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Thread: School Politics

  1. #21
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    To parrot everyone else, you probably wont have much if any formal interaction with parents beyond the occasional greetings. Informally, I know a few of my students' parents, and a few will come up to me in the store or whatever and say hi. Just act naturally if this happens, there isn't some rigid protocol or anything to worry about.

    One thing you might want to do with regards to students, however, is ask your JTE about the students you will be teaching. Some schools don't have separate classes for the slow or special students, and while you will probably learn who they are and how to interact with them eventually anyway, knowing in advance never hurts. One of my old students could get violent if approached, so I needed to know to ignore him during class. Some kids just might need a little extra help, and some might have problems relating to home life. You may have none of these types of kids, but asking before you hit the classes doesn't hurt!

    Quote Originally Posted by adrianjet View Post
    So to get on Sensei X or Principal Y's good side I just need to be polite and never correct them in public (or ever) should they make some mistake, I get that part.
    I think you have a weird idea of your role in the workplace. Yes, you are low on the scale as an ALT, but it is also ESID as well. Going into the job with the attitude that you must be guarded against offending all the time, or paying the utmost attention to tiny nuances, so much that you get stressed about it, is silly. Yes, you should keep your head down and brush up your observing skills until you get used to how things work, but that doesn't mean not correcting people or whatever. I have a very easy relationship with my JTEs, vice principal, and supervisor; they will often ask me to correct them. I will also correct JTEs during class if they get something wrong, or talk to them about it after class if I don't think the timing is appropriate. I never talk to my principal, so that point is moot. Some JTEs wont want to be corrected, others wont mind. You are going to have to wait and see who is who, as each is going to be different.

    As for relationships, let them develop naturally and don't try to force them. I'm good friends with a few of my JTEs and will talk with them often, others I would never hang out with outside of school even with the opportunity. Little things might speed a relationship along, and it never hurts to do nice things for people, but it isn't necessary. I DO bring gifts when I change schools, and will occasionally do the omiyage thing if I am taking nenkyuu and go on a major trip. I also sometimes do something nice, like baking cookies, before I leave although it depends. Lastly, I send New Years cards to my JTEs, vp, principal, supervisor, and teachers I'm friends with. If you do this, you will earn brownie points, but again, not necessary.

    I think you just need to relax, and let go of your preconceived notions of "how its gonna be". Wait and see when you get here, instead of trying to figure it all out now, and don't take what you've seen in movies or anime as what to expect! Each workplace is going to be different anyway, so just keep that in mind!

  2. #22
    ITIL Spokesperson tenderRondo's Avatar
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    Also if you want to be a stellar alt you should visit the graveyards where your student'g grandparents are buried. It will impress the heck out of your supervisors.
    guys, im not playing anymore

  3. #23

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    i think they key is to kick someone's ass the first day. be sure to choose a person that you are confident you can beat, like the fatboy or that old history teacher who eats prescription lunches.

  4. #24
    Feckless Manchild Otaku word's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dirtbag View Post
    i think they key is to kick someone's ass the first day. be sure to choose a person that you are confident you can beat, like the fatboy or that old history teacher who eats prescription lunches.
    Watch out for the fat boy; the fat boy in my school turned out to be descended directly from Takanohana, one of the greatest sumo wrestlers of all time. He beat me down in just a few seconds while the whole school looked on and LOLed. It was humiliating, and I have been considered the pathetic bitch on campus ever since.


    For those of you who are new around here, please ignore this and the previous two posts.
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    It's festivals days like these on which I really try really hard to make up for not partying in college.
    yeah, because who needs free flowing drugs and alcohol fueling adventorous sex with taut, lithe young bodies when you could wander around a dying town in the freezing cold with a can of asahi super dry in your hand while some toothless old farmer shouts at you.

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by word View Post
    Watch out for the fat boy; the fat boy in my school turned out to be descended directly from Takanohana, one of the greatest sumo wrestlers of all time. He beat me down in just a few seconds while the whole school looked on and LOLed. It was humiliating, and I have been considered the pathetic bitch on campus ever since.
    Isn't that better than being beat down by some random ass kid though? I mean, yeah you got your ass kicked, but at least you got it kicked by someone directly descended from Takanohana. In the ass-kicked world that should mean something! They didn't give you any credit for that? Cheeeaaaap.

  6. #26
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    Default Re: School Politics

    I wash kyoto sensei's car on the weekends, even in the winter just so I can keep our bond strong.
    guys, im not playing anymore

  7. #27
    Senior Member Jojo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tenderRondo View Post
    I wash kyoto sensei's car on the weekends, even in the winter just so I can keep our bond strong.
    its all about the bond... does he call you Rondo kun?
    How are you? Yes yes!

  8. #28
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    Default Re: School Politics

    ron-chan
    guys, im not playing anymore

  9. #29
    Code of Conduct Lego's Avatar
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    Whenever I walk by, the students always chant, "Chestnut and squirrel! Chestnut and squirrel!" I don't know why, but it's cute and makes me feel loved.
    minor rant: abe vigoda

  10. #30

    Default Re: School Politics

    To sum up everything in around 4 points:

    -Your place in the chain? Bottom. The printer will even treat you badly cos you are lower than it
    -Don't drink? Not a problem. They don't go out every week, TV dramas are lying to you
    -You're not a real teacher, you won't have to do anything beyond explaining a few games in class and reading out the textbook
    - Lego, I love you.
    Shut up Hikari / Muffles / uthinkimlost. (delete as appropriate)

    Quote Originally Posted by tenderRondo View Post
    minor rant: Waldroon mentioned Maria Ozawa in the japenese movie thread. Me being the fool I am assumed he was being serious and googled her at work.

