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Korakuen English Centre

amonjakku

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I recently had the unfortunate experience of working for a hakken gaisha by the name of Korakuen English Centre, managed by one Seiji Alan Iwata in 2016. I had previously submitted my information to Korakuen for consideration as a teacher trainer. As for me, I have been teaching EFL for over 2 decades and have a graduate degree in Linguistics. I’m also black and fairly tall.

Iwata contacted me by phone looking for a last minute replacement 3 business days before the beginning of classes. Iwata asked me about my experience at the jr. and sr. high school level. I told him I hadn’t worked at that level since 2004. He also asked me about my experience teaching essay writing. I explained in detail how a regular essay writing class was conducted. He then arranged an interview for the next day with Ichikawa Gakuen, where I told them the same information. I got the job; full-time.

As there was no employee handbook/code of conduct and I received no orientation to the school, I stressed that I would need help regarding information about the school, classes and students. Didn’t get that. Long story short, 5 weeks later (3 weeks total class time), I was terminated without notice. No discussion. No meetings. No letters. I wasn’t even given reasons for my termination. I actually had to ask. The “reasons” given, by email, had nothing to do with my duties and/or responsibilities as outlined in my contract. In other words, not professional reasons.

For asking for these ‘reasons”, Iwata responded with threats and power harassment in an effort to intimidate me. My dismissal was personal; some student or students and/or staff just didn’t like me. 5 “reasons” had to do with me using short forms or “nicknames” for the students (e.g., Kaz, instead of Kazuyuki). 4 “reasons” had to do with inferiority/narcissism regarding an innocent observation made 4 weeks previously (student came up suddenly behind me and I mentioned she was tiny, as in petite). This same student angrily tried to confront me during class and afterwards, actually tried to start an argument. I had no idea she had tried medical treatment to increase her height, but it had failed. I apologized, but she subsequently accused me of using profanity in our private conversation; sometimes, kids lie. 2 “reasons” even criticized me for actually “forcing” the students to write essays in an essay writing class.

I was paid an extra month for being terminated without notice. However, I believe my termination was wrongful and asked for 3 months. Iwata mentioned he would “never” agree to that. I approached the Labour Inspection Office in Kudanshita, but they seem to have limited influence on companies. The Tokyo Bar Association in Shinjuku mentioned that if I had been employed directly, I couldn’t have been dismissed for the reasons given. Korakuen should pay the entire year’s salary simply for having the audacity to perpetrate this farce.

It is clear that despite the fact that I was hired for my experience, education and skill, in my opinion, person or persons at Ichikawa Gakuen found it impossible to accord me any degree of professional courtesy or even a modicum of respect by talking to me, directly, about their concerns. Quite ironic when you consider that we’re talking about the communication business. Not to mention this behavior is textbook racist.
 

Mike Cash

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Not to mention this behavior is textbook racist.
I read your whole post but I missed the part where they fired you because of your skin color.

If they're racist enough to fire you for being black, I am honestly astonished that they hired you to begin with.

Frivolous and unfounded allegations of racism are as repugnant as racism itself.

EDIT:

I would be circumspect about committing libel against a lawyer. You do what you like, though.

Company Profile | Londate Co.Ltd.
 
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mdchachi

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I don't know how Japan works but in the U.S. you can be terminated without cause, especially during the first "probation" period of working. If you were a contract employee I suspect there is no recourse.
I agree that it was handled very unprofessionally. I hope your next gig works out better.
 

Mike Cash

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Anyone considering making in Japan defamatory statements such as the ones in the original post should first read: Defamation Laws In Japan

And since it carries a potential penalty of over one year imprisonment, even in the case of a completely suspended sentence a conviction would result in deportation and a permanent ban from entering Japan again. Think carefully before badmouthing people here...especially if you're going to do it in print and be so easily identifiable.
 

Glenski

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We have one side of the story.
This is true. Sounds like the OP has a very strong personality at the very least. We can't judge how he really acted in classes or know what he really said/did.

Bottom line: don't work for such places, though.
 

Mike Cash

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This is true. Sounds like the OP has a very strong personality at the very least. We can't judge how he really acted in classes or know what he really said/did.

Bottom line: don't work for such places, though.
Two posts from the OP, both about being rapidly fired from teaching jobs....
 

mdchachi

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We have one side of the story.
Of course. If the facts he stated are true then it was unprofessional. Typically people are given some reasons for dismissal or non-contract renewal (even if they are bogus made up reasons).
 

