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Teach English Abroad - Trinity CertTESOL/Cambridge CELT-P
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Teach English Abroad - Trinity CertTESOL/Cambridge CELT-P

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Published Content

    9

  • Job Search Guidance

    10

  • Quality of the Course

    9

  • Practical Experience

    10

  • Pre-Enrollment Advice

    10

  • Course Instructor

    10

A great start to your TEFL career

I completed the fall course in 2016 and really had a great time. I had thought for a while entering the world of teaching having previous worked as a lock-keeper, in hospitality and as an engineer. I am so glad I took the plunge.

The best thing this course for me was the guaranteed teaching practice. This gave me the opportunity to believe, that by the end of the course, I can teach English. I would now have no problem preparing to walk into a classroom full of teenagers or younger kids and teaching them English after 300+ hours practice with C. 200 different children with different needs and levels. On completion of the course I received both the ABCi TEFL Cert which stated my teaching practice hours (great for prospective employers) , and my CERTTESOL from Trinity College London (recognised worldwide). The accommodation provided is very basic ( and free) however with such long hours (6:30-16:30) this was OK for me as I was away most weekend and just liked to relax in the evenings( There is a video tour of the accommodation on YouTube). Wifi was provided which I found to be quite good ( it did go down for 2 days but once the college was informed it was fixed straight away) and also the monthly food shop of essentials was also very good. Again this was just basics but for 15 people I found it to be quite reasonable. Weekends were all also free ( Germany, Cech Republic, Hungary, Italy and more were visited) and we had a nice Halloween break which gave a great chance to re-charge the batteries.

There is no doubt that this course is difficult and does require hard work however if you are looking for an introduction to TEFL... I would definitely recommend it.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Published Content

    10

  • Job Search Guidance

    10

  • Quality of the Course

    10

  • Practical Experience

    10

  • Pre-Enrollment Advice

    10

  • Course Instructor

    10

Challenging and Rewarding

My experience at ABCi was challenging but overall it was worth it because I got to see what it felt like to be a teacher and now I have a valued certification. If you are considering a career in education this course is a good way to see how you feel leading a class. You can gain student teaching practice and receive observations/feedback without committing to a graduate program.

That being said, volunteering at ABCi is very much like working a full-time job. I often felt exhausted at the end of a day of driving, teaching and attending an input session. If you are an organized and hardworking person, then this course is manageable. If you are anything other than that, then this course will not be easy. There is a high volume of written assignments outside of teaching and preparing lesson plans. Our teaching portfolios were 2 inches thick of double sided paper once we finished the course. As a longtime procrastinator I recognized early on that I needed to become better at managing my time. Having done so, I was able to enjoy weekend train trips into the surrounding areas and neighboring countries.

Now that I've completed the course I feel very employable in the ESL job market. I learned how to make lesson plans and gained roughly 350 hours of classroom teaching experience. Many people in the program had lined up jobs all over the world before the course was finished. My confidence as a teacher grew exponentially. I worked and lived with a fun and multicultural group of people.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Published Content

    10

  • Job Search Guidance

    10

  • Quality of the Course

    10

  • Practical Experience

    10

  • Pre-Enrollment Advice

    9

  • Course Instructor

    10

The Call to Adventure

When I applied to the winter 2017 CertTESOL course, the word ‘adventure’ was appropriate for my overall feelings of what lay ahead. Looking back, my experiences reflect Joseph Campbell’s concepts of the ‘Hero’s Journey’ and the ‘Call to Adventure’. In essence this refers to when a person, living their normal life, suddenly receive an invitation or information which acts as a call to head into the unknown. To offer some perspective, I graduated in July 2016 with a BA (Hons) degree in History from Queen’s University Belfast. Like many graduates, I was stuck in this awkward limbo, unsure where the next chapter of my life would unfold. Looking back on it now, the day I stumbled upon the English Teacher Training College and their CertTESOL course on the Guardian jobs website was a blessing. This was my ‘Call to Adventure’.

Prior to beginning the course I had limited teaching experience. As a result of this, it is fair to say that when I first entered an Austrian classroom, I was a bag of nerves. Unlike other TEFL organisations, one of the key benefits of the CertTESOL course offered by the College is the sheer degree of classroom experience you gain during the four month course. By April 2017 I had taught in fifteen different Austrian schools, and acquired 316 hours of teaching experience. To put it simply, you will be a teacher by the end of this course, and you will have the credentials to back this up. Whilst progressing through the course, the feeling of fear when entering a new classroom on a Monday morning had gradually subsided to a feeling of excitement and anticipation, as my confidence in the classroom increased. One of my favourite aspects of teaching was building rapport with my students. If I’ve learned anything from Austrian students, they love three things; bottle flips, selfies, and pink fluffy unicorns. If you have done the course, you know what I mean.

