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Left school 2 minutes early and coteacher looked furious.
« on: June 16, 2011, 03:59:31 pm »
So I decided to leave school 2 minutes early today as i wanted to catch the metro stop outside my school instead of taking the bus...the only problem is my coteacher saw me leaving after being mia for most of the afternoon.  He called out and asked where i was going and looked really pissed.  Now i know technically im off at 440 but every other day of my contract ive stayed at least 20 min past to catch the bus.  I thought one day leaving a few min early would be ok but i guess its a crime. My relationship with my coworker is already not that great so im not sure how i should approach this tomorrow.  Any ideas? Should I even bring it up?


  • Browncoat Japhy
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    • April 23, 2011, 08:32:30 pm
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Re: Left school 2 minutes early and coteacher looked furious.
« Reply #1 on: June 16, 2011, 04:04:17 pm »
I would say just don't worry about it.If it is a big enough problem for him to bring up then he will. And of course if it is a big deal then just apologize and wait for the bus.


Re: Left school 2 minutes early and coteacher looked furious.
« Reply #2 on: June 16, 2011, 04:08:44 pm »
Say nothing until they bring it up.  If they try to make a issue of it, tell them to look at the contract.  They can tally 2 minutes everyday you leave early until it adds up to 8 hours.  Once it hits 8 hours, they can deduct 1 vacation day (or if you have no vacation days left, one days salary).  So, you can do it another 239 times before you lose a vacation day....I would stop at 238 so I dont lose anything since it would be 7 hours 58 minutes......Is there even that many working days in a one-year PS contract?


  • joybot0
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    • May 19, 2010, 02:41:59 pm
    • South Korea
Re: Left school 2 minutes early and coteacher looked furious.
« Reply #3 on: June 16, 2011, 04:39:01 pm »
Before you whip out the contract make sure he understands your bus situation. Maybe suggest that if you came a little early if it would be okay to leave a little early.

But public schools tend to be very "strict" when it comes to these sorts of things. Sometimes I came in 1 or 2 minutes late because I was taking my time walking 40 minutes to work in the ice and snow. I lectured and when on about how I am risking my life and that 1 or 2 minutes isn't that much.

I ended up with a warning letter.

Some advice...if he says you must leave 4:40 and doesn't yield to your bus schedule than just listen to him. Otherwise your fighting for what's right will end up giving you a bad recommendation down the road. It's trivial stuff to us but to them they are hardass.

Tomorrow be a reasonable person and clearly state why you left early. Don't whine about, "It was just two minutes." Tell him your situation and that you understand the rules, but you just didn't want to wait for the bus this time. Tell him next time you should have asked for his permission.

Anyways good luck


Re: Left school 2 minutes early and coteacher looked furious.
« Reply #4 on: June 16, 2011, 04:52:51 pm »
Your contract clearly states you stay until 440 which means even if it's 439 and 59 seconds you cannot leave....some schools will let it go and not let it be a big deal but other schools really stick to the time table exactly.

To them it doesn't matter that you stayed after that time...they weren't paying you for it so it was just you hanging out at school during your freetime to them.  If they specifically ask you to stay for official reasons or whatever that's a different story.....

Pretty much in this case you are in the wrong so the school now has the power to give you a warning, refusal for renewal or recommendation letts, whatever they want depending on how strict your school is....you already don't have a great relationship with your co-teacher and leaving early is just going to make it worse....

They stay later than us no matter what so there is also a jealousy factor that can be there....be careful how you handle this because it can really backfire on you.  Pretty much either get permission to alter your hours a little or just wait until 440 like you are suppose to.


Re: Left school 2 minutes early and coteacher looked furious.
« Reply #5 on: June 16, 2011, 04:53:21 pm »
Ya I agree unless he say something tomorrow then just dont say anything.  Sometimes I reakon Koreans are stuck in what we are supposed to do by some random standards.  So dont panic........


  • Bump
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    • April 26, 2011, 12:07:27 pm
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Re: Left school 2 minutes early and coteacher looked furious.
« Reply #6 on: June 16, 2011, 05:01:03 pm »
Before you whip out the contract make sure he understands your bus situation. Maybe suggest that if you came a little early if it would be okay to leave a little early.

But public schools tend to be very "strict" when it comes to these sorts of things. Sometimes I came in 1 or 2 minutes late because I was taking my time walking 40 minutes to work in the ice and snow. I lectured and when on about how I am risking my life and that 1 or 2 minutes isn't that much.

I ended up with a warning letter.

Some advice...if he says you must leave 4:40 and doesn't yield to your bus schedule than just listen to him. Otherwise your fighting for what's right will end up giving you a bad recommendation down the road. It's trivial stuff to us but to them they are hardass.

Tomorrow be a reasonable person and clearly state why you left early. Don't whine about, "It was just two minutes." Tell him your situation and that you understand the rules, but you just didn't want to wait for the bus this time. Tell him next time you should have asked for his permission.

Anyways good luck

This is what I would characterize as constructive and helpful. 

