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  • bethyb
  • Explorer

    • 6

    • April 21, 2020, 05:43:13 pm
    • south korea
Is my school allowed to do this?
« on: April 22, 2020, 11:19:36 am »
Hello all,
  Sorry if this has been answered before in advance.  So after the virus hit, my school shut down, but I was lucky enough to keep working after refusing to sign a new contract saying they didn't have to pay me for an "x" amount of time.

  Now that the school has opened again my workload has become crazy since I am doing everything from the time we were closed and my regular workload.  There are not enough hours during the day to do everything they want me to do even when I rush through it and they don't want to pay me overtime.  It would be one thing if this was temporary but it seems as though it is permanent.  I think they are trying to earn money that they lost while closed by making me do things like 1 on 1 schooling and recording online classes on top of teaching regular classes and doing online classes live plus more.

   I'm burnt out and very frustrated, are they allowed to do this?  I can't tell and for reference, I am including what my contract says below.  Thank you for any help, I really feel lost.

--

1) The Employee will act in an appropriately professional manner and be responsible for conducting professional English Language classes. During the term of this agreement, the employee is required to prepare to teach, and carry out all required administrative duties connected with classes assigned by the employer such as lesson preparations, student evaluations, teacher meetings, workshops, events such as a Halloween party and must arrive in the office at the mandatory arrival time.

2) The employee will be required to work for regularly scheduled 35 hours from Monday to Friday. And the employee should use the remainder of the time for teaching preparation. If working hours exceed 35 hours per week from Monday to Friday, the employee will be paid overtime based on the additional teaching hours. Working hours start at 3:00 PM and ending time is on 10:00 PM. Employee will be required to arrive at 3:00 PM and prepare for lessons according to the employer’s academic standards. Failure to abide the mandatory preparation and arrival time can result in verbal or written warnings to the employee. Dinner break time is 60 minutes and is not included in working hours. Even if the school is unable to provide 35 working hours per week to employee, employee will receive same amount of salary every month.

3) Classes and teaching hours are scheduled at the institute’s sole discretion. 

4) The employee should do his/her responsibilities with your class as a homeroom teacher. The homeroom teacher should manage the class students, fill in the home-school communication form.


Re: Is my school allowed to do this?
« Reply #1 on: April 22, 2020, 02:09:11 pm »
Your school is only allowed to do this  ..... if you let them.


Re: Is my school allowed to do this?
« Reply #2 on: April 22, 2020, 02:32:09 pm »
Is that a contract for 35 hours of classes a week? They can basically fill up your entire day at work with things to do. 7 hours of classes a day, 1 hour planning and 1 hour for lunch. It's no use now, but, that's a terrible contract.


Re: Is my school allowed to do this?
« Reply #3 on: April 23, 2020, 02:06:38 am »

3) Classes and teaching hours are scheduled at the institute’s sole discretion. 



Ouch. Why did you agree to something like this? NEVER allow this in a contract. The whole point of a contract is to outline exact working hours and number of hours and teaching hours. This is very basic. I'm not trying to be mean but I don't know what you were thinking allowing this to be in the contract.


Re: Is my school allowed to do this?
« Reply #4 on: April 23, 2020, 09:38:21 am »
Is this a public school contract or a hagwon we are talking about?

You need to make that clear because that's a huge difference.

I'm assuming you are talking about a hagwon job since you said your school
re-opened and public schools have NOT re-opened.

In this case, hagwons can pretty much do whatever they like.  Of course it doesn't
mean they are right or can get away with it, but they can do whatever they want.

Public schools can't.


  • Kayos
  • Hero of Waygookistan

    • 1902

    • March 31, 2016, 07:13:57 pm
    • NZ
Re: Is my school allowed to do this?
« Reply #5 on: April 23, 2020, 09:41:27 am »
Also, is it 35 hours, or 35 teaching hours?


