Kaplan International Colleges

  www.kaplaninternational.com
  www.kaplaninternational.com

Kaplan International Colleges Reviews

Updated December 9, 2014
Updated December 9, 2014
28 Reviews
2.5
28 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
(no image)
CEO
0 Ratings

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    A company which is struggling to define it's product.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Instructor in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Instructor in New York, NY

    I have been working at Kaplan International Colleges part-time

    Pros

    Kaplan has invested a lot of money in smartboards, which has really made teaching easier and more fun.
    Kaplan has, thanks to the unions in New York, become a slightly less scary place to work (i.e. people are not as afraid of losing their jobs as now Kaplan needs a reason to fire them).
    Kaplan is pretty flexible if you need time off. Paid minimum wage for planning time--encourages teachers to spend time planning instead of recycling materials

    Cons

    No sick leave (except for the government mandated leave). No paid days off. Little opportunity to advance as a teacher. New York city has the lowest wages of almost schools in their company--despite being an incredibly expensive place to live--this is unacceptable. Very few full time teachers--worse yet, the full time teachers are expected to teach two three-hour classes a day.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    There needs to be either bonuses or much higher wages if they want to keep people. Furthermore, the quality of educational product must diminish if you are teaching more than four or so hours a day, every day. Consider lowering the number of working hours for full time teachers and asking them to provide assistance to the part time teachers or to create materials for different levels.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
  2.  

    Learned a lot and met great people at Kaplan.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Sales Manager in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Sales Manager in New York, NY

    I worked at Kaplan International Colleges full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Enjoyed working with fantastic people who cared about their roles and making a difference.

    Cons

    A complex management structure created challenges.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
  3.  

    Hard hard stressful work always having to be "on" and loads of prep time required for low low pay.

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Kaplan International Colleges

    Pros

    Can't think of anything right now.

    Cons

    It's not education. It's edu-tainment.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Let us use our sick time without there being a backlash.

  4. Is this helpful? The community relies on everyone sharing – Add Anonymous Review


  5.  

    Could be a great place only if the company respected its teachers.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - ESL Teacher in New York, NY
    Former Employee - ESL Teacher in New York, NY

    I worked at Kaplan International Colleges part-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great way to interact with people from around the world (students) and intelligent people in the area (teachers)

    Cons

    Starting pay has been decreasing year after year for the past 20 years while living expenses have sky rocketed. No holidays. No sick days. No paid vacation days. No health care. Management keeps teachers as part-time so they have limited responsibility to provide such things.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Treat teachers with respect. Stop decreasing wage offerings year after year. Vacation days? Sick days?

    Doesn't Recommend
  6.  

    Substitute ESL Teacher

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Substitute Language Instructor I in Westwood, CA
    Former Employee - Substitute Language Instructor I in Westwood, CA

    I worked at Kaplan International Colleges as a contractor (less than an year)

    Pros

    This job was the most flexible and developmental position I ever had to date. It taught be a lot about teaching ESL as I was doing it, since the Kaplan curriculum is a structure. Being a substitute had its advantage as I could accept as many hours as I wanted, and was popular among the permanent teachers as I covered their classes to give them time off.

    Cons

    Had some observations for training, but other than that, training took place online and was about office procedures. Substitute work also meant last minute scheduling, so for someone who isn't flexible (or lives 20 minutes away like I did) finding hours can be difficult. Also, despite the awesome pay rate, the salary is unstable, until you are assigned your own class. Also be wary of their copy machine! It, more so than our Academic Manager, decided the fate of the teacher's classes as 20+ teachers relied on the one machine that broke down, constantly.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Designate more computers to teachers (a teacher's computer lab or office materials room)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
  7.  

    If I could give negative stars, I would.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - ESL Teacher in Boston, MA
    Former Employee - ESL Teacher in Boston, MA

    I worked at Kaplan International Colleges part-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    It is a great opportunity to meet people from all over the world. Most of the other teachers were very supportive.

    Cons

    There is very high turnover because teachers are overworked and underpaid.

    The teachers are evaluated on the student survey numbers, not the progress the students make in learning English. This makes managing a classroom and maintaining authority very difficult because the administrators constantly undermine the teachers, especially if they think it will keep the student from transferring to another school. Add that to the classes that are way too big and you've got a miserable experience for the teachers.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Take the emphasis off the survey results and put it on the student progress. When speaking to former students I've heard that students have had a wonderful time but have ultimately learned nothing.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
  8.  

    So much potential, such poor leadership

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Kaplan International Colleges full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    The colleagues - working with the teachers and staff is a blessing! Everyone is so positive, smart, motivated. The only reason most of us still work here is each other! For teachers, decent work/life balance if they can afford to live on a part-time income or don't mind having a second job. For the most part, students are so motivated and interested in learning, and its great getting to know them.

