GRAM English Center (格蘭英語)

I must have forwarded my resume to this company at some point, because they just phoned me, asking me to perform a demo. I had a few questions, and naturally didn’t get any straight responses to any questions that truly mattered to prospective employees (which I’ll rephrase in a Q&A fashion), except for one, which sealed the deal for me – No thank you!

[ul][li]Q: How many hours per week do you need someone to teach?
A: [color=#FF0000](No response.)[/color][/li]
[li]Q: What are the ages of the students?
A: The students are between six and twelve or more years old. [color=#008000](I took that to mean that there are no kindergarten classes.)[/color][/li]
[li]Q: What is the pay rate per hour?
A: It depends on the demo.[/li]
[li]Q: What is the range of pay per hour?
A: [color=#FF0000]I’m not sure, but I will ask my superior.[/color][/li]
[li]Q: How many other foreign teachers work at the school?
A: Two or three are at the 景美 location. (I was struggling to remember where 景美 was, but it’s not terribly far from me, and [color=#008000]the location isn’t horrible[/color]; [color=#FF0000]but how could this lady not be sure whether two or three foreigners work there? Is someone there half-foreign? Does some foreigner there have an ambiguous employment status?[/color])[/li]
[li]Q: What curriculum does the school use?
A: GRAM provides its own curriculum and its own textbooks, etc., [color=#008000]based on an American curriculum[/color].[/li]
[li]Q: (None.)
A: We’re not a franchise. (In her words, “We don’t just sell the name.”) (That doesn’t matter to me. I’m there to teach, not to consult on their business model.)[/li]
[li]Q: How many students are in each class?
A: [color=#FF0000]Each class has twenty to thirty students.[/color][/li][/ul]
That last question killed any interest that I would have in working there. Keeping twenty kids in line over the summer months when they’d rather be outside, coupled with massive unpaid grading loads, etc., tells me that they are targeting newbies. I don’t care if the pay rate is NT$800+ per hour for that much burden. If I wanted to work in an English-themed puppy mill, I would have stayed in South Korea.

They wanted to sell the old line: “Come in for the demo, and we’ll determine how much to offer you,” which would be fair, but they wouldn’t tell me the pay ranges for instructors, either, which leads me to believe that telling me would have ended the call earlier. I guess I should be more careful about one-click 應徵 on that site. I’ll see if I can find the job listing from the webpage.

Are there any workers at GRAM who can fill details in that the HR staff doesn’t seem to know? They obviously make a killing. How much of that goes back to the teachers?

Also, I apologize for not stringing this conversation along to get more information. I’m sure others have questions that are important (e.g. Why are they looking for a new teacher?), and that I didn’t ask.

Well, you know what they say: Come for the demo, stay for the sticky ball.

I still don’t get the reference fully. There’s a ball, and it’s got suction cups on it, and that’s about all that I can bother to figure out.

Also, I have a terrible throwing arm, if recollection serves.

Whatever happened to Jotto, or sentential Letterma, or Scategories, or Believability, or other such games?

That’s why you’re just not GRAM material…

I always wanted to ask: is GRAM a positive or negative place to work? :smiley:

There’s a Gram near the school I work it.

Their billboard that says “Come To Gram, Be My Friend” irks me.

The HR rep asked me if I had ever heard of GRAM. I said that I vaguely knew about it, but now that you mention that slogan, now I remember where I heard it. There’s a TV commercial where some white teacher (or an actress playing one) just makes a group of seated kids chant phonics on an otherwise all-white set – no walls, no shadows, just a bland purgatory in all directions. But they end with a chant: “Come to GRAM! Be my friend!”

If they just need someone to get kids to chant phonics, why don’t they just play a CD or run a video and make the kids follow that?

I think the name, imagery and slogan suggest they are trying to tap in subliminally to the positive, aspirational images we all have of cocaine addiction.

Quite clever really.

Few things as a child pissed me off more than dealing with adults who wanted to pretend that we were friends. Talking in a soft voice or singing a goofy song for five minutes doesn’t make us pals. Pretending to be one of those people…? Just break me on the wheel and be done with it!

But as a child, I used to tell elementary school teachers that I didn’t learn anything on certain days, and therefore that they were wasting my tax dollars for that day, among other things. (I paid “taxes” out of my allowance – long story.)

As you might imagine, the principal called my house a lot.

Does anyone have any current information on this organization? They’re looking for a teacher at the branch not far from my home, but I’d like to find out if they’ve improved over the last three years or not.

I worked for them for a year a while back. From what I experienced, it seems like a franchise situation in which every school is run in the way the manager wants to run it. Where I worked, the manager did not give a hoot about what went on in the classroom. For example, if I suggested a way to deal with certain class control issues, the manager would say something like, “Just play a kind of game that you liked to play when you were a child.” Yeah right, that would be complete mayhem. Outside of correcting merely three or four essays throughout the year, I corrected no homework whatsoever. About once every month when I came into work, I was told I would be testing an entire class in one-to-one oral question and answer exams (those were always a nice break). I never heard a word about the whole Gram English company. It wasn’t bad at all, but my situation may not have been the norm at Gram.

Hi,

I have current information for Gram. Which location?

The one at 251新北市淡水區水源街1段122巷22號1樓 is the one that was advertising.