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  • NorthStar
  • Expert Waygook

    • 786

    • July 05, 2017, 10:54:06 am
    • Mouseville
Re: Coteacher conflict advice?
« Reply #20 on: May 13, 2019, 08:54:21 pm »
No need to worry, donít do a midnight run.  Visualize what you want your workplace to be and focus on that.  If you want to talk about it on skype then send me your contact by personal message.

Yeah, so you can try and sell the OP on a job in China?


Again....OP..AVOID agencies, recruiters and middlemen...unless it is someone you know.
« Last Edit: May 13, 2019, 08:55:52 pm by NorthStar »


  • tomoakleaf
  • Veteran

    • 153

    • September 22, 2012, 03:38:47 pm
    • South Korea
Re: Coteacher conflict advice?
« Reply #21 on: May 13, 2019, 09:05:06 pm »
Certainly not.  Iím really experienced but I definitely donít want to sell a job.  Just to lend an ear and talk it through together. 


  • thunderlips
  • Hero of Waygookistan

    • 1646

    • June 07, 2012, 10:01:55 am
    • South Korea
Re: Coteacher conflict advice?
« Reply #22 on: May 13, 2019, 09:07:28 pm »
Op you seem like a decent person and probably will be an awesome teacher. Hopefully the moe will help or force your co-tís to assist you. If not when one door closes more will open. Sorry you are having to deal with this all. Stay strong and positive. Donít let this ruin your time outside of school if possible. Worrying only makes your problems double.


  • tomoakleaf
  • Veteran

    • 153

    • September 22, 2012, 03:38:47 pm
    • South Korea
Re: Coteacher conflict advice?
« Reply #23 on: May 13, 2019, 09:09:13 pm »
I agree 100% when one door closes others will open.  However, try to make it through this!
« Last Edit: May 13, 2019, 09:25:13 pm by tomoakleaf »


  • Cyanea
  • Hero of Waygookistan

    • 1152

    • September 04, 2016, 01:48:24 pm
    • Las Vegas
Re: Coteacher conflict advice?
« Reply #24 on: May 13, 2019, 10:39:28 pm »
I want to thank everyone for the advice, I really do appreciate it. Things has turned even more sour lately since I wrote this a few days ago.  my main teacher finally reported me to the MOE and they are going to have a meeting  about my "teaching" on wednesday. I was shocked because I thought she was kidding. She wasn't.  I can't believe it.

They like to select greenhorns and then bully them. Their whole system and mentality with public schools is just too pathetic.

If you are ready to move on from this job then I would give them a piece of your mind in this "meeting". Say how unhelpful your CoT has been, ask them why did they purposely select a totally inexperienced applicant in the first place when in fact numerous qualified and experienced people apply for these jobs. Tell them you have done all that is required and still been victimized by your Co teacher. Tell them this is a common problem that many foreign teachers report at pucblic schools. etc etc.

Believe me I have tore into my "superiors" before when they have treated me unfairly. They fire anyone who is assertive, so only do this if you've had enough of it and are happy to go.

I have worked at two public school jobs before and I can tell your situation is common among waygooks. The system virtually ensures it. Hogwons are a mixed bag and there are also some nightmare scenarios, but at least with hogwons you will not be so isolated.
Catch my drift?


Re: Coteacher conflict advice?
« Reply #25 on: May 14, 2019, 06:49:55 am »
I have worked at two public school jobs before and I can tell your situation is common among waygooks. The system virtually ensures it.

 :laugh:

seriously?  no, it isn't common.  this kind of treatment is rare. 


  • debbiem89
  • Expert Waygook

    • 508

    • August 30, 2016, 09:42:49 am
    • South Korea
Re: Coteacher conflict advice?
« Reply #26 on: May 14, 2019, 08:04:41 am »
I disagree with everyone implying Hagwons are better, that's certainly not always the case.