Your contract clearly states you stay until 440 which means even if it's 439 and 59 seconds you cannot leave....some schools will let it go and not let it be a big deal but other schools really stick to the time table exactly.

To them it doesn't matter that you stayed after that time...they weren't paying you for it so it was just you hanging out at school during your freetime to them.  If they specifically ask you to stay for official reasons or whatever that's a different story.....

Pretty much in this case you are in the wrong so the school now has the power to give you a warning, refusal for renewal or recommendation letts, whatever they want depending on how strict your school is....you already don't have a great relationship with your co-teacher and leaving early is just going to make it worse....

They stay later than us no matter what so there is also a jealousy factor that can be there....be careful how you handle this because it can really backfire on you.  Pretty much either get permission to alter your hours a little or just wait until 440 like you are suppose to.

This is not.  Please refrain from making people feel worse for things that in all reality should not be a big deal.  At all.  By the way, all of the teachers at my school are running away at 440.  The only person who stays late is the principal. 


Re: Left school 2 minutes early and coteacher looked furious.
« Reply #7 on: June 16, 2011, 05:15:48 pm »
Explain to him why you were leaving earlier and your situation.  If he's still angry about it, apologize and don't get caught leaving early again (the best way to not get caught is to not do it at all).

By the way, all of the teachers at my school are running away at 440.  The only person who stays late is the principal. 

It's the same at my schools.  I'm usually the last teacher out the door, and I leave at 4:40.  It just depends on your school's administration.


  • Morticae
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    • August 31, 2010, 12:45:33 pm
Re: Left school 2 minutes early and coteacher looked furious.
« Reply #8 on: June 16, 2011, 05:48:55 pm »
I left 20 minutes early today. No problem~


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  • Waygookin

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    • October 07, 2010, 04:13:26 pm
    • Seoul, Korea
Re: Left school 2 minutes early and coteacher looked furious.
« Reply #9 on: June 16, 2011, 06:05:55 pm »
So I decided to leave school 2 minutes early today as i wanted to catch the metro stop outside my school instead of taking the bus...the only problem is my coteacher saw me leaving after being mia for most of the afternoon.  He called out and asked where i was going and looked really pissed.  Now i know technically im off at 440 but every other day of my contract ive stayed at least 20 min past to catch the bus.  I thought one day leaving a few min early would be ok but i guess its a crime. My relationship with my coworker is already not that great so im not sure how i should approach this tomorrow.  Any ideas? Should I even bring it up?

(MOD EDIT: Quote removed)

(MOD EDIT : Removed comment to prevent any emotional response) If your contract says 4:40, it's 4:40. All you have to do is ask before you leave early and problem solved.
« Last Edit: June 17, 2011, 08:08:08 am by Sara Teacher »


  • Castielle
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Re: Left school 2 minutes early and coteacher looked furious.
« Reply #10 on: June 16, 2011, 06:40:08 pm »
Please keep the thread on topic as the OP asked for advise on what to do in his situation.
when in Rome.. Die eind resultaat moet die moeite werd wees!


  • ilpunto
  • Adventurer

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    • December 08, 2009, 12:56:00 pm
    • South Korea
Re: Left school 2 minutes early and coteacher looked furious.
« Reply #11 on: June 16, 2011, 06:40:20 pm »
As you mentioned, your relationship with your coworkers not being so great already is probably causing them to scrutinize you.

Every little thing you do that is against the rule will give them the opportunity to really get on your case.

If you like your school, I suggest trying to do things that will improve your image.

If you don't like your school, maybe a change of schools will give you a fresh start.

In the future, try your best and work extremely hard during the first few months and get on the good side of your employer. If you had been on their good side, I'm sure your currently employer would've just overlooked you leaving a few minutes early and not said anything.


Re: Left school 2 minutes early and coteacher looked furious.
« Reply #12 on: June 16, 2011, 07:17:01 pm »
I've felt like my co-teacher was really stressed out when it came to me behaving perfectly but now I know better. I think many koreans are TERRIFIED of looking bad. If your principal would see you leave early, he wouldn't come confront you, he would go to your co-teacher and insert a grenade up the arse of his dignity and self-worth and have it blow up all over the room. The co-teachers are responsible for you. For a society that is afraid of authority and shame like the korean, that's a really scary thought. God knows I would want to keep you in check if it meant not being chewed up by a power hungry old man! Don't take it personal and don't worry too much about it. He is probably just scared.


Re: Left school 2 minutes early and coteacher looked furious.
« Reply #13 on: June 16, 2011, 07:30:49 pm »
Your contract clearly states you stay until 440 which means even if it's 439 and 59 seconds you cannot leave....some schools will let it go and not let it be a big deal but other schools really stick to the time table exactly.

To them it doesn't matter that you stayed after that time...they weren't paying you for it so it was just you hanging out at school during your freetime to them.  If they specifically ask you to stay for official reasons or whatever that's a different story.....

Pretty much in this case you are in the wrong so the school now has the power to give you a warning, refusal for renewal or recommendation letts, whatever they want depending on how strict your school is....you already don't have a great relationship with your co-teacher and leaving early is just going to make it worse....

