We had wondered why the TBI attack dogs had been foaming at the mouth all week, sending in dozens of comments (most of which involve key words such as “hate”, “psychotic”, “idiot”, “lickspittle”, “cesspit” and other highly emotive, over-the-top language). We knew there was a real motive. We went a few months with barely a comment from the TBI Mafia and now they are dumping five or six comments a day in the box. What was up with that? Looked like another Luke and goon squad orchestrated attack (with very high comedic value considering how little impact the insults of the TBI Mafia now have).
But yesterday someone pointed out the real reason behind the “character assassination” techniques. TBI is desperate for teachers with the right degree again. The misers at Head Office have opened the coffers (“wow, that 2 million rupiah for job advertising is 2 million less for me to embezzle” one imagines Pak Reza bemoaning) and started begging for teachers with, you know, actual qualifications- unlike Luke Preece and his crony, Scott Martin- the last 2 standing expat managers. Here is the job ad, which coincided with the big “cyber-bullying” push against this blog.
But there’s a history to this, isn’t there? Let’s just observe that Luke Preece first intructed TBI group school managers to start employing teachers on VKUs in June 2011. He told everyone then that the VKU teachers were “in the spirit of the law” and argued that they would actually be business consultants because they would do “teacher training” several hours a week. But then when Cameron started rostering teacher training (taking Preece at his word- a bad mistake we now know), Luke emailed Cameron and said it was better they just do regular teaching, as that made money! In other words, it gradually became clear that the whole thing was a con and the VKU teachers were 100% illegal. (A fact which Immigration has confirmed after their 2012 raid on TBI Kelapa Gading). Research has also shown that VKU teachers were actually deported from TBI Bogor in 2007, making the whole thing a dangerous scam from the start.
Anyway, the VKU teachers were supposed to be phased out by June 2012. That was Luke’s own deadline. But the former manager of TBI Malang (the one Luke accused of being a criminal with no proof) has provided information that at the end of 2012 six out of eight teachers at TBI Kuningan were still VKU teachers! 75% failure rate to get rid of the VKU teachers there. This fact is also supported by the comments of user “Tudor” on Dave’s ESL Cafe, who said that most TBI Kuningan teachers were working on “gentlemen’s agreements” and knew the risks if Immigration came knocking!
The fact that TBI has not even been able to get enough qualified teachers at its flagship school makes an absolute mockery of its claims to be “premium”. What “premium” company has a 2 year long recruitment crisis at its best school? As we have long argued, these people are not only corrupt and under-handed- they are also completely incompetent. Wall Street can staff its schools. EF has had no similar high-profile crisis. Why can’t TBI even staff its flagship school if it is so good?
The ad on Tefl.com mentions no possibilities for advancement. There is so farcical waffle about “adaptable personality to cultural difference in South East Asia”. What does this mean? Neither Luke nor Scott can speak the language having been in the country for years. Luke Preece is hated and feared by many Indonesians- several of whom have expressed their revulsion of him to the authors of this blog. This is also the phrase Mariam used to praise Luke on its Linked-In. In the world of these jokers “being accessories to the kind of corruption that has landed hundreds of powerful Jakartans in court” is what passes as “multicultural understanding”. I’m a Westerner and I’m multiculturally sensitive because I help Indonesians keep up their time-honored tradition of corruption! Give me a break!
But the main point is that they have an ongoing recruitment crisis and they are trying to cover it up with empty assurances that the new teachers are required for “expansion”. This is the same empty waffle we’ve heard for years. Remember the promises about TBI Bali opening in 2012? Remember the job ads for staff at TBI Bali in early 2013? Then it vanished like so many of their projects. There is no expansion. They need these teachers not to expand but just to tread water at their struggling core schools. Their reputation stinks so badly now that no qualified teacher wants a bar of them. And they try and get us to shut up through intimidation so they can limp on into 2014 with at least a couple of legal teachers.
The truth is, their name is mud. And they only have themselves to blame after the shocking cover-up at TBI Bekasi.