Shane vs. Wordsworth English schools

Hi does anyone have any information/reviews/personal experiences with Shane or Wordsworth in Taipei, Taiwan? I’ve definitely seen some posts about Shane but most of them are a couple years old and as for Wordsworth I can literally not find anything aside from their website.

Thank you!

FWIW, my friend taught at a Shane in Kaohsiung a few years ago and said it was pretty good as far as buxibans go. Of course, being a fairly large chain its quality will probably vary depending on the branch and manager.

1 Like

Shane are a combination of chain school and franchises. So some locations might be excellent. Other locations might be horror stories. If you’re hired by head office you might be working between locations. If you’re hired by a local branch you’ll usually do all your hours there.

I doubt you’ll find any recent reviews from 2020 to now. Also a lot of reviews get picked up a lot quicker by the schools these days and they threaten legal action. Which is why the blacklist forum hasn’t been updated in a long time. Businesses in Taiwan will even sue if you leave a bad google review.

Over the last ten years there has been a massive exodus of foreigners from Taiwan. This would normally translate into higher wages and better working conditions for those that are here and those wanting to come however it hasn’t. If anything wages have been going down and bosses demands on your time (unpaid) have gone up.

Try to get into the JET program. You’ll have more fun, housing is subsidized, there’s a complaints process (rarely used because those businesses and schools involved don’t want to lose access to the program), and generally friendlier people.


Ohh thanks on the insight, i was wondering where all the reviews for these places were. As for the JET program, is there a more specific name? Just so i can google it and look more into it. Thank you

Japanese English teaching program. If you’re prepared to work outside of Tokyo you should easily get a spot. The kids are great. Most of the parents are excellent. You can travel the island quite easily. I’ve been referring people to Japan for the last 4 or 5 years now. The writing is on the wall for Taiwan. Many buxibans have closed over this last two years. There are fewer kids. And the places that are left are established or own the ground they operate from so have far lower overhead operating costs.

Is Shane still around? I used to see it everywhere, but since coming back I haven’t seen a single branch.

I used to work at Shane about 10 years ago. I don’t know how different it is now, but I liked it and can recommend it for a few reasons, none of which may necessarily apply now considering how long ago I was there:

  • Great management who always took my side and were willing to piss off parents to maintain standards and keep teachers happy (at least, from my own personal experience)
  • Plenty of training seminars and observations with constructive feedback
  • British English focus (I dropped my CV off at several schools before landing at Shane and some of them outright said they only want American accents)
  • Management and other teachers were willing to take time out of their busy schedules to help me lesson plan, watch classes, etc.

That said, I remember that Shane paid less than most other cram schools, which they justified by saying it was because they provided the sort of assistance I mentioned above. As a newbie teacher, I found all of that invaluable and was happy to receive a slightly lower pay than I might get elsewhere for that level of support. If you’re not a newbie, then maybe most of the above doesn’t apply to you.

The only real problem I had with them is that they had a dodgy system where you had to be available to substitute on one day off a month. Of course, you get compensated for this, but my time off is very important to me, more so than some extra pay. They also forced me to teach a summer school, which I really didn’t want to do, but it was in my contract and they warned me it would happen, so…


Wow, you and I had polar opposite experiences at Shane, also 10 years ago. Honestly though, it’s good to hear. Because there’s no way that school should’ve ever gotten so big if every location was like mine. It was a franchise and the owner didn’t speak much English but he insisted he was great at English, which made conversation very difficult. Drove by it last week for the first time in 10 years–in the area and my kid wanted to see where I used to teach–it’s an Austin English school now.

I had a blast on the JET programme. That was back in 1997.

Shit. I’m old.


Wow! Thank you for the detailed response!

1 Like

Thanks Dude, this is helpful to me because I am job hunting that way right now. If for anything it gives me Hope…lol Cheers!

1 Like

If anyone is still interested in this thread, Wordsworth had been pretty good. They don’t give a lot of hours (about 18 hours a week) and theres unpaid time (getting to work early). Overall, not bad though, as compared to other horror stories I’ve read online. Btw I am not working at Wordsworth, I am writing this on the behalf of someone else.

I saw your post about working at Shane! Can you please shed some light on guarantee hours and the hierarchy of the organization?

I saw your post about working at Shane! Can you please shed some light on the hierarchy of the organization?

What do you want to know? I was there a long time ago and I think it’s very different now.

To whom should we complain if the manager and the school owner is embarrassing the teacher ?

It sounds like you’re out of options for complaints in that case.

1 Like

Shane Lipscombe

I never worked at Shane lol. I had an acquaintance who worked there years ago and I already said whatever little I knew about it in whatever old post you’re replying to.

Doesn’t Taiwan have a labor board? If they’re treating you in an unethical manner, contact them. If you just don’t get along with them, then quit and find a new job. It’s not like buxiban jobs are hard to come by.

1 Like

You can leave a one star review without a comment. That says it all.