I've come to Kunming recently from Shanghai. The original plan was to try to source a way to start a school over here but Covid messed with those plans pretty well.
So I've been looking for a job at the moment and I gotta say its tough going and quite different from the market I'm used to from Shanghai (or Shenzhen and Guangzhou where I used to live before). I'm a qualified teacher with over six years of experience, (many of which were spent in school's middle management as well as teaching) and continuous education through training and seminars. I spoke to three schools here, one outright did not even want to look at my CV cause I'm not a native speaker, one rejected me cause I'm a man and one, well I did an interview with them and when I asked about their curriculum they told me they have very good books. Beanstalk was one of those schools as well, which was surprising because I thought they would be more professional than that seeing that their HQ is in Beijing.
Thanks yeah I am fully aware that we'll get more scrutiny. Like we're doing this together with my wife who is Chinese but I still expect it.
Having said that I have zero intentions of doing any shady or cutting corners etc. Sure, we might not make as much money as the other schools but who cares. I'll be happy to simply have a school that works for the children, pays me well as its employee and runs properly.
Honestly, this actually all works out for us as we are not trying to make a fake school that looks nice but is absolutely shit inside or takes people's money and runs away. I'm doing this precisely because I've been to too many of those schools and was really frustrated with the system and what they were doing.
I might be a bit naive but I do believe you can make money and still provide proper, quality education to the kids where the children actually come first. A place that is not just for show but actually works and can help nurture the children.
So right now we're still working out kinks, getting business plans, curriculum plans etc ready and then in the new year the whole big process starts real time. Personally, I think once you've got everything in order, you can show where you're getting your experience, expertise, certifications etc and you obey by the rules it should be fine. It's just that so many people take shortcuts.
We actually have a car so I think travel wouldn't be too much of a problem. I fear if we move to the north while the family is obviously in the south of the city it might not be the best first move.
To be honest we're still only in the opening stages of the process but from my understanding the Kunming government is a little bit more open to international kindergartens that have a fully thought out international curriculum etc as there are not so many in Kunming. There is a bit of a guanxi involved as well, otherwise I wouldn't have known this information
Thank you all for your feedback. It seems the Aegean mall area seems to be the right fit after all. I was just afraid it was far off from the city center which meant that it was more reclusive since I like the busier city life (not night-life mind you).
From all of your feedback I would say I'm pretty certain to look for a place around there for our flat and for our kindergarten as well. Honestly I was thinking about that area for a kindergarten for a long time since from my experience there were quite a lot of new compounds there which would suggest a high-middle class living over there. We'll start off small anyway so we don't need to attract 100 kids straight away so having other kindergartens around the area shouldn't be a problem especially since, from my research, they mostly do not provide foreign curricula or even a western teacher in the class all the time.