Monday, May 23, 2016

China to hire 12,000 more ESL & TEFL teachers for fall semester to compensate for mass exodus...

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The Ministry of Education says their public schools are running short of experienced native English teachers and this is no mystery. Over the last three years over 20,000 veteran foreign China English teachers have left China for greener pastures in Sen ingapore, Korea and Japan where the pay is more than 70% higher on average - when adjusted for cost of living. Many of those leaving this year at the end of their contracts also cite the heavy air pollution they must endure during the four months of winter which seven foreign embassies have labeled "toxic".

Still, China's historical mystique continues to lure fresh faces every year and it is hoped that higher wages that now average 16,000 per month with a 2,000 yuan housing allowance will be enough to produce 12,000 native English speakers for Sept/2016 although we think this will be a true challenge.

For those who love history, great food, and want to learn Chinese and a whole new way of life, a one year contract in China may be just your ticket of you are at least 21 years of age with 2 years teaching experience and a bachelor degree in any subject. If you have a criminal record do not bother to apply. If however you are a native speaker you can demand wages of 20,000 yuan per month or even more at the private schools.

WORD OF WARNING:  China is full of scams, and most of them come from job recruiters who lure students to come work without a mandatory Z visa. There are also a few identity thieves that pose as schools or recruiters fishing for your personal data. Read these links to defend yourself accordingly:

Also feel free to check our annual white and blacklists at

Please do not write us asking about individual employers. We don't do your leg work on an individual basis. That is precisely why we have over 1,500 white-listed employers and over 500 on the blacklist. Get off your butt and read. And off course, do not come to China without a signed contract and Z visa already in your hand.  Last piece of advice:..

Monday, April 4, 2016

Who is trashing the CFTU and why? Relax you need not be Sherlock Holmes to figure this out!

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In the last 6 months, five China job recruiters that we exposed over the last two years have done their very best to smear us with all sorts of accusations, some of which were admittedly quite funny and even we had a good laugh.(ie the one about the United Nations wanted us all to be hanged!).  Actually to be honest, we take the derogatory comments as a compliment that we have been doing our job- exposing school and agent frauds, and giving useful information to our teaching colleagues already in China, as well as those inbound to China.

Here are some of the people who have attacked us and when you read the links you will understand why:

1. A moderator at Reddit whose day job is an unregistered china teacher job recruiter.

2. A former recruiter from Expertise Education named Stefan who was arrested for working with an illegal visa and advised many other newbie teachers to come work in China illegally with many unlicensed "black schools & learning centers".  This is his story and frankly we sympathized with the guy until he began saying we snitched on him to the authorities. We are foreigners- we don't snitch on fellow foreigners - period.  and also

3. A handful of users at Echinacities, eslcafe, and thebeijinger who were exposed over the last three years as unlicensed job recruiters who even sold your resumes to identity thieves for $30-$50 each! See

We noticed all these fake teachers masquerading as "fellow teachers" online about three years ago when this article was published.

All of these people have asked us to say only "nice things about China" and one even offered us $50,000 to do so. Why? Because they earn about $1,000 for every teacher they bring to China, whether they are qualified or not, and whether they are given legal visas or not, and whether the teachers get arrested or not. So long as the new teachers do not get caught within the first 90 days, the agents get paid. The odds are in favor of the agents- at least for those first 90 days. Then it become a 50/50 situation.  Anyway, we turned down the $50,000 and we continue to publish the truth,like these links for examples:

We have been sharing these scam alerts and our white and blacklists since 2010 and we will continue to do so until all the unethical agents still remaining clean-up their acts.  We also provide training, welcome packages,and social activities - all of which is free. Even our membership is free. We do not sell any product nor service, nor advertising. We do not endorse anything,and we have never been sued for any reason. So the next time someone suggests we are cheating someone, please demand the details of who and how was anyone ever cheated by us in any way.

Now then, if you need to breakout of a crappy one-sided contract, find a better-paying safe employer, negotiate a fair contract, or get your last paycheck or release letter, just scroll and search through our 89 posts in our archives, or use google, and you will find six years of hard work on your behalf.

Thankfully,over 90% of the email we receive indicates our colleagues appreciate our work. If we can be doing something better, please just let us know. I am Gregg Finch, the Administrator and you can reach me at

Please understand that we receive about 300 inquiries every day from all over the world and we operate only with a volunteer staff. So if you are not a member it may take us more than a week to reply to you. Our members get 24 hour service. Thank you for your understanding and patience. As I sign off for now I leave you with one question... Are YOU earning at least 250 yuan per hour teaching in China? If not - please read this here:

As foreign teachers in China, we feel a moral obligation to look out for one another. Please help us do this if you agree.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Beware of illegal Z visa China Foreign Teachers teaching ESL & TEFL - You can easily get arrested and deported.

