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Total bait and switch
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whatevs



Joined: 25 Apr 2012
Posts: 45

PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2012 6:26 am    Post subject: Total bait and switch Reply with quote

Some of you may remember me advocating for a fellow teacher I met in China who was in a rough spot. Good news is she finally ditched that whole situation. She wrote about what happened to her here,

http://middlekingdomlife.com/guide/forum/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=519&p=1795&sid=6019875ada24c8735bacc48d8bd4fee7#p1795

Just unbelievable. I know for a fact it was even worse than what she described there, too. (Mods I hope its okay to include that link) Have you ever heard of something like that happening?

*edited to add that she okayed me sharing the link here on Dave's.
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Zimmer



Joined: 26 Oct 2011
Posts: 225

PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2012 7:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I hope your friend writes a warning about that place so that others don't get caught the same way.

She mentions she was going to write a blog about it. That might not be the best way to do it if she really does want to warn others because a lot of blog sites are blocked in China. Also, the name of the school probably won't show up in a google search.
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chinatimes



Joined: 27 May 2012
Posts: 478

PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2012 5:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is why you don't take a job offer in China until you visit the school and make sure you get the proper visa issued.

I remember last year I went job hunting in Beijing. I specifically told recruiters I wanted to teach middle school students or older. They connected me with a school who said on the phone I would be able to teach older students and prepare them for the SAT test.

I visited the school and was immediately welcomed into a room across from a much larger one which had nursery school items in it. After talking, it was revealed they didn't want me to teach older students. They wanted me to get an apartment and teach 6 year olds on a part-time basis and "see how things go".

Well, I replied, "Until I see a full-time contract, housing provided, and a job offer to teach older students as agreed to on the phone, you won't be seeing how anything goes with me."

That was the end of that. It is unfortunate that teachers are exposed to these sorts of lies, but you can't account for every bad school and have time for the good ones.

I suggest helping people in a more productive manner. Let them know what to avoid rather than who to avoid. Then they can avoid more of these people.

1. DON'T COME TO CHINA WITH THE ASSUMPTION THE JOB WILL BE GOOD

2. VISIT THE SCHOOL FIRST

3. IT IS LEGAL TO DO A VISA RUN

4. IF YOU SIGN A CONTRACT BLINDLY FROM ABROAD, DON'T COMPLAIN WHEN IT FALLS APART AFTER ARRIVING
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kungfuman



Joined: 31 May 2012
Posts: 1398
Location: In My Own Private Idaho

PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2012 5:48 pm    Post subject: Re: Total bait and switch Reply with quote

Quote:
The bottom line is they (man and woman who are the school directors) are just very unscrupulous personalities, who think they can treat their employees like property.


Some people find this our the hard way. Like she did.
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Shroob



Joined: 02 Aug 2010
Posts: 1208

PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2012 11:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

chinatimes wrote:
This is why you don't take a job offer in China until you visit the school and make sure you get the proper visa issued.

I remember last year I went job hunting in Beijing. I specifically told recruiters I wanted to teach middle school students or older. They connected me with a school who said on the phone I would be able to teach older students and prepare them for the SAT test.

I visited the school and was immediately welcomed into a room across from a much larger one which had nursery school items in it. After talking, it was revealed they didn't want me to teach older students. They wanted me to get an apartment and teach 6 year olds on a part-time basis and "see how things go".

Well, I replied, "Until I see a full-time contract, housing provided, and a job offer to teach older students as agreed to on the phone, you won't be seeing how anything goes with me."

That was the end of that. It is unfortunate that teachers are exposed to these sorts of lies, but you can't account for every bad school and have time for the good ones.

I suggest helping people in a more productive manner. Let them know what to avoid rather than who to avoid. Then they can avoid more of these people.

1. DON'T COME TO CHINA WITH THE ASSUMPTION THE JOB WILL BE GOOD

2. VISIT THE SCHOOL FIRST

3. IT IS LEGAL TO DO A VISA RUN

4. IF YOU SIGN A CONTRACT BLINDLY FROM ABROAD, DON'T COMPLAIN WHEN IT FALLS APART AFTER ARRIVING


I think that's a little unrealistic, especially for first time jobs. I think as long as you do your research (eg. ask around) you should be OK. Use your common sense, I walked away from lots of job offers simply because things weren't perfect for me. I wasn't going to fly half way around the world if something felt off.
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choudoufu



Joined: 25 May 2010
Posts: 3325
Location: Mao-berry, PRC

PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 1:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

chinatimes wrote:
3. IT IS LEGAL TO DO A VISA RUN


......but not always possible, and not always advisable.

getting a proper z-visa in your home country will help you to
avoid 'those people.'
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chinatimes



Joined: 27 May 2012
Posts: 478

PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 2:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Shroob wrote:
chinatimes wrote:
This is why you don't take a job offer in China until you visit the school and make sure you get the proper visa issued.

I remember last year I went job hunting in Beijing. I specifically told recruiters I wanted to teach middle school students or older. They connected me with a school who said on the phone I would be able to teach older students and prepare them for the SAT test.