  • OnNut81
  • Hero of Waygookistan

    • 1440

    • April 01, 2011, 03:01:41 pm
    • Anyang
Re: Is my school allowed to do this?
« Reply #6 on: April 23, 2020, 12:18:29 pm »
Is this a public school contract or a hagwon we are talking about?

You need to make that clear because that's a huge difference.


Bethyb wrote among other obvious clues: " I think they are trying to earn money that they lost while closed"

Pretty sure she made that clear.   

If you're new to Korea as well as this site (some people conflate new to waygook.org with new to Korea) then go by your contract and don't take it too personally when some people deride you for signing a contract with a sh*tty clause.  I imagine we've all been there and learned from it.  Regardless, if you're new or have been here awhile, clauses with vague meanings that are open to multiple interpretations will rarely favour you at a hakwan.  I've worked hakwans with 10 hour days that put you through the wringer.  Since your contract mentions overtime and you say they are unwilling to pay overtime, you need to sit down with them and discuss what you can reasonably get done during the day.  If you find you need to stay late, don't.  You need to make a stand on that because no hakwan boss is going to volunteer to lessen your workload or pay overtime.  It's up to you to decide if you are willing to make a stink or walk away from the job. 


  • hangook77
  • The Legend

    • 2338

    • September 14, 2017, 09:10:12 am
    • Near Busan
Re: Is my school allowed to do this?
« Reply #7 on: April 24, 2020, 02:53:01 pm »
Hello all,
  Sorry if this has been answered before in advance.  So after the virus hit, my school shut down, but I was lucky enough to keep working after refusing to sign a new contract saying they didn't have to pay me for an "x" amount of time.

  Now that the school has opened again my workload has become crazy since I am doing everything from the time we were closed and my regular workload.  There are not enough hours during the day to do everything they want me to do even when I rush through it and they don't want to pay me overtime.  It would be one thing if this was temporary but it seems as though it is permanent.  I think they are trying to earn money that they lost while closed by making me do things like 1 on 1 schooling and recording online classes on top of teaching regular classes and doing online classes live plus more.

   I'm burnt out and very frustrated, are they allowed to do this?  I can't tell and for reference, I am including what my contract says below.  Thank you for any help, I really feel lost.

--

1) The Employee will act in an appropriately professional manner and be responsible for conducting professional English Language classes. During the term of this agreement, the employee is required to prepare to teach, and carry out all required administrative duties connected with classes assigned by the employer such as lesson preparations, student evaluations, teacher meetings, workshops, events such as a Halloween party and must arrive in the office at the mandatory arrival time.

2) The employee will be required to work for regularly scheduled 35 hours from Monday to Friday. And the employee should use the remainder of the time for teaching preparation. If working hours exceed 35 hours per week from Monday to Friday, the employee will be paid overtime based on the additional teaching hours. Working hours start at 3:00 PM and ending time is on 10:00 PM. Employee will be required to arrive at 3:00 PM and prepare for lessons according to the employer’s academic standards. Failure to abide the mandatory preparation and arrival time can result in verbal or written warnings to the employee. Dinner break time is 60 minutes and is not included in working hours. Even if the school is unable to provide 35 working hours per week to employee, employee will receive same amount of salary every month.

3) Classes and teaching hours are scheduled at the institute’s sole discretion. 

4) The employee should do his/her responsibilities with your class as a homeroom teacher. The homeroom teacher should manage the class students, fill in the home-school communication form.

Did they pay you during the shutdown?  If they didn't and are making you work now, you should get overtime. 


Re: Is my school allowed to do this?
« Reply #8 on: April 25, 2020, 10:31:57 am »
There is a bunch of articles on the reddit sub
https://www.reddit.com/r/Korean_Law/

That goes over your questions, the articles are written by Korean Lawyers and it has been useful for many people


  • bethyb
  • Explorer

    • 6

    • April 21, 2020, 05:43:13 pm
    • south korea
Re: Is my school allowed to do this?
« Reply #9 on: May 06, 2020, 11:20:24 am »
Ouch. Why did you agree to something like this? NEVER allow this in a contract. The whole point of a contract is to outline exact working hours and number of hours and teaching hours. This is very basic. I'm not trying to be mean but I don't know what you were thinking allowing this to be in the contract.

