Making TEFL or equivalent, some of which can be obtained online (how on Earth can a teacher be trained online?!?!) a guarantee of getting good teachers is very short-sighted of the Chinese authorities. Unfortunately for the Chinese market however, properly (read state) qualified Western teachers are still in very short supply to fill the abundance of roles, especially those "non-jobs" found in dodgy training centres.
Aug 17, 2015 02:17 Report Abuse
It seems like this topic goes around and around forever but here are my major disagreements: While its true some retired teachers are excellent and by that I mean fully qualified BA+ Teaching and decades of actual full-time teaching back home its also true many of them are terrible/struggle/go terribly wrong/cannot translate or readjust for China. The 2nd category is very often as good or better which is people (like me) who do not have a relevant Uni degree but worked as tutors and ESL volunteers or teaching assistants or simply took CELTA or TEFL courses in genuine interest of a career change. Some might argue this is the BEST because they come in as ESL teachers and aren't trying to 'convert'(translate, rework) 10 or 20 years teaching in a public school. Anyways, I also disagree with the 3rd group in that I'm still surprised how many I meet who (for example) came to China to backpack, met a boyfriend/girlfriend and with zero experience were offered a summer school job and guess what - did GREAT! that describes one of the most popular and awesome English teachers in one of my schools. Don't laugh at old alcoholics. A burned-out drunken Dutchman who was traveling Asia (and probably was a truck driver back home) was hired and I say sincerely he absolutely loved those kids, cared, had the worst presentation ever (barely audible sometimes) and was so sincere and well-meaning and caring I count him as one of the best teachers (i mean teachers not just ESL teachers) I've ever seen. I wish that guy was my 6th grade teacher when i was a kid. ------- and now to the relative comparison. Well guess what China? about a 3rd of your teachers are horrible, useless, appear to have no education themselves, are drunks or perverts or just plain ridiculous and bad at their job. This is also true of most any American public school, British school, Zimbabwe schools etc. Its also true of Trucking, Nursing, Journalism, etc. Having said all that yes of course we don't want freaks and weirdo's showing up. For reasons that baffle me I've seen great great foreign teachers treated like garbage by incompetent employers who skim and cheat and pinch the money and then I see some slob weirdo foreigner running the whole show over at another school getting good cash and somehow able to get away with anything. and finally for what its worth: I've been on the other side where our company hired many foreign workers from China to Canada. While half of them did seem to be skilled at the thing they were hired for it was pretty clear a bunch of them has absolutely ZERO experience, training or education in said job. Someone's cousin I guess. realistically everyone knew 10% of them had absolutely no experience or training however they were Chinese and in a group and so what - the others basically coached and 'crash course' trained them what to do and so they did as well as any others. a few true experts failed or quit or got fired while so did any others. some of the obvious 'fakes' actually hustled quick and a week later as good as any other.
Aug 18, 2015 02:41 Report Abuse
I wrote a blog a time ago about the ignorance way the China Bureau of Education employing people from some short listed countries, just because of their look and color. Making such people eligible to teach in China. I told you Guys, "Teaching is a profession" "Not a nationality !! I advised you guys to employ professional teachers, instead of employing people Just because of their ethnicity, nationality or color. !!! You only put professional African teachers in the disqualified list.. But hey, African teachers are the best of it all !! I say it again an again: Education isn't about nationality or color, But the quality of education the person has passed through !! How on earth can you employ zoo keepers, street sweepers, street guy into a classroom and expect good result ? Before you know, things has gone beyond repairs !!!
