Shenzhen Oriental English College
No 10, Xuezi Road
Bao An Education Town
Bao An, Shenzhen
“OEC International School (OECIS) is a division of Shenzhen Oriental English College founded in 1994, a co-educational school with students enrolled from kindergarten to high school. OEC occupies an area of 150,000 sq.m. (about 37 acres). The College is proud of its sophisticated european -style teaching and living facilities, and extensive sports grounds.
OECIS is an IB World School authorized to deliver the Diploma Programme since 2004.
Located in Bao, an Education Town, only five minutes drive from Shenzhen International Airport, it is situated at the foot of the Phoenix Mountain and surrounded by picturesque natural scenery. Shenzhen City, also known as the first Special Economic Zone in China is easily accessible from Guangzhou and Hong Kong.”
It sounds quite impressive, right? I'm not saying it's bad, but like most things here facts are easily tweaked to create a flawless facade. Speaking of facade, the school is 16 years old and the building looks it. It's a very tricky structure to maintain over time. Almost every surface is covered in tiny off- white tiles. Pollution and age has left its mark. But they make an effort to make the school look nice from the outside, the main gate looks like it doesn't even belong to the school. This is, I suspect, solely for making a first impression and a good photo opportunity. Online I found messages on forums from previous interns. Many complained about their schools, because they all ended their internship- it's easy to think that they're just disgruntled and take out their rage on the web. One extreme case was a young man who had some trouble with the administration and money affairs- he lost his temper and punched the principal in the face. But some things did seem like possible things. Like money and visa stuff.
Our paycheck was a bit delayed, but we were told that the money was transferred. I have yet to check, though. We're usually being paid by the 15th of each month.We opened a Chinese bank account a couple of weeks ago in order for the school to pay us. According to the contract, we're given 2000 RMB per month. We started 21th February and we've gotten 600 RMB this far. Some people at nearby schools got 740 RMB and others received their 2000 RMB, but then again several people have extra tutoring to add to their income. One girl gets 200 RMB per hour, two hour sessions twice a week (week days that it) That is an extra 800 RMB! I would love to do tutoring! But so far I haven't been offered anything.
In recent news, a bunch of people been 'kicked out'. One because she “wasn't suitable to teach at her school” another because of “foul language in the teacher's office” These reasons seem strange. I'm sure swearing loudly in my office would be frowned upon, but the teachers mostly leave us alone- so I can't image they would be very dramatic about it (I might be wrong, of course) Some people have had difficulties adjusting to the fact they didn't get exactly what they wanted (are/age group etc) but nothing was guaranteed before we came here, we just had to keep an open mind and prepare for anything, really. Maybe they came here for the wrong reasons, or just wasn't prepared for the very spontaneous lifestyle of China. We compare our home countries with the destinations, but only to a certain degree. We shouldn't compare too much, or else you just end up unhappy, regretful and frustrated about everything.
Easier said than done, maybe, but still worth a shot.
A few trips have been planned. The first one to Inner Mongolia. It's planned by TTC staff. Apparently it includes camel tours and sand surfing (?) and more, but it's far away. (Check the map above!)We don't have that many days off. It's going to take a full day to get there and it's far from cheap. Some people are considering going to Shanghai, this is of course closer and therefore not as expensive. I still don't know what I'll do, it depends on who's going where and if I can allow myself to splurge on something this big. I'm not entirely sure where people are going this weekend, some ordered flight tickets- but I think that's for Shanghai. I'll need to check with them again.
I've stayed in my room/on campus for longer than I've done before. It get's monotonous and boring after awhile, it's not much to do around here. I want to wander around more this week. It's easy to say that we have it all mapped out after a few weeks here, but I beg to differ. I'm sure there are some things yet to be discovered around here. But we're close to the airport, so it's not very central. I just recently got a bus card which makes it easier to get around, when you don't have to dig around in your wallet for 2 RMB in the middle of a crowded bus.
Tomorrow we'll eat dinner at our local place i think. I't's been awhile since we had a meal together there, and it's nice to hear what people have been up to.