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I agree with much being said here. But, I can only speak for myself and my personal experiences. As a teacher, I find it very rewarding, yet very frustrating at the same time. The negative impressions the article and the comments make about teachers, usually come from other expats (in my experience). I have been treated fairly and without malice from Chinese people. Expats...well...that is a whole different story. I have far fewer expat friends due to their total negativity and character. It seems that many enjoy bringing misery and despair unto themselves and others. I take my profession very seriously. I work hard as a teacher. I am dedicated to my students and my fellow teachers. I definitely make more as a teacher here, than I could in the USA when one begins to talk "net salary" and cost of living. And, I do not have to deal with all the BS that comes from working in a company in the USA. I am relatively free to do and work as I please here. No one is looking over my shoulder and telling how to do my job. With some training from myself, my Chinese employers have learned that if they want respect and understanding from me on Chinese business practices and other matters, they must show me the same courtesy in understanding my viewpoints and culture. It has been a hard battle between both of us. But, we are now able to work together with understanding and confidence in each other. Yes. There are many things I do not like about China. And, I find it appropriate to discuss those things under the correct situations. But, overall, I am very upbeat and positive about my experiences here. As a result, I have fewer horror stories than most about my time here in China. I like being a teacher. I like the experiences that I have had here. And, I love the Chinese people (good and bad). I came to China for work and money. I stay because of the people and the experiences.
Apr 06, 2015 16:11 Report Abuse
Totally true. I have been teaching In China for the past 6 years. I Have a bachelor degree and a Tefl. I never made as much money here as I use to back in my country .i came after divorce for a woman. There is a truth to it that many foreign men come for women I tried marrying a Chinese woman but the culture didn't settle well with me . So I tried many Chinese girl friends and now I found one that I am taking home with me so she can have a better life and I can feel that I have helped many Chinese and brought one of them to have a better life.In my opinion we serve some rich corrupted school owners, or at best few corrupted university officials that try to make money on students by creating exchange programs between Chinese universities and foreign universities. As per racism and the white skin to sale to the parents that a white man has better qualification to teach English .is so freaking true and sickening I had met many black teachers from USA who had some difficulties in China. This is my last year in China. If I could make a stop to this flow of foreigners coming to china . I would. Any foreigner coming to China to make as we call an easy buck. Is not true. There are agents making money on innocent young foreigners. And they seduce them so they can come and make big $$$$$ on their back for the Chinese owner. There is no easy buck to make here .these Chinese rich men have destroyed balance in the world economics . We should as foreigners get out of this country let Chinese teach their own kids English or whatever they feel like. Also bring this situation to our countries governments to be tougher on Chinese students going abroad . But mea culpa our universities are also part of this giant scam of enrolling Chinese students with an English level so low just to make money and stay open . It makes me sick to see that education has become a $$$$ focused shit and it is all because of Chinese rising and their money. So please as a foreigner do not work for this corrupted people . Have the courage to love your country and stay home. Work in your country . At least you have a pensions and unemployment insurance and many work laws that protects you.Let Russians Phillipinos or Africans teach English to Chinese .at least they need the money. For the salary they offer here, how dare can a Chinese offer 10000rmb to a young graduate from the USA or Canada and think he is paying him a high salary. How dare we accept this shit. Don't tell me lack of work in our countries . Work in McDonald and you can earn the same. Have some respect for your own nationality and do not allow these Chinese corrupted owners of schools make money on you. Let them deal with their shit . And our countries should allow only Chinese students that have worked hard and speak perfect English to come and study in our universities .Chinese now are laughing at us. All companies are outsourcing here in China . Giving them jobs and in the process they want to learn more English so they can go abroad . Why oh why our greed our corporate shit has done this. I will tell any Chinese to be grateful that outsourcing exist and that it is thanks to our corporations that today he has a job and an apartment and a family . Otherwise back to hunger. So as you see please do like me . Go back home . Fight the right to have a job home and not let companies open businesses in china and have corrupted Chinese man get you to become a clown . Since when a Chinese makes others look like a clown . We have seen quit a lot in history , but not this one. Good luck to you all
Apr 06, 2015 11:25 Report Abuse
While I completely agree that all of the 'perceptions' in this article do exist in China in one way or another, I think there are a few problems to address with constructive criticism. There are a lot of 'mosts' going on. What I mean is "most employers...", "most Chinese....", this is problematic because its backed up with purely anecdotal evidence. I meet plenty of Chinese people who do have these perceptions of foreigners, but also plenty that don't. The racial discrimination thing comes down to a lack of the same understanding of race, ethnicity, and culture than that which we value in the United States. You cannot come to another country and expect these attitudes to be the same. When I've tried to describe certain behaviors as racist to my Chinese friends (in Mandarin), they simply don't see it that way. While it may not seem right to you or me, that's the way it is. This, at least, has been my experience. China hasn't had the same struggles that have been had in other countries regarding race and identity. Furthermore, they only just opened the country to foreign trade under Deng Xiaoping in 1978 (basically 1979). They've only had a lot of foreigners living and working here for the last 37 years. It is not right to discriminate, but there needs to be time for such sensitive understandings to come to fruition.
