Teaching at cram school and government school at the same time

Would it be legal and okay for the high school to give me a separate contract ?

That makes it pretty clear that it’s illegal, unless there’s been some change. I was looking online and saw some scuttlebutt that it happens. To work in those schools you need additional qualifications, and this would be a way to skirt regulations and get a teacher in there who doesn’t have them.

Need a teaching licence for that



If you are employed as an Assistant with Special Skills for Junior High and Elementary Schools, you don’t need a teaching licence, but you still need a work permit and it cannot be got without a teaching licence.

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I guess that’s one for the APRC types then

There is NO circumstance under which a foreign national can legally teach in a public school if they do not have a teaching license in their home country. There are plenty of cases where this is blatently ignored (Fulbright ETA program being the biggest, and they expand expotentially every year), but it is still illegal.

I’ve never heard of FETs being “part time”. One or more MOE selected public schools will make sure you get all your hours (18-20/week). FYI, starting salary for FETs is 62,000/mo but sub pay is 350-450/class. For locals without teaching licenses who are teaching (although that’s also illegal), they receive sub pay.

Contract here: https://www.fettaiwan.com/downloads-contract/

If you’re teaching in public school, you need written permission from the education bureau to work anywhere else (tutoring the principal’s children with under-the-table pay included), so cram school would be out of the question if there’s no official document (make sure it’s signed and stamped and notorized) saying you can work in both places. (See contract)

TL;DR: try it at your own risk


This sounds disturbing. I’m quite nervous.

Out of curiosity, which county is this school in?

Actually, it doesn’t matter.

Probably the only thing I would wish someone would have told me, if I were in your shoes, is that the starting salary for someone with a BA and no teaching experience is paid NT62,720/ month plus a 5,000/month housing stipend and 80,000 round trip airfare (x2, if a blood relative or spouse joins you). One month pay bonus at contract end.

I want you to know this because Fulbright has everyone convinced that NT40,000/ month paid for Aug-June (with literally no other benefits) is “standard” and “a really great great salary” and I’m tired of encountering people who happily take this pathetically low salary, work easily 50 hours a week, and actually believe it’s really good, like a bunch of brainwashed cult members.

So I’d say if there’s no contract for the public school, make sure you’re being paid at least NT785-850/class and your airfare is covered.

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if your ARC needs to be supported by your employer.

why do you consider working illegally in a foreign country?

No, the public schools are only legally allowed to hire licensed foreign teachers. It’s got nothing to do with visas, but rather MOE policy. If you don’t hold a teaching license, it doesn’t matter if you have an open work permit, you can’t legally teach in the public schools. Taiwanese people can’t legally teach in public schools without licenses either, but there’s too much guanxi for schools to not make exceptions for otherwise unqualified people. As a foreigner, you don’t have and will never rise to that level of guanxi. Don’t risk it.

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people who don’t need work permit can legally teach languages and some other things as assistants without teacher license.


The law that you posted directly contradicts the FET contract, which states FETs must have attended at least 50% of their university courses in person (not online) and hold a teaching license from their home country. So I stand corrected, but I’d appreciate some consistency on the part of the lawmakers.

I guess it might be possible to teach English in public schools if you are not Taiwanese but hold an open work permit, based on the law @tando posted, but I don’t speak legalese… it seems like you still have to optain some sort of special permission from your uni or county government.

Going back to pay rate, which anyone should absolutely have a firm understanding of before coming to teach in Taiwan, the Taiwanese “teachers” who work as “assistants” or “subs” are paid only for the classes they teach, at 350-450/ class (depending on the length of the class). Even at NT450/ 50 minute clsss, that’s at least 200 NT less per class than cram schools pay. If you want FET pay (starting at, after housing stipend, over 67,000/ month for 18-20 classes per week), you’re going to need a teaching license. Trade offs

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the laws do not contradict to each other, because the one I posted is not on FETs. It is on assistants who teach English or other languages etc.

I guess private schools may be able to pay more for those “assistants”.

Guess the safer option is just not to teach at the government school. Avoid the ambiguity and stress.

it is not ambiguous in your case. Is clearly illegal.

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Well then, yeah.

One should also note that “assistant” is a vague term.

Since every other organization that’s tried to do it has been shut down, I’ll provide this example: In Fulbright Taiwan, the English Teaching Assistant program “requires” “coteaching” and “assisting” a local teacher in the local teachers’ classroom activities. What ETAs often end up doing, however, is teach their classes completely alone, sometimes under the supervision of a non-English speaking other person in the school, who may or may not be paid for their time. When they are “assisting” a local teacher’s own classes, often that local teacher is themself an “assistant” (speaks some English but hasn’t a clue how to teach). Not great when you’ve just graduated from college and majored in art history or underwater basket weaving/ didn’t come in with any teaching experience / wanted to go abroad for a year for the resume and didn’t expect so much work.

I would say regardless of laws, first time teachers had best get some experience teaching from a program that trains them (like a cram school with a good reputation or a teaching license program in one’s home country) cuz being thrown in the deep end in Taiwan isn’t great for learning how to teach well.

I’m just gonna play it safe and stick with buxibans.


Or get your teacher’s certification. Once you have it, pay and job options increase dramatically