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"Lazy" English teachers?

Becoming Liz (16 posts) • 0

Ocean, you may be interested to read this article :"The law is to help a country adjust its policies to best follow the rules. If people want to come to China, we can't simply reject them. We can't go against the pattern of international migration. For those who should be welcomed, we should offer them more opportunities, but for those who shouldn't, we must strictly control their arrival." (in.kunming.cn/[...] I think "teachers who have the necessary qualifications/experience to get a proper teaching work visa and work at a legit school" are welcomed and welcoming

Magnifico (1981 posts) • 0

Hey kids, never let school get in the way of your education!

charleton (2 posts) • 0

Excuse me, but why is the article or the conversation framed as "illegal teachers"?

The fact is that the majority of schools in China are not able to issue working visas, and that the demand for teachers is huge. Why not "illegal schools" or "lazy schools"? Why not "out of touch bureaucracy holds back schools from issuing proper visas?"

Actually the biggest and perhaps the most expensive English training school in China, a publicly traded company, employs foreign teachers illegally. Has it occurred to anyone that keeping large portions of a workforce without their proper papers might just be their preferred way of managing them? It also keeps the top dog companies safe from the competition of start-up schools, as the big guys can always use their guanxi to keep illegally employing their teachers without ever fearing a crackdown.

Do illegal teachers like being illegal? Do they not want training, visas, foreign expert certificates, legal protections, holiday pay and airfare?

While a "cleaning up " of the industry would be very good for good teachers, this is not what this about. This is about blaming the outsider, the individual, the guy you can blame without consequences. They don't blame the visa procedures or the schools or the market.

And as a sort of an off topic side note : As someone who has multiple qualifications to teach English as foreign language and who also has taught high school English in the west, I (and any training school manager) can tell you that Joe blow the cleaner-if trained properly-might be a better EFL teacher than someone with a masters degree in a related field.

Yes there are plenty of lazy teachers. Actually, the majority of workers in any field in Yunnan are lazy.

But articles like this are just xenophobia guys, and are best understood in the context of the current wave of sensationalism, as you can see if you check out the history of such "news" in other countries (including Japan and Korea).

charleton (2 posts) • 0

@ Becoming Liz, you may be mistaken. Most qualified teachers don't come here, because they are not welcomed by anyone except the universities, who offer the lowest pay and the smallest share of the jobs in the market. Qualified teachers usually teach in other countries, or on the east coast. If they come here, they will face the reality of super low pay, or of working illegally, or both.

bluppfisk (398 posts) • 0

Oh the newspaper is by no means wrong or trying to hold an anti-foreigner campaign. It is simply addressing a very real issue. Many English teachers are highly qualified and do excellent jobs. But there are others.

I know of one particular non-native teacher whose English was so bad that she was neither able to express herself clearly to native speakers nor to understand what native speakers were trying to tell her.

Yet she accepted a job as a kindergarten English teacher. You may well think: any English is better than none at that level, but however mouldable the brains of young kids are, getting them to pronounce stuff wrong in the very beginning and teaching them meanings of words that are incorrect is definitely not helping and unworthy of a salary.

It is the school's fault for not checking and I find the attitude of this person is very immoral but I know of more than just one student or traveller accepting such jobs. The low salary does not stop these people.

tony oh (1 post) • 0


I think you are forgetting that though there are some unqualified teachers, this doesn't make the article legitimate.
"Spin" "propaganda" and plain old BS are about presentation, framing issues, appealing to prejudices, limiting debate to 2 sides (or worse-no debate at all), ignoring other perspectives, injecting urgency where there is nothing new, and/or tying unrelated facts together.

Certainly, articles may be constrained by space, or other problems, but even a cursory look shows many shaky assertions and implications within the article.

Combined with the timing of said piece, I think you can be pretty sure that it is part of the anti-weiguoren trend of the moment. It seems worth adding that there will never be such an article highlighting an equally shocking scandal in Kunming. Namely, seriously qualified teachers (Uni degrees in ESL for example) making 100 an hour, and it is not like the are getting many hours either. This, while my Chinese friends who haven't even finished Uni yet are making 120/hour teaching English at training schools.

Liumingke1234 (3297 posts) • 0

The pay of some of these "school" is pretty pathetic. They want this degree and that experience and a 6 months to a year commitment all so they can pay you 80-100 yuan an hour. Some of the age ranges of the 'students' are ridiculous (0 and up)! Be real!

bluppfisk (398 posts) • 0

The times that media were absolutely non-sensational have died with consumerism.

Besides, I don't agree with you. It's just true what they write. Even before reading this article, I had the impression that the majority of the people teaching English here are one or more of the following:

* not native
* not qualified
* not even suited
* working illegally on a student visa

Some of the native speakers' spelling is simply bad. Yet they teach.

The only ones to be trusted without testing or quizzing are the ones that have pocketed a TEFL diploma. Such people need not fear since they can rebuke any sneers by fishing out their diplomas.

Everyone else needs to be screened thoroughly. But as often in China (and elsewhere), schools only care about money, parents only want to spend as little as possible, so you get a layer of rotten teachers. It'll take time to root them out.

bluppfisk (398 posts) • 0

As for the pay, you live in a place where qualified university students work office jobs for fat companies 6 days a week, 10 hours a day for as little as 5000 RMB a month. Kunming is very affordable so 100-120 per hour is actually a very good wage, making you 2600-3120 per week = up to 12480 RMB a month. That's 1560 EUR a month. You know what a beginning foreign-language teacher makes in a country where rent is four times as high as Kuming's? Right: 1500 EUR. Reference: Belgium.

Liumingke1234 (3297 posts) • 0

@bluppfisk So I guess you won't mind being paid 100 yuan an hour, huh?

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