George Washington International School , GWIS has many locations all over Vietnam. I worked for the school in Sa Dec, Dong Thap province in the Mekong Delta. I worked here for approximately 6 months, and never within those 6 months did anything go smoothly. The pay is way above what other schools will pay you, hence my desire to work here. However, after leaving and having some hindsight, the money was absolutely 100% not worth it. This school runs alongside regular public school; it is not a language center. The class size averages around 40 students. Whilst working there, the schedule changed about twice a week, and we were told all sorts of lies as to why. Possibly because the principals of the schools kept changing their minds? Don't know. In any case, this caused a lot of unrest for the students and for the teachers.
THIS SCHOOL DOES NOT HAVE A BUSINESS LICENSE, SO DONT EXPECT TO GET A WORK PERMIT.
That's right, I had to a visa run every 3 months, and they never helped. This school does not care at all for the well being of the foreign teachers. It is a scam. They steal money from the Vietnamese parents promising all sorts of lies.
They do not provide any materials, and the teachers are expected to pay for crayons, scissors, etc. Basic things that any school should offer, we had to pay for. Or even worse, the Teacher Assistants would pay for out of their own pocket.
The management was disorganized and would often make requests from us without giving us any time. For example: The foreign teachers asked about midterm tests - when are they given? who makes them? etc. We weren't given any response till the day before they wanted the tests given. - So they expected us to make 6-9 midterm tests within 1 day. Then they asked us to give them the scores a week before the tests were scheduled to be given.... Nothing ever made sense. This type of behavior was prevalent throughout the 6 months I worked for GWIS.
They lied to us on numerous occasions.
On top of all this, they don't have a curriculum. They have instead, extremely advanced text books - science, math, english that they want the foreign teachers to use. And, won't allow us to use any other material. For example: they wanted us to teach grammar - noun, pronoun, fragments, sentence structure to KINDERGARTENERS. - Kids who are still learning how to write in their own native language! The material was WAYYYY to difficult, and they never supported, allowed us, or gave us materials that would support/ fill in the gaps until 2 weeks before the final tests!
This school was an absolute nightmare.
The only positive aspects of the school is that the teacher assistants go above and beyond. They truly care for the students' education, but they are also in a bind because the director never listens them, when they are the only ones who are on the ground, dealing with the students and the parents.
Also, the pay is pretty good. Roughly 2200-2500 a month. Now, they will pay you, but you have to remind them over and over again that it is pay day. You can never expect them to think for themselves.
I hated working here. All the foreign teachers did. We never had anything positive to say. Do not work here.
If you want to make money in a short amount of time but suffer both physically, mentally, and spiritually then work here. If you are smart and would rather have a good quality of life, health, and happiness do not work here.
Good pay, and star teacher assistants
Advice to Management
Get your act together. Start thinking beyond the next day. Support your teachers. Stop lying to everyone.
Sa Dec, Dong Thap province, Vietnam
Teacher from May 2016-December 2016