details, she sent me a 1-line email saying she was calling the whole thing off since I was too pushy. I convinced her to reconsider as I had only asked a few reasonable run-of-the-mill questions. The night before I was to fly, at 7:30 pm, I still had not received my flight details so I phoned the head and asked what time my flight left the following day. She informed me I would have to be at the airport at 8:00 a.m. which I thought was odd since as late as 7:30 pm the night prior I had not been told of my flight times. I had asked for a Letter of Offer prior to my departure from my point of origin but she refused to provide this or clarify if I was to attend an interview or commence a teacher position with her school. I told her I needed to have something to show customs officials; interview time, letter of offer – anything or I could be refused exit from my point of origin, boarding of my flight and entry to Qatar. She flatly refused and put me at risk of not being able to fly as it is an international aviation requirement to travel on a return ticket when entering a country on a tourist visa. She did not inform me of any visa procedures upon my arrival in Qatar; or inform me that I would have to purchase a visa at the Qatar Airport at a cost of USD$35. This is how it unfolded once I decided to take the risk and fly there…
This isn’t the end of the story. Check out the Middle East forum for the rest. Peronally, I feel quite sorry for the individual who has been treated in this way, while at the same time questioning why anyone would even entertain the idea of flying out to the gulf under such conditions of lies and half promises.
Fate, it would seem, is not without a sense of irony. So, one wretched hive of scum and villainy bans another wretched hive of scum and villainy. OK, that’s a bit unfair, I don’t know if I should label Saudi Arabia as a hive of both scum and villainy.
What has poor old Dave done to deserve it? Surely the Saudi authorities would be impressed with the maniacal level of censorship and oppression displayed by those in control of the ESL Cafe forums? Wouldn’t they love the silencing of any voice that questions Dave’s practice of sacrificing all ethics or morality in the drive for the advertising Dollar? Seems that something’s irked the Kingdom.
I would have thought SA and the Cafe were a match made in Hell. Maybe one party has merely recognised something low down and dirty in the other.
Happy Christmas to all who celebrate it. Hope that if you get herpes, it’s at least fresh (none of that frozen stuff).
Recently, the Minhang Police Entry and Exit Administrative Department of the Shanghai Public Security Bureau began renewing efforts to combat the “three illegalities” for foreigners: illegal immigration, illegal residence and illegal employment.
It has recently been discovered, notes eChinaCities website, that many illegal language schools are using so-called “knock off” foreign teachers.
Read more on this…
Sri Lanka’s Ministry of Education has focused on the dearth of English teachers in the country’s schools and taken measures to launch a special programme to train more English teachers.
Deputy Minister of Education, notes ColomboPage website, Vijith Wijayamuni Soyza said that the aim of the programme is to eradicate the dearth of English language teachers in government schools. Teacher training centers will be set up island wide in this regard, he said.
I can tell you that I for one will be in attendance. If they’re fooling me and it turns out to be a beach festival, I’ll be very disappointed.
Universities around the world are looking for ways to give their students a more international outlook, notes the Chronicle of Higher Education, in order to prepare them for a future that will increasingly involve global problems and partnerships.
‘There is a real opportunity, with the explosion of new and social media, for expansion.’
However, exchange programs are expensive and time-consuming to manage; fewer than 2% of Americans and Europeans enrolled in higher education participate in one. The creators of Connect, a 10-week program of facilitated online discussions among students from Western and Muslim countries, believe they’ve found a solution.
Read more about this here…
Given the experience to date with an overwhelming focus on student achievement scores as a basis for high-stakes decisions, policymakers would do well to pause and carefully examine the issues that make teacher assessment so complex before implementing an assessment plan.
To facilitate such examination, exclaims the grandly-titled National Education Policy Center, this brief reviews credible research exploring: the feasibility of combining formative assessment (a basis for professional growth) and summative assessment (a basis for high-stakes decisions like dismissal); the various tools that might be used to gather evidence of teacher effectiveness; and the various stakeholders who might play a role in a teacher assessment system. It also offers a brief overview of successful exemplars.
Read more (or download the document) here…
English Raven: Jason Renshaw’s Weblog
Following on from October’s winner, Kalinago English and last month’s worthy champion Breaking News English, comes one of the best TEFL blogs out there.
Attention all English lovers of cricket! Surely there has never been a better time to heckle an Australian TEFLer, even one as fine as the ever inspiring Jason Renshaw.
Jason’s blog finds a nice balance between offering helpful tips and great anecdotes about teaching English with things going on in his life outside the classroom. Not only that, posts such as his recent ‘hidden gems challenge’ encourage other bloggers to get in on the act. Basically, all this leads to a consistently entertaining read. Jason’s writing attracts many comments, which are often as entertaining as the posts themselves. Jason finds time to follow up his posts with responses to the comments, which shows his commitment to the blog.
Thank you to Jason Renshaw, ELT World’s TEFL Website of the month for December.
United States: A good system of teacher evaluation must answer four questions:
How good is good enough?
Good enough at what?
How do we know? and…
Who should decide?
Read more about this at the ASCD website…