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winbe english school

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racism at winbe

winbe engages in many forms of discrimination. teachers are treated with a general disrespect and subject to further discrimination based on skin colour, nationality and gender. it all begins in the recruiting process. school managers are allowed to choose the nationality, colour and gender of their teacher. their individual preferences are catered to in every way, and even the occurrence of a little sexual harassment in the past is not enough to prevent head office from hiring and sending another female teacher, if the owner requests it. many owners have a personal dislike of black or asian looking people, or a belief that the presence of such a teacher will damage their business. many owners have a preference for american english speakers, even to the extent that one school forced an australian to teach in an american accent, and another school has announced on its homepage that all winbe teachers are americans. conversely, there are managers who don't like americans, managers who are fine with anyone except the british, managers who will only have young teachers, and managers who want to see how good looking you are before agreeing to take you on. all of this is sanctioned and even encouraged by tact. the winbe recruiting process is more akin to a match-making service than a company human resources department. it's no surprise that so many contracts end in bitterness.

if you are a female recruit, chances are you are being hired on the specific request of of an owner who likes the idea of spending time in the school alone with you. if are black or asian, be prepared to be moved when the owner blames the lack of students on your skin colour, and don't expect a second contract if that happens, you've already caused head office too much trouble. whatever colour or gender you are, be prepared to be judged on your country of birth. instead of explaining to owners that teachers from any country can easily adapt to a standard international english, head office staff write all the requests down on the order form.

throughout the company there is one set of rules for japanese and another for foreigners. teachers do not get the same insurance benefits as managers. they do not get flexible holidays like the japanese do. there is no sick pay. teachers also carry around with them a "prior offender" card. this means that you can be blamed for any and every problem, including ones that occurred befure your tenure. one teacher handed a pair of underpants that he found in his classroom in to the manager and was accused of being a pedophile and subsequently sacked. another teacher was refused a sick day because "foreigners are always taking days off sick". another teacher was accused of stealing a compact disc; on further investigation, the disc didn't even exist. this "prior offender" card contrasts with the "get out of jail free" card carried by owners and japanese members of head office. this allows them to harass, falsely accuse, even assault teachers with no consequences.

when questioned in a meeting about these discriminatory practices, the company president defended them by saying "if i go overseas i get called a yellow pig". while it's hard to imagine what country this happened in, this is how the company president justifies winbe's blatant racism towards foreigners: you started it.

the truth about winbe