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If you used an agent to find a ESL or TEFL teaching job in China, there is a 33% chance your Z visa is NOT legal - even if it is real. What!?!  Yes, as bizarre as this may sound to you, here is what is going on and 80% of foreign teachers in China do not even know about this.
If your real true employer is not registered with SAFEA and SAIC they may be what is called a "black school" or "black learning center" (you can check our 2016 blacklist to check at they probably gave you an invitation letter from another company who is properly registered and legitimate. Although this is illegal it has been done for years and only a few dozen teachers were actually caught and deported. HOWEVER, following some bad behavior incidents of foreign teachers, the Chinese government is now doing their best to weed out all the many fake teachers in China who may never have taught anything, used a fake diploma to apply for their visa, or are working on the wrong visa. Last year they arrested and deported over 2,100 expat teachers who "faked" their way into China.

So this year the PSB is on a mission to scrutinize all 31,000+ visa applications of the foreigners now teaching in China as well as all the incoming new comers. THEY ARE NOW MATCHING INVITATION LETTERS TO YOUR ACTUAL EMPLOYER.
If there is not a match, you will get a friendly visit but even your best smile and Chinese language skills will not save you from being arrested, jailed and deported.

If the company, red seal, and SAIC business license all match with your real employer, you have nothing to worry about mate. If you are not sure how to check, you can email us a scan of your invitation letter, and the name of your actual employer and we can let you know within 2 weeks if your Z visa is legal or not - in strict confidence. of course. If you have an illegal Z visa you have three choices;
1) You can demand that your employer fix the problem with the proper Z visa (only possible if they are approved and registered with SAFEA)

2) You can quickly search out another white-listed employer who can hire you with the correct Z visa before your current visa expires - or you get caught.

3) You can simply depart China voluntarily on your own before you get caught and banned, and then reenter with a proper Z visa from a legitimate employer.

At present it is estimated that one-third of all Z visas issued are illegal. We urge you to check yours today. If you want our help with verification we ask that you first check our blacklist first at If you do not see your school listed, then please send us the scan of your invitation letter to help[at]China Since our members get priority attention, you may have to wait up to two weeks for a reply. Thank you for your patience. You may also want to learn about other China scams at

Monday, March 7, 2016

China Foreign Teacher Survey Has Surprises For CFTU Staff...

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Every year we take an annual survey in order to compile our white and blacklists and to get an idea of the biggest concerns, gripes, and worries of our teaching colleagues in China. The 2015 annual survey results were compiled and here are some interesting finds we now share with you...
* 62% of those surveyed say they will not be staying another year in China for one of three reasons;
-  Toxic Pollution
-  Hepatitis Epidemic
-  Pay is better elsewhere with less scams
*  Only 18% of teachers used agents to find their teaching positions in 2015
*  29% admitted to working illegally without a Z visa or a fake diploma
*  59% claimed they were cheated by their employer at least once (mostly private schools)
*  Average full-time monthly salary for a native English speaker in China in 2015 was 16,500 yuan
*  Average office hours required in 2015 was 15 hours with 20 classroom hours
*  Average age of China foreign teachers jumped to 25 years.
*  67% of China foreign teachers said they are "mostly satisfied" with their job
*  79% said they do not trust job ads at ESLCafe, Beijinger, nor EChinacities/Sinocities
*  28% said they earn over 40,000 per month doing private tutoring
*  43% said they use the CFTU white list and 82% said they use our blacklist
*  The most complaints we received were 39 against a single agency, and 28 against a school
*  68% of China expat teachers are male and 52% come from America, 12% from Canada, 18% from the Ukraine, 10% from Australia, and 8% from the UK
*  The large chains like Wall Street, EF, Webb, Disney, had the highest turn-over rates
*   The most "unacceptable chain" employer was Disney English, which also had the second highest number of teachers arrested for working illegally.

BTW... did you know the following facts:

<> You have rights as a foreign employee that are the same as Chinese professionals if you hold a Z visa and FEC.  See here for details...

<> 1,978 foreign expat teachers were arrested and deported from China last year for working without a Z visa and 482 were deported for working with fake university diplomas.

