|ZhengZhou foreign Language School No.2|
| I have taught in this school 2½ years, 2 separate years, and have found it to be very supportive and accommodating. I have a 5-room apartment with all utilities provided. The teacher pays long distance phone calls. It is furnished with VCD, large screen TV, computer and Internet (ADSL) printer and scanner. Furniture and bedding are excellent but I was the first occupant (2001) so I had it newly furnished. Any repairs are promptly made. Medical facilities are provided but as I was never sick I cannot comment on them. Dental facilities are very good but not provided.
It is s Sr/Jr middle school with an enrolment of about 2,000. The students are very manageable and present no classroom management problems. I consider them average, as some are very interested in English while others are more interested in basketball but none presented classroom problems.
The apartment is about off campus but only 4 minutes from the classroom. This affords excellent privacy coupled with convenience. Across from the apartment/school is a beautiful park.
The town is named Shangjie, a rather well to do community supported by the Great Wall Aluminum Factory. A limited but satisfactory range of restaurant are available from Food Alley, a street where one can eat for 3 or 4 Yuan, to very good and priced accordingly. The school also has a teacher's cafeteria where meals cost about 4 or 5 Yuan.
The strongest point for me was the working relationship between the foreign teachers and the school. Any reasonable request was honored. My classroom has AC, TV, DVD, VHS, and DVD. I used the standard school English book but was also provided a separate book for my class. Additionally I was very much free to generate separate lessons.
I should add that 3 teachers were terminated before the end of the contract period. I knew all 3 teachers and agree with the school. They were not capable teachers who had personal issues in addition to poor teaching methods. The other 6 teachers who have passed through were in agreement that the school was very supportive.
As pay is an often mentioned issue let me address this topic. I received all holidays with pay. My airfare was reimbursed in full within 2 weeks of my arrival. I was always paid promptly without delays or excuses.
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