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In a complete rut - M.Ed., PGCE, QTS, Middle East?

Discussion in 'Qualifications & Courses' started by JBauer, 3 Jan 2017.

  1. SageAdvice

    SageAdvice Well-Known Member

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    The efforts of many NES aren't worth even that crumb...folks who are teaching merely to prolong their stay in paradise have the potential to drag all of us down.
     
  2. stfranalum

    stfranalum Well-Known Member

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    one of the best replies ive ever about teaching in thailand and the mendacity that it is...

    none. they pay crap. if you get 60k you are freaking lucky as balls.

    perfectly said.

    the problem is that it would be efficient and in the end, does it REALLY test the desire for one to be in thailand? no. that would make it simple.

    one of the old truths in life...you create a bar so stupid and hurdlesome that only those who go through it are the ones who need to stay...and as such, put up with the bullshit. then, you have the perfect candidates. quality of teaching? what in the fuck does that matter?

    brilliant

    its not about the rules...its that you are too educated and then, will be a person who questions and doesn't accept the norm. BINNED!

    i'll offer a rebuttal to that...

    Exhibit A
    [​IMG]



    honestly, if it weren't for this, there would be no freaking point whatsoever. full stop.

    oh right. food. weather. because no where else has nice weather and good food. got it.
     
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  3. SageAdvice

    SageAdvice Well-Known Member

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    ...*cough*...
     
  4. OxfordDon

    OxfordDon Well-Known Member

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    Just to comment on one or two of the assumptions in the original post.

    30k baht per month, adjusted for cost of living, is in the range that UK teachers are paid (not senior teachers, heads etc), but I would say the hassles of teaching in the UK are possibly greater than here in many areas. And given the recent changes in UK pension provision, who knows what the long-term financial future will be like for teachers in the UK, but I'd say it's not looking rosy - was it ever?

    It's possible to do a perfectly respectable distance MA at a British university at less than 10k baht per month. The online and part-time courses that I know of are certificated in just the same way as full-time courses, but courses which lead to QTS are not offered online as QTS requires teaching practice in the UK.
     
  5. stfranalum

    stfranalum Well-Known Member

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    ^ but in the UK you don't need to save for a flight home...you are home.

    the fact is that while living overseas, our existence is tied to our visa, which is more often than not, tied to employment. so if you are skimping by on 30k, and as you say, the standard of living is the same, you are effectively in a way worse position.

    also, the lower end of the salary back home may be low to start, but goes up significantly. not the same in thailand where your contribution, if anything declines as you are less attractive (metaphorically and literally) as you get older.

    a 26k (US) salary would be the same as 30k THB. salary. get a masters and that shoots up. not only do you have more work, but more protection and a much brighter future. the only net perk of teaching in thailand is thailand. at some point, the glitter wears off and you find yourself dealing with the same crap, sometimes more so, than a teacher back home or anywhere else.

    as muppetminder said, and it's quite obvious, there are way too many hurdles to pass for such a paltry wage. given that you dont advance much, even in a professional sense moving on, people dont think of a thai teaching experience as one where you really worked hard, even if you did. aka- it's not much of a resume builder, aside from the 1-3 years early on in a career. ...now i know thats not what a lot of folks who are slogging it out in the swamp want to hear, but its true. you run on the hamster wheel just for the privilege of being there. one can say that that's what they want, but it's hardly a rational argument for "going places"

    for me, why im here, posting and such is that my thai experiences left a mark on me. quite literally with the sak yant, but also, i grew a lot personally. that personal growth, was in some ways, in spite of the place, like lessons learned when one grows up. i have very fond memories of the place but still find myself, at 41 years old, thinking that that time was pretty much thrown away, professionally- which matter to me more than ever, because let's face it, you can grow in a personal way, anywhere. that has nothing to do with thailand nor the wage you get. it was for me, just a choice, and now, memories. i would advise other younger teachers (and i do, here at my job) to avoid such a pleasurable trap.
     
    Last edited: 11 Jan 2017
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  6. OxfordDon

    OxfordDon Well-Known Member

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    I agree with a lot of what you say SF, but I also think you are making assumptions about other people's experience based on your own, and it sounds like your own were not too happy. A 30k baht wage here is, as I said above, in line with what junior government teachers are paid in the UK, after you've adjusted for cost of living. If you move out of government education you will be paid more, in both countries.

    I also see no reason whatsoever why foreign teachers in government schools should expect to be on a higher pay scale than Thai teachers. This is a big topic, and I think it'd be better not to derail this thread by pursuing it here.

    For many foreigners Thailand is home, so they don't need to save for a flight "home". The visa situation you refer to is true for most foreigners in most countries (it'll soon be true for Brits in continental Europe too, LOL).

    Having said that, I wouldn't recommend teaching in any form as a lifelong career, at "home" or abroad. But that's just me, other people will feel differently.

    You're in the Gulf aren't you? Well I've spent a few years in several Gulf countries (not as a teacher), and I would say the quality of life in Thailand is significantly better. I could never feel "at home" in any Gulf country, much as I value the experience of having worked there. But I know some who love it there.... strokes for folks.
     
  7. portnoy58

    portnoy58 Well-Known Member

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    Well put!

    Don't worry about what other people think - many people will think you are some sort of pervert if you've lived here for an extended period. A recruiter in China insinuated that I must be a pervert as: (1) I expressed a preference for working with upper primary kids (2) I was male (3) I had lived in Thailand for 8 years. Open and shut.

