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  • JVPrice
  • Expert Waygook

    • 838

    • August 29, 2017, 10:26:13 am
    • Gimhae, South Korea
Hagwons and COVID related issues
« on: May 04, 2021, 04:09:04 pm »
Hello all

I've been working at my first hagwon since December and we had to shut down these past two weeks because of the you-know-what. To my dismay, when I got paid today, I wasn't given anything for the two weeks I was forced to sit out of work. I haven't sat down and talked with my director yet, so I want to hear it from other people while I wait.

Is this even fair? Sure, I get not being paid for days I didn't work but I have no control over if some kid gets the virus. Who's to say it won't happen again soon? Not to mention all my other co-workers got to work at the academy, working with kids online during the two weeks I had to sit out. I have bills to pay back home, and losing half my paycheck really hurts. What if it happens consecutively? Am I just screwed out of a paycheck due to bad luck? (I know that a lot of people lost their job recently, but this academy literally just expanded. They are certainly not strapped for cash.)

Has anyone else faced something similar? Any advice on the situation?
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  • JNM
  • Waygook Lord

    • 5056

    • January 19, 2015, 10:16:48 am
    • Cairo, Egypt (formerly Seoul)
Re: Hagwons and COVID related issues
« Reply #1 on: May 04, 2021, 09:25:11 pm »
No classes means no revenue for your employer.

What does your contract say?


  • JVPrice
  • Expert Waygook

    • 838

    • August 29, 2017, 10:26:13 am
    • Gimhae, South Korea
Re: Hagwons and COVID related issues
« Reply #2 on: May 05, 2021, 07:32:38 am »
Quote
No classes means no revenue for your employer.
Again, the other teachers continued teaching online... All except for me.

Quote
The Employee shall be paid 2.1 million won per month on the 10th of the following month. The
first salary shall be paid according to the workdays the Employee worked. The last utility fee
shall be deducted from the last salary.


Quote
The Employer shall pay the salary, as stated in this contract, and in case the Employee
requests teaching materials, the Employer shall support these with utmost efforts.
  There's nothing that says I shouldn't be paid if the school suddenly shuts down. And it says the first salary is paid according to workdays.

Whether it's in the contract or not, it's still unfair if you ask me. Again, I found out all the other teachers got to continue working while I had to stay home.
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Re: Hagwons and COVID related issues
« Reply #3 on: May 05, 2021, 01:12:46 pm »
Yeah Iíd try to fight it. Tell them you can work from home online. You may need to contact labor arbitration. If your school shuts down for a month then no salary at all?!?


  • JVPrice
  • Expert Waygook

    • 838

    • August 29, 2017, 10:26:13 am
    • Gimhae, South Korea
Re: Hagwons and COVID related issues
« Reply #4 on: May 05, 2021, 05:51:38 pm »
You may need to contact labor arbitration.
If it does come down to it, how would one contact them?
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Re: Hagwons and COVID related issues
« Reply #5 on: May 06, 2021, 12:06:20 am »


  • JVPrice
  • Expert Waygook

    • 838

    • August 29, 2017, 10:26:13 am
    • Gimhae, South Korea
Re: Hagwons and COVID related issues
« Reply #6 on: May 06, 2021, 05:35:41 am »
https://www.korea4expats.com/article-employer-disputes-%20workplace-conflicts.html


Also Seoul global center can help most likely.

Much thanks. I'll post again once I've spoken to my director.
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Re: Hagwons and COVID related issues
« Reply #7 on: May 06, 2021, 11:08:34 am »
I'm not sure if or how force majeure would apply here, but it might well be part of the contract.


  • OnNut81
  • The Legend

    • 2655

    • April 01, 2011, 03:01:41 pm
    • Anyang
Re: Hagwons and COVID related issues
« Reply #8 on: May 06, 2021, 11:53:26 am »
How attached are you to this school?  If they are unable (or unwilling) to meet the obligations of the contract then they would have to release you with a letter of release.  I'm sure the labour board would make that clear to them.  Unless you have some effed up contract they can't just arbitrarily decide to send you home and not pay you at their whim.  You're in country with a transferrable visa so you should be able to switch to a job that needs a full-time instructor fairly easily. 


  • JVPrice
  • Expert Waygook

    • 838

    • August 29, 2017, 10:26:13 am
    • Gimhae, South Korea
Re: Hagwons and COVID related issues
« Reply #9 on: May 06, 2021, 01:11:36 pm »
Just finished talking with the director.

Supposedly, the entire faculty took reduced pay the past two weeks. I, and the bus drivers they employ, did not work while the other teachers came in to teach online while still receiving nothing...

In other words, everyone else got the short end of the stick except for me? This seems a little too good to be true, but I won't complain if it was fair across the board in terms of pay. I suppose... Case closed?
« Last Edit: May 06, 2021, 01:14:15 pm by JVPrice »
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  • Lazio
  • Expert Waygook

    • 963

    • January 27, 2018, 03:56:10 pm
    • Gyeongi-do
Re: Hagwons and COVID related issues
« Reply #10 on: May 06, 2021, 01:35:44 pm »
Just finished talking with the director.

Supposedly, the entire faculty took reduced pay the past two weeks. I, and the bus drivers they employ, did not work while the other teachers came in to teach online while still receiving nothing...

In other words, everyone else got the short end of the stick except for me? This seems a little too good to be true, but I won't complain if it was fair across the board in terms of pay. I suppose... Case closed?

