My wife and I have worked in China for three years and
would like to share a few experiences, in particular
our experience with The Buckland Group.
It is an easy thing to see China as a tourist but you
experience the real China by woking here. As a teacher
you are really in the thick of things, you will see
and get to know the way ordinary Chinese people live.
Having tried to do it yourself method, I can tell you
this has landed us on an island 48 km's from the nearest
town. Feeling isolated and in a lot of trouble, with
no heating, computer, or telephone and nowhere to turn
for help. Without someone like Owen Buckland who inspects
schools before you go there you can end up in a mess.
Our first agent left us with no training or back up,
just dumped in a school never to be seen again, the
sink or swim method.
There are always problems living in an alien culture
and you need someone to check out the problems before
they happen and be there when you need help. I was given
a mobile phone by the school we teach at now, I know
that I can ring the staff at Buckland or the school
any time and get help or advice. Chinese people are
very helpful but without the language you can be a bit
stuck, ringing a staff member and handing the phone
to a Chinese person can solve many problems.
Chinese schools themselves are very honest and stick
to contracts meticulously, however some of them have
little idea of how to look after foreign teachers. This
is why you need someone to act on your behalf, to explain
how best they can treat their new teachers and what
their needs are. Chinese people can thrive without hot
water, heating, computer access, DVD's and so on but
after a days work you need some of these little luxuries
to relax and feel at home.
The school we are working at presently is in a small
town called Tou Jiang in Hunan Province. It has many
karst (limestone) mountains with caves and crystal clear
rivers. The people are always helpful in these small
less developed areas. The school here is very generous
we have been shopping for bikes the best in town, computers,
mobile phones and almost anything we can think of. We
have been taken to lakes, caves, rivers, mountains and
nearby towns. All in the school car, with heaps of food,
beer and good company.
Last week after returning late at night from another
town the bus driver and conductress went into a huddle
discussing Australians. When the bus stopped and everyone
got off our baggage was taken off and put into a new
four wheel drive, we were taken home right to our door,
who the driver was we will never know, it's just an
example of how total strangers look after you here.
On one occasion we went into a restaurant, it seemed
full of guests having banquets, finally two chairs were
produced and we sat at someone's table. After a great
meal I pulled out my wallet "it's all been paid
for by your host" one of them said in the little
English he knew. Who our host was I
never really found out, we have had many meals paid
for by people we didn't know.
Even in Beijing, when a taxi driver spent a very long
time helping us find the right bus in a huge bus station
,I gave him twenty yuan about ten minutes later he got
on the bus with ten yuan change. I have never had change
given under such circumstances in any other country.
I know a lot of people who think of coming to China
worry about their safety, we have traveled in most Asian
counties and this is by far the safest. In particular,
outside of the tourist centers the people will treat
you as honored guests. They never rip you off and always
treat you fairly.
If you're thinking about coming to China, stop thinking
just come, you will learn a lot about a country which
has at this time in history the future of the world
in its hands.
We have found The Buckland Group great to work for,
they run their business more like a family, built on
service and reputation, not just a money making enterprise.
They are easy to talk to and always act with your interests
Ray and Lyn Boggon.
Copyright © 1999-2006.
All rights reserved 桂ICP备：05010604
Buckland International Education Group