Postbox letter from Peter
Sometimes, the red tape here in Thailand seems insurmountable
Tazza joins the Thai Tourist Police as a volunteer
What happened during the two-day training seminar organised by the Thai Tourist police. What exactly do we foreign civilians have to go through before we're given our uniform and badge and we're ready to patrol those mean streets.
Does a degree make a good teacher?
Now what if a teacher has a degree, but no teaching certificate? Would that be okay? Probably. What about having just a teaching certificate and no degree? Maybe. What about no qualifications at all but a lot of experience? Possibly. And finally, what about schools hiring people with no qualifications whatsoever and no experience, would that go well? There’s the odd chance that it might, but I doubt it.
getting rid of the EFL riff-raff
We are talking about setting objective standards to a profession that is long overdue. And by setting these standards, we will be getting rid of a whole lot of really bad people; people that have absolutely no business stepping foot inside a classroom, in Thailand or anywhere else.
Postbox letter from Larry Gellar
I probably should have seen the writing on the wall when I was asked to sign a contract in a foreign language, without a translation. I should have just slowly backed away.
Thailand at a crossroad
When I heard that a teacher, an EFL teacher at that, had been picked up in Bangkok on suspicion of the JonBenet Ramsey murder, I knew that things would change. Or, at least, I hope that things will change. For the better. I, like everyone else, heard the name John Mark Karr for the first time
Legendary scams, blacklists and the midnight run
I tested my marketability and checked the options available. My recently acquired TEFL certificate definitely opened up new opportunities. University job offers poured in from China, Japan, Latvia, Poland, Egypt, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Thailand.
A half year in review
Not surprisingly, I am still wrestling with the administration over issues of fair pay, planning time and sensible class-size and leveling. Despite everything, I am having a great time in Khon Kaen.
The dreaded Thai visa procedure
You go to the Thai Embassy in aforementioned UN least-developed-nation-status state and submit your paperwork. The immigration officer then asks you if the school that you’re going to work for is on ‘the list’. Then you say, ‘What list?’ and he says, ‘The list’, then you shrug and he tells you that it isn’t, then you say ‘So why did you ask,’ and he says nothing, and you say ‘What should I do?’ and he says ‘Damned if I care, but you ain’t gettin’ no stinkin’ visa unless your school is on “the list”.
One man and his trip to Penang
Going to Laos or Cambodia by bus might have been a bit cheaper, but unfortunately one needs a visa to enter those countries. Not so for Malaysia. Anyway, I heard from a few colleagues that the Royal Thai Embassy in Vientiane is staffed by frequently obnoxious personnel (however another colleague told me he didn’t have any problem at all there).