An excerpt from The Olsztynska Daily:
„… we met on a post-graduate training course run by the Teachers’ Training College in Olsztyn at the beginning of the 1990s…”.
It was a course for the teachers of English providing them with the required qualifications for teaching a foreign language. For Allan it was a pure formality- English was his mother tongue and he had been teaching it for over 10 years already. For Janusz, a lecturer at this course, teaching Allan about the British culture was a fairly interesting experience…
„At that time we were both ready to make a step ahead in our careers – to start a language school that could last for generations…”
Their individual visions of what such a school should like turned out very similar. And so in September 1995 a new language school appeared on the map of language schools in Olsztyn – English Perfect Yearwood & Góralczyk.
In the first year of our activity there were basically just the two of us. We were teaching about 100 students. In the following years, due to a rapidly growing demand for our services, we started to employ other teachers. We were always very strict about the quality of teaching and personality of our teachers. We started to headhunt for the best teachers in town or even Poland. It brought about the dynamic growth of EP, which was at some point limited by staff shortage.
We never compromised to satisfy the demand for our courses by looking for teachers just in the press. Our natural next step forward was PASE (Polish Association for Standards in English) audit. PASE is the Polish member of EAQUALS (European Association for Quality Language Services). We needed to know that what we were doing met the requirements for standards of foreign languages teaching and this could be credibly confirmed by an independent audit. Apart from English, already in the second year of our activity we started to teach also German and French, then, gradually, Spanish, Italian, Russian and, since the school year 2008/2009, Japanese.
Before we built our own school building in Warszawska Street, we taught in various places in Olsztyn. We started in former Catholic High School in Baltycka Street. Then there were Teachers’ Training College premises in Glowackiego Street, Primary School No 8 (where we still teach), the Old Town, Vocational Building School in Zołnierska Street, and in various locations in Jaroty – Primary School No 30, Junior High School No 13 and Senior High School No 5.
Our main office was initially in the office building in Kosciuszki Street, next in the Old Town (5 years) and eventually, in November 2005, we moved to our own newly constructed building in Warszawska Street 36. Since February 2008 we have been also running classes in our branch in Jaroty . Currently English Perfect has got over 2,000 students and over 60 teachers.
At the beginning of the 1990s, before English Perfect was established, it was not easy to effectively learn a foreign language in Olsztyn. First of all, there were very few well-qualified teachers. Those available were most often giving individual private lessons. Though there was a number of various institutions offering teaching foreign languages, their way of organization, premises and curriculum were far from the vision of a professional language school which we had.
By relating as early as possible to PASE, which integrates the best language schools in Poland and promotes and implements high teaching quality standards in them, we wanted to get rid of the “moonlighting” odium from language teaching. Prof. Hanna Komorowska of the University of Warsaw, a well recognized authority in English language teaching methodology, once said that the clear improvement in the level of foreign languages knowledge in Poland in recent years was owed to private language schools. We are happy that we have our small contribution to it.