New teacher contracts
In our Minutes of the Board meeting of October 14, 2021, we brought to your attention the need for the school to make modifications to the local contracts of teaching staff employed on this basis, as there have been disputes regarding working hours, overtime payments, and time slots (more details in the official minutes of the Board of Directors).
Since then, in accordance with a request from the LFI Tokyo administrators (which includes two parents) the management team has worked with the Human Resources Commission (HRC) and a law firm specialized in labor law to rewrite the teachers’ contracts. The objective is two-fold:
– to comply with Japanese law
– to ensure the continued functioning of the lycée.
This project has been in progress for many months, and the validation of the new contracts was presented to the administrators during the Board of Directors meeting on June 3 (link to the Board of Directors’ report in French). The Board of Directors voted unanimously, with one abstention, to validate them.
The Director of the AEFE, Mr. Brochet, who is also the President of the Board of Directors of LFI Tokyo, made a number of points regarding this subject. He insisted on the urgency in advancing this matter in order to protect the lycée and to bring it in line with Japanese law. He stressed that there was no ulterior motive and the sole goal was to maintain the functioning of the lycée in its present manner. He also thanked the representatives of the CRH, who have been totally legitimate in undertaking this work and who ensured that the interests of the staff were taken into consideration and fully respected.
Nevertheless, there have been several cases regarding this matter that run counter to preserving the lycée’s interests and practices tied to the establishment’s educational goals. There are a number of legal proceedings underway that challenge the lycée. The CFO told the Board that since June 2021, more than 15 million yen has been spent on related expenses such as legal and translation fees. In addition, a new court case that has just started will cost at least 4 or 5 million yen.
The cost to the families is significant, and if nothing is done it could increase further. As parents, we stressed during the Board of Directors’ meeting that these sums are equivalent to the tuition fees of more than 15 students. This means that a large amount of funds and time is being invested in matters that have no educational benefit. We have asked the AEFE for financial aid, but this is not possible. In addition, these sums will further increase the already-large financial deficit for the lycée, to the detriment of the families and the students. The impact is not only financial but also pedagogical as the organization of primary school activities has also been disrupted.
We understand the concerns of the staff and support communication between the parties, however it is an urgent matter that the school is protected by complying with Japanese law. As the representatives of parents on the Board of Directors, we support the process of clarifying the contracts, but are concerned about the large sums already involved in legal proceedings and have a strong desire for a solution to be found by the start of the next school year.
We are following the proceedings closely, so please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions.