Nova is the largest private language school in Japan. It is a publicly traded corporation on the Osaka Stock Exchange. It is also the largest employer of migrant workers in Japan - larger than Toyota or Subaru. With approximately 5000 English teachers from overseas, it sets the standard for work conditions for not just teachers in Japan but all aspects of migrant worker conditions in Japan.
Nova Corporation is also a subdiary company that sells travel insurance to its teachers and a money loaning company that loans tuition money to its students.
In 2005, Nova and its travel insurance company, Japan Medical Association (JMA), came under investigation of the Japanese government's Social Insurance Agency for not enrolling teachers into the government's mandatory health insurance plan and illegally replacing their JMA accident insurace with full medical coverage.
Overseas recruiters for Nova exist in US, Canada, UK and Australia. However, these recruiting companies are not legally a part of Nova and have no legal responsibilities to truthfully describe work conditions, pay, holidays or health insurance to prospective teachers.
Nova is a flagrant violator of Japanese labor laws and has refused to negotiate a collective agreement with the teachers union for over 5 years. Nova engages in union busting and fired several unionized teachers in 2004.
After the launching of the investigation in 2005, Nova lost the financial backing of its banking partner Mizuho when they discovered that Nova had been lying about properly enrolling teachers in health insurance. Since then, Nova stock has lost over half of its value and been reduced to a penny stock.
After the investigation, the Japanese government demanded that all full-time employees be enrolled into the Japanese government's medical plan. However, Nova began to then hire teachers as part-time employees (at 29 hours/week rather than 30 hours/week).
Nova Branch Union
Nova's Stock Price