    Cons

    The company puts such little value on Academic Integrity, yet that's their company motto! Internally, academics is below ALL other departments. Staff are constantly asked to cut corners and ignore policies, including goverment regulations, to please customers. It's near impossible to create a learning environment when the student is more often referred to as a customer and is always right. So much turnover for teachers and staff, it's so difficult to stay productive when people are always training and learning. Policies change so often, no one can keep up, and it is almost always causes negative reactions with the customers at the expense of the relationship with the school staff and teachers.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Listen to the people at the schools - they know what they are talking about. Appreciate employee retention and be willing to pay for that kind of quality service. You can't treat every branch equally, it's not McDonalds! The customer is also a student, which means they don't know what's best for their learning, so put more emphasis on academics and less on sales. If you give a quality product, customers will keep coming, don't give up on quality for the quick sale.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    Good Company

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Accommodations
    Current Employee - Accommodations

    I have been working at Kaplan International Colleges full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    The team which you will be a part of. The great talent that surrounds you and the students who are so interesting.

    Cons

    In certain positions, work like balance is extremely difficult. Small office support equals overworked individuals with high burnout rates.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Recognize that your resources and capital are the workforce, the customer is not always right, and a company is only as strong as the people who are holding it up.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
  10. 1 person found this helpful  

    The teachers are highly qualified, yet poorly-paid.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - ESL Teacher in New York, NY
    Current Employee - ESL Teacher in New York, NY

    I have been working at Kaplan International Colleges part-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Time off - is no problem for them because they have subs. For example, if you wanted to take 2 days or 3 weeks off, it would be possible.

    The teachers are some of the nicest, funniest, most creative people I have ever known. I have learned so much from them.

    The students are wonderful, and so excited to be in NY learning English. They are intelligent and creative as well.

    Cons

    - When you don't work, you don't get paid.
     - School is closed for 1 week in winter - so teachers are forced to take a one-week unpaid "holiday". ( When other companies are giving Xmas bonuses, Kaplan is taking your paycheck.
     - The company is unbelievably penny-pinching to the point of docking your pay minute by minute. Ex. You are 3 minutes late - they will expect that you deduct the 3 minutes from your hourly pay.
     - 90% of the teachers at the NYC schools are part-time. They just keep hiring part-time teachers at a low wage, rather than give current teachers a full-time posiiton, so they don''t have to pay for benefits.
     - I had 15 years of TESOL experience when I was hired in 2011, and I had to fight to get $21 an hour. Five years before that, a friend of mine was hired at $25 an hour - with less experience too. Now, in 2014, the starting wage is $18 an hour - things are moving backwards for the workers.
     - Teachers were paid minimum wage ($7.25 an hour) for prep time.
     - Teachers had no vacation, no sick pay, and no paid holidays.
    ( We only have sick days now because of the new NY law - and minimum wage is now $8.00....that does not put us into the next tax bracket though...)
     - Kaplan has been involved in numerous class action lawsuits, including wage-theft, of which I am part of the settlement.
     - Your value is based 100% on what students say about you on their student surveys. You are not evaluated by your peers, or even periodically by your superivsor, so it is the customer that is always right. You must cater to what the customer wants - this means that you must sometimes throw your pedagogical expertise out the window.
     - The New York City schools unionized in summer of 2012, and are just about to have a vote regarding the improvement of working conditions.
     -

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    If management had only treated its teachers fairly, and given them a living wage for NYC, they wouldn't have unionized. We need a union to protect our rights from the very company that we work for. Every step of the way has been met with blatant disrespect and a hardcore campaign of misinformation and bullying to prevent unionization.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
  11. 1 person found this helpful  

    At the end of the day, probably as good as any job.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Kaplan International Colleges part-time

    Pros

    Your starting hourly wage depends on the amount of teaching experience you have as well as any post-baccalaureate certification. You have an opportunity to add your own flair into the curriculum they have designed for you. The students on the whole are nice enough, and the co-workers are generally supportive.

    Cons

    It's a for-profit ESL institution. They have academic standards that they bend often for business purposes. It's also on rolling admission so you don't have breaks between terms. The requirements for promotion are, in my opinion, not really feasible for most teachers. It does not feel like an environment that encourages long-term employment. It's worth noting that these cons are more of an indictment on the overall corporate structure than our specific branch.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Create an infrastructure that promotes longevity among your employees, and you will have loyal employees who don't consider this a transition job.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

Work at Kaplan International Colleges? Share Your Experiences

Kaplan International Colleges

 
Click to Rate
or

Your response will be removed from the review – this cannot be undone.