<> There are now only 122 legally licensed and registered HR job agents (head hunters) operating in China nationwide and all have an SAIC license they can show you. If you cannot obtain a color scan of their SAIC business license they are black scam operation to be avoided. There are 322 "black" China job agents (that we know of at this time)

<> The five most trusted and used ESL/TEFL forums used by China foreign teachers are,,,, and

The top 3 complaints from China foreign teachers in 2015 were:

1)  Last paycheck was not paid
2)  Contract not honored
3)  Lies about Visas
4)  Release letter not given
5)  Employer turned out to be illegal employer

NOTICE:  The CFTU is not allowed to provide legal advice, and we have very limited resources. So if you are not a member and you need help or information, you must be patient if you send us an email. Our 6,129 members get our priority attention. Our volunteer staff does the best we can so please scroll through our web site and the welcome package we will send you by email for the information you need. We do not investigate or "check" schools on an individual request basis - especially if you are not a member. Thank you for your understanding, cooperation, and support. If you wish to report an illegal school, agent, or company that holds your passport, or hired you without a Z visa, or refuses to provide you a copy of their license or a release letter, please send us an email at report[at]

Monday, February 15, 2016

Chinese PSB authorities will arrest and deport any China Foreign ESL or TEFL Teacher caught using a fake diploma or TEFL Certificate in 2016

You need to know that  more than 90% of the online job ads are scams and deliberately do not tell applicants that they MUST have a REAL  bachelor degree and a Z visa (work visa).  They only tell the newbie wannabe foreign teacher what they want them to know. Why?
Because aside from the $500 placement fee the agent collects from the school, they will sell a fake diploma to any applicant who doesn't have one, and then offer and obtain for them a 90 day "F" or "L" visa which will get the new teacher into the country, but give them a 50% chance of arrest as this below post from China Scam Patrol explains quite well...

"China to deport 3,000 illegal foreign teachers for fake diplomas and wrong visas"


This may be good or bad news for you depending if you are one of the 20,000 foreigners legally teaching in China or one of the 10,000 expats who used fake diplomas or TEFL certificates to get your visa to work in China.
We were recently "unofficially" advised that a new 500 member PSB task force will be launched on March 1, 2016 to hunt down, arrest, and deport any expat teacher using false documents (or who doesn't have a valid Z visa) This will be a nation-wide sweep according to a Captain I the PSB whose true name was not given although we inspected his government credentials when he agreed to a secret 90 minute interview we waited six months to get.
How will they find the fake teachers? In short, any way they can! But the Captain said they would...
1. Expand the sting operations that proved successful in arresting over 3,000 expats in 2014 and 2015 with more fake job ads and even setting up booths at job fairs in major China cities.
2. Copy cell phone and email data from every black China job agent they arrest or question.
3. By promoting their existing "Reward Program" that pays 10,000 yuan to anyone who turns in a fake foreign teacher
4. Monitoring emails of foreigners that contain red flag words like "replica", "fake", "reproduction" as well as "fake", "genuine", and "diploma" and "certificate".
5. Resume reviews conducted randomly at schools and principals who refuse to cooperate will be fined 50,000 rmb per violation.
He also alluded to a new set of tricks and traps that have not been used yet, but somehow it will involve an email and Skype marketing campaign, perhaps of a school that really does not exist.
What created this new PSB zeal?  Over 2,000 complaints to the Minister of Education from angry mothers, one of whom happened to be the wife of a Mayor whose kid was being tutored by a girl who turned out to be using a fake diploma from NYU! Thanks to Wei Xin, that story spurred a bunch of written complaints and yet other mothers complained about 3 dozen Chinese "International Schools" and companies falsely claiming to be "partners" and "affiliates" of China's Ministry of Education.
Now the jig is up, and if you are not working legally in China, now would be a great time for you to take a "leave of absence" and exit voluntarily so you are not deported as a convict felon. For those of you working within the Chinese law you will soon have a great reason to ask for a raise because the PSB captain said they will not stop until they reach their annual quota of 3,000 expat deportations. The below links relate to over 5,000 previous deportations of foreign teachers from China:

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Updated 2016 Official China Foreign ESL & TEFL & AP Teacher Mandatory Legal Requirements - SAFEA Confirmed

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The new year brings us all good news for those wanting to teach in China. The official 2016
requirements for foreigners to teach ESL or TFL English programs in China are the same as they were in 2015, 2014, and 2013!  In others words... NO CHANGES!  Here is what you MUST have to legally teach in China...

