In spite of tough economic conditions the idea of a gap year just before or after university or at any stage of life can be very attractive. There is now a huge industry built around offering gap year experiences and these are usually very expensive requiring a great deal of fund raising beforehand.
So an all-expenses paid gap year teaching school children English during which you earn a salary and where your flights are paid begins to look very attractive. This is the deal on offer from I Go To China when you sign up for 6 months or a year. How can they afford to do this?
The fact is that the jobs are available in rural China which native Chinese teachers tend to avoid once they have qualified. It is much more attractive for them to migrate to the larger cities where pay is higher and facilities much better. This leaves the rural areas with a chronic shortage of teachers. This phenomenon has been identified by Professor Sugata Mitra who is working on ways to improve education in rural areas. The I Go To China program could be viewed as one way of overcoming this problem.
You don’t have to be a qualified teacher to take advantage of the I Go To China offer. You will be given tried and tested materials to use and get local support. It helps of course if you have an idea that teaching may suit you. And if you are an experienced teacher then you will have the opportunity to use those approaches which have worked for you elsewhere.
Naturally foreigners cannot help with all areas of the curriculum but there is a huge demand for English, especially from the parents who see this as essential for their child’s future prospects.
So if you are thinking of taking a gap year starting in 2013 then it’s not too early to contact me to find out more.
In future posts I will relate the impressions that some previous users of I Go To China had when they went to China.