The course is challenging. It is intense. However, from my perspective, the intensity of both teaching in the classroom alongside working towards the CertTESOL qualification only helped to develop my character as both a person and a teacher. When you are waking up at 5am in the morning, travelling to schools, teaching, returning to campus for input sessions, and then working on lessons plans and assignments, you have to grow certain character virtues. Perseverance, discipline, creativity, courage, and leadership are just a few of the personal characteristics I enhanced thanks to my time in Austria.

One of the main reasons I enjoyed my time in Austria, and successfully completed the course is thanks to the people I met along the journey. Whether it was my fellow student-teachers, course tutors, or specific people working within the English Teacher Training College itself, they all had a positive impact on my time in Austria, helping me along the way. Although it sounds cheesy, the people you will meet during your time in Austria will become like a big extended family. Moreover, although a lot of work is involved, I was also fortunate enough to travel to various cities and places throughout Austria and even Germany in my free time. I visited Hallstatt, Salzburg, Gmunden, Passau, and Vienna, to name a few.

On your time in the course you will be split between two campuses; either Vorchdorf in Upper Austria or Pressbaum in the outskirts of Vienna. If you are on the course I would encourage you to complete your assignments as soon as you can, or at least take an hour out of your day each day to work on completing assignments, rather than rushing at the last minute. I would recommend bringing between 800-1000 euro for living expenses, like food and travel. Honestly you could survive on a lot less, it just depends on how much you would be willing to spend. For a weekly shop, I got by on 25-30 euros. Also if you are travelling in Austria I highly recommend you get an OBB card. It costs 19 euro, however it reduces train prices by 45%. It is a valuable investment. Knowing German isn't a pre-requisite of the course, but I would encourage you to learn or pick up bits and pieces during your time in Austria, even if it just simple greetings. Near the Pressbaum campus, there is a local Cafe called Cafe Corso. I highly recommend going there. The prices are decent and they do really good hot chocolate and cake. In terms of shops, in Vorchdorf you have an ample supply; including Hofer (Aldi), Lidl, Spar, dm (Like Boots in the UK), and Libro. In Pressbaum, your closest shop is Hofer, and there is also Lidl and a dm, which are a 15 minute walk away from Hofer. The weather throughout January and February, for the most part, was very, very cold. In January it could get low as -10 degrees. However by March- April, the weather improved drastically. It got as high as 25 degrees.

Overall, I would say just have fun with your time in Austria. Yes, it is challenging and intense, but embrace the struggle, embrace being thrown out of your comfort zone. It is a truly unique experience. When you finish the course, you'll come out of it a stronger person. My time in Austria is something I'll never regret. The people I met, the places I saw, and the memories I made will be something I'll always cherish. It may sound cliched, but a piece of my heart will always remain in Austria. To those thinking applying; take a leap of faith and trust yourself. Show courage. Accept the 'Call to Adventure'. You won't regret it.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Host School or Placement

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Compensation & Benefits

    10

  • Support Services

    10

  • Day to Day Life

    10

  • Community

    10

A real gem of an experience

Apologies for the informality of this review but sometimes I think it is best to just hear it how it is.
This review isn't the average, it is aimed towards the 18-20 year olds that don't have a degree and are trying to find themselves.
I was in Austria around this time last year and everything changed from there. I still always talk it!
Not only that but it gave me a direction..at only the age of 18. Sometimes it takes someone like Mr Stone to tell you to your face that 'you are a natural teacher' to make you think maybe I could do a bit more of this TEFL stuff.

SO WHAT WAS IT LIKE AT ABCI?
It is no walk in the park, especially if you are on the younger side. It is very demanding, long hours and there is a lot of learning involved on the course. You may get into the habbit of comparing yourself to the others, maybe they have a degree in linguistics, German or are just hyper intelligent. My advice to you is just concentrate on yourself, Rome wasn't built in a day and nor is a good teacher.
Something you will learn is you are constantly learning and so are those others in your group, what you will likely find is they will help you one on one if you ask them so don't be afraid.
For example I could never get the parts of speech down I actually failed the test, I was actually the only one. Everyone helped me every night to prepare for the retake and sure enough I passed. Even Ben Stone who could be regarded as the busiest man in the world, Skype called me to go over some of the things that could be on the test for over 40 minutes! Support like this really shows the caring dedication of ABCI and why people 18-20 can also be right for ABCI life.

