Thursday, April 30, 2015

International School Review

So ABS school changed its American Bilingual School is now American Baccalaureate School Kuwait

One thing that has not changed is the way they run the school since they still get terrible reviews on the International School Review website.

Actually I decided to revisit this blog because I know someone who just came back from teaching in the "Arab" Gulf. Many of the tactics they endured were so similar to the hellish experience I had years ago. They tried to stick it out to finish to the end of the year but they have been repeatedly getting their pay docked for no reason while they are dealing with non stop chaos from kids who are out of control. Then add in the parents who bully for their kids to get them out of their misbehavior and demanding or bribing so that they have their grades changed. As a teacher you are a professional and should not be treated like garbage by people who do not value what you put so much thought and care in to offer their children. It would seem that since westerners are not really welcomed or valued there by a vast majority, then we should learn from the facts and we should not go there. Let them "educate" themselves.

Please- If you are an expat and you are thinking of going to any of the PERSIAN Gulf countries to teach, DON'T. Research online and save yourself the emotional and potential physical distress. When you read online, read between the lines. When a school makes a blog to slander a teacher with name calling or a post sounds a bit off as in it sounds too good to be true, do know that it most likely is a scamming administrator wanting to lie about their reputation instead of putting in the effort to try to truly improve their school's reputation.

Interesting article about so many International schools changing their name:

Also a very detailed and very informative account from an expat teacher from Kuwait:

Lastly, PLEASE do yourself a favor, pay the membership to get full access to read all the reviews. Here is a freebee from their blog

Best wishes and be safe expats! Kristen Jones

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Thinking of teaching at American Bilingual School of Kuwait?- DONT DO IT


If anyone is thinking of teaching at the American Bilingual School of Kuwait, seriously, it is not worth it. I wish I never went for the inteview.

There is a lot to tell but it all culminated on the last day of finals last year when my husband was physically threatened with a LARGE knife in the parking lot of the school by two of his homeroom students. The school backed up the students by using 2 of the school's lawyers to threaten my husband with jail time for things that he never did, but it would be his word against the school. THAT IS FACT that cannot be twisted or made into some sham that we "got what we deserved" like was posted here on the comments (which are now hidden but not deleted as some people said I was censoring and deleting their posts). Comments are now hidden to protect those who spoke out and supported us.

The school got what it deserved by having me post the truth online.

I have had people threatening me here and on facebook- because I spoke the truth and or because I simply tried to teach kids who didnt want me learn. Last month (a year after I taught there) the school posted a blog written with complete lies and half truths about me and what happened. These people have no morals and the only thing they care about is money and standing up for their wealthy community like the mafia does.

We left Kuwait the evening of the last day of finals so somehow we completed the year there. We did not make a "midnight run" like the computer teacher said (an America married to a Kuwaiti who's idea of education is telling students that the 80's was all about big hair). Over on the slanderous blog the school created this "teacher" sickly thought it was funny that we had to leave as we did. I dont think its funny to have 2 teenage boys attack someone with a knife, nor do I think its funny that the school then threatens the teacher if he tries to do anything about it to protect himself.

The school's adminstrator Jacqueline Shaw aka Jackie, put a blog together with emails from me and about me that are half of the story, of course trying to show that I was a bad teacher. The only criticism of me that could be said was that I yelled at the kids, but with most of the kids being completely out of control, disrespectful, the majority of them never doing any of their assignments, and spoiled rotten in this culture of wealthy mafia behavior, its no wonder I had to yell at them to just get them to sit in their seats. But from that, it is then said that Im crazy and I should be the one to blame, instead of the inept administration, the disrespectful students, or the parents who tried to get me to change grades or outright bribe me to take away detentions. Yeah Im crazy, I was made crazy by having to endure working there. Working for the adminstration who docked pay for making print outs, or those who marked teachers absent and would not be paid when they clearly had proof they were at work that day. The school also refused to allow people to use their sick days, the days that they were granted on their contract. They would take away 3 days pay if you called in sick. So you not only had to go put up with the crazy school, the dreadful students, but you had to do so when you were not feeling well and should be home recovering.

The school fired a teacher who had shown a printout in December which had a very small drawing of a Greek goddess with a milimeter view of a bare breast. He was fired for showing pornography..but they chose not to fire him until May because they knew they couldnt get anyone to fill his job...

The school did nothing to punish students who cheated, and they cheated almost every chance they got. Why? because they didnt want to study and they knew they would not get punished .No Im the crazy one... and Im the one to blame. Its all about me..? This says it all about how this "school" works.

The school would make me have to answer for grades for students who would not do their work. They made it like I was the one to blame for so many failing. In my 7th grade class half of the students would do less than half of their classwork and homework but I was made to answer for why they were failing instead of asking the students why they refused to do any work.

now I want to set the record straight to those who choose to lie and slander us.

I do not hate Moslems, nor does my husband. I hate what people do in the name of Islam and how they give all Moslems a bad reputation. Btw I also hate what other religions tend to do for that matter, be it Christian, Jewish, or Jehovah's Witness..... That includes, lying, attacking, violence, and how most in Islam do not allow women to have proper independence.