Are you saying that the other teachers were teaching online, and they did it without any compensation? That is BS! Why would they do that?
The director just tried to make you feel better.
''Jealous of those who make more, have a 2 bedroom apartment to live in, ride a GIANT mountain bike, and drive a car that gets them around?  Well, I can't help myself.  It's too bad you are jealous of me for you having less. I am at least able to say I am living better than most ESLers '' hangook77


  • OnNut81
  • The Legend

    • 2655

    • April 01, 2011, 03:01:41 pm
    • Anyang
Re: Hagwons and COVID related issues
« Reply #11 on: May 06, 2021, 02:14:26 pm »
Just finished talking with the director.

Supposedly, the entire faculty took reduced pay the past two weeks. I, and the bus drivers they employ, did not work while the other teachers came in to teach online while still receiving nothing...

In other words, everyone else got the short end of the stick except for me? This seems a little too good to be true, but I won't complain if it was fair across the board in terms of pay. I suppose... Case closed?

Case closed if you choose to believe the director that your co-workers came in and worked online for free.  Clearly a lie.  Ah, hakwans, how some things never change.  Why would your co-workers come in and do online classes for no pay when you were allowed to stay home?  You can't seriously believe that whopper? 


  • JVPrice
  • Expert Waygook

    • 838

    • August 29, 2017, 10:26:13 am
    • Gimhae, South Korea
Re: Hagwons and COVID related issues
« Reply #12 on: May 06, 2021, 05:09:29 pm »
I talked to another co-worker (one newer than me, mind you) and she told me they were working at a reduced pay rate. So it's not entirely unbelievable. (Assuming that there wasn't a translation issue). I'd understand if they came in and worked for a little less than nothing at all.

That happened when I was working in the States on a non-contract tutoring job. Once COVID hit, me and all the others in my position were able to continue work online, but at a reduced hourly wage. I'm gonna give them the benefit of the doubt for now.
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Re: Hagwons and COVID related issues
« Reply #13 on: May 06, 2021, 09:54:01 pm »
You're entitled to 70% pay for any time you didn't work. That is your employer's legal obligation.

Your co-workers obviously did not work without remuneration. Korean teachers are often not on a contract and can leave as they please. Those on contracts can still leave easily enough. They're not so attached to a job that they'd work for nothing.

Hagwons in the Gimhae area have a reputation for being relatively reasonable. Do not let your director get away with this.


  • JVPrice
  • Expert Waygook

    • 838

    • August 29, 2017, 10:26:13 am
    • Gimhae, South Korea
Re: Hagwons and COVID related issues
« Reply #14 on: May 13, 2021, 04:55:37 pm »
I suppose I have another question.

I contacted someone through the recommended website using a 1350 number but the person on the other line basically told me they couldn't help me and I should file a complaint. I'm a bit nervous to do so because I don't know if that'll lead to my co-workers immediately becoming aware that I did so, or if they'll contact me before getting them involved.

Anyone done this before?
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Re: Hagwons and COVID related issues
« Reply #15 on: May 14, 2021, 06:27:05 am »
I havenít myself but from what Iíve heard from others it moves quickly once you do. They will immediately contact your school to gather information and Iím sure everyone will be aware of the issue within an hour if that phone call.


  • hangook77
  • Waygook Lord

    • 5524

    • September 14, 2017, 09:10:12 am
    • Near Busan
Re: Hagwons and COVID related issues
« Reply #16 on: May 21, 2021, 11:08:04 am »
I'd demand full pay.  If I were contracted to work, their money issues aren't my problem.  Sounds like after past months of making money and hakwon owners make a lot (without giving a pay raise in years), they can afford to pay you out of past profits.  They're just being dicks.  It's not your fault it has to shut down.  I'd demand the full money and complain with the labor board.  What's the worse that's going to happen, he try to fire you?  Honestly, if I lost my job or got non renewed, I'd be gone to China for more money anyways.  It's only my 3 million won salary that keeps me here for now.  If I were low 2's, I'd already be gone.  Not worth it.  On top of low pay, the boss tries to nickle and dime you like this, I'd probably just quit anyways.  Screw him!
Trolls on here are lame and need to get a life.


  • catbird
  • Waygookin

    • 16

    • November 17, 2021, 01:42:32 am
Re: Hagwons and COVID related issues
« Reply #17 on: March 19, 2022, 04:06:11 am »
You're entitled to 70% pay for any time you didn't work. That is your employer's legal obligation.

Your co-workers obviously did not work without remuneration. Korean teachers are often not on a contract and can leave as they please. Those on contracts can still leave easily enough. They're not so attached to a job that they'd work for nothing.

Hagwons in the Gimhae area have a reputation for being relatively reasonable. Do not let your director get away with this.

Is the 70% pay rule still in effect?  My boss and I both came down with COVID on the weekend of February 26-27.  She shut down the hagwon for the following week, which included the March 1st holiday, and then deducted five days of pay for the four days the hagwon was closed. 


  • bosun
  • Veteran

    • 106

    • December 16, 2011, 06:57:25 pm
    • korea
Re: Hagwons and COVID related issues
« Reply #18 on: March 19, 2022, 09:24:35 am »
Is the 70% pay rule still in effect?  My boss and I both came down with COVID on the weekend of February 26-27.  She shut down the hagwon for the following week, which included the March 1st holiday, and then deducted five days of pay for the four days the hagwon was closed. 

That's very rough..take 4 days and lose 5 days pay. You should be paid, even if it is taken from your sick days. But...you know some hagwon owners aren't known for fair policies and practices. Anecdotally, I've been told of the same thing happening, and these are not hagwons.

Here is an article about going to work with Covid symptoms. It's a bit fluffy, but it seems like not getting paid is one of the issues.

https://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2022/03/17/2022031701156.html


« Last Edit: March 19, 2022, 09:28:38 am by bosun »