I have been moderately worried about the future of the company that Kris and I have been working for more than half a year now. There have been a number of small signs that it has not been doing well, from the first few weeks that we have been in Korea right up until this week. However, clearly our boss has noticed that the school is not doing as well as it could, and has brought in a new co-director to help the school expand and gain students and reputation in the competitive market of Dongtan.
There have been many small suggestions that our school is under-performing. Children have been slowly drifting away from the school, particularly in the elementary section. This week, we were asked to open bank accounts to help convince the bank to give the school a loan. Even the fact that the printer is regularly out of paper makes us a little edgy about the security of our jobs and the school’s existence as a whole.
Despite these small indications of instability, two things have happened this week to ease my mind: our boss purchased the entire floor of the building that the school is on, and she hired a co-director to help improve the academic side of the school.
Purchasing the entire floor ensures that the building does not simply get sold off, with the school left stranded and evicted. Now everyone can rest easily in the fact that we are secure in our location. The new co-director also seems to be a positive influence. He wants to meet with each teacher individually to find out about both the students and our teaching styles. This will help him understand the state of the academic playing field before attempting any reparations.
All in all, it looks like the school will be around for the rest of our contract, and we won’t have to worry about having to find a job at the last minute to remain in Korea. We are probably not going to stay in Dongtan for another year, but the school will likely continue to serve the children of the city. Maybe they’ll even become a top-quality education provider, and less of a business. This will set it aside from many hagwons, and I will be happy to see it compete with the big players in the future.