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Thread: Foreign T.E.F.L. teachers, the new Thai underclass?

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    sinneslöshen Array Unwell's Avatar
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    Foreign T.E.F.L. teachers, the new Thai underclass?

    for many months now, me and the dong have been chuckling over the idea of foreign tefl teachers being the new thai underclass; shitty wages (soon, even by thai standards), no job security, persecuted through immigration rules, etc...

    so anway, i was at immigration yesterday, one of my (luckily) infrequent trips there and i'm waiting, like you do. i start to notice a rather loud scottish bloke sitting there having a discussion with some young thai office guy, obviously the poor schmuck picked to take this teacher down to immigration. the discussion becomes heated and i can't help but listen, seems the teacher is on 40 grand a month and the 'school' is docking him 80 grand for having his work permit fixed up! jeeez, and the guys getting more and more irate and he's yeling at the goofy, smiling office boy who wants to be as far away as possible and he's pleading, "you don't understand, i have to eat? how can i eat when you're taking away my first two months wages? how can i pay rent? i can't work for nothing."

    and i think, fuck, his gig really sucks and does so for many, many foreigners in this business here; lied to, abused, exploited, dicked around with, taken advantage of, reduced to begging in a government office to some 18 year old office boy for food to eat and rent to pay?

    jeeez, it scared me, worried me and added weight to the idea that the foreign tefl teacher in thailand really is, and soon will be a new thai underclass.

    :sad:

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    Blah! Blah! Blah! Array kenkannif's Avatar
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    ^ Did you not tell him they were taking the piss as a WP only costs 3K???

    Poor old Bluffer huh


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    sinneslöshen Array Unwell's Avatar
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    nah mate, i didn't get involved. to be honest i thought about it but a. the dude was clearly spoiling for a fight and not logic, and b. i'm a misanthropic arsehole who couldn't give two shits about the idiot's plight .

    oh, and when i left the building sitting on the steps with his whore girlfriend was some old foreign git drowning his sorrows in chang, can in hand, empties strewn asunder...

    dear oh dear, thought i was back in the dole office!

    :sad:

    Poor old Bluffer huh...
    sad isn't it?


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    Blah! Blah! Blah! Array kenkannif's Avatar
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    I really wanna feel sorry for him....but when you say it like that

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    Senior Member Array dongintheklong's Avatar
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    The bottomline is to make as much money as possible off of a TEFL teacher's sweat and stress--and if you have to lie to them then go ahead--we are dispensible and replaceable.

    Charging this man 80,000 baht for a work permit is OBSCENE. I hope this guy logs onto the Ajarn Forum to find out that
    a WP only costs 3K
    .
    banging the gong...

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    Established User Array t_ferguson's Avatar
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    oh, and when i left the building sitting on the steps with his whore girlfriend was some old foreign git drowning his sorrows in chang, can in hand, empties strewn asunder...
    That was me, mate!
    "All phenomena are approximations one way or the other between realness and unrealness." --Charles Fort

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    Quote Originally Posted by Unwell

    oh, and when i left the building sitting on the steps with his lady of negotiable affections girlfriend was some old foreign git drowning his sorrows in chang, can in hand, empties strewn asunder...
    Oi! don't diss the mad_dog! She only ever worked on reception

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    Nothingness Array blackjack's Avatar
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    Apparently she received quite a few.
    Or would you like to swing on a star?

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    Quote Originally Posted by blackjack
    Apparently she received quite a few.
    Eh? This isn't some kind of oblique reference to Dostoevsky is it blackjack?

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    Quote Originally Posted by dongintheklong
    Charging this man 80,000 baht for a work permit is OBSCENE.
    I agree it is utterly outrageous, and a classic example of the type of conduct which made me decide that working in Thailand was most definitely not for me. Really though, who is more to blame? The Thais for trying it on, or the idiot farang who allows himself to be abused in this way? Asian employers in general, and Thais in particular, will gratuitously try to exploit their employees for all they are worth (copious amounts of unpaid overtime, hotel staff charged for their uniforms, cops having to buy their own guns etc. etc. ad nauseam). As non-Thais we have a far greater array of choices available to us than the locals. We can not only job-hop, but also country-hop. Asians will attempt to get away with all kinds of doodoo, but when challenged with a greater or lesser degree of forcefulness will often back down. If you are so desperate to remain in Thailand, or so in thrall to the effects of Stockholm Syndrome that you allow yourself to be treated in this way, then the Thais will be more than happy to accommodate you.

