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GEMS Dubai

GEMS Dubai

Postby Neptune » Sun Jan 02, 2011 3:46 am

Hi there,
Any information on GEMS in general or GEMS Dubai? I read the reviews and thye didn't seem very favorbale. Any kowledge of their package etc.?
Thanks,
Neptune
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Postby justlooking » Sun Jan 02, 2011 4:58 am

I work for a GEMS school in Dubai. If you have some specific questions, I'd be happy to answer. On the package: pay is good in Dubai, housing varies, medical is adequate, and the retirement is junk.
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School climate

Postby Neptune » Sun Jan 02, 2011 5:02 am

Hi there,
Thanks so much for your response. I was wondering about the school climate. How is admin? How si the end of contract gratuity?
Thanks so much for your help.
Neptune:)
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Postby justlooking » Mon Jan 03, 2011 5:48 am

There are many GEMS schools in Dubai. Which one are you interested in? I would imagine the school climate is different in each one. As for the contracted end of service gratuity, the company calculates this on half your base salary, so it's not as much as we thought, but I think this is pretty standard practice in Dubai.

If you send me your email, we can "talk" off list.
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GEMS school

Postby chuck » Tue Jan 04, 2011 1:02 am

Hi Neptune,

I just finished working at DAA in Dubai. I think the other poster was dead on. The schools GEMS operates tend to be rather different. However they were right in regards to pay and housing. The pay was decent, but not in line with better schools internationally or with some others in Dubai. Tutoring is prevalent and lucrative to supplement your income. And cost of living can be expensive if you go out a lot. Housing is in new condos, but they are often problem filled quickly. One bldg. had horrible mould problems and they took 2 yrs to move everyone out. DAA itself is a great beautiful facility, fully equipped and the admin leaves you alone to teach (except elementary). It is a very corporate profit driven school are you are constantly reminded of this. Staff retention has been poor so they just offered up large raises to returning teachers. If you complain too much admin will make your life difficult, not very accommodating with personal problems like pregnancies etc. Generally the expat staff is great, a lot of going out together. Staff has gotten very young though as experienced teachers had enough of the corporate nature and lack of adequate pay indexed to inflation.
chuck
 
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Postby Neptune » Wed Jan 05, 2011 2:06 am

Thanks so much for the help and reply. It is super helpful!
Sincerely,
Neptune
Neptune
 
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Postby misskiwi » Fri Jan 07, 2011 9:56 am

Some of the GEMS schools are excellent (Wellington & Jumeirah College both spring to mind) but you do need to be aware that you will probably be getting paid about 4,000 dhs/month less than if you were working a non-profit school (such as Dubai College or JESS). That adds up to quite a bit (8,500 pounds or $13,000) per year! I know this from personal experience & from the experience of friends.

Of course, money isn't everything...but still!!!
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Location: Dubai

main cocerns...

Postby Neptune » Sat Jan 08, 2011 4:03 pm

Hi Guys,
My concerns are the climate of the school. I read reviews and they weren't good. Workload, I don't want to slave away like I'm doing now. I don't mind the commercialism at all. I don't want to be the oldest person on staff though in my mid 40's. We're mid career professionals and want to save a bit. What is a decent salary range?
Many thanks,
Neptune
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Postby misskiwi » Sat Jan 08, 2011 4:36 pm

Hmm. Well, I have friends working at a couple of different GEMS schools (World Academy, Wellington) and they are finding them both okay, though I think they'd both jump to a BSME school (like DC, JESS) if they had the chance due to the better pay & accomodation.

As far as I know, the bottom of the scale (ie newly qualified) is 9,500aed/month and the GEMS teachers I knew getting paid the most (ie in their late 40s, been teaching for 20+ years) were getting paid 14-15k/month. You definitely wouldn't be the oldest - lots and lots of teachers out here are in their 40s & have families etc. You'll be expected to work hard, everyone out here does, but you get to have great holidays/weekends away too....

If you did take a job with GEMS, your accommodation would probably be in Discovery Gardens or Motor City (neither of them are great), but rents have fallen lots lately so you could probably get a nicer place with the housing allowance. If you want an idea of what's around, take a look at www.dubizzle.com for people renting apartments/selling second hand cars & furniture.

Utilities per month will cost you about 500aed (including the housing tax which has recently been made compulsory for every expat resident, ouch!) Petrol isn't as cheap as it once was, but still reasonable.

If you were both working, you could definitely save a fair bit - particularly if your lifestyles are modest and you don't go crazy at the bars here (drinks are 40dhs a pop!!!)
misskiwi
 
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Location: Dubai

Postby Neptune » Sat Jan 08, 2011 5:10 pm

Hi there are they getting paid 14-15000k a month in AED or US dollars?
Thanks,
Neptune
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Postby misskiwi » Sat Jan 08, 2011 5:14 pm

AED (unfortunately!!!)
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GEMS school

Postby chuck » Fri Jan 14, 2011 9:16 pm

Hi Neptune,

I know DAA has numerous teachers in their 50's and at least one in 60's. It is not a demanding school in terms of workload. My principal was always out the door 20mins after the kids. The school was empty 40 mins after the kids unless you were tutoring in your class. If you take the housing allowance, my friends tell me great deals exist now. I would say it is an easy, mediocre kind of school. Easy to enjoy Dubai after work.
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GEMS school

Postby chuck » Fri Jan 14, 2011 9:18 pm

oh yeah, they tend to give teachers only 5 yrs credit on the grid when entering. even if you have taught 20 yrs. kind of sucks.....
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climate

Postby Neptune » Tue Jan 18, 2011 4:00 am

Hi Guys,
Super grateful to you all! I am looking at the reviews on the site and am wondering about red flags. But maybe things have changed since the reviews, You all have good things to say about it for the most part. Our pay I think will be fine, it looked ok to us. We're looking for a low key place with great staff, great kids, where we can teach. Current post admin was very difficult and staff doesn't get along at all. I don't want to repeat that if possible. Thoughts?
Neptune
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Postby misskiwi » Tue Jan 18, 2011 2:33 pm

Which school in particular are you looking at, Neptune??
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