Mike Cash

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Of course. If the facts he stated are true then it was unprofessional. Typically people are given some reasons for dismissal or non-contract renewal (even if they are bogus made up reasons).
He was within the probationary period and could legally be terminated at will and he received at least what he was legally owed under the circumstances, which is why Labor Standards couldn't intervene. The Tokyo Bar Association essentially said "If your aunt had balls she'd be your uncle". I understand he's not happy because he didn't get treated like he thought he ought to be treated or get a WHOLE ****** YEAR's pay like he thought he ought to get....but how he thinks things ought to be is irrelevant.
 

mdchachi

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He was within the probationary period and could legally be terminated at will and he received at least what he was legally owed under the circumstances, which is why Labor Standards couldn't intervene. The Tokyo Bar Association essentially said "If your aunt had balls she'd be your uncle". I understand he's not happy because he didn't get treated like he thought he ought to be treated or get a WHOLE ****** YEAR's pay like he thought he ought to get....but how he thinks things ought to be is irrelevant.
I wasn't talking about any of that. I was talking about lack of notice & face to face conversation.
 

johnnyG

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I'm not taking sides, but the OP's story here seems to emphasize some things more than when posted at Dave's...

Job Discussion Forums :: View topic - Korakuen English Centre

I recently had the unfortunate experience of working for a hakken gaisha by the name of Korakuen English Centre, managed by one Seiji Alan Iwata in 2016. I had previously submitted my information to Korakuen for consideration as a teacher trainer. As for me, I have been teaching EFL for over 2 decades and have a graduate degree in Linguistics. I’m also black and fairly tall.

Iwata contacted me by phone looking for a last minute replacement 3 business days before the beginning of classes. Iwata asked me about my experience at the jr. and sr. high school level. I told him I hadn’t worked at that level since 2004. He also asked me about my experience teaching essay writing. I explained in detail how a regular essay writing class was conducted. He then arranged an interview for the next day with Ichikawa Gakuen, where I told them the same information. I got the job; full-time.

As there was no employee handbook/code of conduct and I received no orientation to the school, I stressed that I would need help regarding information about the school, classes and students. Didn’t get that. Long story short, 5 weeks later (3 weeks total class time), I was terminated without notice. No discussion. No meetings. No letters. I wasn’t even given reasons for my termination. I actually had to ask. The “reasons” given, by email, had nothing to do with my duties and/or responsibilities as outlined in my contract. In other words, not professional reasons.

For asking for these ‘reasons”, Iwata responded with threats and power harassment in an effort to intimidate me. My dismissal was personal; some student or students and/or staff just didn’t like me. 5 “reasons” had to do with me using short forms or “nicknames” for the students (e.g., Kaz, instead of Kazuyuki). 4 “reasons” had to do with inferiority/narcissism regarding an innocent observation made 4 weeks previously (student came up suddenly behind me and I mentioned she was tiny, as in petite). This same student angrily tried to confront me during class and afterwards, actually tried to start an argument. I had no idea she had tried medical treatment to increase her height, but it had failed. I apologized, but she subsequently accused me of using profanity in our private conversation; sometimes, kids lie. 2 “reasons” even criticized me for actually “forcing” the students to write essays in an essay writing class.

I was paid an extra month for being terminated without notice. However, I believe my termination was wrongful and asked for 3 months. Iwata mentioned he would “never” agree to that. I approached the Labour Inspection Office in Kudanshita, but they seem to have limited influence on companies. The Tokyo Bar Association in Shinjuku mentioned that if I had been employed directly, I couldn’t have been dismissed for the reasons given. Korakuen should pay the entire year’s salary simply for having the audacity to perpetrate this farce.

It is clear that despite the fact that I was hired for my experience, education and skill, in my opinion, person or persons at Ichikawa Gakuen found it impossible to accord me any degree of professional courtesy or even a modicum of respect by talking to me, directly, about their concerns. Quite ironic when you consider that we’re talking about the communication business. Not to mention this behavior is textbook racist.
 

Glenski

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By law, the company was in the right per probationary period and not needing to give a reason AND giving a month's pay.

Very unusual to expect a whole year's pay!

What I want to know is why this was racist?
 

amonjakku

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市川学園、後楽園イングリッシュ・センター


私は最近、2016年にかんイワタ アラン セイジがマネージメントする派遣会社:後楽園イングリッシュセンター不幸な経験をしました、私は20数年EFLを教えており、言語学の大学院の学位を持っています。私はまた、ブラックでかなり背も高いです。


イワタ氏は授業の3日前に教師を探して電話をくれました。イワタ氏は、中学校・高等学校の経験について私に尋ねました。私は彼に、2004年から中学・高校で働いていないことを伝えました。彼はまた私の経験、教育作文について尋ねたので、私はそのレベルで働いていなかったと彼に言いました。定期的な作文クラスをどのように行なったかについても詳細に彼に説明しました。そして彼は翌日、市川学園にて面接設定をし、私は同じ内容を学校側にも話しました。私はフルタイムの仕事を得ました。


そこでは、教員用ハンドブック/マニュアルがなく私は学校側に何のオリエンテーションを受けていないと、学校、クラス、学生の情報に関するヘルプを必要とすることを強調しました。それは得ることはありませんでした。長いようで5週間後の短い(3週間の総授業時間)、議論も会議も予告も文章もなく私の雇用は突然終了となりました。雇用終了の理由を与えられませんでした。私から実際にお願いしなければなりませんでした。メールで、与えられた"理由は"、契約書に記述されたような、私の任務・責任とは何の関係もありませんでした。言葉を変えると、プロフェッシャルな理由ではありませんでした。


