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Buckland Group

1. How do I apply to Buckland?
Buckland has an on-line application form. Simply complete the form with the required details. (Get more information from how to apply)

2. Does Buckland charge any application fee or service fee?
No! Buckland does not charge any service or application fee because all the fees are paid by Buckland franchised schools. All the services including visa & immigration paperwork, airport pickup, culture orientation, school placement, professional development support and emergency support are covered. Just submit all the required documents and your application process is finished.

3. What happen when teachers first arrive?
An English-speaking representative from the Buckland Group will meet you at the Guilin airport. You will be brought to the Buckland Building in Yangshuo and enjoy 6 - 10 days of orientation, training, sightseeing, and a chance to overcome jet lag before you start teaching. During this session, you will learn more about our Teaching Program and Buckland's franchised schools. You will also meet other new teachers and bond with like-minded people who are embarking on the same adventure as you. For details, please refer to our Orientation Program page: http://www.bucklandgroup.org/sub/orientation.html

4. Does Buckland train its teachers?
During the first week at Buckland, all teachers participate in an Orientation Program that includes Chinese culture orientation and English teaching training. Learning about Chinese culture helps you understand our wonderful country and customs you will encounter. The teacher training prepares you for the differences in the Chinese education system. It includes techniques for teaching conversational English, classroom management, activities, and a chance to practice and observe in real classrooms with Chinese students. After you begin teaching, professional development opportunities will be still available for you through emails with our training staff. Our teachers are always helped and led by the teacher trainers and senior, experienced teachers.

5. How to go to school after training?
Buckland will make all your travel arrangements by plane, train, bus or car. The travel expense will be reimbursed by your host school.

6. What age of children will I be teaching?
Most of our students are teenagers (13 - 18 yrs. old) in grades 7 to 12. In China, these grades are called junior and senior middle school. We also have primary schools with 7 - 12-year-old children, these are grades 1 to 6. You can choose the age group you are most comfortable with.

7. Will I teach in one school or be transferred among different schools?
You will teach in one of our schools for at least one school term. This way you will meet the same students every week, work as a member of the team with the Chinese English teachers, make friends and establish your network in the local community.

8. What is RMB or Yuan? What is the exchange rate?
RMB (Renminbi) or "Yuan" is the name for the Chinese currency in use. At this writing 6.8 Chinese RMB equals 1 U.S. dollar.

9. How many hours do I need to teach? What will my teaching schedule look like?
Teachers at Buckland are paid on a salary basis, not on an hourly one. Our contracts require maximum 15 teaching hours per week. Teachers usually have four 40 - 45-minute lessons each day between the hours of 8:30 - 12:00 pm, 2:30 - 5:30 pm, from Monday to Friday. Sometimes or at private training schools, the regular Saturday and Sunday weekend days will be switched with regular work days, but you will always get two consecutive days off each week. If the school requires more than 20 lessons per week, the teachers will be paid 100-150 RMB for each extra hour.

10. What are the apartments like in Buckland? Are apartments individual or shared?
Most schools provide each teacher a private apartment with at least one bedroom, one living room, one bathroom and one kitchen. At some schools, two teachers need to share one big apartment with at least two bedrooms and other rooms. Every apartment is outfitted with all the necessities for working and living comfortably, including an air conditioner, a TV, a DVD player, a telephone, internet access, a computer and desk, sofa and chairs, a bed, a wardrobe / dresser, bed linens, a washing machine, a hot shower, and a kitchen with a refrigerator, a microwave, a stove and essential dishes. See the photos . (Note: accommodations for teachers teaching in Yangshuo and Sanya are different)

11. How close to the school will I be living?
Some of teacher apartments are on the school campus, because most of our schools have around 200 - 300 Chinese teachers and staff, there is always a residential area for teachers on campus. Some other schools have the foreign teacher apartments off the school grounds with about 5 to 10-minute walk away.

12. Are the utilities covered? If not, how much a month would electricity, water, gas cost?
The school will pay 200 RMB for electricity, water, and gas per month for each foreign teacher, you need to pay the extra cost. Usually a Chinese family spends about 150 RMB for their electric, water and gas each month.

13. How do I open a local bank account? Is it easy to transfer money to my home?
Buckland will assist you to open your bank account during the oriention period. Also, your English speaking assistant at the host school will go to the bank with you to open an account if necessary. You need your passport to do this. Regarding transferring money, we recommend that you use PayPal. Buckland can help you with international money transfers through PayPal or Bank of China, however, please bear in mind that you will still need to pay for the fees generated by both banks at two ends.

14. Does Buckland help teachers acquire work visas?
Buckland Group is responsible for all your visa and residence. (for more info. Please see HOW TO COME page: http://www.bucklandgroup.org/sub/how_to_come.html)

15. What immunization shots should a teacher who is going to China get?
Teachers should contact a health unit in their home country for current requirements. Hepatitis A & B, Tetanus, and Typhoid, are usually recommended. There are also several hospitals and clinics with English speaking doctors who can administer the vaccines in China, but they will not administer vaccination serums brought from outside of China. All our schools are NOT located in the malaria area.

16. What should a teacher who has just been hired bring to China?
It is a good idea to bring along photos of friends and family, English magazines, posters with lots of pictures of food, cloths and homes, and holiday paraphernalia, stickers and your country's flags, all of which make good teaching aids. A phrasebook and a guide book are not bad ideas either. As for clothing, one pair of formal shoes is recommended for special events. For the chilly Yangshuo winters, a jacket, some sweaters, and long underwear are good ideas, and for the rainy season, a waterproof jacket is handy. (for more info. Please see page: http://www.bucklandgroup.org/sub/what to bring.html)

17. How many students are there in each class?
Classes have an average of 40 students. There are around 50 students per class in Public schools and 30 students in Private schools.