It's a very long story, trust me I was thinking, but I really either had to go spend more money to go back home after investing a large sum of money into committing to do this or take what I could get.  Korea has not been kind to me and I can't say I will ever do this in Korea again.  It has been a nightmare since I came here, so many things I was afraid of happening has happend and I was very excited to do this before I came.  I will certainly know better than to be put in that position before my next contract.  Thank you for taking the time to give me advice tho, I will be far more paranoid next time.


  • bethyb
  • Explorer

    • 6

    • April 21, 2020, 05:43:13 pm
    • south korea
Re: Is my school allowed to do this?
« Reply #10 on: May 06, 2020, 11:24:21 am »
Is that a contract for 35 hours of classes a week? They can basically fill up your entire day at work with things to do. 7 hours of classes a day, 1 hour planning and 1 hour for lunch. It's no use now, but, that's a terrible contract.

It is unfortunately for 35 working hours.  It is a long story, I tried to get them to change it but there was a very small window for me to get everything decided so I took what I could get.


  • bethyb
  • Explorer

    • 6

    • April 21, 2020, 05:43:13 pm
    • south korea
Re: Is my school allowed to do this?
« Reply #11 on: May 06, 2020, 11:26:28 am »
Also, is it 35 hours, or 35 teaching hours?

Unfortunately, it is 35 hours which means they can just say teaching hours if they want.  My big issue is that I am not really doing much teaching right now, and when I do there is never enough time to prepare because of all the extra work.


  • bethyb
  • Explorer

    • 6

    • April 21, 2020, 05:43:13 pm
    • south korea
Re: Is my school allowed to do this?
« Reply #12 on: May 06, 2020, 11:38:07 am »
Bethyb wrote among other obvious clues: " I think they are trying to earn money that they lost while closed"

Pretty sure she made that clear.   

If you're new to Korea as well as this site (some people conflate new to waygook.org with new to Korea) then go by your contract and don't take it too personally when some people deride you for signing a contract with a sh*tty clause.  I imagine we've all been there and learned from it.  Regardless, if you're new or have been here awhile, clauses with vague meanings that are open to multiple interpretations will rarely favour you at a hakwan.  I've worked hakwans with 10 hour days that put you through the wringer.  Since your contract mentions overtime and you say they are unwilling to pay overtime, you need to sit down with them and discuss what you can reasonably get done during the day.  If you find you need to stay late, don't.  You need to make a stand on that because no hakwan boss is going to volunteer to lessen your workload or pay overtime.  It's up to you to decide if you are willing to make a stink or walk away from the job.

I have tried to explain it to them.  They basically tell me that I am being lazy, that other Korean teachers do extra work so I should too, and that there is nothing they can do.  It's alienating and demeaning.  So the only thing to do is subpar work that I am not proud of but I can get done on time.  Then they come and yell at me for all the things I just told them would happen because I don't have time.  Right now I am refusing to stay late but I cannot walk away from this job, I have to see it through.  This year has been terrible and all I've been through will have been for nothing if I walk away now.  So I'm looking to see if there are legal reasons I can go to them and reason.  If I don't then I just have to put my head down for the rest of the contract.


  • bethyb
  • Explorer

    • 6

    • April 21, 2020, 05:43:13 pm
    • south korea
Re: Is my school allowed to do this?
« Reply #13 on: May 06, 2020, 11:38:52 am »
There is a bunch of articles on the reddit sub
https://www.reddit.com/r/Korean_Law/

That goes over your questions, the articles are written by Korean Lawyers and it has been useful for many people

Thanks for this, I will look into it.