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16 February 2005
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KLB - Bonnie's Reply

I got a reply from Bonnie. What a load of BS this "part-time" job comes with. Sometimes I think without being able to unload my thoughts on my website, I may just blow up like a balloon and pop. This and the health club are great stress relievers. So sit back and enjoy her reply and my added commentary:

Dear Shawn,

Thanks for your reply and I really appreciate your honest comments. [Has she been taking diplomacy lessons from Condoleeza Rice?]

First of all, don't get me wrong. I wanted to keep you at our classroom
because everybody was enjoying your class including myself. I always felt good whenever I visited the classroom [OK, then - it sounds like everything is terrific. No need to bother me anymore!] and I tried to compromise your lateness [she means my not coming in early enough - I've only been officialy late once. I would definitely go in early if I lived even just an hour away...] with the quality of teaching you have given to us.

However, as time went by, I kept getting repeated feedback and obviously it
seemed you did not enjoy the variety of curriculum I gave to you. [The variety? I have one book for each class made up of a bunch of random, poorly photocopied pages from equally random books - it's the worst book I've ever seen with no continuity. One minute I'm teaching about the food Kangaroos eat, the next about how little Johnny lost his baseball cap. They should have just went on to the next English Time!]

As I said before, you did not have to follow everything what the book has
but we needed to have prior conversation before skipping some parts of the
curriculum. [Even though the book stinks, I only skipped a couple of things - some ridiculously difficult readings and the equally silly rainforest theme. I'm supposed to teach that one class a week. All the materials she gave me for this theme are photocopied pictures of obscure rainforest animals with bizaare names like Cock of the Rock (did I tell you I found a new name for 'little Shawn'?). I did try to teach it a little but obviously Cathy reported that I didn't teach it enough.]

Without knowing the problem, I could not escape from pointing out thing
needed to be resolved. [Yes, that's because I've learned in Korea it's better not to complain and to do your best with what's given. I bitched and moaned on this site and to Cathy - which I though was in confidence, but obviously it wasn't...] Otherwise, you need to develop or find other stuff to supplement the book I have given you but I did not think that worked either. [Earth to Bonnie - that's why I've been teaching phonics, conversation, games and writing! Hello?]

I did not have any problem at other schools in using same curriculum [this tells me that either the other teachers are nitwits (highly liklely) or that they have assistants who don't report every detail of what's actually going on to the boss] and I do understand that some parts of the book does not meet the level of classes at your specific school. [This really pisses me off. She has implied several times that the problem is my students ability. That's BS because these kids are fantastic for their age and I have been very proud of how much they have learned already. They know English Time inside and out, all the conversations, vocabulary, songs, etc., and a lot of other things I've taught including how to read and write and also grammar (Class C). The problem is definitely not their level - it's this poorly planned book! Also, in a perfect world, Cathy would spend her time making useful materials and supplemental lessons rather than interfering with my class and wasting time writing minutely detailed paperwork for Bonnie - I'm sorry but I don't get paid to go in on my free time to prepare materials. But that's not really the reason, either. I would gladly do extra things if she did some things back such as paid a sick day now and again. She gets the same pay from the parents if I'm there or not anyway. In fact, she probably likes it when the teachers are sick because she ends up pocketing that money! Maybe she put the flu in my coffee cup last week!]

The point is that I really value your quality of teaching. Most of all, your
class is very enjoyable overall. [Here we go again!] However, not only you judge the class but many different sources are involved in there including students [Can you repeat that please?] They do not want to waste time during the class [the only time that's wasted is time teaching the new books! - I really don't know what Cathy is telling her but I have never taught so hard before and been so effective as a teacher - what the hell does she expect?] and my role is to listen to everybody's opnion and find the best way to keep this running well [the best way is to not be so involved. We have not had any kids quit with a few exceptions, and those were kids whose parents never paid the tuition. I have the same number of students I started with so what's the problem?]

I really wanted you to stay until the contracted time in finding the best solution for everybody. [Then you should have butted out]. I know Cathy is not a fluent speaker but I need her to be there for taking care of children and doing paperwork to satisfy school requirement - which is also important to me. She is a very hardworker and serious [she sure is!]

If you made up your mind already, it is not a problem to prepare all the
necessary paperwork for you. [Phew - good news!] But I would like to speak to you tomorrow to discuss anything make this situation better for both of us, I will be there at 12:30 pm and wait for you [oh boy! I'm looking forward to that so much!]

And sorry for the salary payment, I did not try to cut anything from you,
insteady, I need to be fair for everybody. [translation: if a teachers misses a day - she actually makes more money by not paying them] If I do not have the restriction
on sick or any personal days off, I will be more difficult to maintain [translatuion: she will make less money].

I know your are commuting from distance, but please understand I am supporting
part of your transportation even thought it would be very little for you. [I don't know what the point is here. Is she saying this is some great benefit? The reason she is paying this fee is because she was in desperate need of a teacher at the time. Remember, she hired me a few days before the job started. She gave me no time to consider the job. I acted skeptical about the travelling and that's when she added the travel fee.]

Anyways, thanks for reading and replying my long letters [yes - they sure are long. What a lot of time and hassle you would have saved yourself would had you not written in the first place!] and hope to see and sit down with you to have a little conversation tomorrow. [Great - a conversation that is sure to piss me off right before I have to teach again.]

Please let me know if I could assist you in anything. [OK - you can assist me by brining the paperwork and not bothering mre anymore].


Stay tuned to see what transpires tomorrow. It should be interesting.


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