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DickForce
April 14th, 2013, 11:05
Ok, excuse me for sounding like an entitled a*hole (which I am) but I think the whole 8 month waiting process thing, mixed with Japan's international status and economic status, the new tax system, all that sh*t should signal that something needs to change. If you look at Teach For America, we're doing a bunch of things that Monbusho refuses to consider. This is how I think they should do it.

Selection system: the total number of JET schools seems to be bounded by the amount of schools that specifically want to join the program. The fact that there are still a hilariously huge amount of inaka positions and very close to zero participants in Tokyo, which contains a whole fifth of the Japanese population, should signal that there is something awkward about the design of the program. It suggests that schools in large cities, where you can generally find a higher rate of English fluency and international activism, don't find this program beneficial, which shouldn't be a surprise because the threshold for acceptance into JET is technically very low and bounded only by the size of the applicant pool versus the availability of schools. No school is ever told "we can't give you someone because we ran out of qualified applicants," but that doesn't mean that all schools are getting what they should be out of the system. In fact, most schools are getting almost nothing, and they're paying upwards of 3.5 million yen plus other fees. Yes, I understand what JET stands for, that doesn't justify that they're asking people to come be walking tape recorders and say a few things about their country for the salary of a young teacher. Many Japanese teachers feel that ALTs are overpaid, and many ALTs feel that their responsibilities are underwhelming, yet they don't feel any need to look at successful private schools and countries like Hong Kong and Singapore to figure out what the program needs. You can't justify the program's inability to help fix the miserable fluency rate of a country that is forced to go through at least six years of English education by saying that you're not hiring people to teach ESL, you're hiring them for "cultural exchange" which is simply not a 3.6 million yen job. The fact that smaller areas must rely on JET and Interac while public schools in big cities can hire full-time ESL teachers (and they do, according to my friend from Osaka) suggests a degree of educational discrimination in a country that needs anything but. Revamp the system, hire people based on teaching skills, and there will be more available schools for more people with more qualified people signing up for the job, and then everyone wins except the lazy, who are getting turned out anyway because the applicant pool is oversaturated.

Pre-interview section: fine for the most part, everyone gets the same advantage, gets points based on their app allotted to a total amount of key skills, etc

Interview section: needs to be more like the pre-interview section. You've already had a chance to look at all the applications before accepting them and after them, before interviews. You already assigned points to them and had a chance to go back and add comments about what specific benefits each application offered. By the time they come in for an interview your job should already be more than half-done, and this point should take far less than the amount of time it took to check each interviewed person's application. Treat the interview section a similar way and don't bullshit anyone. You've had time to prepare what you're going to ask this person, he or she has had time to review potential questions, don't try to play tricks or good cop/bad cop, ask questions that are relevant to the job position and its responsibilities, not simply viewing the job as a paid study abroad session, which it seems to be and shouldn't be. Give them a prompt ahead of time for a 3 minute lesson, because no one is going to come to a class unprepared and this gives you a chance to see how well he or she can prepare. Give them a secondary prompt if you must that checks the ability to react quickly, say something like "ok, some kid just ran up to you and gave you a kancho, what are you going to do?" because this is excessively relevant. Don't ask about favorite foods or some shit, don't spend more time asking about someone's experience with Japan and quiz questions and all that shit, because you need to know more than just "is this person going to do alright in Japan" and "is he or she interesting." Of course these are important questions, but if the entirety of your examination of one's teaching ability is a 3 minute long twitch-reaction teaching prompt, you're going to learn almost nothing about what this person's capacity to plan and enact an ESL lesson is like. Which is totally fine for JET in its current state, but schools are still hiring ALTs for the purpose of bringing in English education where they poorly need it, and you're denying them that by creating a joke of a program that focuses on culture.
Grading people should also be easy at this point. After the 4 or 5 interviews you've had, you can talk about them to your mates, agree on a score for them on a scale of 1 to 10 where more than 5 is recommendable and less than 6 shows reservations, with notes about where someone does particularly well or particularly sucks so that the ultimate grading body can determine if an unimpressive score should be overridden based on special qualities, and otherwise an aggregate application+interview score of greater than 50% average should be enough to land someone in the "acceptable" pool, which the top X people are allotted based on X available positions and then another percentage is put into alternate status based on a percentage of the total number shortlisted reduced based on the percentage scores of that remainder group. There shouldn't be weeks of debate on this, once you've been interviewed they should know already how good you are. We didn't get to rehearse for the interview, you don't need to rehearse for the acceptance period. Sounds like you could get too many bad apples that way? Well, your program encourages bad apples. Be honest about what you want, if you keep advertising yourself as an ESL position you'll get too many people who expect to come to teach English, but then you're turning away people with actual experience because you want the whole thing to be a "cultural experience."

That's just my two cents.

Gizmotech
April 14th, 2013, 12:48
:popcorn:

This could be good.

Ini
April 14th, 2013, 13:15
Such a misinformed post it has to be a troll

DickForce
April 14th, 2013, 13:17
Alright, let's talk.

Ini
April 14th, 2013, 13:40
http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-m2ZclLLHHSs/UPMMhq-mHpI/AAAAAAAABFo/Y5Kuq-1NFug/s320/keep-calm-and-don-t-feed-the-troll-1.png

word
April 14th, 2013, 14:13
Posting here was the right thing to do. Constructive criticism posted here is read daily by CLAIR, and they invariably implement the solutions we suggest on a regular and speedy basis.

DickForce
April 14th, 2013, 14:34
Of course, I am aware of that. I am aware CLAIR is ready to listen to any suggestions someone is willing to make, especially during alternate and placement season where their workload is especially high, so they should be contacted directly instead of criticism of the program being directed into democratic channels. Generally when some criticism is made of a program that affects a certain demographic, that criticism may not necessarily be shared, in exact terms, by all members of that demographic, so there's a possibility it would be effective if that demographic could discuss such a criticism and provide counterpoints. If only there were such a community, where individuals could initiate a discussion on that criticism to exchange ideas. Well, I guess not, so I'll just leave my post here where CLAIR can expediently read it and then address the concerns in such a timely fashion. Thank you for your attention, Word.

mothy
April 14th, 2013, 23:12
Sounds like someone got rejected.

DickForce
April 15th, 2013, 01:45
accepted. it would've made for a boring topic if I got rejected before posting this

coop52
April 15th, 2013, 08:09
Bless your heart.

Page
April 15th, 2013, 09:31
How lucky that you have a friend in Osaka that can fill you in on the educational status of all big cities in Japan based on their singular experience (by the way, it's EFL not ESL). Ask yourself why a city like Tokyo, full of foreigners, would need the help of the government to get foreigners to come to their city as compared to some rice paddy trailer park dump of 3000 people (not to mention offering more incentive to get them to stay, rent in my town is free)? Big cities have the foreigner pools and we can also assume that they have city offices with more international experience so that they have the ability to do the leg work of getting ALTs on their own. Why more bigger cities haven't changed over is more reflective of Japan's tendency to resist change rather than the quality of the participants (which isn't that high, anyone would agree).