    I slogged my guts out and loved the teaching. I developed as a teacher and as a person in spite of the atavistic tendencies of the school's management. We loathed each other. My students, however, held me in high regard and gave me the most amazing and spontaneous send off I could ever have imagined.

    Again, well put. But like everything, it really depends on how you use it. Teaching a group of 26 students in a bilingual programme for seven years is valid experience, even if it is in Thailand. When the recruiter, above, insinuated I was a pervert, I told her she was a f****** a*******. Basically, at that point, my mindset was I am not working for anything you're connected with, baby, so let's party!

    Now if you're trying to prolong your shelf life in Thailand then perhaps you will sell yourself short and work for the likes of KissMyA** and if you do, you know in advance you will need to eat humble pie and give it a bit of yessir, nosir, three bags full sir. If you see yourself as an educator first and foremost, then selection is not an act of desperation, it is a mutual process, you're selecting the school as much as they you. It's perhaps a semantic difference but I think people need to ensure that above all else that if the job goes wrong in Thailand, as it does quite often, that they have a backup plan, an alternative.
     
  8. stfranalum

    stfranalum Well-Known Member

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    until you look for work in other places.

    and like you said, there is no convincing others that you are a dedicated teacher who happened to be living there. in a way, it reveals more about not just whats on their minds, but what they've been fed via the media and such. having said that, there a SHIT TON of freakish teachers in LOS. shit ton.

    true that.

    which is why when i interview folks for positions here, i try to be as direct and honest as possible. let them know that this isn't a free ride, but just a solid place to work. i think it's pretty darn sincere and as such, many interviews go (relatively) well.
     
  9. Hey_ewe

    Hey_ewe Well-Known Member

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    A 'home' that will tell not to let the door hit you on the arse on your way out of the country, when you reach retirement age and don't have the necessary funds to get a marriage or retirement visa. There'll be no teary eyed 'thank you for your years of service' just a reminder that you've outlived your usefulness to the country and you need to leave the country.

    If you're happy on 30-35k a month then great but if you do that long term, you're unlikely to have been able to set aside money or have paid into a decent pension pot.
     
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  10. stfranalum

    stfranalum Well-Known Member

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    the only one example of this not applying was seen at my university where there was a teacher, chris, who was there for 30 years. much beloved by all. when he died, they renamed the humanities library in his name and put a display in there with memorable things from his office. his dog statues are outside the library's doors like chinese lions guarding it. a small man by height, he was large in personality, fluent in thai, and knew thousands of people. the university, naresuan university, showed respect that is hardly ever shown to a foreign teacher. NU was a fantastic place to work. i just wish the salary was on par with the work environment and people there.

    having said that, and that is a real thing, your point stands for 99.99999% of the time.

    and we needn't be saddened by our commodification while living overseas. the bottom line, as you alluded to, is what comes next. if you have managed to save for the next step, then great. if not, the swamp becomes quicksand, having turned from wonderful experiences to trap right under your feet. this is why i consider it a great place for retirement and also a couple of earl years to get a career in teaching started. for guys in their 40s and even 50s, with not much in the bank, boy o boy is that hard to reconcile.
     
  11. OxfordDon

    OxfordDon Well-Known Member

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    It seems a tad unfair to blame Thailand for one's inability to plan one's finances. And full credit to the OP who sees that this could become a problem, and is taking steps to address that.

    You seem to have missed my main point which is that a government teacher's pay scale in the UK is pretty similar to the scale in Thailand, consequently a teacher in the UK would probably not be able to put away any more for their retirement than s/he would be able to in Thailand, and I sincerely doubt that the UK government pension will be any better by the time today's 40 somethings retire.

    As for your comment about 30-35k per month, that's a day rate for many professions not a month rate.
     
  12. Hey_ewe

    Hey_ewe Well-Known Member

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    That's a lovely story and I'm glad he was remembered in such a nice way and so widely respected. On a personal level, I'd imagine most of us teaching here on a long term basis are respected by parents, students and Thai teachers. The immigration, work permit and government in general does not respect foreign teachers at all.

    I enjoy life here despite some challenges. I have a great job at a good school. I'm able to have a very comfortable lifestyle and put away money for the future. I would not be able to do that on 30-35k a month which is the going monthly rate for the majority of teachers in Thailand.

    I'm not blaming Thailand for poor financial management but it would be very easy for decades to slip by, whilst you're having fun here and enjoying the lifestyle and not realise that you're going to be very poor in old age. I know several people who are on their way to doing just that. One thing I guarantee, is zero sympathy or leeway from immigration, when you're too poor to retire in a country you now call home. The income/savings financial requirement is set to western standards, not for someone living on a Thai social security pension.
     
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  13. SageAdvice

    SageAdvice Well-Known Member

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    Isn't this where the wife's family and kids come in? I would hope the 30K grinders won't be too proud to except support from relations.
     
  14. stfranalum

    stfranalum Well-Known Member

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    a thousand dollars a day? aside from a CEO of a large company, not many "professionals" earn that.
     
  15. OxfordDon

    OxfordDon Well-Known Member

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    Oh they do SF, it's just that it's outside of your experience, and I guarantee that many of the expats you see around the malls in Saudi are earning that. But it's not limited to the Gulf by any means; I'm sure you'll even find people in Bkk on those rates if you know where to look.

    As the OP said in his opening post "no-one got into teaching for the money" or words to that effect., and how right he is.

    It makes me sad when I see some Teflers looking down their noses at other Teflers because they earn a few dollars a day more.
     
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