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On getting hired in Tainan
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jm21



Joined: 26 Feb 2008
Posts: 77

PostPosted: Thu Mar 28, 2013 7:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was an assistant teacher for a year between university and law school...I liked working with smaller kids but middle schoolers would drive me freaking nuts.
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ncaraway



Joined: 15 Feb 2010
Posts: 90
Location: Tainan, Taiwan

PostPosted: Fri Mar 29, 2013 5:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you are leaning toward Taiwan and teaching it might be worth your while to get certification in whatever state you're living in now. Being certified to teach in public schools will open more opportunities for you here. I considered it but I only plan to be working for another 10 years and it would probably take me that long to pay off the loans I'd need to get a masters degree. In other words, not worth my effort.

I can't speak to opportunities in mainland China or Australia. What I would recommend you do is to pop over to forumosa.com or taiwanease.com and see if you can connect with any lawyer folks about those kinds of opportunities in Taiwan. I know there are a number of lawyers at forumosa.com.
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jm21



Joined: 26 Feb 2008
Posts: 77

PostPosted: Fri Mar 29, 2013 3:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ncaraway wrote:
If you are leaning toward Taiwan and teaching it might be worth your while to get certification in whatever state you're living in now. Being certified to teach in public schools will open more opportunities for you here. I considered it but I only plan to be working for another 10 years and it would probably take me that long to pay off the loans I'd need to get a masters degree. In other words, not worth my effort.

I can't speak to opportunities in mainland China or Australia. What I would recommend you do is to pop over to forumosa.com or taiwanease.com and see if you can connect with any lawyer folks about those kinds of opportunities in Taiwan. I know there are a number of lawyers at forumosa.com.


It's too expensive ot get certified in the states for me, but in AUS there's a 1 year post-grad diploma you can get that will allow you to get certified and not too expensive. The catch being that it restricts what kind of classes you can teach...e.g. can only teach primary school, can only teach special ed, etc...not sure how much that would get looked at abroad.

I could see teaching on the mainland for a while but I'm not sure I'd want to live there permanently...aside from there being age limits on the work visa the air quality is just too bad for me.
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JZer



Joined: 16 Jan 2005
Posts: 3823
Location: Alaska

PostPosted: Fri Mar 29, 2013 8:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ncaraway wrote:
If you are leaning toward Taiwan and teaching it might be worth your while to get certification in whatever state you're living in now. Being certified to teach in public schools will open more opportunities for you here. I considered it but I only plan to be working for another 10 years and it would probably take me that long to pay off the loans I'd need to get a masters degree. In other words, not worth my effort.

I can't speak to opportunities in mainland China or Australia. What I would recommend you do is to pop over to forumosa.com or taiwanease.com and see if you can connect with any lawyer folks about those kinds of opportunities in Taiwan. I know there are a number of lawyers at forumosa.com.


There was a law firm in Taipei that advertised for a licensed American lawyer for a long time.

However these jobs are few and far between.
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ncaraway



Joined: 15 Feb 2010
Posts: 90
Location: Tainan, Taiwan

PostPosted: Fri Apr 05, 2013 11:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Chains
In an effort to get more hours I recently applied to several of the large national chains. I won't name them here but I will share my experiences, which are not positive.

* I had read on Forumosa that one of the major chains that caters to teaching adults doesn't advertise. It was recommended that you just walk in, resume in hand. And so I did. I was told there were currently no openings and that they only advertised online. I followed the website they mentioned but have yet to see any openings.

* I completed the online application for another major chain (this one caters mostly to children) and got a denial via email within 2 business days. They don't say exactly why I wasn't considered so I have to read between the lines. I'll take two guesses:

1) my age - I'm too old for them.
2) they're probably like most retail businesses in the US that prefer low paid staff with a high turnover to higher paid, experienced staff.

* I responded (via email) to an ad placed locally for a new branch of another major chain. I got a warm reply inviting me to come for an interview. When I showed up for the interview I was told that the HR person I had corresponded with had car trouble and couldn't make it. The staff gave me an application to complete (I had already provided my resume via email). Following the non-interview, I sent an email to the HR person telling her I hoped she was OK and offering to reschedule. I never got a reply.
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JZer



Joined: 16 Jan 2005
Posts: 3823
Location: Alaska

PostPosted: Sat Apr 06, 2013 1:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

ncaraway wrote:
Chains
In an effort to get more hours I recently applied to several of the large national chains. I won't name them here but I will share my experiences, which are not positive.