While your source of your irritation is shared by all other ALTs, your ignorance of the Japanese education system and JET program are keeping you from seeing the real problem. The reason other countries are better has nothing to do with the quality of JETs and everything to do with English education methodologies in this country. There are just as many inexperienced college grads in Korea and China as there are here.


ALTs aren't teachers and they aren't expected to be. Waste of money? To be sure (and the money, combined with the hands-off approach for most BOEs, is the reason that private companies have taken over as much as they have). Most schools don't want some know-it-all foreigner coming, ignorant of the Japanese school system, and taking over the reigns. They have real, trained teachers for that and for leading English lessons. Don't get me wrong, I think there are plenty of schools and BOEs that enjoy the benefits but that's not what the Japanese government wants. They just want some foreigner who can parrot words out of a textbook and share their funky foreignness who will go home eventually after they've lost their shiny foreignness. Not to mention that holding a license in your home country does not equal a teaching license in Japan in most schools and BOEs' eyes (this obviously doesn't go for every single school in Japan but I've never been recognized as a teacher despite my masters in Japanese-Foreign Language pedagogy and teaching in uni).

I'm not saying that the JET program shouldn't seek to find better applicants with actual educational experience, I'm just saying that the problem lies in the educational system and the way English education is approached. Until that changes I don't think you can expect ALTs, or JET, to change, either.

DickForce
April 15th, 2013, 11:09
Thank you for taking me seriously, now we have something to talk about.

Yes, my statistic for people I've met who I've talked with about the status of educational personnel is an inadequate sample. That doesn't change that every other understanding I have, along with the information you immediately follow with, is consistent with my belief that English language education is higher quality in more urbanized areas of Japan. The explanation you give me for why cities operate, while not untrue, doesn't challenge my assertions. Urban schools maintain more benefits in hiring and retaining personnel, while JET is basically a welfare service for everyone else. And EFL is a subset of ESL; one's foreign language will necessarily be a second/secondary language to that person.

Actually your understanding of the contrast of Asian countries' English education is both wrong and misses my point. Underqualified staff is a product of inadequate educational methodology, which I agree is one of the problems bearing down on JET's approach to EFL (I'll use it just for you). I even addressed that in my point, that JET has an inaccurate approach, and that's causing problems in education; underqualified teachers arriving is a consequence of the former and an implication to the latter. Yet, you misunderstand the rest of Asia's relative success. Yes, other countries have better educational methodology. Let me give you an example of one: Korea's EPIK has a recruiter system, unlike JET, and many of these recruiters provide TOEFL certification packages. Which is a good recruiting tool, since pay is graded in EPIK based on one's qualifications. Have a Ph.D. in applied linguistics? JET is still giving you 3.36 million yen first year, deal with it. Similarly, Hong Kong's NET system is also graded, and failing to have a small multitude of certifications and experience is liable to keep you from walking through the door. What might keep you out of the JET program? Knowing too much about Japan, or failing a quiz question on the interview.

What you say after follows exactly what I already argued, except that you believe schools are applying to JET for the same reason JET is recruiting. Most of those schools do not have well-trained English teachers, and often they're aware of that, they just hire someone who meets the qualifications which aren't much. They're not paying double-over a teacher's salary so they can hire someone to come in and provide a sideshow complete with juggling and Wakko's 50 states song, they're applying for an EFL teacher because they need one and they're using JET because, like you already said, they don't have the resources that urban schools have to pull people in directly. If they had even one fully-qualified English teacher on hand, he would have the responsibility of combing ESL Cafe to get an actual teacher.

I can agree with your conclusion though.

word
April 15th, 2013, 11:28
Thank you, Page; it's good to know that there are still a few nice folks around here to respond effectively to applicants suffering from some sort of butthurt. It's a shame DF seems to only be interested in hearing people agree with him.

DF, one is not rejected from the JET Program because one "knows too much about Japan" or "fails a quiz question on the interview." Contrary to the popular opinion of the butthurt, applicants are not rejected because of those reasons.

Why are you of the opinion that "most of those schools do not have well-trained English teachers"? Why are you of the opinion that ALTs make twice as much as Japanese teachers? Why are you of the opinion that having a teacher "comb the ESL Cafe" would produce superior ALTs than those produced by JET currently?

You'll pardon me, good sir, if I am rather suspicious that you haven't the faintest idea what you're talking about.

therealwindycity
April 15th, 2013, 11:44
And EFL is a subset of ESL; one's foreign language will necessarily be a second/secondary language to that person.

I'm going to have to agree with Page on this one - the distinction is significant enough to warrant the use of a different term. You wouldn't teach English the same way to people already living in a predominantly English-speaking country and to people who are studying a language with which they have little contact outside of class.

I thought that JET used to hire only EFL-certified teachers, but the JTEs were the ones who resisted this? Not sure if it's fact, but I've heard that before.

And, as word mentioned, JETs actually don't make more than JTEs, unless perhaps they're in their first or second year of work. Our monthly salary is higher, but because we don't get the bonuses they do the average income works out to about the same as that of a second-year public school teacher.

Furthermore, it's also true for Japanese teachers and not just ALTs that holding special EFL certifications doesn't get you a higher salary. Aside from slight distinctions depending on how long it took you to get into college and pass your exams, once you're a teacher your salary is based on how long you've been in the school system. I don't disagree that using higher pay as a motivation to get more credentials might be a good thing, but before you praise EPIK as a model for JET you might want to look at the experience of some English teachers in Korea. Korean students may score marginally better than Japanese students on average in standardized English tests, but I think if you check you will see that a lot of English teachers in Korea are experiencing similar frustrations to JET participants, and not always seeing evidence of actual practical English ability.

Edit: also, looking back on your original post, I'm starting to realize that a lot of the problems you are seeing in JET's application process come from what you've learned online here and in the JET forums. The problem is that most of us really don't understand how JET's selection process works. We tell ourselves a lot of things in an effort to understand why some seemingly qualified people were rejected and some certified morons were hired ("You probably didn't get in because you just speak too much Japanese!"), but we can't know for sure what every person at every consulate is thinking (bearing in mind also that many people involved in the JET selection process have never themselves worked in public schools or taught English). There's a lot of speculation, but you have to take everything you read online with a grain of salt, including this website, because hell, half the time we're just talking out of our asses. And as far as teachers complaining that JETs are overpaid, yes, that criticism has come up before, but if you're not already teaching in Japan where would you have heard about it except online? A lot of teachers in my school don't feel that way; if most Japanese people considered it an unreasonable expense the program wouldn't even exist.

Lianwen
April 15th, 2013, 12:04
I love you Rommy.

I gave up as soon as I saw TFA mentioned.

DickForce
April 15th, 2013, 12:28
Thank you, Page; it's good to know that there are still a few nice folks around here to respond effectively to applicants suffering from some sort of butthurt. It's a shame DF seems to only be interested in hearing people agree with him.
Which is why I expressed gratitude to her for addressing my post and not lazily hotlinking a troll meme. Thanks for showing me up Word.