18. Are there any extra-curricular activities for Buckland students?
Schools always hold extra-curricular activities for students such as after school programs and interest groups. Foreign teachers are especially welcomed and often invited to these activities. It is not your contracted responsibilities to attend, however we strongly recommend your participation as it is one of the best ways to connect yourself with the local community and get your students to learn English in a natural way. Holding an English Corner once a week (1 - 2 hours) is Buckland teachers' responsibility though as stated in our contract. English Corner often involves free chatting and playing games with students in an informal setting outside of the classrooms.

19. How many teachers work for Buckland?
There are annually over 200 foreign teachers working for Buckland in over 80 locations.

20. What is the difference between a tourist visa and a work visa?
A tourist visa allows a foreigner to travel in China, but it does not permit a foreigner to work in China. To obtain a work visa, a foreigner must be sponsored by a Chinese organization. Buckland does this for all our foreign teachers. This is a standard practice in China and all applicants are processed by the People's Security Bureau.

21. Does Buckland have a dress code?
Buckland requires its teachers to dress in a professional manner. This does not mean that they must wear suits, but they should not wear tank tops, tongs, cut-offs or any other casual wear.

22. Do teachers require a physical examination?
A health form needs to be filled out for processing Z visa paperwork. Upon your arrival, a heath check is required at our government appointed hospital for upgrading your Z visa to a resident permit. Buckland will arrange the medical check and guide you in person through the hospital, but you'll have to cover the cost (about 300rmb paid to the hospital).

23. What resources do Buckland franchised schools have available for teachers to use?
Schools supply every teacher with the following teaching materials: textbooks, teacher's guide for textbooks. Some schools are equipped with the latest electronic teaching aids in every classroom and some have only blackboards. Your home office also has a computer, with high speed internet access, and some schools may also provide printers. Buckland supplies a teacher manual full of information about lesson planning, classroom management, teaching activities, etc.

24. Do teachers have a Chinese teaching assistant?
Most Chinese schools don't provide a TA. However, your FAO (Foreign Affair Officer) will help you throughout the term with general administrative support, translation, and any other problems you might encounter. In some primary (elementary) schools, a Chinese teaching assistant is assigned for some class that you teach.

25. What is a teacher monthly budget like?
Utilities, on average, cost 200 RMB a month, but can be more in the very hot summer and very cold winter because of the cost of air-conditioning and heat. Food is inexpensive if you cook at home or even eat out at local restaurants. Travel within the city can be done by several means: taxis are around 1.6 - 2.5RMB per kilometer; local buses are 1 or 2 RMB depending on where you want to go; the school will provide free use of a bike. Since most of our schools are in small towns and cities, 1000 - 1500 RMB/month is enough for basic living. By comparison, living in a big city such as Beijing, Shanghai, or Guangzhou, a monthly budget around 3000 - 5000 Yuan is needed.

26. How do teachers arrange their tax payments?
Teachers ought to make their own tax arrangements with their home countries. The tax on your teaching salary with Chinese government is paid through your host school.

27. Does Buckland provide medical coverage?
Private health insurance is rare in China. Buckland recommends that teachers purchase their own health care insurance before leaving for China. Teachers can receive free medical care at the host school's clinic for small problems such as a cold, and if necessary pay a low fee for medical care outside of the school. Buckland provides all teachers with standard Chinese accident insurance covering up to 45,000 RMB emergency medical cares.

28. Dose Buckland provide Chinese language lessons and arrange any cultural events for its teachers?
Most Buckland franchised schools provide many teachers with one free Mandarin Chinese lesson each week and arranges cultural events such as food sampling, day trips to neighboring towns, Chinese temples, parks, and gardens throughout the semester. Buckland also holds parties to celebrate Chinese holidays such as the Autumn Festival and the Chinese New Year. Buckland's franchised schools do their most to take their teachers to historical and cultural sites around the city and community that they are living in.

29. How much preparation is required for each lesson?
This depends on the lesson and on the individual teacher's experience and initiative. The Buckland Teacher Manual contains lesson plans and other reference materials to make lesson planning less of a burden. It can take as little as fifteen minutes to prepare a lesson. In addition, a single lesson plan, which is designed for one class, is adaptable and used for any other classes at the same level. This means that most of our teachers only have to prepare one or two lesson plans per week for the levels they teach.

30. We are Christians. What does this mean for us in China? Will we be able to go to churches? Will we be able to bring Christian resources to China?
It is no problem for you go to church and bring your Christian books FOR YOUR OWN USE in China, but it is illegal if you spread your religion and Christian books to Chinese people according to Chinese laws.

31. When we arrive in China for our probation period, is there a possibility of not getting a job afterwards? Will you guarantee us a job after the probation period?
It is IMPOSSIBLE to not get a job because we always have positions reserved for you before you come to China.

32. Where can teachers go with their problems?
Buckland has several administrative staff members and senior teachers who serve as program coordinators and help teachers with any problems they may have. Teachers can always contact our primary operation office in Yangshuo, Guilin for any assistance they may need throughout their stay in China.

We hope these answered most of your questions. If you have any more questions, please feel free to contact us. If you would like to apply, please refer to our on-line application.

Buckland International Education Group

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