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FAQ on Teaching in China

source:Teach Abroad time:2019-02-26 13:20:39 read:654

Why would I want to teach in China?
China has a constant presence in the news, with the good, bad, and sometimes even strange. The country is a major and growing power and changing the world today. At home or abroad, what happens in China will affect our future. Experiencing China firsthand is an invaluable experience.

Life in China is worth experiencing for itself. China offers a 5,000-year history, vast and diverse land and some of the most modern cities in the world today for you to explore. Chinese cities enjoy modern infrastructure and a very high level of personal safety. You’ll find keen English-speakers everywhere you go, and should you want to learn a foreign language, you will find no better way. The local cuisines are infinite and delicious but even in smaller cities, you can still find a burger joint or a coffee shop. Working in China offers the chance to explore and experience the country in a way a tourist never could.

Modern China is a booming, vibrant, modern place with extraordinary demand for both English teachers and English-speaking educators and subject teachers. In this job market, you are in high demand at diverse cities across an enormous region.

What can I expect of life in China?
Not having experienced the country directly, it’s easy to have inaccurate ideas about what one is likely to run across in the course of teaching in China. The range is extreme: from those who pack a year’s supply of toilet paper (unnecessary!), to others who plan for overnight advancement and wealth (unlikely!).

Can I still apply, if I speak English fluently but am not a native English speaker?
Most schools will prefer hiring native-speaking English teachers.
That said, the job market has so much demand for English speaking teachers that schools may accept non-native speakers into their teaching staff. If you are fluent in English and don’t have an accent, you are welcome to apply.

What type of position should I be looking for?

English language teaching positions have always been the most readily available but we are seeing an increasing demand for English speaking teachers to teach other subjects. Echo Education helps you find the best opportunity for your skills and qualifications, and advises you on what is really out there and achievable.

What kind of visa will I need, and how do I get it?

You need a Z visa for work in China, organized through your school, and ideally arranged before you arrive in the country. While you can arrive into China using other visas, the Z visa is a necessary step for full-time employment and can be issued in your home country or in Hong Kong. Required steps in acquiring a Z visa include a health checkup in China as well as a criminal background check.

It’s routine to downplay the complicated nature of scoring a work visa before arriving to teach. This step is often overlooked by smaller-scale recruiters.  Also, schools may be more hopeful than realistic about the ease of arranging your visa. Complicating matters, national laws can be implemented differently depending on the province, city, and even school involved.

Echo Education makes a unique commitment to informing you about the realities and issues of the visa process in your specific case. The process can’t always be simple and predictable, but we can certainly prepare you for what to expect.

What kind of visa will my spouse need to stay in China?
Your spouse can enter China on a dependent or S visa. The S1 and S2 visas allow immediate family – parents, spouses, and children – to enter the country, but in order to apply for them, you must first have acquired legal residence in China through a Z visa. An S1 visa provides for a stay of over 180 days, while an S2 is limited to no more than 180 days.

How can I be sure of the school’s reliability as an employer?
Some teachers – without proper guidance – may find that their expectations are not met. Echo Education knows each school that we work with and ensures that each is legitimate and reputable, to reduce this risk. When you receive an offer from a school, we share with you the track record and teaching status of the prospective school – how long the school has been in operation, how its English teaching or international programs have worked in the past years, and goals for the coming school year.

How can I be sure that the school understands me? And that I understand them?

It’s all too easy for a potential employer to respond to questions they don’t understand with vague reassurances. You are in a different country, the language and culture are different – this can cause misunderstandings and frustrations. Mutual understanding isn’t a perk; it’s essential to the everyday workplace.

Our cross-cultural service is a big part of why we stand apart. Our team will help you navigate through and bridge communication any challenges that may arise with your school employer.


What don’t I know that can get me in trouble?

From benefits to visas to food to local culture – know what you’re getting into, or expect a wild ride!

One area of misunderstanding among teachers working in China is with health insurance. There are many versions of the same story: A teacher may learn too late that “full health insurance” means much less in China than in the West.

Echo Education brings to your attention issues like these – issues that you may not have been aware of. Where possible, we also offer avenues to work around the problem.

What do I do if something goes wrong?

Working overseas and not speaking the local language can be both exciting and daunting.

Echo Education can assist you in preparing you for emergencies requiring an immediate local response, providing you with a contact list specific to your location, and tips for dealing with such emergencies.

For longer-term issues, we also offer guidance, information, and advice as part of our after-hire support.

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Please note: Due to local visa requirements, only citizens of the UK, Ireland, USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Barbados, Saint Vincent, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago can be considered for our job openings.

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1. Fill out the application
2. Interview (we will email most qualified applicants within 48 hours)
3. Offer (Shortly after interview, we will notify successful applicants and begin placement process)

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