DF, one is not rejected from the JET Program because one "knows too much about Japan" or "fails a quiz question on the interview." Contrary to the popular opinion of the butthurt, applicants are not rejected because of those reasons.
That was a metonymical simplification. It is not to say that every question, or even most questions, that JET interviewers ask are completely without value, but that they cloud the process of trying to find an effective English teacher by assuring foremost that the person is interesting and would make a good study abroad candidate if JET were more a publicity/"experience Japan" program than an actual recruiting agency, which, I think we might all agree, it actually is.


Why are you of the opinion that "most of those schools do not have well-trained English teachers"?
One, because if they did they either wouldn't need ALTs or wouldn't need JET. Two, a quick travel to the current JETs' section of this forum.


Why are you of the opinion that ALTs make twice as much as Japanese teachers?
I'm not, I said that BoEs pay twice over for ALTs, since they do have to pay a recruiting fee anyway you cut it.


Why are you of the opinion that having a teacher "comb the ESL Cafe" would produce superior ALTs than those produced by JET currently?
Because then they could pursue what they're looking for without having to pay a recruitment fee. If you independently search for an EFL teacher, you may end up paying 3.3 million a year for a teacher who's not great at his job. If you contract through JET, you will definitely end up paying 6 million for the first year for an excellent circus clown.


You'll pardon me, good sir, if I am rather suspicious that you haven't the faintest idea what you're talking about.
Easy conclusion to reach if you start off with the bias that the person you're talking to is an idiot and a troll, and then reduce everything he says to the most incriminating understanding you could potentially derive, rather than admitting that you don't follow what he's getting at and ask him to clarify.


I thought that JET used to hire only EFL-certified teachers, but the JTEs were the ones who resisted this?
I wouldn't be able to tell you. What I heard was that in the old days anyone who could fill out an application, successfully attend the meeting, and didn't have any hideous scars or a background of serial murder could get through the door, and they specifically looked for people with no Japanese experience, which they later revamped because they found it was inefficient. How much is hearsay, I couldn't tell you.


Furthermore, it's also true for Japanese teachers and not just ALTs that holding special EFL certifications doesn't get you a higher salary.
Just because everyone else in the country is doing it wrong doesn't mean JET needs to do it wrong too. It's not like JET's problems are isolated, but at least other firms have a goal focused more on EFL than simply cultural interaction.


before you praise EPIK as a model for JET you might want to look at the experience of some English teachers in Korea. Korean students may score marginally better than Japanese students on average in standardized English tests, but I think if you check you will see that a lot of English teachers in Korea are experiencing similar frustrations to JET participants, and not always seeing evidence of actual practical English ability.
They're two countries with two programs with most of the same problems, yet Korea is slightly more meritocracy-based and Korean students perform slightly better, so I'll leave the statistical analysis up to you.


I'm starting to realize that a lot of the problems you are seeing in JET's application process come from what you've learned online here and in the JET forums. The problem is that most of us really don't understand how JET's selection process works. We tell ourselves a lot of things in an effort to understand why some seemingly qualified people were rejected and some certified morons were hired ("You probably didn't get in because you just speak too much Japanese!"), but we can't know for sure what every person at every consulate is thinking (bearing in mind also that many people involved in the JET selection process have never themselves worked in public schools or taught English).
Well, no, I've learned a lot about JET from a lot of people before and after coming here. It's been on my mind for maybe five years now, so it's not like I suddenly popped up here and decided I suddenly knew everything. I admit there is a lot I don't personally know, but there has been some insight released concerning the program's selection method, and some of it is more blatantly stated, so some things can be taken with a little less than a grain of salt depending on how dedicated your research capacity is.

Page
April 15th, 2013, 12:38
Working, will reply later but the difference between EFL/ESL is environment:

EFL - English taught in an environment where English is not readily accessible language (i.e. teaching English in Japan)
ESL - English taught in an environment where it is the predominant language (i.e. immigrants learning English in the US)

Use of the two has no relation to the ability of the language to become someone's L2.

therealwindycity
April 15th, 2013, 12:41
They're two countries with two programs with most of the same problems, yet Korea is slightly more meritocracy-based and Korean students perform slightly better, so I'll leave the statistical analysis up to you.

If you want me to do a statistical analysis I'm also going to point out that Korea has a higher suicide rate than Japan and an incredibly high amount of pressure relating to test performance. Just because it means slightly better test scores doesn't mean we should emulate it.



Well, no, I've learned a lot about JET from a lot of people before and after coming here. It's been on my mind for maybe five years now, so it's not like I suddenly popped up here and decided I suddenly knew everything. I admit there is a lot I don't personally know, but there has been some insight released concerning the program's selection method, and some of it is more blatantly stated, so some things can be taken with a little less than a grain of salt depending on how dedicated your research capacity is.

Why are your friends any more reliable sources than we are? If you have have a better information source, "there has been some insight released concerning the program's selection method, and some of it is more blatantly stated" is a pretty vague way of referencing it. Are you talking about this? Importing Diversity: Inside Japans JET Program - David McConnell - Google �u�b�N�X (http://books.google.co.jp/books/about/Importing_Diversity.html?id=zqJ9ymeMqrEC&redir_esc=y)


admitting that you don't follow what he's getting at and ask him to clarify.

Hmm actually maybe I agree with word ... sounds vaguely trollish.

DickForce
April 15th, 2013, 13:07
If you want me to do a statistical analysis I'm also going to point out that Korea has a higher suicide rate than Japan and an incredibly high amount of pressure relating to test performance. Just because it means slightly better test scores doesn't mean we should emulate it.
As much as the hagwon lifestyle of students sucks in Korea, it's not much worse than the juku lifestyle of students in Japan, if at all. Regardless, the correlation of time as a raw input variable and English performance is extremely weak, so the suicide-influencing factors of Korea's school life might not be worth isolating for the purpose of such an analysis.


Why are your friends any more reliable sources than we are?
No one is any more reliable than anyone else; my understanding is an aggregate of all the perspectives I've been handed.


If you have have a better information source, "there has been some insight released concerning the program's selection method, and some of it is more blatantly stated" is a pretty vague way of referencing it. Are you talking about this? Importing Diversity: Inside Japans JET Program - David McConnell - Google �u�b�N�X (http://books.google.co.jp/books/about/Importing_Diversity.html?id=zqJ9ymeMqrEC&redir_esc=y)
Well, you didn't ask me for a source, but yes, that's it, so I guess I could've been more vague.


Hmm actually maybe I agree with word ... sounds vaguely trollish.
Troll is just a blanket word you guys use to describe anyone whose opinion annoys you. Real trolling is exerting little effort to produce a large response. Me calling Word out for talking down to me is not trolling, it's just keeping with the banter. If I spoke politely and agreed with everyone, then you would be even more suspicious of me.

mrcharisma
April 15th, 2013, 13:23
DickForce

I'm sorry you didnt get in. If you need any cash to keep you going or whatever just let me know and I'll wire you a couple of man. I'm still on the old payscale :)

therealwindycity
April 15th, 2013, 13:30
As much as the hagwon lifestyle of students sucks in Korea, it's not much worse than the juku lifestyle of students in Japan, if at all. Regardless, the correlation of time as a raw input variable and English performance is extremely weak, so the suicide-influencing factors of Korea's school life might not be worth isolating for the purpose of such an analysis.