I visited the school and was immediately welcomed into a room across from a much larger one which had nursery school items in it. After talking, it was revealed they didn't want me to teach older students. They wanted me to get an apartment and teach 6 year olds on a part-time basis and "see how things go".

Well, I replied, "Until I see a full-time contract, housing provided, and a job offer to teach older students as agreed to on the phone, you won't be seeing how anything goes with me."

That was the end of that. It is unfortunate that teachers are exposed to these sorts of lies, but you can't account for every bad school and have time for the good ones.

I suggest helping people in a more productive manner. Let them know what to avoid rather than who to avoid. Then they can avoid more of these people.

1. DON'T COME TO CHINA WITH THE ASSUMPTION THE JOB WILL BE GOOD

2. VISIT THE SCHOOL FIRST

3. IT IS LEGAL TO DO A VISA RUN

4. IF YOU SIGN A CONTRACT BLINDLY FROM ABROAD, DON'T COMPLAIN WHEN IT FALLS APART AFTER ARRIVING


I think that's a little unrealistic, especially for first time jobs. I think as long as you do your research (eg. ask around) you should be OK. Use your common sense, I walked away from lots of job offers simply because things weren't perfect for me. I wasn't going to fly half way around the world if something felt off.


It's specifically related to first time jobs.

1) First time in Japan was with NOVA. I left after 3 months (they tried to rewrite the contract after I arrived) and worked 3.5 years at the second school. I didn't sign anything until I visited the second school. You are allowed to do part-time work in Japan, and I made sure I didn't take additional jobs with other schools until I met them.

2) First time in Korea was at a language school (hagwon). After 4 months, living arrangements were drastically changed. Perhaps I had legal options, but I didn't know better at the time. I was promised one thing on the phone in the US, and then when I arrived I was told to take below average housing. It worked ok for 4 months, until a Korean family wanted to move in and the grandfather threw my stuff out the door. I made sure I visited every school after that before signing a contract.

3) First time in China was at a language school. After moving in, it was obvious the apartment was in terrible condition with roaches and bad odors coming from the bathroom pipes. The water smelled, and the street I lived on wreaked of fecal matter. The job was not what was promised over the phone (surprise surprise). I made sure I visited every school after that before signing a contract.

In all three cases, I didn't decide ahead of time where I wanted to go. If you know specifically where you want to go, you can handle things like the one that wanted me to teach 6 year olds on a part-time basis. You don't have to sign any contracts.
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chinatimes



Joined: 27 May 2012
Posts: 478

PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 2:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

choudoufu wrote:
chinatimes wrote:
3. IT IS LEGAL TO DO A VISA RUN


......but not always possible, and not always advisable.


You only need one door opened to enter a house. If the rest are locked, it doesn't matter. If there is one offer on the table that allows you to visit, then that's all you need. If someone does a modicum of research online, they can find plenty of offers which will allow a visit. I have been offered rooms to stay in while visiting and free meals. You have to be going to great lengths to avoid looking into the options if you convincing yourself it's not possible.

It is possible.
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choudoufu



Joined: 25 May 2010
Posts: 3325
Location: Mao-berry, PRC

PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 3:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

chinatimes wrote:
You only need one door opened to enter a house. If the rest are locked, it doesn't matter. If there is one offer on the table that allows you to visit, then that's all you need.


an 'offer' doesn't 'allow' one to visit. the tourist visa allows the visit, not the offer.

possible ≠ advisable.
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GeminiTiger



Joined: 15 Oct 2004
Posts: 999
Location: China, 2005--Present

PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 4:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

OP, IMHO when someone posts something in a blog it becomes public information and lose your right to complain if someone posts a link to it. In fact most blog owners want nothing more than this kind of publicity, that is of course why they blog to begin with.


2nd

It's not hard at all to get a proper visa if your qualified to work here.
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roadwalker



Joined: 24 Aug 2005
Posts: 1458
Location: Ch

PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 10:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I used to be with the come to China and look around folks. In fact, I got my first job by just coming over ( I had an invitation letter from another school that ended up at the last moment telling me to come over later, and not for September as originally agreed to.) It worked out in my case, and I didn't have to do a visa run in those days. They just changed my status at the PSB and issued a Residence Permit. Now I'm in Guangdong and from what I'm told, it's either impossible or nearly impossible to do a visa run other than back to my home country (USA) which is a bit too far in my opinion. (Can anyone verify that it IS possible to do a Hong Kong run from Guangdong?)

So I have changed my advice too: I would still say, come on over if you are flush with cash and have time for a scouting report/holiday in China and environs. But for those on a tighter budget (Do NOT come to China broke!) I've jumped into the just-do-your-homework camp. Try to get a hold of current or recent teachers at the school. The inability to contact one or more is a red flag. (We don't all want to be bothered, but generally someone is going to be happy to tell the good and/or bad of the school.
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chinatimes



Joined: 27 May 2012
Posts: 478

PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 11:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

choudoufu wrote:
chinatimes wrote:
You only need one door opened to enter a house. If the rest are locked, it doesn't matter. If there is one offer on the table that allows you to visit, then that's all you need.


an 'offer' doesn't 'allow' one to visit. the tourist visa allows the visit, not the offer.

possible ≠ advisable.


