Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Speak Up! forced to Pay Up!

Once again, Sandy's Tefl spies have brought to greater attention the dodgy doings of another shyster school. In this case, I am very proud to be able to shine the 'Spotlight of Shame' on Speak Up! London, who have been found guilty of flouting employment laws and promoting outright sexism in the workplace. The main character responsible is an upstanding gentleman of Asian extraction, pictured alongside, who goes by the glorious name of Mr Fartan!

Without doubt, this thieving toad represents another fine example of the cockroaches and scumbags who infest the UK Tefl scene. Last month he attempted to fire an employee for no reason and without notice or payment. No doubt this is the way employees, especially female ones, are treated in his country of origin. However, Mr Fartan (a.k.a. Farhan Quraishi) seemed to overlook that he lives in a civilised country now, whose laws need to be respected.

After a spirited campaign via social media, Mr Fartan was forced to change his cheating ways. You can find out all about the matter here:

Anyway, I did some further digging into Mr Fartan and his academic cesspit, and I found some pretty vile stuff. He is a man who is not shy of making grand claims on his LinkedIn page, but in reality he appears to be much more of a wimp.

For example, he claims to be a "Multi talented individual whose skills set ranges" . Indeed , they probably range from promoting discrimination against his female teachers to failing to issue teachers with contracts. Or perhaps that is what he means by his boast that he is "Definitely not a one trick pony."? After all, he seems to have lots of tricks up his sleeve, especially when it comes to dodging his legal obligations as an employer.

He has also been pulled up about the full name of his school, which is Speak Up! London School of English on their website and advertising. Certain people at the London School of English, which is probably the UK's very best EFL school, have asked him to either alter his school's name or issue a disclaimer, stating clearly that his cheapskate outfit in tourist town is nothing at all to do with the high-quality outfit in Holland Park. However, for some strange reason that only Mr Fartan can provide, he has consistently refused to do so!

Another strange matter is the fact that on June 4 this year - just a few weeks back - Mr Fartan and his co-director, Kamila Cwiklinska (both of 49 Clarence Gardens, Camden) registered a new company at Companies House. This new school is called Speak Up London Language School Ltd - a name that is very similar to their current company, which was incorporated in August 2012, called Speak Up London Ltd.

Now, language schools come and go, and my experience of those that go after a name change is that they often claim insolvency and dodge the taxman. And for some reason, the current Speak Up! outfit has apparently paid no taxes and filed no accounts EVER!

Oh, and sometimes these shyster schools avoid paying their employees too. Is this another of those tricks that Mr Fartan likes to crow about?

Do YOU work at Speak Up!? Got a story to tell? 
Just send it to and you'll receive a free packet of 10 Park Drive in return!


Anonymous said...

It would not surprise me if this bunch of pakis were fiddling their taxes and sending the profits to their jihadi mates in Iraq and Syria.

Three rooms above a kebab shop in Caledonian Road said...

Hey, you might like to ask Mr Quraishi abouit his other 'failed' businesses, including an outfit called Meridian Training.

But I doubt you'd get an answer.

The TEFL Tradesman said...

While I doubt that Mr Fartan is involved in gun-running to the Middle East (without at least a little bit of proof!), I'd also be grateful if the unwarranted racial epithets were dropped.

What's needed here is evidence, more evidence, of malpractice, please!

Angry Language Brigade said...

We took part in the successful campaign to win backpay for Marta and while we might appreciate the extra research you've done, we'd appreciate if you did it without all the racist sh*t in there.

Let’s be clear: Farhan is a scumbag, but him being Asian is irrelevant. British bosses ignore employment law all the time (we know because we've had disputes with them about it). The practices we helped challenge at Speak Up happen at language schools all around London everyday. The only difference is that Marta fought back.

As for sexism, that's endemic in Britain: two women a week are killed by their partner or ex-partner, 1 in 3 girls experience unwanted touching at school and 30,000 women are sacked every year for getting pregnant. Women are still, on average, paid between 10% and 34% less than men for the same job. So don't come with that 'civilised country' nonsense.

Your attempt to pin all this on the national background of Farhan is not only racist, it's an offense to all women living in Britain who are affected by sexism on a daily basis.

We’re glad you’ve now challenged the person who left the racist epithet in the comments under your blog. That person clearly doesn’t give a toss about TEFL workers and is just some scumbag looking for an excuse to mouth off on the internet. However, you should probably consider what in your writing made that person think it was acceptable to post such disgusting, racist language in the first place.

The bottom line is this: we have Muslim and non-Muslim workmates and will always stand with any of them against dodgy TEFL bosses. Because when it comes to fighting back, ethnicity and religion don’t come into it.

- The Angry Language Brigade

The TEFL Tradesman said...

Well, it's good to see that the spirit of Dave Spart is still alive! As for the assertion that ethnicity and religion are of little consequence, I direct you to the list of 58 recently suspended colleges, which you can find here:

Now, Dave (erm, sorry - Jerome), how many of these places are run by dodgy darkies? Care to research that one for me?

The TEFL Tradesman said...

Sandy is happy to report further Spartist hysteria about this blog here:

Infamy! Infamy! They've all got it in for me!!

William Fuckstickson said...

