If you ever want to work in Japan, be very, very careful who you work for. Eikaiwas are generally a bad bunch (there are probably some good ones out there... Somewhere...) but Seiha has really proven to be one of the worst. Here's why:
1) Long travel times. They have their foreign teachers working at multiple schools, and those schools can be very far apart. One of my schools was over a two hour commute each way.
2) Few days off. Even when there are no classes, you're working. You get 8 days off a month. (7 days in February!) That means there's a six day week every month. I confronted the bosses about the over 40-hour workweeks and they said, basically, "I'm above the law." You usually don't get holidays off, either. Also, of course, you're required to get to the school early and often stay late. Sometimes your one hour lunch break is cut short because you have to prepare for the next class.
3) Disorganization. I'm serious. No one knows their ass from their elbows in this company, and it shows. Could be do to the ridiculously high turnover rate. Also, their textbooks suck and are painful to teach, but well...
3) Nickle and diming. If there's some way they can find to not have to pay money, they'll do it. This results in few resources in the newer classrooms, bad song CDs, you name it. They even threaten to take a hefty chunk of money out of your last paycheck if you don't return your uniforms (dry-cleaned)
4) General being a dick. You are not worth dirt to this company. Here's proof: they even refused to renew my visa when I said I wasn't renewing my contract; they claimed my contract ended before my visa was up. Also, when I confronted my boss once about the 40 hours a week law, she called a meeting with all the foreign teachers and the head teacher from the head office. He proceeded to yell at us for being unreasonable.
5) Lies. They will lie to you in your interview. I was told I would be teaching 3 days a week and campaign the other days-- all at the same school. Granted, the person who hired me ensured this was the case. When she quit, the head teacher said "the situation has changed." And then told me that it would continue to change in the future. Sounded a lot to me like, "I have altered the deal. Pray I do not alter it any further." I DID NOT AGREE TO WORK FOR THE DARK SIDE. Grr.
I'm pretty sure I'm forgetting something; I'll add it if I think of it. But seriously. This place is toxic.
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