CHINA EXPAT INTERVIEW
Dool’s shares her “Teaching in China” horror story.
Do you want to know how to get started teaching in China?
I’m here with Dools, and I’ve had the pleasure of knowing her for a while and she teaches in a place called Nantong. She has a bit of a horror story, so keep reading.
My name’s Kwadwo. Learn real Chinese, communicate, and have fun. Oh, we’re in Shanghai by the way because there’s the Pearl.
Teaching in China: what not to do!
Dools: Basically, I completed a TEFL but with no real solid plan of what I was doing. I was having a drink with my sister-in-law, it popped up on my phone where I can live in China.
Kwadwo: Oh, that’s a perfect way to get started in China. Random-
Dools: Exactly, why not?
Kwadwo: … ads that come up.
Dools: I literally was like, “Oh I’ll just click this and hope for the best.”
Kwadwo: What not to do.
Dools: And then within a month I was here, which is quite crazy. But it turned out that my agent wasn’t very good. They weren’t very helpful. They didn’t really look after me.
Kwadwo: So what happened that was so… What did your agent do?
Dools: Just basically, they didn’t tell me where I was going. So I asked to be in Shanghai, and I’m actually based in Nantong which is 60 miles away.
Kwadwo: Number one thing, you never came to China, and they gave you a choice-
Kwadwo: … and they threw you in the middle of nowhere.
Kwadwo: Because Nantong it’s kind of in the middle of nowhere guys. Actually, I don’t even know where it is.
Dools: And so then I arrived, and I was told that I was going to be at a normal school, and it turns out I was in a training school. Which is fine because I absolutely love my job. But basically the agency didn’t tell me any information at all.
Kwadwo: I was thinking maybe you were going to say, “I thought it was in the normal school.” And you ended up in an X-Men school.
Dools: No, that would be cool!
Kwadwo: #ILoveWolverine. Who’s your favorite X-Men?
Dools: I don’t know.
Kwadwo: You don’t know? That’s okay. She doesn’t like X-Men-
Dools: I don’t think I have a favorite.
The best decision she ever made!
Kwadwo: … but show her love in the comments. And by the way, if you’re thinking about coming to China to teach, it is the best decision I ever made in my life.
Dools: Me too. Absolutely.
Kwadwo: Career China is a recruiting agency that brings teachers to China, and you do not want to get screwed over, and they take care of everything.
Dools: Yes, go with them.
Kwadwo: Of course you have to be certified to apply, right? Like, you have to have a BA too?
Kwadwo: Four-year degree?
Kwadwo: #education. So they put you in the middle of nowhere in Nantong.
Dools: Yeah, they put me in the middle of nowhere and then-
Kwadwo: And you thought you would be in Shanghai.
Dools: Yeah, they just basically didn’t look after me. They weren’t very empathetic towards, obviously, the fact that I’m in a completely new place. Eventually, I cut off from them, and now I’m still with the same school but just not with that agency, which is…
Kwadwo: How did you cut off from an agency?
Dools: Very messily.
Teaching in China
Kwadwo: So then you quit the agency.
Dools: Yes and-
Kwadwo: And you got out.
Dools: … now I’m very, very happy with my school. I’m very happy with my boss. Me and him just have the same… all the same things that were in my contract, but it’s just more fair.
Kwadwo: Yes because I have talked to… Naturally, because I teach Chinese, and so all the people that are paying me are teachers, a lot of them.
I have heard some other horror stories about, “Oh yeah, come to our school. It’s an international school. You are a certified teacher. Welcome to our school. You will be designing the whole curriculum for your grade and other grades. And by the way, school starts tomorrow. Oh yeah-“
Kwadwo: … “you have two days off a week. Congrats, you are now working your third week in a row without vacation.”
I’m Kwadwo this is Dools, and I have the wrong hand, but good, good study, day, day up.
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