その理由を求めていると、イワタ氏は私を威嚇したり脅威やパワーハラスメントで答えてきました。私の解雇は個人的でした。一部の学生および/スタッフが私を好きではなかったのです。 5の理由は「私が学生(例えば、カズ、:正式名前 和幸)に短い呼び名または「ニックネーム」を使用したとしています。

4の理由は「4週間以前に起こった無実である劣等/ナルシシズムとされていました(学生は私の後ろに突然きたので彼女が小柄であっため、小さい と言いました)。この言葉に学生は怒って、実際に授業中やその後も私に議論しようとしてきました。私は彼女(学生)が彼女の背の高さを高めるために治療を試みたか真実はわかりませんが、彼女は治療を受けたが失敗したと言いました。私は彼女に謝罪したが、彼女はその後、私たちの個人的な会話の中で不謙虚であると私を非難しました。時々、子供たちは嘘をつきます。 2の理由は「実際に作文クラスで作文を書かせたことを学生を"強制"したと授業中や授業後に私を直接、非難し抗議をしようとしました。


私が学生であったとき、私は先生に向かって怒りを表したり、教師との口論などのおこがましいく、無礼なことなどはありませんでした。確かに、いくつかは時々、世間知らずもありとても怖がりましたが、私は教師に敵意や恨み、または無礼を持ったことはありませんでした。

彼らは、教師や年長者で正当な資格のある、尊敬に値する人達でした。

日本人教師は当然のこととして敬意を持たれているが、その社会的なエチケットは日本人でなく、非白色外国人である場合は、よりさらに荒れ果てているようです。


また、一般的に教室のなかにおいては教師の役割として、許容されることと容認できない行動、ふるまいの基準や制限を設定することが理解されていました。

明らかに、市川学園の権力がありますー非白人教師が、彼らの学生のための制限や基準を設定しているような人ではないと感じた時-それはおこるのです。その理由をあなたは尋ねることが必要となります。


私は予告なしに解雇された1か月分の給与を支払われました。しかし、私は解雇が不当と3ヶ月を求められると信じています。イワタ氏は、「決して」それに同意することはないだろう述べました。私は九段下の労働監督署に相談に行きました。そこは企業に限られた影響力を持っているようです。新宿の東京弁護士会は、私が直接学校に雇用されていた場合、私が与えられた理由により解雇されることができなかったと述べています。後楽園は、この傍若無人な厚かましい悪事をしていることに対して年間の基本給与を全額払うべきです。


私は市川学園に、人として、私の経験、教育やスキル、意見により雇われたという事実にもかかわらず、不可能とされる私への解雇理由および私にきちんとした礼儀や少しの尊敬を示すことも含め、彼らの懸念を直接私に話すべきです。私たちは、コミュニケーションビジネスについて話していることを考えると非常に皮肉です。これは、教科書の人種差別主義者を言及してるわけではないのです。
 

Mike Cash

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Not to mention this behavior is textbook racist.
これは、教科書の人種差別主義者を言及してるわけではないのです。
Next time you should hire a translator who is familiar with idiomatic English usage.

You've made your tiresome point, One Trick Pony. Either sue the guy or get on with your life.

And hope the lawyer you are libelling doesn't decide to sue you first or have you charged with CRIMINAL libel.

https://ja.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/名誉毀損罪
 

Starrwulfe

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I just found this thread 3 years later, so forgive me for beating a dead horse... Also, Mike Cash, how are you doing old friend! Still miss "From the driver's seat".

Anyhow, allow me to shed some light here...

I was offered this job before OP, about 3 weeks before the start of the school year. I have been teaching actual live students at this grade level in Japan since 2008. I had to do TWO live demo lessons with students from both the middle and high school. I also had a second interview where I met with all the foreign teachers and some of the Japanese ones. They loved me and offered me the gig, to which I happily accepted. About a week before the start of the term, I was told I needed to come 3 days earlier to the entrance ceremony, and I told Korakuen I couldn't because I was already working another contract and had to work that day--they knew ab0ut it already. They said they'd tell the school. Next thing I know, they said they couldn't honor my contract. So of course I asked if they told the school about my having to finish up my previous gig and that it was too short notice for me to find someone to proctor exams and grade them at the college I was employed at the time. So I said "**** it then". If they're willing to ditch me over me HONORING another contract, then I don't need to work for them, whether it was the school or the agency. Not worth my time.

Also, I'm Afro-American too homie; they ain't racist at all. This is Japan and folks here sweat the small stuff and ignore the big stuff. Don't piss off the students because they tell their parents and unless you've already garnered a reputation for being "the man", the school staff will cast you aside. Doesn't matter how many degrees you got, you're just another English spouting meatbag with a visa and there's more standing in line behind you to take your place. Unless you can make yourself stand out in a good way on DAY ONE, your accolades and initials behind your name ain't jack.
 
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