1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Hi Guest, welcome to the TES Community!

    Connect with like-minded education professionals and have your say on the issues that matter to you.

    Don't forget to look at the how to guide.

    Dismiss Notice

Is it possible to get a one year contract in China/Hong Kong?

Discussion in 'Teaching abroad' started by enev93, Sep 8, 2019.

  1. enev93

    enev93 New commenter


    My partner and I are both b.ed qualified primary teachers in Ireland. I am currently in my 4th year of teaching in Ireland and he is in his 6th. We are interested in applying for jobs to teach in China next year (2020-2021) and I was just wondering is it possible to just sign a one year contract as opposed to two? I understand that the majority of schools offer 2 years but we would both be applying for a career break in our own schools at home which is only granted on a one year basis so I wouldn't like to commit to two when I would only have one year leave. Obviously this would only be in relation to us actually securing employment. Also would it be more beneficial for us to apply to schools as a teaching couple? Thanks!

    Oh I meant to add we are currently interested in Guangzhou area or Shenzhen, we like the idea of Hong Kong/ Singapore too but I think they would be too competitive for us as we don't have international experience.
  2. Jason_Bourne_

    Jason_Bourne_ Occasional commenter

    You've pretty much got no chance of securing a job at a good school on a one year contract. Why would any school want to go through that process? I know at least one school in Guangzhou that recruits teachers on an initial 3 year contract followed by 2 year renewals.
  3. blue451

    blue451 Lead commenter

    Contracts for one year or even shorter periods do occasionally arise but they tend to be for eg, maternity cover, a newly recruited teacher who isn't available to start straight away, long term sickness etc. However a huge dose of luck and a fortuitous alignment of the astros is needed for the right vacancy to come up in the right location at the right time - and it's highly unlikely you'd both get so lucky.
  4. clovispoint

    clovispoint Occasional commenter

    In Hong Kong, one-year and shorter contracts do come up frequently but tend to be filled by residents e.g. teachers here with a spouse that don't have a full-time job yet. You would likely need to be registered as a teacher locally (through the EDB https://www.edb.gov.hk). A shorter term job in a language school is another option. It won't be as well paid but it will get you here for a while. Look here: https://jobs.geoexpat.com/browse-by-industry/ or here
  5. enev93

    enev93 New commenter

    Thanks We might see if anything comes up and consider 2 if not
  6. february31st

    february31st Established commenter

    Also consider the money costs of only staying for one year, moving abroad is expensive. A two year stint will put a lot more money in the bank account and allow for a couple of good holidays.
  7. amysdad

    amysdad Established commenter

    TBH - unlikely. The administrative cost is too high and as others have said, many schools are now starting with a 3 year contract (there are legal reasons for this) often with a get-out after 2.

    If you are really only considering one year abroad, then try looking at some of the exchange programs or TEFL-type schools where you might be able to get one year.
  8. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    Yes, it might be possible to get a one-year contract, but not at a reputable school. "In for a penny, in for a pound" would be my advice. I have written to you and sent you one of those silly TES Conversation things, enev93, and I think that it would be an excellent idea to get a teaching job in China. But not for just one year.
  9. lifeinthe852

    lifeinthe852 New commenter

    As @february31st said, the cost of relocating is high and in HK the cost of starting up here is enormous! Most properties require 3xmonthly rent up front. IMO it takes about two years to settle properly and to be financially back on your feet/saving.
  10. krakowiak6

    krakowiak6 Occasional commenter

    There are many TEFL language schools in China and I saw on Daves ESL Cafe the other week one job saying 22-25k RMB after tax and accommodation. I emailed him and said I find that incredibly high for a TEFL language school salary and he emailed me back and said that it how much his school pays. I have my doubts though. Most pay less than 18000 RMB unless it is in Shanghai where you can get 20K.
  11. Mr_Frosty

    Mr_Frosty Established commenter

    I am loosely acquainted with a TEFL teacher in China who has just switched to a Bilingual 'International' School. I believe they're on around 23k after tax + accommodation with just a TEFL certificate, not a CELTA, maybe the Trinity(?) qualification. He told most of the English teachers at the school are qualified in the same way as him, so maybe salaries will rise to stop all the TEFL teachers jumping to Bilingual schools?
  12. february31st

    february31st Established commenter

    Massive shortages of qualified international teachers in Chinese schools at the moment. Many schools not even bothering with TEFL teachers just requiring a 3 year degree from native English speaking country for a work visa.

    I have seen 25k before tax as a standard rate of none qualified teachers here in a Shanghai Bilingual school.

    I think there will be a massive enforcement of the visa regulations in Shanghai this year to weed out the lawless, destructive, drunk, druggie teachers sleeping in the gutter of the city according to the news papers.
    Mr_Frosty likes this.
  13. krakowiak6

    krakowiak6 Occasional commenter

    So what are all the proper English degree holders with a PGCE in English going to do then? A TEFL course lasts just one month and is pretty easy to pass (I did mine in 1995) but a degree in English is 3 years and the PGCE 1 year. I thought you said China takes their education system very seriously!
  14. Mr_Frosty

    Mr_Frosty Established commenter

    I also know of another guy in China, with no degree or TEFL certificates - they simply have forged documents bought in Thailand and they've had no problems finding jobs and getting a visa. I wouldn't have thought it was worth the risk but from their experience it seems there is very little risk at all of being caught.
  15. february31st

    february31st Established commenter

    The Chinese parents take education very seriously, unfortunately the private schools are just for profit. As long as there is a white monkey dancing in front of the class that is all that matters to school owners. Take a look at the numbers of teachers with iPGCE working in China.

    One news paper article pointed out that only a third of teachers in China would be issued a work visa if the regulations were followed.

    Last year several thousand TEFL instructors were rounded up and deported from China for having no or forged qualifications, some got to spend a few days in a police station. Just read the local and state papers for details of all the illegal activities so called teachers have been up to this year.

    You can earn 5000rmb for reporting a fake teacher to the authorities here in Shanghai.
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2019

Share This Page