Covid-19 has badly impacted almost every country in the world. China is the very first country to experience the burn of this virus. To curb the spread of the virus, China sealed all its international borders, shut all public and private organizations and put a ban on all public gathering. A total lockdown has been imposed on the country from January 23, 2020 and China border has been sealed for foreigners from March 28h, 2020.
Henceforth, the situation affected foreign professionals working in China, even those who were having a long term working visa. This situation was not any different for TEFL teachers. All of them had to leave the country almost immediately. This was the very initial picture of the country, and gradually they embraced different strategies to handle the situation. Now almost 8 months after WHO declared Covid-19 a pandemic, China has brought the disease under control as a country. Accepting the new normalcy, China has started gradually reopening its international borders. It’s a positive sign for the TELF personnel working in China or wants to work in China. Here in this post, we have discussed the relevant changes and new rules that have been incorporated in the TEFL industry of China. Hope this will help many EFL teachers who are projecting to work in China or want to come back to the country.
Coronavirus situation in China
Combating the current situation to bring the country to normalcy drastic measures have been taken by the Chinese authority. On that front, the country has now managed to handle the situation under control. While the virus hasn’t fully disappeared, some sporadic outbreaks have been reported in individual cities. Keeping a continuous vigilance on the situation, the country is maintaining proper measures to contain the virus from spreading further in the country.
As on 25th of October 2020 as per WHO data only 22 cases have been reported nationwide in the last 24 hrs.
Reopening of Schools And Teaching Organizations
Schools have resumed in China from August. In China, most kindergartens, primary and middle schools and universities will be reopening for the new semester until the end of September. A few colleges and universities would open again at the start of October, the ministry announced. Gradually Chinese authorities are trying to bring nearly 280 million students on campus with all the precautionary measures of new normalcy.
Hence the opportunity for the EFL teachers who are aspiring to start their EFL career in China is increasing manifold. Most of the EFL teachers had left the country. As the various institutes are resuming their curriculum, demand for the language teaching professionals will be high. So cross your fingers and apply for the job.
Travel guideline in China
Chinese media has stated that starting September 3, the country is resuming direct flights from eight countries, including Thailand, Cambodia, Pakistan, Greece, Denmark, Sweden, and Canada.
Though China has opened its borders for foreign nationals for business and essential services, they are not issuing visas for foreign English teachers. So one can travel to China but can’t work legally there right now. But as schools and teaching organizations are reopening, the EFL teachers can hope for the positive signals very soon.
Apply For A Work Visa
Once the Borders of China reopen, they will start reissuing visas. ‘Z’ visa is needed to work in China.
For applying visa one needs the following documents:
- Bachelor’s degree – authenticated by the issuing body and authenticated by the Chinese embassy.
- 120 hour TEFL certificate – notarized by the issuing body and endorsed by the Chinese embassy.
- Clean criminal background check report – issued within 6 months – notarized by the issuing body and authenticated by Chinese.
- Medical check – issued within 6 months
The documents have to be sent to the concerned school school who will issue an ‘invitation letter’ to work in China. This letter is used to apply for your work visa at the local Chinese embassy.
Remember that there will be a huge backlog for notaries and visa applications. While your local Chinese embassy is not accepting visa applications right now, when the borders reopen, they’ll be super busy.
Certify As a TEFL Teachers
Keeping the situation in mind, one should find a suitable TEFL certification course without wasting time or waiting for borders to reopen, and get certified. Now most of the TEFL training organizations offer online courses.
Complete your 120 hours TEFL certification, and start applying for a job. In recent scenarios, many professionals are working in online mode. Continue practicing for interviews and search for online positions offered by Chinese language schools. Apply for such positions, join these positions until the borders are open and build a strong resume with solid work experience in Chinese schools. Keep yourself ready for the enormous opportunities that are coming on the way.
Take a Covid Test
Since July 20, 2020, the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) has required both foreign and Chinese passengers flying into China to obtain COVID-19 negative certificates before boarding if they are from or transferring via the listed countries.
Passengers must complete the nucleic acid tests at facilities designated or recognized by Chinese embassies in host countries within five days before embarkation. Chinese embassies will cautiously evaluate the testing limit of host nations and plan traveling way when testing conditions are met.
Prepare For Quarantine
Travelers will be subject to a 14-day mandatory quarantine in the first entry point city. After they complete the fortnight quarantines and test negative for the virus, they can travel for the desired city on the same day or following day and they don’t need to undergo another 14-day quarantine. Otherwise, they will be subjected to another 14-day quarantine upon arrival.
Those older than 70, younger than 14, pregnant, with underlying medical conditions, or in other special situations can apply for self-isolation at home. Others must spend their 14-day isolate at assigned lodgings. This means you need to take into account an extra two weeks worth of food and board in your initial budget (around $50 per day).
A final update on the situation is that many language learning schools in China are working in online mode with EFL teachers. So, without bothering about current developments on border reopening of China for TEFL candidates, you should:
- Certify yourself
- Apply for online TEFL jobs in China.
- Start working
- Persist a strong working experience
- Make yourself ready for future opportunities.