Personally,I can't see the racist slant of your blog entry,Sandy. Unless it's the spacker-brained Trotskyist idea that all minorities are oppressed and as such,they can do no wrong.Incidentally,its a derogatory idea because the inferral that these people commit crimes as they don't know any better arises.

William Frederickson said...

ERMMM...I meant that some numpty thinks its racist to report crimes by ethnic minorities for that reason. Sorry,got a slight hangover this morning! Thanks for hammering the commenter who trotted out the old 'Islamic terror conspiracy' chestnut! If he wants to root such things out,I could show him where to look.

Son of Sandy said...

William, what the fugg are you doing out of bed before midday?

Or is it your signing-on day?

Anonymous said...

I dunno, Mr Fuckstickson. There's no mention of the fact that Mr Lindsay is white in the hatchet job on him, but we do learn that Mr Fartan is of Asian extraction. They're both shits, but we only learn the ethnicity of one.

William Frederickson said...

Never signed on in my life,mate! Unlike your bum-chum Paul Lowe. Might you be he? Puffing himself up like a rotting piece of road-kill and looking down his nose at people.More pertinently,Asian-run colleges often seem to be up to all sorts of shenanigans regarding student visas and the like. As for racism/religious bigotry,I was on the receiving end of it from that child-fondler Paul Lowe and his gutless cohorts,so I know full well what prejudice is.

Anonymous said...

Hey Sandy, where's my ciggies?! I sent U my story 2 weeks ago, but since then, nowt!?

The TEFL Tradesman said...

Yes mate, I did get it, but your story of Devil Worship in the DoS's office had the ring of fantasy about it. Especially as Speak Up! has no proper DoS.

Mind you, the bit about Fartan carrying out acts of FGM sounds plausible. PLease send evidence!

Ken said...

So really for EFLers what do you think the solution is? I have worked for state funded colleges and adult education centres run by councils with real progression for the students and I'm finding work to be OK paid but incredibly scarce.

Is overseas the answer? I'm having trouble getting responses from Asia, lots of qualifications but zero responses. I'm told apparently it is because my parents are Mexican and we all have quite dark skin.

The TEFL Tradesman said...

Ken, the only solution is to get out of EFL, period. If you enjoy your teaching, do a PGCE and become a proper teacher and get paid properly.

I wrote a brief piece about this very subject on this blog some time ago. I'll try and find it for you (and everybody else) - when I can be bothered!

Oh, and BTW, it's true that I myself have managed to escape from the drudgery of contracted EFL/EAP slog. So what am I doing now? Still teaching, but ... not telling!

Ken said...


I have my PGCE and I very nearly have QTS EFL is something I do to supplement my income for quiet times such as the summer break right now. I'm somewhat picky and won't even humour the £10/min wage places. My current work place pays £19 which is actually more than my state funded college (Oldham) pays (£17.50).

Unfortunately my PGCE is in post compulsory English and here too the jobs are somewhat scarce but well paid if you can get them. The massive year on year budget cuts aren't helping either.

For some strange reason the government think that the students will take out loans to pay the tuition fees. You might wonder why I'm quoting hourly pay for state colleges, but there seems to be a trend to move staff to hourlies in colleges as well with only the subject leaders having longer positions.

My current plan is get the QTS, finish off my MA (not in TESOL!!) and attempt to get into either a reputable international school (oxymoron?) or the English department of a university pre-seasonal university work isn't too bad!

The TEFL Tradesman said...

Oh well Ken, good luck in your misguided quest to make a decent living out of EFL/ESL.

If you do ever manage to see the light and quit the game, please let us know what you're up to!

Anonymous said...

Q. How many Pakis does it take to change a lightbulb?

A1. None - they just insist that the council move them to another house where the lightbulbs still work.

A2. As many as you want. Just don't tell 'em the power's still on!

Anonymous said...

I was working with this bastard,and i know many people who was working with him.

Do you want know another thing about him?

Some months ago he was teaching in his school...nothing strange right?

NO,IT'S STRANGE because...

He doesn't have the qualification for teaching in a school accredited by British Council, so if the British Council will know about that i think the Speak Up will lost his licence!

Please send this prick back to Pak!

p.s. sorry for my english,i'm from Argentina, but i hope you will understand what i wrote!

The TEFL Tradesman said...

Oh dear, oh dear - how could it be? I see I'll have to give my BC colleagues a call and alert them to this.

Meanwhile, perhaps Mr Fartan himself would like to issue a comment in response?

Or perhaps I should give him a call!?

Jihadi John said...

I just noticed this on Dave's ESL Cafe...

I see from this month's edition of the EL Gazette that the awful 'school' in London known as Speak Up! has been subjected to an occupation by the Angry Language Brigade and International Workers of the World.

The matter concerns the 'school' owner's insistence on foisting 3rd world conditions on his staff, as "the group presented a letter detailing ... grievances including unpaid holiday pay and teaching hours classified by the school as 'training'. ... 90 minutes later management emailed offering a resolution."

The 'school' has become notorious in recent months for its exploitation of workers and its refusal to follow legal guidelines on the treatment of employees. Hopefully this further matter is the final nail in the coffin.


So it seems that Mr Fartan, the demon Paki businessman, can't learn from his mistakes! Same old shit, same old shit!