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Old August 27 2012, 09:58 AM   #1
Lord Garth
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Teaching in Japan, Part II

Some time ago, I can't remember when, I asked about teaching English to students in Japan and I'd sounded wishy-washy, leaning-torward-no at the time. I'm less wishy-washy now. I'm deciding that this is definitely going to become a Plan B.

I applied to Amity Corporation and also had to write a 500-word essay experessing my interest and why I would be interested in the position. After having done all that, Amity got back to me and invited me to be part of a group interview session. I requested the session that's being held in Boston on October 13th. I'd be required to come up with a lesson plan and there would be people who would pretend to be students.

If I'm invited to a second interview I'd have to pay $24 for a background check. Does this sound legit? I'd also have to pay $200 before I even take flight. Does this sound legit?

I converted the pay for a year from yen to the dollar, and it came out to a salary of $41,000. That's no bad. BUT that would be assuming I last and it's assuming that company to whom I have to play upfront is actually legitimate. I want a job so I can make money, not so I have to spend it; which raises red-flags.

Is there anywhere else I could apply that would essentially still offer me a position where I could teach in Japan? Somewhere that I also wouldn't have to worry about whether or not a company was real and what it cames to be instead of just just out for my money?

Last edited by Lord Garth; August 27 2012 at 06:17 PM. Reason: Typos.
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Old August 27 2012, 10:30 AM   #2
billcosby
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Re: Teaching in Japan, Part II

5-10 years ago it was easy to get a good gig there and the pay was higher.
Since the Lehman Good Times in 2008, demand for gaijin senseis fell dramatically. The teachers' salaries also tumbled. Now I hear it's quite competitive for a decent gig there... but the English McJobs should still be within reach.

Get in however you can. It's fantasy island, after all.
Never heard of Amity. Snoop around the net.

I've never heard of anyone paying for their own background check but it's a different game now.
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Old August 27 2012, 01:12 PM   #3
Gov Kodos
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Re: Teaching in Japan, Part II

I'd be leery of any company that wanted me to pay them for anything related to hiring. I haven't worked in Japan since the early 90's, but paying like that just sounds too odd, if not outright fishy.
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Old August 27 2012, 01:18 PM   #4
Alidar Jarok
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Re: Teaching in Japan, Part II

Wikipedia at least has a stub on them, but I suppose that could have been created by the company themselves. Snoop around on the web. This might be helpful.

Had you considered JET?
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Old August 27 2012, 05:47 PM   #5
NebulaClassGuy
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Re: Teaching in Japan, Part II

This probably isn't much help, but I found this one review for the Amity Foundation on Glassdoor.com. It seems to be an Asian teaching charity?

http://www.glassdoor.com/Reviews/Ami...ws-E149392.htm

Oh, well... like I said, it may not be much help, but I figured I'd post it anyway.
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Old August 27 2012, 07:06 PM   #6
mimic
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Re: Teaching in Japan, Part II

To become a certified teacher in Pennsylvania I needed to pay for various clearances. I had to be fingerprinted, PA child abuse background check, FBI background check...I think there's one more I'm forgetting?

To get it switched to a VA license I had to pay a $75 fee, and now that they got my degree wrong on it (Bachelors instead of Masters) they want me to pay the DOE $25 to get that fixed.

I guess my point is that the fees could very well be legitimate.
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Old August 27 2012, 07:32 PM   #7
billcosby
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Re: Teaching in Japan, Part II

That's all well and good mimic (odd that they would want you to pay for their mistake!), but the kind of English schools (corporations) in Japan are completely different... think McDonalds rather than a public/private school. They essentially want someone who can just speak English for their boilerplate lesson plans, something many expats have been doing from birth. No licenses or qualifications required, besides a degree of some sort to keep you in the country longer than one year.

Students pay a premium to be taught by a "real" foreigner. That's the draw.

I think it's more likely that the Japanese companies are feeling the economic squeeze and want prospective employers to shoulder the cost. Don't worry... if you make it LordGarth, at least your daily transportation in Japan to-from work is covered by your company! That's the beauty of the train system there. Hugely efficient.
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Old August 27 2012, 08:24 PM   #8
Holdfast
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Re: Teaching in Japan, Part II

Lord Garth wrote: View Post
I'm deciding that this is definitely going to become a Plan B.
Can't help with the specifics of your questions, but hey, if you do it, have fun! It's a fab country to live in for a while. I keep meaning to go back but it's been over 10 years and I still haven't got round to it yet.
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Old August 27 2012, 09:02 PM   #9
mimic
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Re: Teaching in Japan, Part II

billcosby wrote: View Post
That's all well and good mimic (odd that they would want you to pay for their mistake!), but the kind of English schools (corporations) in Japan are completely different... think McDonalds rather than a public/private school. They essentially want someone who can just speak English for their boilerplate lesson plans, something many expats have been doing from birth. No licenses or qualifications required, besides a degree of some sort to keep you in the country longer than one year.
I understand that; Goji is basically my best friend and he did the Japan thing for two years. But quite often to teach you are required to pass certain clearance checks, which is what this more or less sounds like.
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Old August 27 2012, 09:53 PM   #10
billcosby
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Re: Teaching in Japan, Part II

^ Oh, I see.

I was surprised by the lack of due diligence in these situations in Japan... you could be a total maniac in your home country but be cleared for kids teaching in a couple of twenty minute training sessions!
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