I fully agree with Ronnie here. This is NOT normal or usual treatment in a public school job AT ALL. I've literally never heard of things going so sour, so quickly.

Talk to the MOE about your concerns, be really honest about your struggles and how you've been treated. You CAN pull this back.



  • cattato
  • Waygookin

    • 14

    • January 16, 2019, 05:12:45 am
    • South Korea
Re: Coteacher conflict advice?
« Reply #27 on: May 14, 2019, 08:45:58 am »
I am correcting myself when i said it was my main coteacher. It wasn't her, she told me she couldn't bring herself to do it because she likes me. It was my vice principle who called. My vice principle went to my open class a couple weeks ago for about 3 mins and determined I can't  teach from those 3 mins. Which for the record that open class was the first time my main coteacher actually let me lead the class so of course it wasn't going to be the best. My main said that I haven't been working hard the past 2 months which is bs, I did exactly what they told me to do which was basically to stand off to the side and make a game. or be a human tape recorder. Not lead the class,if they wanted me to do that they should have told me in the beginning not 2 months later. urgh.


  • pkjh
  • Hero of Waygookistan

    • 1580

    • May 02, 2012, 02:59:44 pm
Re: Coteacher conflict advice?
« Reply #28 on: May 14, 2019, 09:18:20 am »
I disagree with everyone implying Hagwons are better, that's certainly not always the case.

I fully agree with Ronnie here. This is NOT normal or usual treatment in a public school job AT ALL. I've literally never heard of things going so sour, so quickly.

Talk to the MOE about your concerns, be really honest about your struggles and how you've been treated. You CAN pull this back.
I've only heard of one case where they fired someone. And the guy was a bona-fide nutbag. However, there have been a handful of others, imo, that should have been canned within their 1st year. But, somehow most mange to stay for years.


Re: Coteacher conflict advice?
« Reply #29 on: May 14, 2019, 09:36:43 am »
Hi
Sorry to hear about your problems.  I've been there and done that.  I've been here for quite a few years and thought all was going well.  After more than 5 years I had 'that' co-teacher.  Fortunately I only had her for 6 months but it was enough time for me to end up on medication! 
One thing I did was document via email to myself details on what happened.  This allowed me to get it out while it was fresh and then I could let that incident go and not keep rehearsing it in my head.  It was also providing an 'electronic' trail should a meeting with the MOE have come up.  It didn't so I haven't quite been through the same as you.  She did however try to fail my renewal - fortunately I had other co-teachers who spoke to the Office of Education when they phoned.

As others have said 'don't take it personally'.  Very hard to do I know.

So what would I have done differently to avoid getting to that situation.  I'm not too sure.  The first thing DO NOT SAY 'I'm sorry'.  This, in Korea, is seen as an admission of fault, that you have not done something or done something you should not have done.  That was probably my biggest error and the one that caused my co-teacher to think I was 'insincere' (her word).  I often say 'I'm sorry' eg 'I'm sorry the weather is rainign today and you can't play outside'.  'I'm sorry, I'm ill today'.  'I'm sorry your daughter is ill' etc.   Hey, I even started this reply with 'Sorry'!

Here are 3 Korean words which are very different meanings - try using the second two and avoiding the first one (sorry)
- 미안해요 I apologize (my fault) - but this is the word that is translated to 'sorry'
-   유감입니다 It is a shame.  It is unfortunate. It is regrettable
- 힘드시겠어요  It must be difficult for you

The second thing I should have done was to address the problem when it first appeared.  She flew off her handle with me after one class (which I thought had gone well) and it totally shocked me.  I was stunned.  I guess I should have tried harder to make time with her to discuss it - and had it gone badly to have insisted on another meeting with another person present as mediator.  But she was too busy.  But looking back, it would have saved a lot of anguish (maybe).  She had told me at our first meeting that 'no Korean teacher likes having a Native English Teacher)' (I knew this wasn't true but didn't argue it with her).