This doesn't even make any sense. I wasn't talking about the amount of time spent in school; I was talking about the pressure to do well on standardized tests which likely contributes to both the high suicide rate and to the higher test scores. I was not saying that more time = better English. In any case my main point was that there are plenty more cultural factors in play than simply the EFL certifications, so you can't really make the assertion that "EPIK rewards EFL training with higher pay; therefore students in Korea do better on English tests than students in Japan." Not to mention that those higher test scores don't necessarily translate to practical English ability - plenty of people still complain that the average Korean student doesn't really learn to speak English despite the many years of English classes. Also it's kind of dumb that you try to assert that hagwon and juku are the same without ever having lived in either country.



No one is any more reliable than anyone else; my understanding is an aggregate of all the perspectives I've been handed.

Well, you didn't ask me for a source, but yes, that's it, so I guess I could've been more vague.


If you want to rant to a bunch of JET program participants about how the JET program works you probably should have some sort of personal experience and/or reliable source that we don't already know about. Also you sound like an uptight know-it-all, so you should probably work on at least being snarky in a funny way

Page
April 15th, 2013, 14:36
DF did get in, charisma.


That doesn't change that every other understanding I have, along with the information you immediately follow with, is consistent with my belief that English language education is higher quality in more urbanized areas of Japan. The explanation you give me for why cities operate, while not untrue, doesn't challenge my assertions. Urban schools maintain more benefits in hiring and retaining personnel, while JET is basically a welfare service for everyone else.


If I'm assuming that your "assertion" is that Tokyo doesn't use JET because it's a joke, my point was that there was no evidence to that nature. There's basically no way to prove this unless you work in the education sector there. Tokyo is the "leader" of Japan, I don't think it's too far of a stretch to say that if Tokyo thought that ALTs are useless more of the country would move to direct hire of experienced staff members. They aren't using JET but there are still plenty of ALTs (Interac and other cheaper JET options). As much as I'm sure we both want to, we can't base arguments on our feels when we don't know the facts or statistics about JET/private/direct ALT numbers. There's just no proof that Tokyo doesn't utilize JET because it's dumb, or because they don't need to. (Also I don't believe you can draw lines between use of JET and the quality of education in urban areas, I think that goes without saying in most countries regardless of subject.)



Actually your understanding of the contrast of Asian countries' English education is both wrong and misses my point. Underqualified staff is a product of inadequate educational methodology, which I agree is one of the problems bearing down on JET's approach to EFL (I'll use it just for you). I even addressed that in my point, that JET has an inaccurate approach, and that's causing problems in education; underqualified teachers arriving is a consequence of the former and an implication to the latter. Yet, you misunderstand the rest of Asia's relative success. Yes, other countries have better educational methodology. Let me give you an example of one: Korea's EPIK has a recruiter system, unlike JET, and many of these recruiters provide TOEFL certification packages. Which is a good recruiting tool, since pay is graded in EPIK based on one's qualifications. Have a Ph.D. in applied linguistics? JET is still giving you 3.36 million yen first year, deal with it. Similarly, Hong Kong's NET system is also graded, and failing to have a small multitude of certifications and experience is liable to keep you from walking through the door. What might keep you out of the JET program? Knowing too much about Japan, or failing a quiz question on the interview.


I think you've missed my intended meaning of methodology. Methodology is referring to the methods used to teach English as a foreign language, not how they choose their ALTs. My meaning is that the way English education is mandated in Japan gives us a weak base before we even get to the ALT problem, thus making it unfair to compare to other countries (and further guess that it's because their ALTs are better). But I certainly agree with rewarded qualifications, but you'd have to be kidding yourself if you thought a back water junior high school gives two shits about that. All they care is that the kids pass their entrance exams, they're not looking for an educational messiah.


And while I agree that your intended point, written in response to word, that some of the interview questions are inane, none of us are in any place to make guesses on how applicants and interviews are actually graded.



What you say after follows exactly what I already argued, except that you believe schools are applying to JET for the same reason JET is recruiting. Most of those schools do not have well-trained English teachers, and often they're aware of that, they just hire someone who meets the qualifications which aren't much. They're not paying double-over a teacher's salary so they can hire someone to come in and provide a sideshow complete with juggling and Wakko's 50 states song, they're applying for an EFL teacher because they need one and they're using JET because, like you already said, they don't have the resources that urban schools have to pull people in directly. If they had even one fully-qualified English teacher on hand, he would have the responsibility of combing ESL Cafe to get an actual teacher.


There's no evidence to say that JET exists because they're own teachers suck. Even Japan isn't stupid enough to miss how completely dumb that would be (hey let's bring in some fresh grads to fill in our JTEs' educational gaps!) You're right though, they are brought over to assist in teaching (The JET Programme--Official Homepage of The Japan Exchange and Teaching Programme (http://www.jetprogramme.org/e/aspiring/positions.html); though most of us don't actually do this in JHS/HS) so it's a mistake on CLAIR's part to not demand better credentials. But I'd have to argue on the likelihood of getting 5000+ active professionals (who would willingly put their career on hold for a 80/20 chance of a professionally fulfilling, advancing job) over here.

Gizmotech
April 15th, 2013, 14:57
DF, while I sympathize with you about your complaints with the program, as Page has outlined, there are many more institutional problems with JET beyond the recruitment process. The entire Japanese education system (including teacher training) needs an overhaul with more guidance and how-to than has been provided to the teachers.

While it would be nice to have the entire JET program filled with trained professionals, and my coworkers agree that the difference between johnny McFuckup and a trained teacher is night and day and they prefer the trained teacher, the chances of getting that many trained professionals into a transient job are slim to none.

Now, if there was proper credential sharing and evaluation, combined with an English (or atleast low Japanese level) teachers test that could properly integrate trained professionals into the Japanese Teaching work force, I think many people would be happy. My coworkers would love to see trained pro's teaching more classes solo than they do, but realize that the system is not setup at all to deal with that at the moment.

