Career Venue => Contract, and Job Related Issues => Topic started by: me657 on November 11, 2019, 01:29:30 am

Title: Being asked to resign...
Post by: me657 on November 11, 2019, 01:29:30 am
It's as the title says. First, some context.

I started this job in June of this year. Throughout the duration of my teaching period, things were strange between the director and I. He'd micromanage me, express disapproval over everything I did, and would repeatedly compare me to another teacher who had 5 years of experience under her belt. My first written warning was issued one month later, where he expressed it was because my classes were disorganized. I said I would try harder.

Three months go by, and I do everything to a T. I'm given an insurmountable workload, and I don't complain. I do everything on time, so he'll have no reason to be upset. Then one day, on the fifth month, the head teacher calls me into her office.

She says the director is thinking about issuing me a second warning. I ask why. She says it's because I forgot you change a letter on a student's handbook from a lower case to an upper case. She then says a parent complained my classes were boring.

A few days pass, no letter is issued.

Then, I'm called in again.

She tells me to start looking for another job. I asked if I'm being fired. She says no. Rather than fire me, she says the director's giving me a chance to resign. No second or third letter. I'm so confused. I ask what will happen if I stay. She says he'll find a bullshit reason to kick me out and issue the other warnings.


What do I do? She says I have until the end of the month to find another job. 3 weeks.

Title: Re: Being asked to resign...
Post by: Arsalan on November 11, 2019, 06:02:34 am
Sorry to hear this, but you've come to the right place.  It might be that they can't fire you and you're being asked to leave so it doesn't cause issues for them.

Is this a hagwon?
Title: Re: Being asked to resign...
Post by: thunderlips on November 11, 2019, 08:04:41 am
Crappy situation. But you may want to take this opportunity to get a Letter of Release, which you will need to get a new job. You can switch to a D-10 visa with this LOR. You will have to find temp housing in the interim, but you could probably find a room to rent temporarily.

The alternative is staying at the job, get fired and then file a complaint with the labor board.

If it were me, I'd probably resign.

Third option is to always go home for a bit and then reapply.

Good luck.

You can contact Seoul Global for advice and/or help to switch to D-10.  http://global.seoul.go.kr/index.do
Title: Re: Being asked to resign...
Post by: SuperDoodle23 on November 11, 2019, 09:16:54 am
It sounds like a hagwon. I love how these hagwon owners hire noobies with no experience, pay them the lowest pay they can get away with, offer the bare minimum vacation, and then get upset because the teacher isn't a perfect teacher. If I were you i'd use this as a learning experience and cut my loses. Now when you interview with a new school you will know what warning signs to look out for. 
Title: Re: Being asked to resign...
Post by: NorthStar on November 11, 2019, 10:31:05 am

..sorry you are going through the P.A. game.  The "passive aggressive" game, that cowardly employers in this country like to play.  It really is taxing, especially in this circumstance, as I yet to have found a Korean director that can actually put together an effective lesson plan and teach the class in English.  And, they are calling you out on missing a corrective error? 

Well....before things go further, how about you give the NHI/NP office a call and see if the school has been paying their share (insurance/pension).  If you resign, remember....they can play even more phuck-phuck games with you, as opposed to firing you, going to immigration and reporting your visa status. 

How long have you worked there?  The length of employment in correlation to needing a LOR may be in your favor....can someone confirm on this?

Good luck OP...
Title: Re: Being asked to resign...
Post by: Chinguetti on November 11, 2019, 01:58:11 pm
The director is only giving you a "chance" to resign because they can't legally fire you without facing potential ramifications for it later. So they're trying to bullshit you into leaving on your own.

Which might be for the best for you, but first things first:

1) Find out if they have you registered properly. A lot of shady hagwons will register an E2 teacher as an independent contractor (or IC for short). This is illegal, and the reason for it is tax fraud. Do as NorthStar has suggested, call the NHI office and find out if they've been paying their share of the NHI insurance. You can also give the pension office a call for the same reason, to be sure that your employer has paid into the pension fund. If they haven't, it's highly likely that they've illegally registered you as an IC, and you'll be responsible for paying for everything that they haven't. You'll probably need to contact the MOEL to report them for this.

2) Make sure they're going to give you letter of release (or LOR for short). You won't be able to get a new job in Korea without one while under your current visa. The only real exception to this is if the employer has been doing illegal shit that you can prove to the MOEL (such as trying to fire you illegally, or failing to pay your salary), and the MOEL grants you a special temporary visa to look for a new job while your employer is being investigated.

If your employer wants you to leave, it needs to be on your terms because you're the one getting left out in the cold here. If you want to fight this and stay until the end of your contract, then you'll need to start secretly recording all discussions and meetings you have with anyone at this school (this is legal here as long as you're part of the conversation and can also be heard in the recording), and you'll need to start documenting everything as well. Keep all emails and messages, don't delete anything. You'll need to directly challenge their reasons for trying to fire you, and make sure they know what you're expecting from them. In this case, the law is on your side because the burden of proof falls squarely on your employer's shoulders, and Korean law requires that they have to prove that they've lost business as a result of your employment in order to justify firing you (which is almost impossible to prove). There's also a very strict process they must follow, which involves a series of warnings. Your employer has clearly tried to use this for paving a path for firing you in the future... but they've probably come to realize that it's not as simple as issuing warnings. They've also got to prove that the warnings have merit, and that they're not just made up, lol, hence why they're trying to bully you into quitting on your own now. They want to get rid of you, but they're also trying to cover their asses.