Thirdly I think it might have been better to have written down the problem as I saw it (being carefull not to accuse her) and some possible solutions.  Often the KTs are afraid to talk with us and don't always understand us.  I would suggest you do this (write things down clearly) before the Wednesday meeting.  Just be careful as this will now be a document against you.

Possibly the MOE may (????) considering changing your schools - not too likely during the first year but a possible suggestion if the relationship has broken down.

I have class now so must go.
All the best


  • lhelena
  • Veteran

    • 129

    • March 11, 2018, 01:57:14 pm
    • Anseong
Re: Coteacher conflict advice?
« Reply #30 on: May 14, 2019, 10:07:32 am »
I think it's really important to make an outline of some kind to guide your thoughts in the meeting. I also recommend sticking to that outline and not letting whoever is present from your school try to derail you because I get the feeling they will. If you are each given time to say your peace having an outline will not only help you control the discussion to the real issue, but also serve as documentation. So for each incident you list try to provide the date, class period, grade level or anything else that can help make a sort of timeline for them. My petty ass would even go as far as to bring a copy of the outline for each person, you may not feel comfortable doing that but it could help them understand you better if they can read along. Another thing is to present yourself as calm, cool and collected as possible. I know it would be a struggle for me too, but nothing will get done if you lose your temper or cry so much you can't speak your peace. Like JenniferNZ1 said, don't apologize for anything. You've not done anything wrong from what you have said, but saying sorry is going to look like you're waving the white flag.

An important point I would make sure to hit multiple times is how long you've been here. Remind them that you're still in an adjustment period from moving your whole life to another country and teaching for the first time. Judging you on such a small amount of experience is in no way fair or practical. You could also point out that teaching experience is not a requirement for the job if you feel comfortable being very slightly aggressive.

I really hope everything works out for you in the most positive way possible. This is honestly the worst and shouldn't be happening to anyone let alone someone brand new. If you ever need to talk outside of the thread feel free to PM me, I'm usually on here a couple times a day.


  • thunderlips
  • Hero of Waygookistan

    • 1646

    • June 07, 2012, 10:01:55 am
    • South Korea
Re: Coteacher conflict advice?
« Reply #31 on: May 14, 2019, 10:47:09 am »
Ask for an independent translator too. Otherwise your coworkers will do it and may change things or leave stuff out.


  • lhelena
  • Veteran

    • 129

    • March 11, 2018, 01:57:14 pm
    • Anseong
Re: Coteacher conflict advice?
« Reply #32 on: May 14, 2019, 10:48:15 am »
Ask for an independent translator too. Otherwise your coworkers will do it and may change things or leave stuff out.
oooo yeah yeah this^^^ I felt like I was missing something...


  • debbiem89
  • Expert Waygook

    • 508

    • August 30, 2016, 09:42:49 am
    • South Korea
Re: Coteacher conflict advice?
« Reply #33 on: May 14, 2019, 12:25:02 pm »
I honestly don't think they'll give you an independent translator. Your EPIK coordinator is there to mediate, this isn't a legal case just a meeting I'm guessing.

Unless they wrongfully terminate you, in which case you would have grounds to go further with it.

BEFORE meeting with the MOE, call your coordinator. Ask them to tell you exactly what is going on. They are teachers too, they've been in your shoes. If they can tell you what they expect to happen in the meeting, what your vice has actually said...then at least you can take some time and think about exactly what you will say and know a little what to expect.

Personally all my coordinators have been pretty good. They don't always have the power to DO a lot officially but they know what's up.


Re: Coteacher conflict advice?
« Reply #34 on: May 14, 2019, 02:05:51 pm »
I honestly don't think they'll give you an independent translator. Your EPIK coordinator is there to mediate, this isn't a legal case just a meeting I'm guessing.

Unless they wrongfully terminate you, in which case you would have grounds to go further with it.

