How to "Guide": Being an Agent for Schools/Teachers

OK, so some years back I decided I wanted to be an English Teacher “Agent” because I knew they made money for doing what I thought was not a lot of work (and that’s mostly true :slight_smile:.)

The first thing I tried was doing it for free at a kindergarten I had been working for a year. I posted an add, got a bunch of resumes, set up interviews/demo, yadda yadda. I foulnd out what work needed to be done and did a pretty good job of it, but no doe :frowning:.

Later on I got a job through someone that does/did the whole agent thing so I questioned the hell out of the place I was working. How much did they get charged, etc. Then I found out the kindergarten/elementary school I had been working at also used agents from time to time, so I found out more from them.

Then, I got involved with helping another school find teachers (they contacted me through, but what happened there is I basically handed the job over to friends that wanted/needed work.

OK, now we’re at now. A quick summary of agent fees seem to be 10,000 for the cheaper ones up to about 30,000 for the more pimp packages. What an agent does is produce a replacement if the school doesn’t like the teacher, all the way up to help the teacher and school sort out living and ARC issues.

So what I’ve recently done is hook this one dude up with the PHAT teaching hours (and I told him I was going to have to tax him for the hook up.) He was happy to pay because he wouldn’t have been able to hook it up himself. I’m also going to charge the school because they have trouble finding good teachers (don’t know where to look, language problems etc.)

The key to making this all come together seems to be guanxi (on the school side.) The important thing to do is show a school that you can really deliver what you promise (for free if you have to) then when shit hits the fan, they’ll naturally come to you. Maybe you help them out for free again (maybe not), but eventually you get to be known as the problem solver and they will be more than happy to pay you for your services.

On the teacher side, if you’re working for enough schools and you ask a teacher what hours they want and what kind of environment, and they are unable to find this on their own (lack of language skills or mojo), you simply match them with a school and tell them what the tax will be. If you do it properly they should be happy to pay you for the service provided.

I’ve now made a formal arrangement with school number one to help them find a teacher for September (already hooked one up this semester.) If I made the same kind of arrangement with more schools, it could be a nice chunk of extra doe.

What you’d need to do this is:
[ul][li]Mandarin skills[/li]
[li]People Skills[/li]
[li]An understanding of how the English teaching biz works[/li]
I actually enjoyed all of the encounters I had this last week (talking to schools and a teacher dude) and everything went really smooth for all parties. If you have been thinking to yourself “Hey, I could tax mutha fuckas for hooking them up with jobs AND tax these bitch ass schools at the same time, all while schoolin’ beers and playing 360,” you might have what it takes to (drum roll please)…

Pimp English Teachers to these trick ass schools. :laughing:

  • miltownkid (Professional Teacher Pimp Since '007)

Anyone else have further light to shine on the issue?

Best of luck with your endeavor.
:post edited:


its all well and good taxing people - only problem is that agents get burned all the time, mainly coz teachers dont wanna stay out a contract, then you have to find the same level teacher, or even better to maintain your guanxi and then you can end up losing out

What I wanna know, is why do the schools here bother with agents?

It overcomplicates a simple arrangement - we pay you and you work for us

Instead of having the usual issue of who needs pleasing in an educational environment

students - interetsing class
parents - good education (exam grades)
teachers - fitting in with school
principal - making money for school/ being on time “professional”

you then gotta add in Agent - its like another loop you have to please, whilst adding more middle men into the process or getting information to the kid’s head and it staying there

So my real question is, why why why do schools needs agents?

I tried to get a normal job here without using an agent, but its rare that those jobs are advertised - yet they pay an agent like 10-20k a month, to do nothing, great in some ways, but why not pay the teacher that cash, I mean how many teachers would walk out on an 80,000 a month deal?!?!?! (which is basically the only reason to have the agent no, as guarentour of the teacher staying?)

Why do companies in the west use recruiters, headhunters, temp agencies?

You specialise in teaching, the school specialises (effectively) in marketing, and the agent specialises in HR. In theory, anyway.

Because they have trouble finding (reliable) teachers.

I don’t think any agent gets 10-20K/month. I know some might get like 5 a month, but I don’t think those are good situations.

Agents normally get a flat fee for providing a school with a teacher. The agents also usually take care of finding a replacement should the teacher not work out, or need to leave.

I’m not really planning on doing any agenting seriously, but I am getting a nice chunk of money for just knowing the right schools, the right people and connecting the 2. Someone else could easily do the same (is all I’m saying.)

What would really be good (and I’m gonna lose money on this) is an agent you can call to help you find a sub when you’re out. It’s hard sometimes on the school and you when you have to miss class. Having a roster of people who can sub really can make a difference. even if it’s for a day or a few hours.

I agree. If you’re only an agent who finds schools their teachers, but can’t help with finding a sub when that teacher is sick or away on holidays, then that’s probably not good enough.
My agent in Hsinchu had a pretty big roster of teachers who she was able to call upon for short or long term fill-in positions. I didn’t mind working for $600nt/hour because my agent gave me as many hours as I wanted and worked out my taxes so I didn’t pay as much. The agency was also good for other things. If i needed help with daily living obstacles, I would just need to make 1 simple call and shit would get done.
I had friends use the same agent, but they couldn’t understand why the agent was making money for doing nothing. What they didn’t understand was that they could call the agent for any problems they might be having. Anything from trouble with their school or landlord or calling a taxi to go to the airport at 5am. They didn’t fully use the agents services.
So, in short…like Namahottie said…what would really be good is an agent who can do everything.

Agents charge about 15% for their services. I think that rate might be ok, but there are some agencies charging more than they pay the teachers. I think that kind of situation is kind of ludicrous. The teachers don’t work hard because they don’t get paid well, and the people who pay for the teachers are paying a lot so they think the teachers should be working hard.

That’s true. If agents would just step back a moment and realize that even if they were to pay their teachers $50nt-$100nt more an hour…the teacher would be happier, and thus the school would be also be happy. On the otherhand, most agents are greedy and they know they can pay teachers (mostly newbies) low salaries and get away with it.