IS IT FOR EVERYONE
ABCI is hard work you have some very early mornings, long car rides with your flatmates falling asleep on you and you have to feel the pressure of having your lessons assessed. The first week is non stop! Just remember I know you have never been to uni before so you are not used to staying up late and getting a deadline in early the next day. Do the smart thing a work hard first and play hard second, I get its all new and it will be your first time away from home with no rules but be sensible! If you take this into account you will be able to get up the next morning no trouble making life so much easier.
You will also get quite homesick but everyone is friendly and they are there for you, dont forget the senior teachers are people too. If that doesn't work you could always just bring your home to the classroom. For example, I always told classes no matter the age that the classroom was Manchester it helps you get the 'only English' point across and actually helps fight home sickness. I did it all the time at ABCI. I even think it started to annoy some of my group but it definitely helped!

SO WHY ABCI?
You will not find a more character building course any where in the world. Gmundens mountains, Sanct Poltons whisky bar and Graz' Christmas lights are breathtaking
It is a very good deal because you are very highly subsidised and even though they can't pay for you flight there and back, it is because it just isn't practical only once you have done a CertTESOL and got your certificate from ABCi do you have the experience for companies that would be willing to fly you out somewhere to even look at you. Also the people at ABCi will grow you as a person and a teacher. They gradually get you to grow a thick skin and show you how to give constructive criticism. For example, in my very first assessed lesson I actually said to the students 'come in, come in everyone for a..erm....plenary..' much to Ben Stones amusement.
Although, by far the best thing ABCi is they contiue to check on us even after leaving, asking if there is anything they can do to help. This I think sets ABCi apart from the rest!
I would and have recommended ABCI to people of all ages but I think those of you like myself at 18 who think they know everything, but are not ready for University definitely should try your hand at TEFL teaching you might like it.
If you have any other questions ABCi I would be glad to answer them.

How can this program be improved?
Just keep going as you are.
Keep responding to reviews and take in to consideration the feed back.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Published Content

    8

  • Job Search Guidance

    9

  • Quality of the Course

    9

  • Practical Experience

    10

  • Pre-Enrollment Advice

    9

  • Course Instructor

    10

Appreciate the course for what it is and it is worth its weight in gold

I came to ABCI and Austria off the back of finishing an English Literature degree. I was unsure of what I wanted to do and found the chance of moving to a new country for a short while and learning a new skill to be a fascinating prospect. Teaching, was not something that had interested me before or something that I thought I would ever consider. Throughout the course (January 2016) myself and other trainees were put under immense stress both through teaching and completing various assignments that were required for your certification. It was intense to the extreme, at times it seemed no matter how much time you put in to your assignments and lesson planning that it would not be enough. However, through the help of your fellow trainees and staff members you will find that the college has an atmosphere much like a well meaning, although at times; dysfunctional family. Each individual whether trainee or member of staff were always on hand to help with any problem whether small or large. While this doesn't always mean that things run as smoothly as planned (there will be highs and lows to your experience, as in any new place) it is an experience that I would thoroughly recommend providing you are prepared for one of the busiest workloads I have ever experienced.

Austria as a country is beautiful, while not every weekend will be free for you to roam around, you will find yourself with a little time at least to explore, meet new people and enjoy what Austria has to offer. Through ABCI and my experience in Austria I decided that teaching was in fact a career path that I wanted to explore, and now only a short while after completing the course I find myself to go into my first paid teaching job in Poland, this can only be down to the support and encouragement I found at ABCI.

Although you may read discouraging reviews for ABCI (English training college of Austria) I would advise you to take them with a pinch of salt. Of course there are areas of improvement for the college but at the same time there are also many fantastic aspects to the college and your own experience that you will not find anywhere else.

Overall Rating

9/ 10

  • Host School or Placement

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Compensation & Benefits

    10

  • Support Services

    9

  • Day to Day Life

    10

  • Community

    9

Hard graft but a highly valuable and practical experience

I completed the college's CELT-P course in Autumn 2016 and have returned for the Winter 2017 CertTESOL course. Whilst the workload was somewhat excessive on the CELT-P course, there were also many advantages to studying and gaining teaching practice with ABCi and the English Teacher Training College.

