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  • sepper
  • Newgookin

    • 3

    • August 11, 2018, 12:17:46 pm
Hagwon Contract Review
« on: January 12, 2019, 03:18:46 pm »
Hi, all. I'm attempting to be an English teacher in Korea and I've received a contract with a school after having an interview with the school set up by a recruiter. A few things I picked up from the interview and research on my own is that the school is nearing the end of it's first year of operation, the school has two departments (elementary and middle school), there are at least two other English teachers in the elementary department they want to hire me for, and that there 280 minutes of teaching and the rest are for planning/breaks/lunch. The school also sent me a short video that is simply a slide show of picture from the school and it seemed nice.

Anyways, here is the contract I've been sent with sensitive information removed. If you could take a look an let me know if there is anything bad or good about it, I would be grateful.

1.Term of Contract

   1.1 This contract will be valid for a period of 12 months beginning [start day] 2019 and ending [365 days later] 2020. Arrival date has to be at a week earlier than the starting date to take a training course (At least 3 days training is needed from the starting date).


2. Employee Requirements

    2.1 The employee will act in an appropriately professional manner and be responsible for conducting professional English Language classes.

    2.2 The employee will be required to work for regularly scheduled hours from Monday through Friday (In a special case like lunar new year or Chu Seok holiday, one of the Saturdays or a national holiday in the month which includes a Korean traditional holiday can be exchanged with a weekday off to secure the convenience of the students and their parents), 40 hours per week (30 hours of teaching and 10 hours of preparation), or a total of 160 hours per month.

    2.3 The employee is required to attend the events held by the employer such as workshops, year ending party, retreats, academic seminars, etc.


3. Services Provided by the Employer

    3.1 Payment
         3.1.1 The employer will pay a monthly salary of 2.1 mil. won for regularly schedules hours.
         3.1.2 The employer will pay a monthly salary of 2.1 mil. won in the event that the employer is unable to provide the employee with the regularly scheduled 160 hours per month.
         3.1.3 If the employee fails to work the regularly scheduled hours due to tardiness, absence, etc.; the monthly payment will be calculated and paid using a daily rate and/or an hourly rate. The method of calculating daily rate: Monthly salary divided by 30. The method of calculating hourly rate: Daily rate divided by 8.
         3.1.4 The employer may ask the employee to work over time (the Employee is expected to cooperate to supply better service to his or her students), and if the Employee chooses to do overtime, the Employer will pay for the overtime at the rate of W 15,000 per 60 minutes class.
         3.1.5 The employer will pay a monthly salary or the total sum of the amount for one full month of work on the 5th of each month. In the case the employee doesn't start working on the very first day of the month his/her working days for the month will be counted from the day when he/she started working a regular schedule.
         3.1.6 The employer has the authority to move the employee from one department to another with sufficient notice of two (2) weeks or ten (10) business days. In case of emergency, such as absence or vacancy, the employer can ask the employee to move departments, when necessary, either ad interim or permanent capcity.
         3.1.7 Working times are as follow: Elementary School Department: 10:00 - 7:00, Middle School Department: 3:30 - 11:45

    3.2 Housing
         3.2.1 The employer will provide the employee a single apartment in a safe environment with certain furniture items (bed, washing machine, gas range, refrigerator, TV, a table and chairs suitable for taking meals, fan or air conditioner, some utensils and cookware, a wardrobe) and the apartment will be provided at no cost to the employee with the exception of utilities and phone, cable, satellite, and internet bills. After contract ends, employee must to pay 50,000 won for housekeeping cost.
         3.2.2 The employee should have the duty preserving the housing and furniture items provided by the employer until the termination of this contract. If they are destroyed, the employee should restore them to the original state or pay the cost needed in purchasing the same level of the substitutes of them.
         3.2.3 The employer will deduct 200,000 won from each of the employees first three months of pay to make a total of 600,000 won as a housing management deposit. This deposit is to cover any unpaid monthly service or utility bills in the event the employee fails to pay for any service or goods which she/he used throughout the contract. The employer will hold the full amount of the deposit until all payable bills are checked to have been paid. After the employee completes his/her 12 month contract, he/she will be refunded the 600,000 won if all bills are paid.

    3.3 Airfaire
         3.3.1 One way airfare (standard economy ticket) from the employee's designated city to Korea before departure will be provided only for the employee who will be fulfilling a 12-month period and who has been hired outside of Korea. This is not applicable if hired within Korea. If the employee leaves the school before 12 months, the employee must pay back the initial airfare or the employer may deduct the amount of airfare from the teacher's last payment.
         3.3.2 In the event when the airfare is paid by the Employee him/herself before departure, the airfare will be reimbursed by the employer to the employee after the issuance of an E-2 Visa from Korean Immigration Office. The reimbursement is subject only to the employee who will be fulfilling a 12-month of employment period and has been hired outside of Korea. This is not applicable if hired within Korea.

    3.4 Lodging
         3.4.1 The employer will provide lodging if necessary, for the Employee's stay for the orientation and training period at a facility provided by the employer.