So the things people took offense at thinking I was saying all Moslems are that way (which I DID NOT DO) those people then do exactly what they were saying I was said about all Moslems. They make up lies about me and then in a gang mentality all gather to attack- WHY? I guess they do not see that as a form of terrorism. That includes the administration, the very few teachers who stay on there as pawns, some of the parents who bribe and demand you lie for their kids, and the students who did not want to learn or behave. They have no need to learn because they will always be taken care of by their government and their parents.

-It was said that I hate Indians as that is just such nonsense just like everything they write on their slanderous blog.

-I dont hate people for their race or religion, I dislike people for how they behave, or should I say, misbehave.

-I do not hate my students, even those who gave me a hard time. I was always willing to listen to them, talked to them without insults and forgive anyone who apologized for being disrespectful. I have a few students who keep in touch with me from Kuwait and they are afraid to speak out about the truth for fear of being attacked like I was - but they are in Kuwait and I feel for their situation. I completely understand and feel bad for them to be put in the situation they are there.

-I did nothing but try to do my job and get paid for it like my contract agreed to. I was ripped off for nearly $5000 USD and the reasoning was that I did not have proper reason to leave when I did. I think having my student attacked with a knife and the school using lawyers and police to threaten my husband is plenty of reason for me to leave with my life. All I ever did was try to educate students, MANY of whom did everything possible to block me from teaching, cheating whenver they could, and disrupting those who wanted to learn. I do hate those two boys Khaled and Ahmed who tried to kill my husband. They hated him because he simply wanted them to shut their mouths during the principal's announcements every morning. But now that blog the school created cheers those boys on and makes it like it was ok what they did. What kind of school operates like that? one that should be shut down!

-I created this blog because I was angry at the administration of ABS, not only for how they treated me or my husband but most of the other teachers as well. I also did it to warn teachers about this school. What I said was all true and its backed up by the fact that I just heard that the English position at the school this year was filled 4 times already this year. I think that says it all with how this school operates. And if they had valid reasons for firing those teachers they need to think about their hiring methods. btw they have to hire about 90 percent new faculty every year of the school's short existence. Basically I honestly should not have been hired to teach those classes because I am a certified art teacher, not an english or science teacher. But I tried my best to fill in after 2 other teachers left my students that year and I did so without anyone to help me do so- academically or with discipline. I want to note that Ms. Shaw scolded me for telling the students I am not an English teacher but she forgot that SHE sent out a letter to the parents when I was hired stating that I have my degree in art..... anyone ever heard of a mad hatter party? its called ABS.

-I do not hate the Middle East. I should mention that many of the Lebanese, Egyptians, Palestinians, and Jordanians I met all said they did not like the way they were treated by Kuwaitis. I could see how they were treated and in the end I completely understand why the underprivileged feel the way they do. In my original blog I tried to make the connection to their ill behavior with why so many people in the west fear Islam and Arabs. It is a few bad apples that give the whole barrel the reputation of being rotten.

-I have every right to report the TRUTH that my husband was attacked with a knife and the school backed up the students by making up lies that my husband said things against Islam. THAT IS FACT and no matter how you try to twist the story or put words in my mouth you cannot keep me from stating the truth. Perhaps you think that making people afraid is a method that you see work with terrorism but standing up and speaking the ACTUAL truth is the only way that Moslems can change things for their religion. but see this whole thing is not about Islam, its about the mafia mentality of the gulf region and the wealthy people there that rely on it. they have a name for it, they brag about it, calling it "WASTA". I find it appalling no matter what name you give it.

-I tried my best to be nice to each of my classes and was always encouraging them to do well, right up until my last day there, but with a group of 25 boys and MOST of them screaming, throwing things like soda cans against the walls, spraying perfume in my face, and walking into class 15 minutes late every day, I would like to see what teacher would be able to stand up there and not eventually yell at them to get them to at least sit in their seats. of course the principal and the administration was not going to do anything about it because they only cared about making money.

-The only thing I did wrong was not leaving ABS back in April when I was being harrassed by the administration for things that were so insane most people would have said SCREW THIS IM OUTTA HERE! Clearly Jackie was trying to make me quit so she wouldnt have to pay me my summer pay. I did not leave because I did not want to abandon the students who honestly did like me and my classes. There were few, but only a few there care about education. I guess in the end it did not matter because those students who liked me could not help settle down the classes or defend me, and those who hated me would have moved their hatred onto the next teacher/victim.

I know people were upset that I mentioned names and I have revised the blog to remove some of the names, but nothing I said was untrue and if those people didnt like it then maybe they did not like it because they were made to face the facts of what they actually did.

To Jackie and her pawns, if you think that using my name in your slanderous blog and saying Im a bad teacher hurts me, just realize that in any interview I will tell the truth about what happened there. I have plenty of glowing recommendations, btw I should note that when I was being hired Ms. Shaw did not even want to look at my portfolio I brought in. She just hires whoever will sign their soul over to her and she doesnt care about the credentials of teachers.

Slanderous/terroristic replies on your blog about me only back up what I say when I tell people about how aweful teaching in Kuwait was, and furthermore, I recently found out that many schools had already heard the same kind of stories about schools in the gulf. Teachers need to know the truth. So if you keep on attacking me like you are, you just prove the point that everyone already sees for themselves.