They stay later than us no matter what so there is also a jealousy factor that can be there....be careful how you handle this because it can really backfire on you.  Pretty much either get permission to alter your hours a little or just wait until 440 like you are suppose to.

This is not.  Please refrain from making people feel worse for things that in all reality should not be a big deal.  At all.  By the way, all of the teachers at my school are running away at 440.  The only person who stays late is the principal.
[/quote]

At my school I am the only one out of the entire school that leaves around 430/440....every other teacher has to stay to finish everything and the general time for them to leave is around 5/530.  My school is extremely strict so it would be a big deal at my school and I know a few other teachers like that.  If it's not a big deal at your school then you are lucky but for my school what i wrote is a reality. 


  • rabidkoala
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    • June 16, 2011, 07:09:58 pm
    • Yecheon, South Korea
Re: Left school 2 minutes early and coteacher looked furious.
« Reply #14 on: June 16, 2011, 07:32:00 pm »
Koreans place such a strong emphasis on first impressions that if you don't pull things off perfectly from day 1, every single negative thing you do will dig you into a hole.  It's unfortunate, but there's probably nothing you can do to rectify the situation except to follow every rule to the letter.


Re: Left school 2 minutes early and coteacher looked furious.
« Reply #15 on: June 16, 2011, 07:32:56 pm »
It really depends upon your school's principal.  At my last EPIK (elementary) school, more than a few of the KTs were leaving early.  The principal sent the vice principal out into the parking lot to watch out for those scalawags.  The early exodus stopped very quickly.   At other EPIK and GEPIK schools, that was never a problem.  I usually had too much to do to even think about leaving even five minutes early.  It's usually the Korean teachers who try to leave early, in my experience.

The funny thing about my last public school job, was that if you did not leave within 20 minutes of the scheduled quitting time, it was possible for your regular exit to be locked and you would have to hike down to the main entrance near the principal's office to get out.   I was nearly locked out at that school once because I stayed too late talking and working.  The security guy locked the gate to where my bicycle was locked up.  I went down to the first floor and opened a window, which I climbed out, grabbed my bike and then I climbed back through the window with my bike.  Then I rode my bike out the door literally in the corridor.  I know it's a little off topic, but I hope you enjoy my little adventure.  It was the first and only time I have ridden a bicycle inside a Korean school in the corridor.  I always wondered what the cleaning people must have thought at seeing my tire tracks.  I'll never know.


Re: Left school 2 minutes early and coteacher looked furious.
« Reply #16 on: June 16, 2011, 07:39:19 pm »
On this note-I keep turning up at around 8:36 they don't say much I think because the teaching on my part is good, I had principal drive past me at 8:35 like I was in the school by then and put his window down and kept looking at me, I was not sure what he wanted, so I just give him a friendly wave, hello and smile, seemed to work.
"Independence? That's middle class blasphemy. We are all dependent on one another, every soul of us on earth."


  • Daeguber
  • Waygookin

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    • September 10, 2010, 12:47:51 pm
    • Daegu, South Korea
Re: Left school 2 minutes early and coteacher looked furious.
« Reply #17 on: June 16, 2011, 09:22:49 pm »
It's weird because every school is different. At my school teachers come really late and are flexible with the time up until 9. At the same time you have to deal with the double standard. My principal got upset with the other native teacher at my school but never said a word to the Korean teacher who is usually not there on time.


  • cat fud
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    • June 03, 2011, 06:37:09 pm
Re: Left school 2 minutes early and coteacher looked furious.
« Reply #18 on: June 16, 2011, 09:25:43 pm »
Please keep the thread on topic as the OP asked for advise on what to do in his situation.

Well, it's difficult to know.  I wonder if there is something common to all of his problems, which if we could identify we could perhaps remove to fix things.

I myself go home 2 hours early on a Friday, so there must be a problem at his school.


  • twak24
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    • March 22, 2011, 08:01:42 pm
Re: Left school 2 minutes early and coteacher looked furious.
« Reply #19 on: June 16, 2011, 09:41:27 pm »
At my last EPIK (elementary) school, more than a few of the KTs were leaving early.  The principal sent the vice principal out into the parking lot to watch out for those scalawags.  The early exodus stopped very quickly.

I was nearly locked out at that school once because I stayed too late talking and working.  The security guy locked the gate to where my bicycle was locked up.  I went down to the first floor and opened a window, which I climbed out, grabbed my bike and then I climbed back through the window with my bike.  Then I rode my bike out the door literally in the corridor.  I know it's a little off topic, but I hope you enjoy my little adventure.  It was the first and only time I have ridden a bicycle inside a Korean school in the corridor.  I always wondered what the cleaning people must have thought at seeing my tire tracks.  I'll never know.

Reader, you LEGEND!!! I laughed out loud at both of these little accounts of awesomeness. I pictured them vividly in my head, lived vicariously through them for a moment and enjoyed myself thoroughly. Much thanks. But I digress.

RE dealing with it, I reckon you should just wait to see if he brings it up or not. RE not letting it happen again, I always wait about 3 minutes until after the first KT in my English office has left. This seems to do the trick.