Part 13. Luke Preece and Nicola

You mentioned in a previous interview that Luke Preece moved three teachers from Bandung to Jakarta with him: Matthew France, Nicola and Minnie.

    Matthew France and Minerva are known Luke stooges. Was Nicola also a trouble-maker?

For the brief time I worked with her, she certainly was. After I left Menara Kuningan, she worked for Wati and, from all accounts, she got even worse.

We asked ‘The Truth Regulator’, an anonymous commentator who claims to be ‘a friend of Matthew France’, what he thought of Nicola and he replied, “I do know that she was incredibly unpopular with the students because her lessons were so boring.” To your knowledge was she unpopular with students?

     She was very unpopular. I know that Wati had a lot of trouble with her. I only managed her for a short period but I was already receiving complaints that she was mean and nasty to students. There was one children’s class which were scared of her and an official complaint was made. These kids said she was mean and horrible to them.

How old were these children?

   It was Kids’ Level 5 if I remember correctly. They were probably around eight or nine years old.

What action did you take about these complaints?

  I spoke to her and raised the issues.

How did she respond?

   She said to me, “You know what…I don’t care. You know what I mean. I ….just don’t care.” She was just horribly rude and dismissive.

I think it’s sad she would move to Indonesia and show such complete disrespect for Indonesian students. How do you think her attitude would be received in a Western workplace?

She’d probably be asked to leave. The amazing thing was that she was doing her DELTA. Can you imagine how fast she would be thrown off DELTA if she acted that way?

Was she any more cooperative with Wati?

      I was at Sudirman and had no interest in Nicola. But every time I heard her name mentioned, the news was bad. When she was working on the SIAP project she refused to write progress reports. She was generally very unhelpful and obstructionist.

Would she have known that SIAP was an important project for TBI?

Yes, it would have been explained very clearly to her before she started.

Do you think that Luke Preece may have been scared to discipline or correct her behavior? Was he known for his weakness in dealing with teachers who were causing problems?

Luke staged the whole thing. He wanted Wati gone and his plants- Minnie, Uli and Nicola- undermined Wati at every turn. The whole idea of a teacher refusing to write progress reports is a joke. Of course Luke could have brought her into line if he wanted to. After all, he had approached her and brought her to Jakarta, along with him and Matthew France. He also managed to get involved when she asked for an end of contract bonus for a contract which she broke. He didn’t bring Nicola into line because Luke didn’t want Nicola to behave professionally. He wanted Wati gone.

What else do you know about that bonus?

I know almost nothing about it. The first I heard of it was when other teachers starting asking for it, even though they’d broken their contracts. They said it was unfair because Nicola had received it.

Who would have authorized that payment?

    Wati and Luke Preece.

Did anyone have anything positive to say about her services to the profession of teaching?

   I heard that only David Bradbury liked her. I have no idea why.

Do you think that she was being a problem on purpose?

  I do know that her conduct behaved totally after I agreed she could move from Bandung to Jakarta on a permanent basis. Before that she had been pleasant and cooperative and after that she was difficult and the student complaints starting coming in.

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