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Probation Period for Work Visa
By:TokyoTESOL <[email protected]>

I'm sorry if this question was answered on another forum, but nothing came up on my searches across many websites and forums, so here it goes-

It seems that the only schools to sponsor work visas in or near (as in 1 hour away from) Tokyo are the big conversation schools (Aeon, Gaba, Shane--now called Eikoh, Interac, Geos, etc).

These are also the same schools that have tons of horror stories floating on the internet (including a labor union website) regarding the illegal labor practices, breaking of teachers' contracts, recent or impending declarations of takeover or bankruptcy, etc.

On the other hand, the small, local schools that don't sponsor new visas, and may or may not renew visas seem to offer higher salaries, better hours, etc.

It seems like the only way to get one of the good jobs is to first apply and work for a crappy slave-labor job, just for the visa.

I have some questions about that situation:

1) How long would I have to work for the visa-granting school before I can jump ship, visa in hand?

2) Does probation/trial period differ from school to school?

3) Is there a maximum amount of time that a school can legally claim to be a probationary period? (For example, is there a law preventing a school from having a trial period of 6 months out of a one-year contract?)

4) Can the visa be revoked by the school at any point after the trial period?






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