Last point about Tokyo. Good lord you don't want to be a private hire in that city.... The contracts that I keep seeing for schools there are either MA/PHD required on contract (but with decent pay at private schools) or super low paying temp work. I remember meeting a guy there 2 years ago who was working two part time ALT jobs just to make ends meet, and he still wasn't making more than a JET does. That being said, the ALT I met down in okinawa who had been in Kyushu for the past 4 years as an Interac was pulling in about 4mil/year not including over time bonuses, and I know the guy down the road from me who's been in the near by BFI town for the past 8 years is making some decent money through Interac (or is he borderlink... I forget. either way, it's better than JET)

Ini
April 15th, 2013, 17:16
why are you people entertaining this fool? everything he said shows he hasn't got any idea about what hes talking about. Most people wait at least a month after arriving before claiming they have all the answers to Japans problems, its quite impressive to see some clown trying to do it before even stepping foot in the country

DickForce
April 16th, 2013, 02:21
This doesn't even make any sense. I wasn't talking about the amount of time spent in school; I was talking about the pressure to do well on standardized tests which likely contributes to both the high suicide rate and to the higher test scores. I was not saying that more time = better English. In any case my main point was that there are plenty more cultural factors in play than simply the EFL certifications, so you can't really make the assertion that "EPIK rewards EFL training with higher pay; therefore students in Korea do better on English tests than students in Japan." Not to mention that those higher test scores don't necessarily translate to practical English ability - plenty of people still complain that the average Korean student doesn't really learn to speak English despite the many years of English classes. Also it's kind of dumb that you try to assert that hagwon and juku are the same without ever having lived in either country.
I have a gaijin card and I used to have a lease in Osaka, can I say I lived there? Anyway, I have a fair amount of friends who are students in Japan or Korea, or have been in both, and to date I haven't heard any indication that one is inherently more suicidal than the other; both seem to equally suck and share the same obsession with tests and numbers. Meanwhile, the highest-scoring English students I've met have never been study-freaks in the least; typically those people do poorly, and the people everyone thinks are idiots are demolishing TOEFL before they go talk to Americans about Lil Wayne and figure out what DTF stands for.


If you want to rant to a bunch of JET program participants about how the JET program works you probably should have some sort of personal experience and/or reliable source that we don't already know about. Also you sound like an uptight know-it-all, so you should probably work on at least being snarky in a funny way
逆ギレ


If I'm assuming that your "assertion" is that Tokyo doesn't use JET because it's a joke, my point was that there was no evidence to that nature. There's basically no way to prove this unless you work in the education sector there. Tokyo is the "leader" of Japan, I don't think it's too far of a stretch to say that if Tokyo thought that ALTs are useless more of the country would move to direct hire of experienced staff members. They aren't using JET but there are still plenty of ALTs (Interac and other cheaper JET options). As much as I'm sure we both want to, we can't base arguments on our feels when we don't know the facts or statistics about JET/private/direct ALT numbers. There's just no proof that Tokyo doesn't utilize JET because it's dumb, or because they don't need to. (Also I don't believe you can draw lines between use of JET and the quality of education in urban areas, I think that goes without saying in most countries regardless of subject.)
If every prefecture is using private ALT firms, but Tokyo and Osaka aren't using JET, that suggests something about the nature of JET. It doesn't confirm anything, which isn't what I was saying, but there is definitely a difference in goals between JET and private firms, mainly that the latter are seeking to hire people based on EFL skills and JET is seeking to hire high-quality circus clowns.


I think you've missed my intended meaning of methodology. Methodology is referring to the methods used to teach English as a foreign language, not how they choose their ALTs. My meaning is that the way English education is mandated in Japan gives us a weak base before we even get to the ALT problem, thus making it unfair to compare to other countries (and further guess that it's because their ALTs are better). But I certainly agree with rewarded qualifications, but you'd have to be kidding yourself if you thought a back water junior high school gives two shits about that. All they care is that the kids pass their entrance exams, they're not looking for an educational messiah.
I got what you meant, I understand how Japan has a really awkward approach to English and makes it a test-based system. I just approached the issue as inclusive of programming methods and selection of employees as well. Regardless, even if a backwater school cares more about test marks than an educational messiah, they still want someone who can teach EFL effectively, because countries with good EFL programs overwhelmingly post better test scores as well.


And while I agree that your intended point, written in response to word, that some of the interview questions are inane, none of us are in any place to make guesses on how applicants and interviews are actually graded.
Actually, based on the interview questions, the stated goals of CLAIR, and the selection profile, there is nothing keeping us from making educated guesses on what they're doing.


But I'd have to argue on the likelihood of getting 5000+ active professionals (who would willingly put their career on hold for a 80/20 chance of a professionally fulfilling, advancing job) over here.
Use pay-grading and either sponsor a certification program or allow for recruiters, encouraged to sponsor certification programs. Again, Korea can do this, what's stopping JET? I'm not saying bring in what NET has, not all at once at least, but you can at least open the doors a little to people who might have a future in EFL or at least are interested in approaching a JET position for the purpose of teaching English. Even many of the applicants know (or don't care) that JET isn't pulling people in for the benefit of effective education.


DF, while I sympathize with you about your complaints with the program, as Page has outlined, there are many more institutional problems with JET beyond the recruitment process.
It's still a place to start. And I'm trying to address some of those too, specifically the problems that JET has that other firms don't.


the chances of getting that many trained professionals into a transient job are slim to none.
There's a happy middle-ground between "fresh out of Bumfuck State with a 2.5 GPA in communications" and "Ph.D. in applied linguistics." You don't need a career-track professional to make improvements on the program. One of my friends solo-teaches ESL as a college sophomore, and she's still degrees more effective at her job than most ALTs are at theirs.


Good lord you don't want to be a private hire in that city
But more people there are learning English than anywhere else in the country, so they must be doing something right.


Oh my god words I don't know how to read these what do I do so many letters
And yet after however much experience you've had living in Japan and 22 thousand posts later, you still have yet to reveal a single bit of insightful knowledge

Ini
April 16th, 2013, 05:03
typically those people do poorly

Whadda ya mean "those people"? Racist!

Ini
April 16th, 2013, 09:02
If you look at Teach For America
this isnt america


The fact that there are still a hilariously huge amount of inaka positions and very close to zero participants in Tokyo, which contains a whole fifth of the Japanese population, should signal that there is something awkward about the design of the program.
not at all


It suggests that schools in large cities, where you can generally find a higher rate of English fluency and international activism, don't find this program beneficial
no it doesnt


The fact that smaller areas must rely on JET and Interac while public schools in big cities can hire full-time ESL teachers
not true


according to my friend from Osaka
second hand anecdotal evidence isnt going to impress MEXT


the top X people are allotted based on X available positions and then another percentage is put into alternate status based on a percentage of the total number shortlisted reduced based on the percentage scores of that remainder group.
They dont know how many available positions there are when the interviews are done


There shouldn't be weeks of debate on this
They have to coordinate with thousands of Board of Educations in Japan, hundreds of embassies and consulates all over the world and process tens of thousands of applicants. you try doing that in a weekend.


English language education is higher quality in more urbanized areas of Japan.
thats not true



Urban schools maintain more benefits in hiring and retaining personnel
apart from the urban areas that are underfunded and cant afford any ALTs


What might keep you out of the JET program?
giving a bad interview and applying at a location with a high number of suitable candidates. nothing else


If they had even one fully-qualified English teacher on hand, he would have the responsibility of combing ESL Cafe to get an actual teacher.
no he wouldn't, schools dont hire teachers.


