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Thread: Moscow meltdown?

  1. #1
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    Moscow meltdown?

    I keep hearing horror stories about the EFL market in Moscow at the moment. All sorts of crises at the big schools, falling student numbers, tightening legislation making it harder for foreigners to work over here.

    What are your experiences? Are you getting more students as people want to boost their skills and employability? Or is it the opposite, with people cutting back on non-essential costs? Have you had any experience with some of the breakaway schools leaving the big chains lately?

    What's the picture?

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    what breakaway schools have sprung up recently?

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    I'm told that some of the BKC franchises have decided to go it alone. The groups at Partizanskaya and maybe Prazhskaya were mentioned.

    But that's with a pinch of salt for the moment. Not confirmed.

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    was trying to apply for a job with BKC for a while and they said they couldnt get any new teachers coz they didnt know what was going on with the crisis. Just reapplied a few days ago though and got accepted. Perhaps things are looking up

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    Work has been slow as molasses and hours down at my official job since the fall. I do not work for BKC or the other Mc Schools. I lost some private students last fall when they were made redundant. I have given up on things picking up at work anytime soon and just filled the gaps privately. I have almost always had a waiting list for private students and have had to turn ppl away. Much of the waiting list was affected by the crisis as well and I had to look further for students. If not for private lessons, I'd be totally effed at the moment.

    It's not just where I work- hours are down across the board at many language centers.

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    Private Work

    While, by the sound of things, there's been a general slowdown in general teaching, professional stuff (law, ILEC, ICFE) is still going strong. So, one door closes for bog-standard teaching and another one opens for targetted, specific needs.

    C'est la vie )

    Bill Beetham

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    I'm getting requests for resume prep and interview techniques. Geee, I wonder why!!! A friend wants to start IELTS prep in April as well. Anyhow, the Waiting List has reappeared and I'm pretty booked for now.

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    Demand on my part appears to be increasing on children and teenagers. young children as pure beginners, teenager needing preparation for state exams or entry into british education.

    There is also an increasing demand from adults in IELTS for immigration or native English education purposes. It looks like the Russians want out.

    Yes I fear that EFL schools are losing out on companies supplying student, as the international companies disappear or cut down on costs. But for the private teacher things maybe looking up.

    One problem I'm having is that parents of my students are asking if I'm going to raise my fees next September, and have already made it clear that they can pay no more. With the way inflation rising this is a big problem. I can only hope that rent prices get cheaper, as I currently rent a second plat purely for the purpose of teaching groups. Any other ideas of cutting cost would be most welcome.

  9. #9
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    Yes, I agree. The IELTS student is a friend of mine I know in the running community who has a job prospect in Toronto, but needs to score a 7 on the IELTS! He's not quite upper int. yet and I told him it's best to work on getting to STRONG upper int approaching advanced level before spending the $ on taking the test. I had an advanced student score a 7 last yr.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by kazachka View Post
    Yes, I agree. The IELTS student is a friend of mine I know in the running community who has a job prospect in Toronto, but needs to score a 7 on the IELTS! He's not quite upper int. yet and I told him it's best to work on getting to STRONG upper int approaching advanced level before spending the $ on taking the test. I had an advanced student score a 7 last yr.
    As always you have the right approach and understanding, and I know where you are coming from. If a student reaches the Cambridge level of advanced then they should do well in advanced. However to ensure the student feels more confident and familour with the IELTS test, there are many course books available to prepare them for IELTS, and there are also prvious year tests of where students can try before tring for real. If they could onl try previous year tests or mock tests, they will be ready for the real thing.

    I must admit my students from intermediate level and upper intermediate have been horrified what they had to put up with the IELTS previous tests Especially the listening skills. I am amused for example the look on their faces when a Kiwi was talking about an art exhibition, and the look on their faces of what on earth he is talking about. I asked them just to be patient, as you will eventually get used different accents eventually.

    Oh please don't accept Afrikan English, Singapore, or Jamaican English as an acceptible native English language, as you will torture our poor EFL students

    And WOW! Local Irish which is already accepted as native English.

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