  11. #31
    Senior Member Jojo's Avatar
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    Default Re: School Politics

    Have you prepared a cirriculum yet?
    How are you? Yes yes!

  12. #32
    ITIL Spokesperson tenderRondo's Avatar
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    Default Re: School Politics

    RON-CHAN OHAYO!!
    guys, im not playing anymore

  13. #33
    Smashes through the wa Miss_igirisu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jojo View Post
    Have you prepared a cirriculum yet?
    Come on, you're scaring him. Just let him get on with the self introduction that he'll have to perform in front of the PTA (he said he could use keigo well, right?)
    Quote Originally Posted by tenderRondo View Post
    they said your uk blood has extremely high levels of tea and crumpets in it.
    http://osharejunks.blogspot.com/

  14. #34

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    Ok thanks everyone, this is making me feel more at ease. I'll try to be more relaxed and observant when I get to orientation.

    So given my role as assistant if I happen to see students bully each other (ijime) or any problem with the student I just mention it to my JTE and leave it at that, I got it. If there are any slow students falling behind in English I could try to make some time and tutor them after school or have them email questions to me but besides that I'll leave it to JTE to handle.

    I am a little confused about people mentioning to "dress well" on my first day or on enkais, etc. I assumed I would be wearing a business suit with tie 24/7 when going to school, PTA events, etc. Isn't that standard dress in Japan? How can I dress "nicer" than a suit? (Though if I join clubs after school I'll be sure to bring athletic wear as well)

  15. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by adrianjet View Post

    I am a little confused about people mentioning to "dress well" on my first day or on enkais, etc. I assumed I would be wearing a business suit with tie 24/7 when going to school, PTA events, etc. Isn't that standard dress in Japan? How can I dress "nicer" than a suit? (Though if I join clubs after school I'll be sure to bring athletic wear as well)
    didnt you read anything on the jet website? it clearly says to bring a tuxedo with you for these situations.
    guys, im not playing anymore

  16. #36

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    Quote Originally Posted by tenderRondo View Post
    didnt you read anything on the jet website? it clearly says to bring a tuxedo with you for these situations.
    Does that mean I bought my Hello Kitty kimono for nothing?
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    U da real mvp.

  17. #37
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    Most of my teachers don't wear suits every day. A lot of people wear track suits and some people just wear like, slacks (or even khakis) and a button-up with no blazer or anything. Suits are reserved for special days (which, honestly, happen OFTEN so you will get some use out of your suit). That being said, I hardly ever wear a suit, even on special days -- I put on a nice conservative dress and am good to go (note: I'm a girl).

    Obviously, this situation varies. You may find your school really likes you to be sharply dressed all of the time.
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    They're FUCKING MEETING ABOUT POTATOES AGAIN

  18. #38
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    Default Re: School Politics

    for my day to day I usually wear pants a button up shirt and a tie. for graduation ceremonies I wear a suit. but anytime the BOE or any big wigs might be coming I throw this on to make sure they know I understand their culture
    guys, im not playing anymore

  19. #39

    Default Re: School Politics

    A lot of good advice and I agree with it all. As far as the actual title of the thread though, yes there are politics and cliques among the teachers. If you can manage to get in with a social group of teachers it will probably do wonders for your work relations to go out with them. You say you don't drink though so if it's anything like my school, they'll invite a new person out but once they figure out you don't drink they might not ask you again (this is the male group that drinks all the time). How you fit in here will depend on you, your Japanese ability, and as Miss Igirisu said your ability to fit in or "be Japanese." I'm not saying that you can't fit in while being yourself, but if you are that gaijin clown type ALT that is always goofing off and thinks its his job to constantly joke around 24/7 you probably won't be treated very seriously.

    If you want to be taken seriously, it's up to you to act the part. Just don't ever let it get to your head as you are still the bottom rung of the ladder.

  20. #40
    Smashes through the wa Miss_igirisu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by adrianjet View Post
    Ok thanks everyone, this is making me feel more at ease. I'll try to be more relaxed and observant when I get to orientation.

    So given my role as assistant if I happen to see students bully each other (ijime) or any problem with the student I just mention it to my JTE and leave it at that, I got it. If there are any slow students falling behind in English I could try to make some time and tutor them after school or have them email questions to me but besides that I'll leave it to JTE to handle.

    I am a little confused about people mentioning to "dress well" on my first day or on enkais, etc. I assumed I would be wearing a business suit with tie 24/7 when going to school, PTA events, etc. Isn't that standard dress in Japan? How can I dress "nicer" than a suit? (Though if I join clubs after school I'll be sure to bring athletic wear as well)
    Didn't we just say to dress well (suit) at the start and then play it down as you see fit judging from how other teachers dress?

    (Are we sure this guy isn't trolling us?)
    Quote Originally Posted by tenderRondo View Post
    they said your uk blood has extremely high levels of tea and crumpets in it.
    http://osharejunks.blogspot.com/

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