If you’re looking to begin a TESOL career in Asia, Hong Kong is arguably one of the easiest places to do so; whether you’d like to join an organization or begin a career independently, there is never a shortage of English-teaching jobs in this bustling metropolitan hub.
Language Institutes – Teaching English in Hong Kong
A job at a language institute is the most common route to take. Learning centers employ teachers to work long hours, including Saturdays (This is the busiest day for learning centers, though you will have a day off during the week as compensation). Some teachers prefer teaching at learning institutes because the classes are small and personal; you will be teaching a class of around four to six students on your own, as opposed to teaching 33 students as you would in a Hong Kong school classroom. The monthly salary at a learning center can range from around 15,000HKD to 22,000HKD, with some institutes providing housing as well.
Native English Teachers (NETs) – Teaching English in Hong Kong
The majority of schools in Hong Kong employ NETs: Native English Teachers. There are two kinds of NETs in Hong Kong: school-hire NETs and Education Bureau NETs. The former consists of teachers who are hired directly by the school; the school principal decides the salary, duties and benefits (The salary is typically between 20,000HKD and 25,000HKD per month). The latter consists of teachers who are hired by the Education Bureau of Hong Kong. There is a strict criterion for teachers who apply to the government NET scheme: applicants are highly considered if they possess a teaching certification, an English degree, and a TESOL certificate, or two of these three (Though a TESOL certificate with a practicum is required to begin the job).
An EDB NET contract lasts for two years and includes extensive benefits: a salary of at least 23,000HKD per month (In accordance with your qualifications and experience), a housing allowance of approximately 17,000HKD per month, health insurance, and flight reimbursement for flights to your home country. While the EDB NET job is typically considered the best ESL job in terms of payment and job stability, it is important for you to explore your options and choose the path that is most suitable for you.
Erin completed Ontesol’s 120-hour TESOL Certificate with Practicum in 2013.