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EF English First ESL Teacher Reviews

Updated 8 Sep 2019

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2.4
50%
Recommend to a Friend
56%
Approve of CEO
EF English First CEO 	Jacob Toren (no image)
Jacob Toren
13 Ratings
  1. Helpful (2)

    "ESL Teacher"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - ESL Teacher in Moscow
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at EF English First full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Great team, good materials, possible flexible hours

    Cons

    Low salary, high demands, no real professional growth

    Advice to Management

    The pay for an hour is too low and the demands are too high. Sometimes they want you to work on weekends promoting schools in shopping malls, but they pay the same as regular hours and do not cover the transportation. While the teachers have to motivate the students all the time (as well as their parents) they do not receive much motivation from the management.

    EF English First2017-05-19
  2. Helpful (1)

    "Great School"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - ESL Teacher in Changzhou, Jiangsu
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at EF English First full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Always paid on time Good amount of training and teacher development generally well looked after also had multiple company trips each year Good local staff Good variety of classes and plenty of planning time

    Cons

    Short notice for some events Often understood western workplace problems but sometimes dealt with them in an unprofessional way. Due to cultural differences

    EF English First2017-03-15
  3. Helpful (2)

    "A Great company to work for!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    ESL Teacher 
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at EF English First

    Pros

    They allowed me to work independently and come up with my own ideas for Life Clubs. Fellow employees were very friendly and worked together as a team.

    Cons

    Had to spend downtime in the office when we didn't have any classes. Management wasn't always flexible about giving us the ability to change our schedule.

    Advice to Management

    From what I have heard, the management structure has changed and improved since I left.

    EF English First2016-09-05
  4. Helpful (2)

    "Great Start to a teaching career in China"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - ESL Teacher in Wuzhen, Shaanxi
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at EF English First full-time

    Pros

    Legal Visa Great Arrival Support and ongoing development Great colleagues Great Students

    Cons

    Senior teaching and management positions are competitive It would be better if there were more holidays for the first year of the contract

    Advice to Management

    More vacation time! I would of liked a few more days off to travel.

    EF English First2016-07-20
  5. "ESL Teacher"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Contractor - ESL Teacher in Tangerang
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I worked at EF English First for more than a year

    Pros

    Lesson Plans have already been created.

    Cons

    Work hours are all over the place and you also have to work on the weekend.

    Advice to Management

    Hold on to your hats!

    EF English First2016-07-19
  6. Helpful (3)

    "ESL Teacher - Corporate Language Training / Adult Training"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    ESL Teacher in Dalian, Liaoning
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I worked at EF English First

    Pros

    *'Relatively' good salary for ESL teacher in China, compared to other English schools. However, when you calculate what your hourly rate actually is, it's not very high. *Arranges visa and all other required paperwork for working in China *Provides help finding apartment *One roundtrip airfare per year *Weekly group Chinese class

    Cons

    *Many EF schools in China are just franchises of the actual EF company - therefore salary and benefits are not as good as working for the 'actual' EF company *Only 10 days paid holidays per year *Only the first three days of sick leave are fully paid. 4-30 days are paid at 60%. *Class reports can be time-consuming, especially for larger classes. *Heavy workload: Average 16-24 teaching hours per week, plus class... preparation time, plus travel time to/from classes at different client locations. *Travel time to/from client locations can be time-consuming.

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    Advice to Management

    *Just to save costs, you shouldn't cancel events such as Christmas/New Year dinner party, as what happened at the school I worked at. *When classes are held at clients' onsite location, teachers are entitled to either take a taxi or be driven by EF's own driver. However, one client required their teachers to travel to/from class on the Client's shuttle bus, which added time onto the already lengthy journey. This is... unreasonable.

    Show More
    EF English First2016-03-01
  7. "ESL Teacher in China (kids)"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - ESL Teacher in Guangzhou, Guangdong
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at EF English First full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Communication is great and the company is very good to work for overall.

    Cons

    Some management can be unprofessional which can bring down the work atmosphere quality.

    Advice to Management

    Better team building strategies.

