Summary of the LFI Tokyo Board Meeting held on 2022-02-16
Link to the full report in French (8 pages).
Attended: director of the AEFE, administration, embassy, 1 staff representative, 2 parents’ representatives, 3/4 French advisors abroad.
Recruitment 2022. Following legislative changes, it is no longer possible to recruit resident staff by deferred recruitment: vacant resident positions can now only be filled by employing staff residing in the country or staff considered to be accompanying a spouse. This is a problem for the functioning of the AEFE, but for the school year beginning in September 2022 it should not affect the LFIT negatively, as its pool of personnel is large.
Update on the building work: The work on the second site, the annex, is progressing at a steady pace, in accordance with the planned schedule, and the annex will open for the start of the new school year in September, in spite of the hazards and imponderables that have generated additional work and costs. Following our request, an update on the costs will be presented at the next Board of Directors meeting and the final report will be presented in October 2022. We remain vigilant and are in regular contact with the administration on this subject.
Adjustment of work contracts: the local contracts of the teaching staff are being rewritten, as well as the internal regulations related to the contracts. The school is assisted by a law firm specializing in labor law. The contracts and modifications will be presented to the Board of Directors at the end of the year. This work is one of the consequences of a dispute with two staff members of the school who refuse to sign the current amendments to the contract, and continue to claim overtime from the school, which the school refuses.
Catering: the functioning of the service is still not considered satisfactory despite the support put in place by the school for several years (audit, training, multiple reorganizations). Recently, to overcome the difficulties encountered by the team, an interim chef was hired until the end of the school year. Please send us your comments on the school catering service, its possible deterioration/improvement recently, your objective and/or subjective appreciation of the service provided: email@example.com. The subject will be discussed again at the next Board meeting.
Staffing reduction: for 2022-2023, 2 teaching positions, one in kindergarten, another for the CM1 level, as well as an ASEM position, are likely to be eliminated, in view of the current number of pupils and the forecasts for the next school year.
2022-2023 budget: The projected deficit for the year 2021-2022 is about 90 million yen, the projected deficit for 2022-2023 is 175 million yen. This is the result of two trends:
- An increase in expenditures due to the opening of the annex (the expenditures are there but not the students for the moment) as well as a growing structure in the secondary (middle school in particular) ;
- A stagnation in enrollment due to the closure of the borders and the impossibility for many families to arrive in Japan. The Strategic Orientation Commission (SOC) conducted in 2018 had projected an enrollment of 1,550 students; at the start of the 2022 school year, we had only 1,427.
Proposed 2% tuition increase: We abstained (2 abstentions, 8 votes for). While the economic factors behind these increases are understandable, their recurrence is less so. Indeed, families have had to bear numerous increases in school fees: +30% over 20 years, +15% over 10 years and an increase of 100,000 yen in the first-time registration fee (FFR) in 2019. In addition, the Finance Director (DAF) indicated that tuition fees will continue to increase steadily to keep up with the annual payroll increase, approximately 1% per year. Indeed, according to the salary grids in effect at LFIT, salaries automatically increase each year. As a way of mitigating this trend, we have proposed that hiring teachers with the least possible amount of seniority be given priority for equivalent skills.