JET were more a publicity/"experience Japan" program than an actual recruiting agency, which, I think we might all agree, it actually is.
no, I dont think many people will agree with that.


If you independently search for an EFL teacher, you may end up paying 3.3 million a year for a teacher who's not great at his job. If you contract through JET, you will definitely end up paying 6 million for the first year for an excellent circus clown.
And who is going to search for these teachers and interview them? Why pay 6million for a JET when you can hire an extra BOE member at 5million a year to run the ALT program and then pay 3.3 million for a teacher who's "not great at his job"


What I heard
Excellent point, maybe thats what you can call your report when you submit it to the minister of education?


in the old days anyone who could fill out an application, successfully attend the meeting, and didn't have any hideous scars or a background of serial murder could get through
As long as they went to a top university, had excellent references from distinguished sources and were suitable ambassadors. Then the pay dropped and you ended up with the current bunch.


other firms have a goal focused more on EFL than simply cultural interaction.
yes, they focus on maximizing profits


go talk to Americans about Lil Wayne and figure out what DTF stands for.
there you go talking about America again....


If every prefecture is using private ALT firms, but Tokyo and Osaka aren't using JET, that suggests something about the nature of JET.
Tokyo and Osaka both use JET.
If every city is using private firms it suggests private firms only go to the trouble of establishing and staffing an office in an area which has enough ALT contracts on offer to make it financially viable.


there is definitely a difference in goals between JET and private firms, mainly that the latter are seeking to hire people based on EFL skills and JET is seeking to hire high-quality circus clowns.
No, private firms are looking to hire people who will work for the lowest amount of money possible.


Regardless, even if a backwater school cares more about test marks than an educational messiah, they still want someone who can teach EFL effectively,
No they dont, they want the ALT to be quiet so they can get on with their grammar lesson and practice tests.


there is nothing keeping us from making educated guesses on what they're doing.
as soon as you educate yourself on the matter feel free to come back and make some guesses


There's a happy middle-ground between "fresh out of Bumfuck State with a 2.5 GPA in communications"
again with the americanisms? should you really be teaching international students when you have such a obvious national bias?


One of my friends solo-teaches ESL as a college sophomore, and she's still degrees more effective at her job than most ALTs are at theirs.
how on earth can you quantify this?


But more people there are learning English than anywhere else in the country, so they must be doing something right.
?????? there are more crimes there too so maybe leaning english has a direct link to organized crime? there are more prostitutes there too so learning english must be linked to the sex industry! Hang on, there are more public toilets there than anywhere else in the country, learning english must be linked to public urination!

Tyr
April 16th, 2013, 09:05
The trouble with Jet as I see it is that it serves as a highly paid ALT training programme.
You come on Jet, do your X years then you have to leave.
For most of us this is fair enough, its just a temporary thing we're doing for one reason or another, we have no intention of making a career out of this.
Many people I have met here however are lifers, they came over on Jet and wanted to stay...which usually meant switching to a worse paying, worse conditions private company where due to their experience they do a much better job than they did on Jet.
Just seems rather skewed to me to go from being a beginner on high pay to being experienced with a pay cut. Should really be a much clearer and official progression from Jet to a longer term job for those who want it (note- not me).


As to Jet being useless and that's why Tokyo doesn't do it (do I sense a 'wahh wahh wahh, I got my placement and its in Inaka-machi, Yuumeinashi Ken! I wanted Akiba!'?)
Tokyo has a bazillion foreigners to choose from, its destination number one for experienced Jets who want to stay in Japan, its simple economics that if you can you pay less for better then obviously you will do so. Particularly given Tokyo's history of right wing anti-central government local governments.
It stands to reason that the more rural, less desirable postings would have to pay more and take worse people. No discrimation from on high at work, just market forces. Given the whole point of Jet is internationalisation and in these villages the only foreigner they ever see is the new Jet that gets shipped in every two years it sounds like it is doing its intended job just fine.

DickForce
April 16th, 2013, 09:44
BAWWW give me more attention
tl;dr


The trouble with Jet as I see it is that it serves as a highly paid ALT training programme.
You come on Jet, do your X years then you have to leave.
For most of us this is fair enough, its just a temporary thing we're doing for one reason or another, we have no intention of making a career out of this.
Many people I have met here however are lifers, they came over on Jet and wanted to stay...which usually meant switching to a worse paying, worse conditions private company where due to their experience they do a much better job than they did on Jet.
Just seems rather skewed to me to go from being a beginner on high pay to being experienced with a pay cut. Should really be a much clearer and official progression from Jet to a longer term job for those who want it (note- not me).
Yeah, I totally agree, I think that's a part of the problem.



(do I sense a 'wahh wahh wahh, I got my placement and its in Inaka-machi, Yuumeinashi Ken! I wanted Akiba!'?)
Nah, I haven't received placement and I'd probably happy with anywhere near a major city, somewhere near a major trainline in Honshu, or somewhere where civilization is within an overnight ferry's ride in Hokkaido. But the whole range of "totally BFI" to "miserable suburb within an hour of a decent city" with the mode being "nowhereville with a train that takes you to a city of 500k people after 2 hours" isn't raising my excitement for the process. It's like the program is saying "90% of Japan lives in or near developed cities with conbinis and vending machines everywhere, functioning trains, and some degree of night life, BUT THAT'S NOT THE JAPAN YOU'RE GOING TO SEE"

I'm prepared for the worst but sucking it up and figuring how to make the most of my placement isn't going to change the fact that I'll probably be spending my waning youth somewhere people go to slowly die.


Tokyo has a bazillion foreigners to choose from, its destination number one for experienced Jets who want to stay in Japan, its simple economics that if you can you pay less for better then obviously you will do so. Particularly given Tokyo's history of right wing anti-central government local governments.
It stands to reason that the more rural, less desirable postings would have to pay more and take worse people. No discrimation from on high at work, just market forces. Given the whole point of Jet is internationalisation and in these villages the only foreigner they ever see is the new Jet that gets shipped in every two years it sounds like it is doing its intended job just fine.
You know, I get this, but what's ponderous is that even inakavilles are hiring through Interac, and as far as ALT firms go Tokyosakyoto is almost exclusively using Interac. Why would the poor inaka be using the more expensive JET program when they could use Interac, and why would Tokyo be using Interac when they can direct-hire? And yes, I am aware that the chance of urban placement on Interac increases with experience or residence, but I don't think that answers the question completely.

coop52
April 16th, 2013, 09:49
Yeah, I totally agree, I think that's a part of the problem.



Nah, I haven't received placement and I'd probably happy with anywhere near a major city, somewhere near a major trainline in Honshu, or somewhere where civilization is within an overnight ferry's ride in Hokkaido. But the whole range of "totally BFI" to "miserable suburb within an hour of a decent city" with the mode being "nowhereville with a train that takes you to a city of 500k people after 2 hours" isn't raising my excitement for the process. It's like the program is saying "90% of Japan lives in or near developed cities with conbinis and vending machines everywhere, functioning trains, and some degree of night life, BUT THAT'S NOT THE JAPAN YOU'RE GOING TO SEE"

I'm prepared for the worst but sucking it up and figuring how to make the most of my placement isn't going to change the fact that I'll probably be spending my waning youth somewhere people go to slowly die.


