The reason I say easy big bucks in the title up there is because as the article “Cram School Caters to Kids Gunning for Harvard” because seriously… they are smart enough to accept only kids who are going to get in anyway, right? So they teach them some writing schools, maybe one of the teachers is a Harvard or other Ivy League graduate. If they are very smart, then the graduate is also registered as an alumni interviewer for the school so that he can do that as well. The graduate will also, of course, write a recommendation for the kids.
Now for the scammy part of it, as I see it. Kids that probably had a good chance of being accepted anyway are going to pay 1,500,000 yen to 3,000,000 yen (about $15,000 to $30,000) for this service they may not need. On top of that, the teacher probably spends a lot of time with those kids, but he also teaches kids in other courses in the school. What I mean is that Bennesse probably didn’t create a school just for these kids, it’s probably one course option in a cram school already in operation. That means the same teacher also teachers other kids. If the cram school is really student and service oriented they might help kids in their cram school apply to Ivy League schools without charging an arm and a leg.
The sessions are 150 minutes each for a total of 240 hours a year in class. $15,000 for 240 hours a year works out to $62.50 an hour which wouldn’t really be bad for one on one sessions with a really great teacher.
Now a personal twist. I have a friend who has a two Masters degrees, one from an Ivy League school, and also has teaching licenses in both Japan and the United States. So he should charge $100 an hour?Technoratiのタグ Cram School, Harvard, teaching English in Japan