One of the best things the courses is that they provide you with plenty of practical teaching experience in a wide variety of schools throughout the country. The teaching practice combines the delivery of a set programme with the implementation of your own lesson ideas. This aspect of the course was excellent as you become familiar with many tried and tested activities and language games which can be easily adapted and used in different situations.

Teaching the programme also allows you to really focus on your delivery in the classroom and improve on things like behaviour management techniques. Although I had done a PGCE and had worked as a language teacher for several years before beginning the course, it was a real eye-opener for me as I had chance to observe my peers and course tutors on a regular basis. This exposed me to different teaching styles and techniques and the support and feedback from course tutors was very helpful indeed. They gave me some great ideas how to improve my own teaching methods and encouraged me to be more creative and adventurous in my lesson planning.

As far as I know, these advantages are unique to the college as most other CertTESOL or CELT-P courses will not provide as much teaching practice or as many opportunities to observe and be observed by experienced teachers. At the end of the day, I decided to return to the college because I really enjoyed teaching their programme, I felt that there was a lot of support from the course tutors and I knew that there was so much more to be learned from them by completing a second course. It is also a great deal financially as you gain an internationally recognised teaching qualification free of charge whilst living in some really beautiful places in Austria.

Overall Rating

8/ 10

  • Host School or Placement

    8

  • Living Situation

    8

  • Compensation & Benefits

    9

  • Support Services

    8

  • Day to Day Life

    9

  • Community

    8

A true test of willpower and perseverance

I have actually completed 2 course with ABCi, the first back in 2014; with not teaching experience and the second; with 4 months of teaching in Austria. The first course that I did was very light on the amount of preparation needed to teach in schools. The program is already designed with a guide that you take into class with you, each school you teach at is the same program(this is great for improving your confidence and fluency of instruction giving). After teaching for 6 lessons at school, we would drive back and have a debrief session the day and any issues that came up. Then we would have small inputs for an hour or so every Thursday to cover some grammar and technical language. This was the first course: Fun, Easy and a great learning experience.

My second time was in 2016 and it was very different. In the years that I had been absent many of the staff members had left and the company had grown a lot, both in a good way and a bad. Let´s talk the good first: The first course I was in a group of 4(myself and 3 girls), this meant that although I did get along with them, we were never super chummy. However, for this course living in a house with 15-20 other awesome people, all eager to learn, teach and to party. This was much better. Although living with so many people was a little bit of a chance from my normal habitations, it was nothing that I hadn´t experienced before. After spending over 2 years travelling to over 60 countries, I have spent a fair amount of time in communal housing and even many a night sleeping on a beach or out in the forest. For me, 20 new friends was a great way to improve my teaching abilities. As well and the close bonds that I made, the inputs that we had(although still rather dry) were much more informative and forced me to research and take personal initiative to improve to keep up with the workload. This did take a toll on my heath and sucked a lot of time out of my fitness schedule(the drinking didn´t help either), however in the end it left me with 100% confidence of walking into a classroom of students and teaching a lesson without any fears. I had the opportunity to live in 3 different regions of Austria, a country with unquestionable beauty. To this day, as I drive around, I am still awestruck every time I drive past through Salzkammergut or through the Alps.

Let´s get to the bad then: I´ll make this simple and just use dot points
-THIS IS NOT A FULL TIME HOLIDAY! Yes, you do have time off in the evening and weekends, however it is mostly taken up by preparation and planning. However, almost every weekend we were throwing house parties with the locals, watching the World Cup and playing football in the park.
-The growth of the organisation has meant that a lot of new staff come and go quite quickly. However, this is not all due to ABCi and the work. Austria is also a very expensive country to settle.
-The lack of appreciation that you get for teaching. This is a big one. After teaching for 6 hours and then having inputs in the afternoon. All you need is a couple of beers and a pat on the back. Then it´s all worth it. Come on ABCi, fork out a couple more bevs and the teachers will stick around a bit longer.
-Cleanliness at the accommodations. This was pretty bad at some times, however I think half of the fault were the British that really can´t look after themselves. Mum isn´t going to clean up after you, mate.

