Wednesday, November 17, 2010

The Details

Actually, I don't want to give you all the details that are on the contract. For one I think next year I would like to try and be more discrete about my workplace. Of course, I still want to share classroom happenings and lesson ideas.

The Location
I will give you a good look at what the job is like from looking at the contract and the school. For starters let's begin on the location. Like I said before it is in the Nowon area of Northeast Seoul.
Then once you are in that area you get off at the Jungye station. I am not going to tell you which school but it is in this area, along with the housing. (You have to walk up a particular non-straight road.)
When getting a glimpse of the area it is mostly apartments near the school. But tucked in other places are "downtowns" with shopping. Nearby is a Lotte Mart and further down a Homeplus.

The School:
The school is fairly large and is a private elementary school, so the kids wear uniforms. Looks like there are many extracurricular activities at the school.

The classrooms, for English, were ample with all the supplies one needs. They are situated across from the kid's homeroom classes.

The Job:
Work is from 8:30 - 4:30 with classes starting either at 8:50 or for the second period after 9. You get your own classroom. Every teacher gets just one grade to teach and a particular subject, either Math, Science, Reading and Literature or Extracurricular.

There will be 3 weeks of camp in the summer and winter.

Vacation is deemed at 8 weeks (I think), including a vacation around Christmas. Overtime and all that is in there.

They do require the teachers to make yearly lesson plans, tests and quizzes along with other essential teaching materials.

The Challenge:

I am excited because this is going to be a different game than the usual public school. I will get a chance to advance and grow and really define myself as a teacher. I know I don't have the "background" but would like to pick up some books and start getting my mind prepared.

My Concerns:
Mostly I am concerned about whether my FBI document will come in on time. I was told to have everything ready to submit for a visa issuance number by mid-January. If my FBI Doc takes the longest amount of time (12 weeks) it would be completed by January 18th. Then it still has to get the apostille, and then everything has to go to Korea. Where 2 weeks later I get the visa issuance number and then can get the Visa and hop on a plane.

My gut feeling is that it is going to be real close and down to the wire. Tomorrow will be exactly 1 month from when the FBI received it, so I will inquire with them as to the status.

Other concerns right now aren't that big. Just working on moving out and getting ready for going back home.

In the meantime, I have been a scratching post for Tom and I am not enjoying that. Since the little guy has no one to play with while I am gone he certainly has a lot of energy by the time I get home. Just need to get his claws clipped and then the playfulness will be tolerable.

I'm tired and going to rest now. Looking forward to the new Year! oh yea~


  1. Congrats Joy! Hopefully things will work out well - I used to live in that area and thought it was great :)

    I was wondering if you knew - because the new immigration guidelines were (supposedly) delayed to 2012, does one still need to get the FBI background check? What has the recruiter / new school been telling you?

  2. According to my hagwon boss, the new visa rules have been delayed until at least 2012. He would know because he has been busy trying to find my replacement over the last few weeks and had been initially worried about those previous requirements.

  3. I used to live really close to there - by Sanggye dong, I worked on this street that has about 40 hagwons on it.

    It's a nice area, especially if you like spending time in the mountains: it's a quieter, safe area, with tons of mountains nearby that provide easy and difficult hikes.

    And there's a great bulgogi restaurant by sanggye station, and pretty good access to the downtown. I think you'll enjoy it.

  4. Ooo Sounds good Rob~ I hope to find that restaurant as bulgolgi is great.

    As for the FBI check, I am not going through a recruiter. It has been directly through the school.

    So far he believes that if you are transferring or renewing then those relaxed laws apply. But if you are a fresh person than you need the new docs. However, I am going to call Immi or have him call Immi to see my options.

    If you know this applies to all folks (renewing, transfer or new visas) let me know.

  5. I called immigration and they said "NO" to my situation. Due to that is for the new year. Checking the immigration sight if you work for EPIK the laws are relaxed.

    From what I can tell it all depends on if you are getting a job now before the new year or after, and whether you are renewing or transferring.

    Since I am leaving the country I will have to start fresh.

    My hope is that my new school will be gracious with me if things are delayed.


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