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The More Things Change, the More They Stay the Same

Although I haven't been active updating this blog since the collapse of Nova and GEOS, I do get email and questions about what has been going on in eikaiwa. It turns out, not much has changed.

Two British language teachers who worked for Shane English School Japan filed suit Thursday against the school’s operator Shane Corporation Ltd., claiming that their dismissals were unfair and invalid.

Chris Beardshall, 46, and Adam Cleeve, 44, demanded that Shane pay their monthly salaries until the day of the case’s final judgment. The two were hired on fixed-term, one-year contracts, with annual renewals possible.

Beardshall said he joined Shane in 2003 and that he was dismissed as of Dec. 31, 2016, after refusing to sign a contract that included a drastic pay cut.

“Shane decided to cut my salary by two-thirds … yet they know I have a wife and a child,” Beardshall said during a news conference held Thursday at the labor ministry.

Cleeve, who joined the company in 2015, was dismissed as of Feb. 28, after the company determined his 24 days of absence to be unreasonable. Cleeve said he told the company in advance that he needed to take days off due to the birth of his child.

First, pay cut of two thirds is absolutely brutal. Image yourself making 300,000 yen a month, and then being presented with a contract for 100,000 yen a month, take it or leave it.

Second, I have my doubts about Cleeve's claim. If wonder if there's some missing information here. Even a top-tier Japanese company isn't going to let an employee take an entire month off without some sort of extenuating circumstances.

That said, this serves as a reminder that you are completely at the mercy of the eikaiwa. If they think you're done, you're done.

Good luck to these guys.

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