Overall, I enjoyed my time on the 2 course. Both very different. I would recommend this anyone wanting to gain experience and test what it would be like to teach. If you like it, stick around, if not, just leave. Easy.

Now to the present:
I am currently working for ABCi and have been for a year now. The difference in being a Student Teacher and being an employee are immense. For one, Austria is much more comfortable to live in when you are earning money. Hello good beer :) I spend my day driving around the country reaching out to schools to book projects, part of this meant learning more German(which I have greatly improved), this also means seeing some amazing sight and of course meeting lots of Austrian teachers that are incredibly friendly and teaching Austrian students that are so eager and amazed to interact with an Australian.

How can this program be improved?
-Less teaching per week for teachers.
-Better planning for projects, prior to the week or day.
-Prizes and awards for Student Teacher that go above and beyond to deliver top notch lessons.

Overall Rating

2/ 10

  • Host School or Placement

    2

  • Living Situation

    2

  • Compensation & Benefits

    1

  • Support Services

    1

  • Day to Day Life

    2

  • Community

    8

ABCi - An absolute joke

I'll try to touch on just the main points because I could go on for pages on the concerning/disturbing things that this program does.
In my intake (Jan 2016) our entire group was lied to and told we would be receiving accredited certifications upon completion of the course. It came to light in the first week that this was false. At the end of the program they claimed the testing facility made a mistake and no one was able to take the exam. ABCi promised to pay for trainees to take the exam in their home countries however more than half of my fellow teachers have yet to receive this. ABCi is famous for never returning emails, something you will learn quickly upon signing up.
Within the first 2 weeks a quarter of the trainees jumped ship. The continuous lies you're told and the fact that your day starts at 5am and usually goes until 5pm is a good reason behind this. They claim they are a volunteer based non profit when in reality it's simply slave labor that you're agreeing to.
Accommodation: How awesome that this is provided! Yea... right. In Gmunden my group had the 'nicer' of the two flats. Our shower broke the second week and wasn't fixed until the following. When we asked how we were expected to shower we were told to walk down to the other flat to do so.. in the middle of 3ft of snow.. in January.. with wet hair. GREAT idea! In the flat in Vienna there were disturbing cracks along all the walls and ceilings. After googling, we discovered part of the building had actually crumbled away a few years prior. Our first week we had no working radiators (so no heat or hot water). We were told to use lots of blankets and 'shower at the gym across the street for a charge' if we wanted to shower. This was while they took their sweet time having various instructors come and poke and the units to see if they could save money by having staff fix them.
While going 90+mph on the Autobahn our acting 'senior teacher' whom was one of the very upper level staff, fell asleep at the wheel. We nearly collided with the barricades but the front passenger woke in time to yell and wake him up. This same man often got drunk with and shared drugs with trainees. Very charming, ABCi. (Photos available to anyone interested!)
Most of the staff are 20 somethings from the UK who are looking for an escape for a bit. Most recognize how ridiculous the program is as far as functionality. ABCi has looped a few 'alumni' to work for them, most of which whom had never taught prior to this program.
The male trainees are held to a much different standard than the women. We were told we absolutely could not wear jeans. The male trainees did constantly. Some male roommates often would not shower, wore no antiperspirant, did not brush their teeth, and hardly ever washed their clothes. ABCi felt this was completely acceptable and took no corrective action despite being told numerous times by the house managers.
One of the most absurd things ABCi spews is just 'how many thousands of people are applying for this very RARE opportunity'.... Uh huh. They would also threaten that if you leave that would be fine because there were plenty of people on a waiting list. Only one of these supposed 'waiting list' people ever showed up and he took off within 2 days. Has this changed since I was there? NOPE! A woman from the current intake group has said she was one of 14 that has already left the original 60. On top of this they threaten that if you are to take any time off for being sick that it will be noted on your certifications. This resulted in me working an entire day with a high fever and horrible cough.
While I was there they brought on an intern to handle social media and things (if you've done any research on reviews you'll have noticed that they are now being responded to by ABCi staff and explained away). I eagerly look forward to whatever response will come to my own review. Especially since the upper administration said wanted to make sure we all wrote HONEST reviews. Yes of course, nothing less.
I will note that the curriculum for this program is great. Ben Stone was amazing the few times I met him. His heart in genuinely behind the program which is the only positive thing I can say for this 'college'.
I left with one month remaining to spend my last 4 weeks exploring Europe instead of remaining slave to a faulty program. While the organization has expanded they are not properly run. Please do EXTENSIVE research before signing on. And please do take the negative reviews seriously, I wish I had. I came away with some incredible friends and learned that next time I'll sign on with a REPUTABLE program.