You know, I get this, but what's ponderous is that even inakavilles are hiring through Interac, and as far as ALT firms go Tokyosakyoto is almost exclusively using Interac. Why would the poor inaka be using the more expensive JET program when they could use Interac, and why would Tokyo be using Interac when they can direct-hire? And yes, I am aware that the chance of urban placement on Interac increases with experience or residence, but I don't think that answers the question completely.

Somebody doesn't get the purpose of the JET Programme. Oh dear.

Ini
April 16th, 2013, 09:52
you can only use interac/borderlink/joytalk/heart etc if they put in a bid for the contract. Even the smallest office has 6 people working in it. why would a company set up an office in the middle of nowhere if there are only 6 ALT contracts on offer within the surrounding 50km? The selling point of those companies is they assure the BOE if a ALT quits they can provide a new ALT within a week and if there are any problems a company rep can be on site within an hour. Cant do that if the nearest office is 4 hours drive away.

private firms are preferred over direct hire as its easy to get rid of a bad alt without losing face, its quick and easy to get replacements when the ALT quits and the BOE/school is in no way responsible for the ALT. Its a way of getting a warm body in the school without any of the headaches.

Tyr
April 16th, 2013, 10:18
"90% of Japan lives in or near developed cities with conbinis and vending machines everywhere, functioning trains, and some degree of night life, BUT THAT'S NOT THE JAPAN YOU'RE GOING TO SEE"
1: As a heads up even decent sized cities in japan don't really have much night life. This is one of the hardest cultural differences to tackle, and one which nobody even thinks to tell you the slightest bit about before coming over.
2: The 90% of Japan who live in developed cities have no problem gaining international experiences. They've got so many opportunities in life. Its the poor deprived kid born on hontoudeshouka island who needs it smacked into his head that there's more to the world than his little village and English could actually be beneficial for him.


You know, I get this, but what's ponderous is that even inakavilles are hiring through Interac, and as far as ALT firms go Tokyosakyoto is almost exclusively using Interac. Why would the poor inaka be using the more expensive JET program when they could use Interac, and why would Tokyo be using Interac when they can direct-hire? And yes, I am aware that the chance of urban placement on Interac increases with experience or residence, but I don't think that answers the question completely.
Interac and the like are a bit of an abomination. Bringing in untrained, inexperienced people to do the technical work side of Jet without any of the expectations of the bigger picture. It really is strange, but it doesn't look likely to change any time soon.

Tokyo does do a lot of direct hire I think. I guess the thing with Tokyo and interac is that Tokyo is the reward for people who stuck out their time on interac in a bad placement and actually have an interest in teaching long term, so Tokyo only gets the good people from interac.
Its a bit of a misnomer that interac is cheaper than jet for rural places, it usually costs the city just as much, muttering I've heard says sometimes more even. As ini says though its less hastle, the government mandates they need an alt so the quickest and easiest way to pay their gaijin tax is taken.

Jiggit
April 16th, 2013, 10:27
Why are people bothering to address this? Even if it weren't a troll it would still just be some dude crying that the Japanese govt isn't paying him the highest rate to go be in an even more worthless position than he would be otherwise.

Ini
April 16th, 2013, 10:28
good tokyo schools do direct hire and pay a lot, but they require a higher level of ALT. Same way the music teachers they hire have played in orchestras all over the world, the art teachers have had legitimate exhibitions and the PE teachers have represented Japan at some level. Those schools can do that because they have money. The schools where the kids threaten the staff, the police are called on a daily basis and there are 40 kids in each class dont have much money so either go with interac (but interac is one of the more expensive dispatch companies so more likely it'll be borderlink) or hire part timers. The countryside doesn't always have the luxury of a dispatch company operating in the area or a large foreign population from which they can recruit some housewives for 4 hours work a day.

Gizmotech
April 16th, 2013, 11:01
good tokyo schools do direct hire and pay a lot, but they require a higher level of ALT. Same way the music teachers they hire have played in orchestras all over the world, the art teachers have had legitimate exhibitions and the PE teachers have represented Japan at some level. Those schools can do that because they have money. The schools where the kids threaten the staff, the police are called on a daily basis and there are 40 kids in each class dont have much money so either go with interac (but interac is one of the more expensive dispatch companies so more likely it'll be borderlink) or hire part timers. The countryside doesn't always have the luxury of a dispatch company operating in the area or a large foreign population from which they can recruit some housewives for 4 hours work a day.

This. The jobs I've seen advertised in the major areas for Foreign Teachers (not just alts) pay, and pay well, but also demand that you are in some way skilled and qualified to do the job.

In my area, there is one contract employee and he works out of a branch office about 200km away. The only reason he got the position in the first place is he was asking for super rural out of the way places to work, and the company already had a few years of experience with him and had no concerns. Otherwise there would be no reason to have an office anywhere near my area as there aren't enough contracts to warrant it, and the Prefectual BoE is firmly a JET organization.

DickForce, you really should read Inis comments, there are quite a few good ones in his replies. Tyr and Ini are pretty much spot on on the economics of the situation.

Tyr
April 16th, 2013, 11:03
Why are people bothering to address this? Even if it weren't a troll it would still just be some dude crying that the Japanese govt isn't paying him the highest rate to go be in an even more worthless position than he would be otherwise.

Interesting enough subject anyway and bordom.

Kuroda Ishikawa
April 16th, 2013, 12:08
I like how Ini points out serious and factual flaws in DickForce's claims/arguments/statements, and then DickForce just flat out refuses to engage him.

therealwindycity
April 16th, 2013, 13:02
I have a gaijin card and I used to have a lease in Osaka, can I say I lived there? Anyway, I have a fair amount of friends who are students in Japan or Korea, or have been in both, and to date I haven't heard any indication that one is inherently more suicidal than the other; both seem to equally suck and share the same obsession with tests and numbers. Meanwhile, the highest-scoring English students I've met have never been study-freaks in the least; typically those people do poorly, and the people everyone thinks are idiots are demolishing TOEFL before they go talk to Americans about Lil Wayne and figure out what DTF stands for.

I thought you were trying to say that English education is better in Korea because they pay teachers with specific TEFL training more?



逆ギレ


I do not think this is the board for you.

DickForce
April 16th, 2013, 14:13
I like how Ini points out serious and factual flaws in DickForce's claims/arguments/statements, and then DickForce just flat out refuses to engage him.
He's spent the majority of this thread calling me a troll and idiot, telling everyone to ignore me, and then once he suddenly decides to take notice of the content of my posts after other people humor me, I'm supposed to magically decide "oh, okay, this guy is an authority, I should listen to him"? I'd rather carry on the discussion with people who want to take me seriously enough to listen and converse with me.


