I don’t know you, but I hire you. Foreign teacher placement in China gone wrong

Before you start hating on me for stereotyping. Yes the following incident was, so far, a single incident on University level. If you read through my old post about sucking ESL Teacher placement you’ll see things like that happened before though. However this time on University level which makes it, in my opinion, even worse.

It’s not breaking news that I am looking for different teaching alternatives right now so I was happy that I got in touch with a University in China (Beijing). After a first initial email that was quite friendly a received a second one within a short period of time already stating a job offer and a preferred starting time.

Quite odd on my opinion. Without having talked to me once (skype or sth like that) or knowing more about me (ok, they checked my linkedin profile which is, of course, awesome) they came up with a serious job offer. Highlight of this offer: I should work as an English instructor. On Uni level.

Since the initial email was so friendly and nice I decided not to tell them that this is weird behavior and thought maybe there was some misunderstanding (after all I taught English before) involved so I wrote a very detailed email back outlining that I am by no means a certified English teacher and while I would be happy to help out with English classes or tutoring once in a while (!) when there is an immediate need (!) I really want to focus on my areas of interest and expertise. I also outlined my prior expertise and future research and professional plans as well as teaching approaches.

The email was received with great pleasure (quote) and I was asked to wait for a response from the director. Sounded reasonable. So I waited a few days until I followed up with a ‘do you need more info?’ email. The response came just a few hours after with, once more, a job offer for the position of, you guessed it, English instructor.

Once more I politely declined. My mind however went wild. How the heck could those people at Uni do that? First offering me a job without knowing me and hearing me talk (after all they wanted me as English teacher!) and then, after I explained that I am not an English teacher, still persisting on offering me a position as English teacher because, and I quote, my English skills “seem to be very good.”.

Once more my “education is the most important thing” bubble bursted. It’s incredibly how less even Universities care about who they hire and who’s teaching their students. Maybe I should just give up.

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