* I had read on Forumosa that one of the major chains that caters to teaching adults doesn't advertise. It was recommended that you just walk in, resume in hand. And so I did. I was told there were currently no openings and that they only advertised online. I followed the website they mentioned but have yet to see any openings.

* I completed the online application for another major chain (this one caters mostly to children) and got a denial via email within 2 business days. They don't say exactly why I wasn't considered so I have to read between the lines. I'll take two guesses:

1) my age - I'm too old for them.
2) they're probably like most retail businesses in the US that prefer low paid staff with a high turnover to higher paid, experienced staff.

* I responded (via email) to an ad placed locally for a new branch of another major chain. I got a warm reply inviting me to come for an interview. When I showed up for the interview I was told that the HR person I had corresponded with had car trouble and couldn't make it. The staff gave me an application to complete (I had already provided my resume via email). Following the non-interview, I sent an email to the HR person telling her I hoped she was OK and offering to reschedule. I never got a reply.


This is probably why I would tell newbies to try another country unless they have a Taiwanese spouse. Even someone with a Taiwanese spouse should probably think twice before moving to Taiwan.
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ncaraway



Joined: 15 Feb 2010
Posts: 90
Location: Tainan, Taiwan

PostPosted: Tue Nov 12, 2013 2:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There have been some changes in my status so I figured it would be a good time to post another update since I think this thread may be useful to those newbies who regularly ask the same questions (as I did when I was a newbie!).

In my initial post I mentioned getting hired by three schools. Two of those schools catered to children (kindergarten and elementary) and one to adults.

School 2 (elementary school age): I quit after three months. They had no one on staff who spoke enough English to communicate with me but that wasn't really a complaint of mine. I mention that because I suspect it is common and newbies should be prepared for this. The textbooks they asked me to use were woefully inadequate. Yes, I could have created my own content but I had only been teaching for a few months and didn't have the skills or experience to create good material. I resigned because I felt like I was wasting the students' time.

School 1 (kindergarten and elementary school age): I completed a one year contract but decided not to renew and gave them 2 months notice. The boss spoke English and we actually had a fairly good rapport. I also found their curriculum to be really good and enjoyed using it. However, when they hired me they offered only 6 hours a week. That crept down to 5 and sometimes 3. There were two bad kids that I repeatedly recommended they get rid of since I noticed other kids leaving as a result of the bad kids' behavior. The boss refused. Between the lack of hours and the bad kids I figured I could get by without that job. It was a good learning experience for me.

School 3 (adults): My one year contract expires next month. I'm debating whether to renew. The work has averaged 6-10 hours a week with multi-student classes comprising the core 6 hours. The remaining hours have been 1:1 classes arranged by the school. My experience with 1:1 classes has been less than optimal for the same reason other teachers complain about them: students are unreliable. It's disheartening and annoying to juggle your schedule to accommodate the students and to spend time crafting a customized lesson plan and then have the student not show up or drop out altogether. Sadly, the group classes are little better but I've already discussed that in another thread.

School 4 (adults): This is a new gig that wasn't mentioned in my initial post. I've been working there for just over 2 months; one night a week (2 classes each time). I interviewed around the same time my contract at School 1 was ending. At that time they said they were offering two nights a week (4 classes). Throughout my interview they kept telling me how they hoped I would not renew with School 3 and work exclusively for them. They asked me to do a demo with several members of their staff, whom they described as having both low and high level English speakers. As a result, I catered my impromptu demo to accommodate the low level students, which apparently gave the high level speakers the impression that I was somewhat inadequate. Perhaps as a result, after my demo they told me they had already hired someone else for one of the nights so they were only going to offer me one. I agreed, but their lack of honesty left a bad taste in my mouth.

School 5 (adults): A month ago I signed with a company in Taiwan that provides online English teaching. The hourly rate is just under half what I am paid at the other buxibans. However, they prepare all the lessons and I don't have to commute. Most classes have 1 student, some have up to 4. If the student doesn't show up I still get paid for the hour as long as I remain logged in. This happens about once a week (especially on Saturday nights!). When it does happen I just use the time to work on my lesson plans for the other two schools. The downside is the low wage. However, the other side of the coin is that they have been giving me 3-5 hours a day, 7 days a week.

That's it, folks. I hope this info is helpful. If you have any questions, feel free to respond or PM.
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