62 Yen Phu Doi, Ba Đình, Hanoi
“Language Link Vietnam is part of an international teaching group with its headquarters in London and more than 120 centres worldwide. Language Link Vietnam (LLV) was established in 1996 to train students in General English, Business English, the International English Language Testing Syste...”
I worked at a branch of the company and left there with a huge disappointment. The staff is so unorganised and the administration is rude; they don't respond all your emails, speak unkind and untruthful. Despite what I had been told, there was so much unpaid extra work to do as well. Once I decided to quit and professionally let them now in advance, they didn't even ask why and they made excuses to not reimburse the promised fees including the welcome gesture which is paid all the new teachers in the first salary. You are not cared at all by the management. So f.ck 'em!
I worked for Shelton a few years ago and have to say they are one of the better companies to deal with in Vietnam. Part of working in Vietnam is that its going to be a bit chaotic, but they do warn you and do everything to help you. They are also really involved on the corporate social responsibility side which is unheard of in Vietnamese companies.
I looked at some of the previous views and realized they were written by people who had virtually no experience teaching in Vietnam or just plain crabby.
I have worked for this company on occasion for a number of years and I find them to be perhaps the most honest and realistic of English language providers in Vietnam (I've been mostly a consultant to English Centers throughout the country for years). They don't make promises they can't keep, they tell you up front what sort of a program you'll be getting yourself into, they pay on time, and they are passionate about providing English to some of the more challenging situations I've ever seen, yet they do it with dignity and decency. - They now have a number of international area managers whose job it is to assure foreign teachers are treated well.
The problem some 'bitter' teachers seem to have is that they didn't realize that working in public schools is not about playing games and acting like a foreign clown, entertaining the students. It's about being dedicated and willing to work to improve the lives of some students who'd not otherwise have a chance to experience a foreign teacher. Shelton is not your typical hack English center. It is a conducting a larger, long term project to improve teaching standards and student test scores in Vietnam. Some teachers don't realize this and find it easy to throw stones at the sometimes disorganized, chaotic nature of what goes on there.
What I would say to anyone who is serious about changing the lives of students through helping deliver an Education Ministry approved curriculum (rather than commercial books, not relevant to Vietnamese students' experience) as part of an internationally monitored experiment, take a chance.
Though the conditions are not perfect, the experience is great. They have been opening several centers in a number of provinces to supplement public school teaching. This gives its teachers a nice mix of schools, in-center lessons, and private lessons, not solely relying on public schools any longer.
My Advice: Ignore complaints in reviews by people who worked for the company a few years ago, and only for less than 1 day. It's over all a decent company to work for.
I feel I need to bump this rating. While I have not worked with them, I have met with, and got an offer from, Sean and Minh. I have also spoken to others who have worked for the Shelton Development Group.
First the bad; the pay is hourly and not that great. It is the primary reason that I turned them down. Personally, I will not teach High School without a set salary. There are simply too many days off that are unannounced. While Shelton has a policy for dealing with this, it isn't good enough.
The other big problem is with class size and location. This is what the other two posters seemed to be complaining the most about, and to a certain extent they have a point.
The class size is large even for high school jobs, and the locations can be spread out around Hanoi or in Hai Phong. For me, the class sizes were too big when compared with another offer, and it was likely that I would be teaching at different locations and probably some evenings.
Finally I tried to get them a new contract with a school that was disappointed with there current education company (Ha Phuong IED) but they were unable to close the deal.
What is good, is that there are standards here. They have a well designed curriculum with specific goals that need to be accomplished. They have made improvements at all the schools at which they have tried their method and they are growing every year.
As a jobs mod I have also noticed something in their postings that is different than other centers; they give a reason WHY they are recruiting. They will fully admit if a teacher left on his/her own accord or if he/she had to be replaced. This kind of transparency is rare even in the western world.
I would recommend this company to someone who is familiar with the Vietnamese style of classroom but is tired of dealing with Vietnamese management. To they company, I would suggest that they offer a salary option for teachers and try and get a contract with the school I sent them as Ha Phuong is unable to recruit on New Hanoian.
If you like Shelton Development Group...