Aug 20, 2015 08:23 Report Abuse
I once noted a front page article in Shenzhen about ESL teachers. The cartoon with the article showed a white foreign teacher, naked and hiding his private parts behind a school bag, in front of him a class of teenage students. This is how the media in China constantly portray men from other countries. At the time, I had started work as a Director of Studies, I was recruited via a UK teacher agency that assured me the Chinese owned school was genuine. I met my team of five ESL teachers, two of them had a z visa.The others told me they were being constantly assured they would get a visa but the promises were just ongoing lies. I was constantly assured I would be given a Z visa but found sixty days later found myself on a visa run to Hong Kong, I returned, quit the job and left China. What I do understand is that the problem stems from the actual Chinese visa system, any school would be happy to finance a z visa but they are bogged down by selective licensing on schools by the political system. It actually feels like the system wants to place professional foreign nationals in dangerous situations where they find themselves under the control of a school that simply is not allowed to apply for a so called z visa. Even nationals that marry a Chinese, find themselves offered a visa which does not allow them to work? How absurd and nasty can a visa system get? Let's have some truth on the so called sex offenders, look at the size of China,the population is huge but in something like 30 years they have around a dozen cases involving foreign nationals, a few bad apples slip through screening in any country but in China the amount is incredibly low yet the state media fix on such things and blow it up out of proportion, rather than look at their own nationals where sex offenses from Chinese teachers reaches staggering proportions. Yet the media coverage is back page news. The state simply needs to be fair with its school licensing system, properly screen applicants from all schools as no applicant or school would feel cornered into hiring unqualified teachers by a bias visa and school license system and this would go a long way to addressing a visa system which borders on criminally designed. Buying not needed medicals at extortionate prices from state owned hospitals whilst undergoing a humiliating medical process which is simply baffling? China wants to be part of the global community but continues to behave like a shifty second hand car salesman. They need professional English trainers, so start paying a professional wage, allow all English schools to apply for the so called z visa and drop the bogus money making medical scam, this in turn will attract the real qualified professionals to come and help the country master an international language tool.
Aug 24, 2015 21:21 Report Abuse
I'm noticing a trend this September (2015) and while it might be strictly my own crazy coincidence I wonder if anyone else is noticing this - fewer young backpackering 'paid party vacation' guys and more schools with teachers married to local women (or men in one case of a female teacher). I recently was doing rounds with nearly every school in the city. Now, I'd actually noticed I was seeing less of the single young partying dudes BUT it was the funniest thing but every school I interviewed with was almost entirely and only guys married and residing here. It was almost comical after the 8th interview where (and this is newer) but where this question about my marriage status came up almost immediately. Specifically the 'Q Visa' questions and how long and did we own or lease etc. Add to this I was also surprised how easy it is to get a Q-Visa (whatever the spouse visa). Like it was toooooo fast, efficient and helpfully rushed through. So then its started to occur to me this is not coincidence at all but a planned response and governing decision to make this direction happen. In some ways I can see why. Married people (married to a local) cannot easily dick around and do 'midnight runs' and are (I'd like to believe) less likely to be using the job as a quick i-dont-give-a-shlt way to get KTV, beer and condom cash. Married foreign teachers are, in a sense, cheaper and this means they have their own translator, assistant, guide, direction-finder and probably go and rent their own apartments, buy their own e-bikes, maybe have their own medical insurance, medical tests (Q-visa req.) and don't quote me on this but my understanding is that Q-Visa holders do not have to do the 'Hong Kong Visa run) thing every year. thats a major thing that a school does NOT have to take care of in the cases where they must. Add to that the foreign teacher is (again hopefully) probably supporting the spouse who are often stay-at-home wives-moms who also transfer salary to parents who need a new cow and village renovation. In a sense taking a burden off China with the RMB they earn. Mind you, the young work-vacation people really just spend their pay in China anyways I suppose but im not sure if its in ways and places the government loves to see supported heh. So in a way the government has made it easier for schools to hire essentially 'cheaper' and more reliable foreign teachers who are married to locals. *btw..a spouse visa isn't a work visa but you see where im pointing out the benefits where it counts*. btw, I'm well aware that not all young dudes on sort of 'working adventure' are the party pack douchebages running around trying to get girls pregnant and pick fights with locals at the douchebag bars. There are great young single work-adventure people who also happen to be great young teachers and are not dicking around. But you know that is a 'stereotype' and again I've just noticed less and less of them and strangely almost exclusively the married-to-local guys were nearly the ONLY foreign teachers I met in school after school. (Also the single 30ish gals who aren't married but who aren't partying so much as learning Tai Chi and are into tea and probably secret drinking at home, quietly. Now, is this just my circle of coincidence trends or is anyone else noticing trends along the same line in their city this year?
Sep 02, 2015 02:29 Report Abuse
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