    EF English First2016-01-24
  8. Helpful (3)

    "good entry level job for ESL teaching"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - ESL Teacher in Shenyang, Liaoning
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at EF English First full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    great set of foreign teachers and chinese assistants, an ideal job for your first step into the world of ESL. training and feedback provided. The kids are generally a joy to teach and pay was always on time.

    Cons

    The intensive warmers periods. 6 weeks in summer and 4 weeks in winter having to work a 6 day week (up to 39 allotted hours) for no extra money. Career progression is very limited with only those that have worked their way into the old boys club approved for promotion to senior teachers position, Teachers who pride themselves with their professionalism tend to last 1-2 years before jumping ship and moving on to... better paid jobs. Wages are one of the lowest in the city, and the company will overcharge you for the utility bills.

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    Advice to Management

    communication could always be better. Like trying to give teachers suffiecient notice of when the national holidays are happening. Listen to the teachers, Acknowledge those teachers who go the extra mile for the company.

    EF English First2015-12-25
  9. Helpful (7)

    "The company is good, but recent local changes may cause big problems for particular centers."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - ESL Teacher in Shijia, Hunan
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at EF English First full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    -The school itself is very well outfitted with good technology, supplies, and plenty of activities. -The staff is very helpful for new arriving teachers, getting them settled in and easing them into the teaching. -The lesson plans are very detailed and helpful (but management has told us we can't use them as-is, more below) -The brand new program is designed by Cartoon Network and is very colorful and engaging.... -The students are ages 3-adult, so there's always a wide range of age and ability levels to teach.

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    Cons

    -Pay is very sketchy. Teachers are paid cash with no pay stub record, with 350-450 yuan deducted from each person's 7000 yuan monthly pay to cover monthly utilities. I have since learned that this is about double what an entire apartment's utilities should cost, so somebody's making money on the side by taking it from the teachers. -The bonus plan is always changing, and even when they say they're upfront about it,... there are hidden subjective reasons why you won't be receiving the bonus you thought you would. It is also paid in cash with little to no record. -Within the past few years, the school was fined a huge amount by the government for misrepresenting costs to parents and charging more than the documentation said. -Teachers have to give 2 months notice before leaving, instead of the standard 30 days. -Recent local management changes have led to a series of new micro-managing policies that are in direct conflict with the procedures handed down from corporate, demanding us to re-write every single lesson plan to conform to an extremely rigid and frequently unrealistic schedule. During meetings and training sessions teachers were yelled at and talked down to publicly, and everyone was told that they're horrible teachers. -Teachers receive very little time off- the absolute minimum as decided by the government. Also, during the spring festival and summer breaks when students normally do not have school, this school has extra courses. During the 10 day Winter Course, teachers were forced to work 7 days straight before they had a single week vacation, and worked more than 40 hours the 5 days after. During Summer Course, for 7 weeks straight teachers are forced to teach a few extra classes on top of the normal 40 hour schedule, with no increase in pay for the extra work.

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    Advice to Management

    I know each school is a separate franchise, but management needs to pay careful attention to them. There are a few schools of the lot that either have or will start to make a bad name for EF. I love the resources, I love the material, I love the students, but local management has become far out of touch with the process of teaching, and are punishing the teachers. The work environment has become so frustrating and... disheartening that I am looking at finding a different job. I know I'm not the only teacher at my school who feels this way.

    Show More
    EF English First2015-03-18
  10. "A great environment to hone your teaching skiils"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - ESL Teacher in Xi'an, Shaanxi
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at EF English First full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    English First is a great place for teachers that want to teach English in China and have access to the latest technology as well as a wide library of resources. Academic quality actually matters at EF, and you will be expected to really teach your students. There are a variety of advancement and development opportunities for teachers that wish to stay develop their teaching skills. Working hours and pay are... consistent and working visa is provided which gives you peace of mind while you 're in China.

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    Cons

    EF is a busy job and people just looking for a 'job' as a way to be in China and do as little work as possible should probably look elsewhere.

    EF English First2014-06-27
Found 42 reviews