(1) Must be 22-55 years of age

(2) Must have a VERIFIABLE bachelor degree (yes, they are now checking)

(3) Must have a Z visa in your passport BEFORE you even tutor a single class even on a part-time basis

(4) Must have 2 years verifiable teaching experience (any subject)

(5) Must speak and write fluently in English

(6) Must have a police certificate proving you have no criminal record (Beijing & Shanghai only at this time)

TEFL/TESOL Certificates are not a government requirement but about 20% of the chain schools like WSW, Webb, and EF require one. Native Speakers are also in high demand and command the highest salaries. (12,000 to 20,000 per month)

CAUTION:  Do NOT believe any agent or recruiter who tells you that you can work on a L, M, or F visa. This is totally false and you will end up like the Disney teachers or these 49 expats in Shanghai that were recently arrested and deported. Here

Finally, be aware that the PSB is now checking 50% of all foreign teachers - not only for Z visas but also t verify diplomas.  If you are caught without either, here is what you can expect:

In closing we remind you that spending only 30 minutes to read the below 5 websites will keep you safe from China job and internship scams. Also be sure to see the 1,569 white-listed schools/employers on our CFTU White List (just scroll down two posts on this blogsite)
If you have any questions or doubts about the above requirements you can confirm with your own embassy or the Chinese government at or drop us an email at

Friday, February 5, 2016

CFTU Updated 2016 Blacklist of China ESL Job Recruiters and TEFL School Agents - Over 415 Sly Devils To Avoid...

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Well last month we gave you the good news (1,596 White-Listed schools in China) and this month we must share the bad news... Over 300 new entities have been added to the China Blacklist which are basically all the unlicensed black employers, those with numerous complaints of dishonesty and wage theft from expat teachers, and all the China job agents and recruiters that will hustle you any way they can to make some quick money selling you bogus TEFL courses, diplomas, or putting your freedom at risk by getting you a China job without the mandatory Z visa. 

But be sure to avoid these 415 bad apples who often change their name. Go here for a complete and current listing:

The big problem is that the sly devils are well disguised and most are now foreigners who win your trust by telling you anything you want to hear. You do not learn the truth until you actually get to China and realize your are working illegally! To learn all you need to know about working in China visit these web sites and read the one you are now on!

Thursday, January 28, 2016

CFTU Releases 2016 China Foreign Teachers White List of China Schools, Kindergartens, & Universities...

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The new year starts of with some good news to share with you all... There are almost 300 new schools, and learning centers added to our 2016 White List since last year. They are finally getting the message of accountability - Thanks to all of you who have been diligent in reporting abuses, and giving recognition and kudos to the ethical and honorable education centers and schools that deserve a pat on the back. Our blacklist also grew, but only by 57 new additions which you can still find here:  We hope the below will help the ESL & TEFL newbies get a safe start in China. The complete 97 page listing is available to our members free of charge by sending and email to

Saturday, January 16, 2016

CFTU Asks: Do YOU truly Deserve A Pay Raise In 2016 China Foreign ESL & TEFL Teacher?

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Average salary of a qualified China foreign English (ESL & TEFL) teacher is now 16,000 yuan per month.  Are YOU qualified?  What are YOU earning?

Welcome to 2016, the year of the monkey. If you are reading this website it means you are probably an educated veteran China foreign teacher or a newbie who got lost online.  It matters not, because what you most need to know right now is that even though China will be needing over 500,000 ESL & TEFL teachers over the next five years, the supply of qualified TEFL & ESL teachers willing to endure the pollution, hepatitis risk, and clever scams of China is dwindling.  This is both good and bad news - depending on your perspective.
If you are a China veteran you now have the grounds to demand a pay raise of 250 yuan per hour if you are a full time teacher and 300 yuan if you are part time. Why?  Because less than 60% of all expat teachers working in China today are 100% legal and subject to arrest and deportation at any moment they get caught. Why are they illegal?  Pick one of the below...

* Working without a mandatory Z visa

* Working with a fabricated university degree

* Working with a fake TEFL certificate

* Working for an unlicensed school or learning center

* Working for a "black school" not authorized to hire foreigners.

If you hold a bachelor degree in Education you should be earning no less than 400 yuan per hour. If not, you are simply cheating yourself.

If you have any doubts about your earning potential please ignore all the low-ball fake job ads spammed all over the internet by the black agents and visit and read up on real wages and salaries. Do not be fooled by the lip service of recruiters.  Of course they would love to hire you for 5,000 per month but the reality is the current average income for expat TEFL & ESL teachers in tier 1 cities is 16,000 yuan.

BREAKING NEWS!  Check back here in 5 days for our 2016 White and Blacklist of China Schools and Agents.

Again we warn you about the Echinacities, Beijinger and eslcafe job ads: and if you must use an agent or recruiter be damn sure they provide you an agent reply form (see here below) and read this here before sending anyone your resume related to jobs in China:

Do not make the same mistake that these 49 expats who spent their China Christmas in Jail and are were sent home as convicted felons.  Remember, most agents will only tell you what they want you to know, and often withhold the truth of your true risks of working without a Z visa.

Here is what you will find out the hard and costly way if you listen to agents instead of follow China's visa laws:

Can you just imagine how these foreign English teachers must have felt?