BEFORE meeting with the MOE, call your coordinator. Ask them to tell you exactly what is going on. They are teachers too, they've been in your shoes. If they can tell you what they expect to happen in the meeting, what your vice has actually said...then at least you can take some time and think about exactly what you will say and know a little what to expect.

Personally all my coordinators have been pretty good. They don't always have the power to DO a lot officially but they know what's up.

Right, Debs!

The OoE has invested a lot of time and money in getting you here.  Now you're here, they should try and fix it.  It's not a legal issue, so no need for an independent translator.  Also Ihelena is right too.  You're taking time to adjust here and it does take time, as most of us have been there.  Just think about what you want from this meeting.  Don't get all flustered and emotional.  Come across as calm and have an idea about what you want from this, and go with that.  Try not to think that everyone is against you.  You've come to a new country and this kind of thing is daunting but how you handle it is important. 


  • thunderlips
  • Hero of Waygookistan

    • 1646

    • June 07, 2012, 10:01:55 am
    • South Korea
Re: Coteacher conflict advice?
« Reply #35 on: May 14, 2019, 05:47:01 pm »
By independent translator I meant someone other than a co-teacher.
« Last Edit: May 14, 2019, 05:55:53 pm by thunderlips »


  • SanderB
  • Super Waygook

    • 437

    • June 02, 2018, 06:25:54 pm
    • Burning Oil Be Best
Re: Coteacher conflict advice?
« Reply #36 on: May 15, 2019, 12:58:24 am »
Record your classes as proof.

Fiat voluntas tua- What you want is allowed


  • hangook77
  • Hero of Waygookistan

    • 1306

    • September 14, 2017, 09:10:12 am
    • Near Busan
Re: Coteacher conflict advice?
« Reply #37 on: May 15, 2019, 08:31:47 am »
I am correcting myself when i said it was my main coteacher. It wasn't her, she told me she couldn't bring herself to do it because she likes me. It was my vice principle who called. My vice principle went to my open class a couple weeks ago for about 3 mins and determined I can't  teach from those 3 mins. Which for the record that open class was the first time my main coteacher actually let me lead the class so of course it wasn't going to be the best. My main said that I haven't been working hard the past 2 months which is bs, I did exactly what they told me to do which was basically to stand off to the side and make a game. or be a human tape recorder. Not lead the class,if they wanted me to do that they should have told me in the beginning not 2 months later. urgh.

The VP won't call as he doesn't know anything about your class or your teaching style.  It would have been your main coteacher who would have asked him and signed off on it.  If they didn't help you or give you guidance, then tell the truth at the meeting and ask why they never gave you any support before deciding to complain about you?  You got nothing to lose now. 


  • hangook77
  • Hero of Waygookistan

    • 1306

    • September 14, 2017, 09:10:12 am
    • Near Busan
Re: Coteacher conflict advice?
« Reply #38 on: May 15, 2019, 08:34:05 am »
The VP won't call as he doesn't know anything about your class or your teaching style.  It would have been your main coteacher who would have asked him and signed off on it.  If they didn't help you or give you guidance, then tell the truth at the meeting and ask why they never gave you any support before deciding to complain about you?  You got nothing to lose now. 


  • NorthStar
  • Expert Waygook

    • 786

    • July 05, 2017, 10:54:06 am
    • Mouseville
Re: Coteacher conflict advice?
« Reply #39 on: May 15, 2019, 08:38:30 am »
The VP won't call as he doesn't know anything about your class or your teaching style.  It would have been your main coteacher who would have asked him and signed off on it.  If they didn't help you or give you guidance, then tell the truth at the meeting and ask why they never gave you any support before deciding to complain about you?  You got nothing to lose now. 

They are just going to deflect and turn blame on the OP....that is all the can do.  There is no reason to think that those people are going to sit down and reflect on how they failed on their part.  It will all be blamed on the OP. 

It is a game of dodge, deflect, rope-a-dope, with these people.