How wrong you are. The offer DOES allow one to visit. The offer does allow one to meet with hiring staff, English department or office workers, and fellow teachers.

I have done this in all three countries at least a couple times. China is a big country, but it is cheap. If you have the time, you can easily meet with the school and you should.

In this case, my advice = possibilities. But, box yourself in if you wish and say "No, it can't be done." It won't affect me.
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chinatimes



Joined: 27 May 2012
Posts: 478

PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 11:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
They just changed my status at the PSB and issued a Residence Permit. Now I'm in Guangdong and from what I'm told, it's either impossible or nearly impossible to do a visa run other than back to my home country (USA) which is a bit too far in my opinion.


Your premise assumes someone specifically wants to go to a place like Guangdong from the get go. Now, correct me if I am wrong, but I am confident in stating all parts of China would allow already existing teachers to "migrate" to places like Guangdong which apply stricter visa procedures (as evidenced by this example offer http://www.jobchina.net/index.php?post_id=43111 which reads, "A letter of Recommendation/or Release Letter from your previous Chinese school (Only if you worked in China previously)").

If you already know you want to go to Guangdong or a place like Guangdong, then I feel you are in a different camp than the norm which simply want to go to China. Most don't even know there is a place called Guangdong. They might know Hong Kong, Beijing, and if they follow the olympics Shanghai. I am sure you can bounce back with a handful of people who know more cities and even know Guangdong specifically, but that's just a handful.

I don't hear the average teen, parent, or college student in an English speaking country refer to other places experienced teachers in China would know. Since coming to China, I have learned quite a deal about regional territories and after moving to various cities the opinions I have about each city were nowhere mentioned in my textbooks I read when I studied in China or at the college I graduated from. I even have a completely different view of Beijing now. In 2002, I didn't like it when I was a student. Now in 2012, I am happy to be going into my 2nd year here teaching.

The point is, if you are coming to China to teach in China, and you don't have a specific agenda for an area like Guangdong, then you should really come and visit the country first. See if you like the area you might be living in. If you don't, no problem. You don't need to get a release letter then. You don't need to get a medical check then. You don't need to get housing then. You don't need to open a bank account then. You don't need to do a lot of things that people who commit to a year need to do.

After deciding on a school where you can do a visa run, do the visa run. Then you will be assured your first year in China is a happy one. I gambled my first time in China because I have done this many times in Korea and in Japan. So, it was easy for me to tell the owner I would be packed up and leaving in 4 days (Even though I had no idea where I would move to, and I didn't have any job offers.) I just stood up and told her I wasn't going to live in housing which was that awful and work a schedule which involved me teaching 1 class in the morning, staying in the office until 3pm to teach only 2 more classes. To add to this, it was on a Sunday.

Rewind to my first job in Japan with NOVA. I was a scared rookie. I actually booked 2 flights (2nd one was cheaper, but luckily for some reason they never actually charged my credit card) to return home in despair even though the contract I signed with NOVA was pristine, complete, and not full of any holes. Everything was on the up and up until I arrived and found out the truth about their scamming ways.

I don't think a new person to China will fair any better considering China doesn't pay for the flight, they don't reimburse usually until you finish 6 months, and sometimes rent is not part of the contract. So, you have ample ways to get screwed royally if you sign a contract abroad without visiting the school first. I can't stress this any more firmly. In China, you have very nice Chinese people and you also have very dishonest Chinese people. Unless you are like a boxer who can bounce back and take it (obviously in a figurative sense), I wouldn't go to China thinking you have everything mapped out beforehand.

Find out where you can do the visa run and get a school in that area. Trust me. You will be much happier and glad you did your first year.


Last edited by chinatimes on Fri Oct 05, 2012 12:12 pm; edited 1 time in total
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youtalkingtome



Joined: 19 Aug 2012
Posts: 16

PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 11:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

roadwalker wrote:
Now I'm in Guangdong and from what I'm told, it's either impossible or nearly impossible to do a visa run other than back to my home country (USA) which is a bit too far in my opinion. (Can anyone verify that it IS possible to do a Hong Kong run from Guangdong?)
.


I can verify that it's not possible to do a visa run to HK if your school is in Guangdong. It is one of the more stricter provinces. The requirements to get a Z visa are one of the toughest as well.
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whatevs



Joined: 25 Apr 2012
Posts: 45

PostPosted: Thu Oct 18, 2012 6:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

GeminiTiger wrote:
OP, IMHO when someone posts something in a blog it becomes public information and lose your right to complain if someone posts a link to it.


Yeah, I guess that's true. I guess I was feeling overly protective of her privacy. These people really did a number on her. She was and still is unduly afraid, in my judgement, that they would retaliate against her in some way. That's why I felt the need to help her. When I met her and heard about the situation I could see that she was obviously in despair and not advocating properly for herself.
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