Apr 06, 2015 10:59 Report Abuse
'When I've tried to describe certain behaviors as racist to my Chinese friends (in Mandarin), they simply don't see it that way.' You nailed the issue with this --- they see nothing wrong. Not restricted to racism either, from shitting in public to yelling on their mobile to manufacturing & exporting gutter oil, they "don't see it that way". So, which way? THEIR way.....which is? Just ask them, would you like foreign tourists shitting all over china, defacing your 'Great Wall', exporting radiated food into your country? They are brainwashed by CCP/communism, built upon warmongering mentalities (guerilla warfare which was how they fought, also meant nothing was too low --- STILL applies). On top of that, the complete lack of spirituality (normally the domain/responsibility of major religions), plus material/financial poverty had turned them into ruthless, cunning "I don't give a shit if I act, steal, lie, cheat, rob, bribe, sleep with my enemies" as long as the excuses I cook up successfully justify the things I do, get what I want (face, money, maiming my enemies), and let me get away with it all. I am strong/smart, you are weak/foolish, the ones left standing take all and write history books anyway they like, our 5000+ years history said so.
Apr 06, 2015 11:56 Report Abuse
I was under the impression that expats in other fields, IT, Banking, Marketing, ...etc. earns more than EFL teaching. The figures shown on the salary table in this article are dated 2012. Perhaps they have changed since. Mind taking a look for me? Thanks. www.expatarrivals.com/china/salaries-for-expats-in-china
Apr 06, 2015 11:01 Report Abuse
Thanks for the info. Smart choice too, sounds like the job is more of HR nature. Normally, operating an agency or being the key staff within an agency (which is a business) lets you earn far more than those working as employees/contractors for the agency, in this case teachers. This is the same in other fields. And yes, land of jerks, fully agree. There is nothing wrong with you jerking the local jerks off. They deserve it. LOL
Apr 06, 2015 11:22 Report Abuse
Eorthisio. Wow, those are some impressive numbers there. I'd be "comfortable" with 1/3 of what you make per month at 100 teachers. I'd like to ask if currently you are having more of a supply or demand problem with what you do. If its a supply problem, private message me or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org as I have some business ideas to throw around with you. Hope to hear from you soon.
Apr 09, 2015 10:55 Report Abuse
Those who've been on this forum long enough probably have witnessed western commenters trashing EFL teachers. One reason, my guess is, they think along the lines, "how difficult can it be for someone to teach his native language?" For these ignorants all you have to do is to ask him (be him a chinese/indian/canadian...etc.) to teach his native language for a couple of hours then have the students, be they housewives, teenagers, workers, do the assessment. LOL Best thing to deal with egotistic talkers 'blessed' with a warmongering personality thinking lightly of anything with a 'how difficult can it be attitude' is to have them do those things they look down upon. This is a matter of perception. To turn around those negative attitudes, one can present EFL teachings as the key to future success if they want to fare well internationally. The locals know that. A young 20+ uni. graduate working in the export sales dept of a battery manufacturing plant told me he was paying RMB 2000+ for 'chatting' with westerners on QQ/Wechat monthly, organized by some company. Their monthly salary is typically only RMB 2000+ (commission included)!
Apr 06, 2015 10:20 Report Abuse
Not true Mr. 388182. The majority of foreign teachers are conscientious and hard-working. I see how you managed to insult both foreign teachers and the Chinese in one sentence. Bravo. I think the author mentioned your kind in the article. Lateral aggression?
Apr 06, 2015 09:16 Report Abuse
The diversity of ESL teachers is very wide ranging from those who just want a way to make a quick buck and pay off student loans, to those who genuinely have an interest in China and believe teaching is the easiest way to get there, to those who couldn't find employment back home (though experience teaching in China is a good way to go back to the states to either continue to seek employment or to get accepted into a graduate-type program.) Everyone I know who makes fun of ESL teachers was either a teacher at one point or ended up turning to teaching when their non-teaching job did a poor job of matching the pay of ESL teachers (who can get paid a lot to do a little). Also the "get back to work" mentality is not just applied to teachers. If you are employed by a Chinese employer, expect to work long, hard hours and even on weekends to make up for holidays. We get treated like workhorses because that is how it is here... Lawyers, doctors and teachers alike will get the same treatment (I have friends who work as lawyers and doctors here so I am not speaking from the air). It doesn't matter what your position is. I've worked in retail, and the same mentality applies. If you are breathing, you can work. I recommend people who come over to China gain experience in learning about the culture and the language so that you have valuable skills to take back home.
Apr 06, 2015 07:42 Report Abuse
Decent article and most of it is true. Where I live, everyone (Chinese and foreigners) expects that I am an English teacher (and I used to be one), but when I tell them I am not... They (normally Chinese) act like I won the lottery or did something amazing. Being an ESL teacher is an easy job, being a good ESL teacher is very tough and equal to any other job in my opinion
Apr 06, 2015 02:04 Report Abuse