    When more farang teachers are prepared to show a bit of backbone and say "no" to imperious and unreasonable demands, and if necessary back this up by walking away from an exploitative situation, Thai employers just might start to get the message that this type of behaviour is unacceptable.

  11. #11
    sinneslöshen Array Unwell's Avatar
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    We can not only job-hop, but also country-hop.
    the thais seemed not to have worked this out yet. how can they expect to have any native-speaking english language teachers in ten years time with this kind of callous and gross exploitation.

    i love living here but really, its hard...


    "...ever wonder why they kill the weak ones, baby?"

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    Regular User Array I Am Robot's Avatar
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    Re: Foreign T.E.F.L. teachers, the new Thai underclass?

    Quote Originally Posted by Unwell
    for many months now, me and the dong have been chuckling over the idea of foreign tefl teachers being the new thai underclass; doodoo wages (soon, even by thai standards), no job security, persecuted through immigration rules, etc...
    I do believe, that every year, EFL teachers in LOS are slipping down a notch on the food chain. Notch by notch, year by year.

    the teacher is on 40 grand a month and the 'school' is docking him 80 grand for having his work permit fixed up!
    40 grand a month in BKK is awful.

    If someone has a pension or outside income coming in, it's a different story.

    This guy you mention, sounds like 100% of his income was coming from EFL - in Thailand.

    The older we get, this is a situation, that we must avoid:

    By finding other opportunities in LOS, or even by leaving LOS.

    We must not be 100% dependent on our income from EFL in Thailand.

    Not only will a person who is dependent 100% EFL salary be a second-class citizen in Thailand, but they will be a second-class citizen in their own, home country.

    I love LOS. I love SEA.

    I may stay and end up in this guy's situation. I like it that much over going back to the U.S.

    But there are major, major, ramifications.

    And the affect - all- areas of our life.

    and i think, fruit, his gig really sucks and does so for many, many foreigners in this business here; lied to, abused, exploited, duck around with, taken advantage of, reduced to begging in a government office to some 18 year old office boy for food to eat and rent to pay?

    jeeez, it scared me, worried me and added weight to the idea that the foreign tefl teacher in thailand really is, and soon will be a new thai underclass.

  13. #13
    Established User Array t_ferguson's Avatar
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    I really don't think Thai employers care what their employees think, feel, or conceive as being fair behaviour. It isn't directed towards just farangs--Thais get it much worse (but with less money at stake).

    As non-Thais we have a far greater array of choices available to us than the locals.
    I'd like to know what this "array" consists of.


    When more farang teachers are prepared to show a bit of backbone and say "no" to imperious and unreasonable demands, and if necessary back this up by walking away from an exploitative situation, Thai employers just might start to get the message that this type of behaviour is unacceptable

    I agree. I'm a good employee, but don't push me too far. I do have limits to what I think is acceptable/unnacceptable requests and demands. Presently I predict that I will turn in my walking papers in the next few months.

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    Quote Originally Posted by t_ferguson

    As non-Thais we have a far greater array of choices available to us than the locals.
    I'd like to know what this "array" consists of.
    Thailand is not the Centre of the Universe, nor is it the only country which requires teachers. Go somewhere which will either treat you better, or at least remunerate you for putting up with the bullsh*t. Or go home and do something else. Or go to another country and do something else. You are, presumably, a First Country National not a Burmese refugee (however much the Thais may like to treat you as one). You do have choices and they are generally more diverse than those available to most Thais.

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    dia dhuit Array zehner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rumpole
    You do have choices and they are generally more diverse than those available to most Thais.

    Yes, I wish to apply to a position as a labourer on a building site sir. Of course 200 baht a day is great. Don't worry about the work permit.



    Come on buddy, who are you kidding? Work for the Farang here is limited to teaching, bar ownership/guesthouse/restaraunt or else the super duper ex- pat packages the much maligned hordes of Thai-Visa dude/dudettes love to advertise/brag about.

    Teaching has become such a downtrodden profession in part due to the lack of respect for true educational values and general "dumbing down" of society. No Thai government would wish it's populace to be highly educated, culturally aware and critical for obvious reasons. You could also draw parallels with other western countries.....

    Many of the "underclass" teachers here are rejects from their own society so how could they hope to succeed here? Well succeed may be too strong a word...survive would be better.

    "Living, Teaching and Surviving in Thailand" .....



    So Unwell are you a member of the underclass??!!??

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