The 90% of Japan who live in developed cities have no problem gaining international experiences. They've got so many opportunities in life. Its the poor deprived kid born on hontoudeshouka island who needs it smacked into his head that there's more to the world than his little village and English could actually be beneficial for him.
There is no one in Japan who would not benefit from a proper cultural exchange program. The logic of "there are a lot of gaijin in big cities" does not sufficiently prove that urban students are receiving adequate exposure. I went to an international school with some 8000 Japanese students and 400 visiting foreign students, guess how many people had ever spoken with a foreigner in their entire life. Regardless, if that were the whole logic of the situation and it were true, Kobe wouldn't have an unusually high degree of representation within JET, considering how foreigner-friendly of a city it is.


I thought you were trying to say that English education is better in Korea because they pay teachers with specific TEFL training more?
How is that inconsistent with what I've said? Japanese students who spend a lot of time involving themselves with foreign culture perform better on TOEFL than average Japanese. Korean students who are taught by certified EFL teachers perform better on TOEFL than average Japanese. There are two reasonable correlations here, neither of them includes the idea that taking a suicide drive towards GPA maximization produces higher results, which was one of my earlier points.


This. The jobs I've seen advertised in the major areas for Foreign Teachers (not just alts) pay, and pay well, but also demand that you are in some way skilled and qualified to do the job.
And I get this, which only reinforces my idea that the JET structure needs to reform, especially with respects to pay-grading with certifications.

Ini
April 16th, 2013, 14:28
if you did that you would eliminate vast numbers of certified ALTs from the JET program because the majority of contracting organisations wouldn't be willing to pay more than the base salary. They get an ALT from the prestigious government program and they only have to pay interac wages.

word
April 16th, 2013, 15:05
Scrotty-esque wall of face-kicking forum-smackdown awesome.Well said, good sir. You wouldn't happen to be sitting at a terminal connected to fabled self-aware Soviet military computer system S.C.R.Ot.T.Y, would you?


there are more crimes there too so maybe leaning english has a direct link to organized crime? there are more prostitutes there too so learning english must be linked to the sex industry! Hang on, there are more public toilets there than anywhere else in the country, learning english must be linked to public urination!Holy sh*t; some Japanese person is gonna read this. The JET program is sooo f*cked.


tl;drEh, it's worth a read.

Kuroda Ishikawa
April 16th, 2013, 15:21
He's spent the majority of this thread calling me a troll and idiot, telling everyone to ignore me, and then once he suddenly decides to take notice of the content of my posts after other people humor me, I'm supposed to magically decide "oh, okay, this guy is an authority, I should listen to him"? I'd rather carry on the discussion with people who want to take me seriously enough to listen and converse with me.

You may want to, since his points directly contradict most of what you are claiming, and he seems to be more knowledgeable on the matter than you. I don't expect you to though since you seem to only care about discussion insofar as it reinforces your own beliefs. I doubt very much you will leave this thread feeling like anything you've said in it was anything less than 100% true, factual, and indisputable. You just seem like that type of guy.

therealwindycity
April 16th, 2013, 15:39
How is that inconsistent with what I've said? Japanese students who spend a lot of time involving themselves with foreign culture perform better on TOEFL than average Japanese. Korean students who are taught by certified EFL teachers perform better on TOEFL than average Japanese. There are two reasonable correlations here, neither of them includes the idea that taking a suicide drive towards GPA maximization produces higher results, which was one of my earlier points.


It sounded like you were saying that it didn't really matter in the end because both countries end up with essentially zero functional fluency solely from public education and what's really important is students' personal interest, which doesn't really help your case much.

I don't disagree that there are problems with English education in Japan, but the longer you stay here the more you realize how numerous and complicated the problems are. I also agree that TEFL certification and training are important, but that's really only a very small part of the equation (and I don't think the average JET is as bad as ITILers make them out to be)

hunterofpeace
April 16th, 2013, 15:43
He's spent the majority of this thread calling me a troll and idiot, telling everyone to ignore me, and then once he suddenly decides to take notice of the content of my posts after other people humor me, I'm supposed to magically decide "oh, okay, this guy is an authority, I should listen to him"? I'd rather carry on the discussion with people who want to take me seriously enough to listen and converse with me.

You've made two distinct errors in judgement here.

1) While Ini is total dick, he's one of the most knowledgable and oddly helpful people on the forum so it actually IS worthwhile to listen to him.

2) You've made the incorrect assumption that the people who are talking to you actually take you seriously.

zombiekelly
April 16th, 2013, 16:34
Interac is tricky with their placements. You can get a reasonably sized city on your first year- with a catch. In my case a big catch. I'm their only placement in this city, there's minimal English support, and my branch office is two hours away (though they have another branch 30 minutes away). They send you to an overly convoluted training program that usually doesn't line up with what your school does with you. I'm fairly certain the BOE is paying as much as they would for JET if not more for me, an unexperienced college grad who only had 2 previous jobs. So I wouldn't say it's better.

mothy
April 17th, 2013, 01:07
I am legitimately confused as to how we ended up with a normal human being on these message boards. I feel bad for you if you got lost on your way elsewhere, KI.

And he just showed up out of nowhere. He must be trolling us in some way.

DickForce
April 17th, 2013, 01:37
Interac is tricky with their placements. You can get a reasonably sized city on your first year- with a catch. In my case a big catch. I'm their only placement in this city, there's minimal English support, and my branch office is two hours away (though they have another branch 30 minutes away). They send you to an overly convoluted training program that usually doesn't line up with what your school does with you. I'm fairly certain the BOE is paying as much as they would for JET if not more for me, an unexperienced college grad who only had 2 previous jobs. So I wouldn't say it's better.

Where did they deploy you?

Kuroda Ishikawa
April 17th, 2013, 08:20
DickForce still ignoring the valid points that Ini made, refusing to address what is otherwise a rather complete rebuttal of his arguments, because 'he's a meanie'. Just laughable.

zombiekelly
April 17th, 2013, 19:06
I'm in Kanto, but far up enough that I still have to turn the heat on at night.

Prospective
April 18th, 2013, 13:05
This guy's gonna have a BAD time if he ever works as an ALT in Japan.

DickForce
April 18th, 2013, 13:34
I'm in Kanto, but far up enough that I still have to turn the heat on at night.

So Aomoriish? That's not really that good for what they're paying you, why did you take Interac over another private firm?

Ini
April 18th, 2013, 13:38
So Aomoriish?

Stop trolling.

mothy
April 18th, 2013, 16:21
So Aomoriish? That's not really that good for what they're paying you, why did you take Interac over another private firm?

Maybe he was afraid of shunning otherwise.

zombiekelly
April 19th, 2013, 07:45
Aomori?? Do you know where Kanto is?

DickForce
April 19th, 2013, 07:56
Oh, laff
somehow I read "Kanto" as "Tohoku" in my head
So like north Gunmaish?

word
April 19th, 2013, 09:28
This malarkey has gone on long enough. This has no place in Applying; it doesn't help potential or current applicants in any way. If you guys want, I'll move it to the Lounge and unlock it, but here in Applying... nope.