    3.5 Health Plan
         3.5.1 The employer will pay 50% of the premium for the Employee's health plan, which is provided by the Employer and are administered through the Employer (Participation in a health plan is optional, but it will be mandatory for Americans and Canadians from year 2007). The employee will be responsible for rest of the cost.

    3.6 Severance Pay
         3.6.1 The employer will pay a severance to the employee upon completion of contract. The amount of the severance pay will be equal to a month's salary (2.1 mil. won), and if necessary, applicable government deductions will be subtracted.

    3.7 Paid Vacation
         3.7.1 The employee may use 7-working days as paid vacation per year. No more than three consecutive workings days may be taken at once, with the exception of special scheduled academic periods (e.g. holding/exam periods) in which the Employee may take four consecutive working days. Three days of Institute-scheduled vacation are counted in these 7 days. None of these 7 days may be taken during the first three months of employment. The remaining days must be scheduled with the Institute at least one month in advance. If an employee does not use all of their vacation days they will be compensated at daily rate. Days in which the employee does not regularly work i.e., Saturdays, Sundays, and National Holidays are not to be considered as part of the vacation period.
         3.7.2 The employee will be paid for all national holidays and not be expected to work during these days otherwise in special occasion for which the employee agrees to work voluntarily.
         3.7.3 Upon completion of contract, unused vacation days will be paid at the same rate as the formula used in 3.1.3.

    3.8 Sick Day
         3.8.1 The employee may use up to 2 paid sick days per year with the doctor's note from a company-designated hospital, and after the 2 sick days have been used, it will be counted as absent and the pay will be calculated according to the Daily Rate/Hourly Rate.


4. Renewal and Termination of Contract

    4.1 Renewal
          4.1.1 The employee must give the employer a written 45-day notice before renewal or non-renewal of the Employee's current contract.
          4.1.2 Both the employer and the employer reserve the option to renew the contract.

    4.2 Termination of Contract
          4.2.1 Both parties will give at least a 45-day notice prior to the termination date of the contract.
          4.2.2 The employer retains the right to terminate the contract immediately if:
                   a. The employee is unable to discharge the responsibilities or meet the conditions such as being late for class on a continuous basis, continuous failure to keep regularly scheduled class hours and repeated absences from classes without a valid reason.
                   b. The employee teaches off the employer's property.
                   c. The employee used illegal drugs or is intoxicated during work hours.
                   d. The employee participates in any type of criminal activity of corruption of public moral that violates the laws of the Republic of South Korea.
                   e. The employee receives three (3) written warnings from the employer.
                   f. The employee tells others about his/her own employment contract details.
          4.2.3 If, for any reason, the contract is terminated before the full completion of the contract period:
                  a. The employee will not qualify for benefits such as severance pay and the airfares.
                  b. The employee will be wholly responsible for any utilities/maintenance and phone bills remaining for the duration of their housing lease.
          4.2.4 Withing 14-days the employee is required to sign a notice of termination and accompany the employer to the Korean Immigration office to notify the Korean Immigration office of the termination.


This is the bulk of the contract. Maybe I am naive, but the contract doesn't look too bad, and a friend who taught in a public school in Korea said it didn't look that bad other than the hours. Thank you ahead of time for any advice you could give on this.


Re: Hagwon Contract Review
« Reply #1 on: January 13, 2019, 07:57:00 am »
Low salary, very low overtime rate, unpaid training, 7 days holiday instead of 10 and isn't it illegal to operate a hagwan after11pm? Also If you don't use a holiday you get 70,000 won (2.1 mil divided by 30) instead of the 90,000 overtime you should get for a day's work (at 15,000, a very low rate, an hour)
« Last Edit: January 13, 2019, 08:27:19 am by eggieguffer »


  • m.corless
  • Veteran

    • 239

    • August 30, 2011, 02:55:14 pm
    • Toronto, ON, Canada
Re: Hagwon Contract Review
« Reply #2 on: January 13, 2019, 10:47:46 am »
Substituting national holiday days off for weekend days isn't a good deal.
There is a sentence in there that makes overtime sound non-optional, which is never true but this employer may guilt you into the extra work.
Also you don't want "employer provided and administered health insurance". You want enrollment in the National Health Insurance Plan and the National Pension Palan.


  • KoreaBoo
  • Expert Waygook

    • 565

    • May 25, 2014, 04:00:42 pm
    • Korealand
Re: Hagwon Contract Review
« Reply #3 on: January 13, 2019, 11:31:00 am »
The contract has a large number of illegal conditions in it.

I would simply walk away.


  • sepper
  • Newgookin

    • 3

    • August 11, 2018, 12:17:46 pm
Re: Hagwon Contract Review
« Reply #4 on: January 14, 2019, 02:36:58 pm »
The contract has a large number of illegal conditions in it.

I would simply walk away.

Could you let me know which parts in particular are illegal? I'm not going to take this contract, but I'd like to know for future reference.


Re: Hagwon Contract Review
« Reply #5 on: January 14, 2019, 11:06:04 pm »
You can do better, don't do it.  The overtime thing   :huh:

No chance.  As others have said, too many red flags.  Run away!

« Last Edit: January 15, 2019, 12:12:42 am by some waygug-in »