  • The English Teacher Training College responded to this review July 19, 2017 at 10:36 AM

    Dear Kate,
    Thank you for leaving feedback, 18 months after joining the program. I am glad we are still in your thoughts.
    I was not with ABCi in January 2016 but by all accounts things are different around here nowadays. I would like to take your concerns point by point, and attempt to give some clarity or updates for you and anyone else reading.
    I am sorry that there was a mistake made with the testing of your intake at the end. I can understand that it is more than frustrating to go through a course expecting an accreditation exam at the end and then there being problems with that. You say “half” of your fellow trainees have “yet to receive this”. However, since you chose of your own free will to leave the program well before the end, I can only assume this actually didn’t affect you. Of course I am sure you appreciate we cannot pass out world-renowned TEFL qualifications moderated by Trinity College London or Cambridge University to people who leave after less than ¾ of the course.
    From the records I can see on our system, 6 people besides you out of a total of 31 dropped out of the course you were a part of, with two of these trainees not arriving until the third week, meaning that your assertion that “within the first 2 weeks a quarter of the trainees jumped ship” would seem not to be the case, as 4/29 is around 14%. Obviously, we don’t wish anyone to come and not complete the course but this is not a high number of non-completers.
    Maybe it was not made clear to you that your days would start early (many schools in Austria begin at 07:30 – there is nothing we can do this) and would end around 5pm, in which case I apologize. It is now made very clear to anyone interested in our program that these lengths of days will be possible and they should prepare themselves to work hard.
    Again, I can only retroactively apologize for the condition of your accommodation when you were on the course. We have since moved to a different town (Vorchdorf) with better accommodation and are currently (this is hot off the press) negotiating to rent an even nicer, better built, more spacious building for our Student Teachers in Vorchdorf. We have a new campus in Wolfsberg which to be honest still needs some TLC but is nowhere near “crumbling away” and is again spacious and has a great outdoor space for BBQing and chilling out.
    If you had a staff member act as inappropriately as you claim, then I hope you followed the proper procedures and had the authorities involved. Getting drunk with student teachers is absolutely not policy, sharing (or even using) illegal drugs is obviously a matter for the police and any staff member proved to be doing this would be dismissed immediately, and reported to the police. We work with 100,000s of children every year and we will not tolerate this kind of person in our organisation: we simply can’t afford to even if we wanted to “turn a blind eye”.
    Since your time here, we have professionalised quite a bit Kate. Blue jeans, ripped jeans etc are not acceptable for either gender to wear in school. Our dress code, which we do strive to enforce, is business casual or smart casual which means a polo shirt/blouse/shirt and “proper” trousers/skirt e.g. chinos, dark trousers, knee length skirt. Male and female student teachers should not be treated any differently in any regard and if any student teacher feels this is the case, they are encouraged to put his in writing and bring it to our Welfare or HR specialists.
    The laws in Austria are very clear as regards “sick leave”, and actually very in favour of the employee/worker (as most things are here). We appreciate that our Student Teachers are not employees, but they are holding positions of responsibility both to their Austrian pupils in class and to their peers on the program. If one is sick, one informs the College as early as one can and visits the local doctor to receive a signed piece of paper saying they are sick and cannot work. Depending on the severity of the sickness, this might be one day, one week or whatever. Once this is handed in to the College, that is the end of the story. If anyone is “threatened” with their legitimately documented sick leave being noted as a negative on their certificate then that is unacceptable, obviously.
    We have definitely expanded, we have opened a new campus and will welcome our biggest ever cohort of student teachers in August. We have expanded because the Austrian schools love working with us (we are now an official partner of the Austrian Education Ministry); and we attract more and more student teachers who wish to work hard and make some sacrifices to help others while looking to the future benefits for themselves. With expansion comes growing pains and we have absolutely not got the magic formula – far from it. We hold our hands up to mistakes made previously and we do encourage, even mandate immediate, honest feedback from all of our Student Teachers now. I do apologize that your experience here was not what you hoped for and you feel let down. Like you, I encourage potential applicants to read as much information and as many reviews as they can before they commit to applying here. It’s not for everyone, but those who it is for will come out the other end great teachers, with a wealth of new skills in and out of the classroom and friends for life.