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Thursday , November 21 2019

Contract renewal issue for a teacher

I am in shock and feeling very upset at my company’s treatment. I have a similar question to one you answered recently and would appreciate any advice or answers you can provide. I am a teacher working at a private English school in Kuwait.

My contract stipulates that I must notify my employer by Dec 31 whether I will renew or not for the next academic year, and then sign a new contract.

In January I had discussions with managers about how I would be utilised next year and then after some thought notified them in January that I would not be extending and never sign a new contract.

I have been informed today that I have to pay back 12 months salary or loose my salary for June to August and receive no indemnity. I am completely shocked at this response. What is my legal position? Are they entitled to respond this way? What steps can I take?

Name withheld Answer:
According to you, your contract stipulates that you must notify the employer by Dec 31 whether you will renew or not your contract for the next academic year. This, you did not do, but rather waited upto January to inform your managers that you would not be renewing your contract.

We believe it is this indiscretion on your part which has embolden your employers to demand their pound of flesh from you. We are not in a position to say if the demands made on you are within the confines of the law or not.

We can however say without contradiction that any demands made on you by your employers should not be arbitrary or capricious but should be backed by law stipulated ambiguously in the condition of service governing all teachers in the private sector or expressly inserted in your contract which you appended your signature to.

If you are convinced that you are being given a raw deal by your employers you can launch a complaint with the complaints units of the Private Education Department of the Ministry of Education with the option of proceeding to Ministry of Social Affairs and Labour if you don’t get a fair hearing at the former.

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