Honestly, I'd be recording and documenting everything anyway, even if I was planning to leave, because these aren't honest people you're dealing with, and I have no doubt they'll try to pull a fast one if they think they can get away with it. It's best to cover your own ass.

Remember, if you decide that you want to leave and find another job, do not submit a resignation until they've given you a LOR. Before you submit a resignation, not after. And if you're living in an apartment that they've provided, you can negotiate that they must let you stay in that apartment for at least 30 days (or until you can secure new employment), which is more than enough time to find another job. Providing an employee 30 day notice (it could be 60 days, but I don't remember for sure, so saying 30 because that's safe) before legal termination of a contract is required anyway, and the fact that they're trying to push you to resign on your own doesn't change the fact that they're the ones who want this, so, as far as I'm concerned, they still owe you that 30 days along with the LOR. They'll likely try to push back on this, but if they want you to leave on your own, and you don't want to leave Korea, yet, then this is what they're gonna have to do; otherwise, they can try their luck with firing you. 

And make sure they've registered you properly in the first place. If they haven't, they need to fix that shit before you leave. If they refuse, give the MOEL a call. Submit a complaint about everything your employer is trying to do.

EDIT: Also, if they do end up firing you, they're required by law to provide you with official documentation stating that they're firing you, and listing the reasons for why they're firing you. Don't let them get away with not giving this document to you because they'll just claim later that you quit, which is a common tactic used by shady employers who fire employees illegally, and it'll come down to your word vs theirs. Remember, secretly record all discussions and meetings on this matter because if they say they're firing you but they refuse to give you official documentation of that, then having this all recorded will be valuable evidence for when you submit a case of illegal termination with the MOEL against the employer. Keep showing up to work unless they provide this document to you or until you've obtained enough evidence of the employer firing you (like recorded evidence), even if they threaten to call the police (unless, of course, you've already filed with the MOEL and the MOEL says you have sufficient evidence and can stop attending). If they actually do call the police, and the police show up, show the police a copy of your contract, and explain to the police that the employer has not provided you with official documentation stating that you're fired and why, and that this is illegal. You'll be happy to stop showing up to work once your employer provides you with this documentation. You should absolutely record any such correspondences as well, to capture the employer saying that he fired you, in case the police force you to leave the premises without that document. It will serve as further evidence against the employer after you report the employer to the MOEL.
Title: Re: Being asked to resign...
Post by: me657 on November 11, 2019, 07:06:19 pm
Everyone, thank you so much for your helpful advice so far...

I'll call the pension office first thing in the morning. I'm so happy everyone was so kind to me about this. This is my first time as a teacher, and at a Hagwon no less. I graduated with a BA in English and a minor in writing, and I thought the transition here would be OK, but I've become easily disheartened by the way things are run.... I really, truly tried me best to make this work. When the first warning was issued, I tried to place blame on myself for my newness. However, it seemed nothing afterward would appease him.

Everyday I went to school was another day walking on egg shells. I swallowed any new task that was given to me, but it seems that all of it was for nothing. I'm a little bit saddened by it.

I'm currently in the process of looking for another job in the Seoul Area. Many potential employers need the LOR, so I'll be asking for this first thing tomorrow morning. If he wants me to leave, I'm not going to fight it. That's how stressed out this job has made me. However, I wish I could have made it to 6 months. I'm at the 5 month mark now.
Title: Re: Being asked to resign...
Post by: Cohort 2019 on November 12, 2019, 02:45:37 am
Is it now okay for me to say 'Only in Korea?'
Title: Re: Being asked to resign...
Post by: theman3285 on November 12, 2019, 08:53:53 am
it seemed nothing afterward would appease him.

Sorry you had to learn this the hard way. As many people on this forum would attest to, once a Korean decided they dislike you there is literally nothing on God's green earth that can be done about it.
Title: Re: Being asked to resign...
Post by: SuperDoodle23 on November 12, 2019, 10:01:41 am

Everyday I went to school was another day walking on egg shells. I swallowed any new task that was given to me, but it seems that all of it was for nothing. I'm a little bit saddened by it.

I'm going to help you out a bit. Things like this are probably a big reason why you are in this mess. You have allowed your boss to be too comfortable being critical of you. They probably have sniffed out your weakness and have lost all respect for you not only as a worker but as a human being. You basically tried to play a poker game by playing your hand face up. You are showing your weakness and a lot of business owners in Korea are savy enough to pick up on this right away and will never stop being critical of you once they see weakness being projected. 

There is nothing wrong with trying to do a good job, but there needs to be a line that you set for people not only in your personal life but in business. You are a grown adult and you are walking on egg shells?  Ya know if you were working at Microsoft or something I could see you being careful, but come on now. You are really this afraid to lose this kind of job? You should always set up a relationship with your boss that is respectful and cordial, but you don't want to be in a situation where you are always giving up ground without standing up for yourself when needed.