Things to be aware of if you are considering taking a job here:
1. Don't come on a tourist visa. They have many teachers working illegally and will fire them with 24-48 hours notice when it's convenient for them, they've done this to multiple teachers.
2. Don't live in the teacher dorms. Yes, they've improved the living situation in that teachers no longer have to live in the student dorms with students, but no the mold problems haven't gone away. In addition to mold, there's also rats, cameras everywhere (and they will email you pics of anything you do that they don't like) and they have a bedroom at the only entrance to the building where they have someone stay to watch that you aren't bringing in anyone you shouldn't.
3. The location is currently surrounded by fields, taxis don't go by there and going anywhere nice isn't within walking distance. So you'll need to get a bicycle, ebike or call taxis/didis to get anywhere. The area is currently under construction and dangerous, when I say dangerous, I mean multiple teachers have gotten into accidents on bikes and ebikes, involving stitches, broken bones, surgeries and extended hospital stays. Which leads to another wonderful thing SNA does and that's sick leave. If you get a note from a doctor they will pay you 60% of your salary for the days you miss, if you don't have a note they won't pay you anything.They also expect you to make up any missed cla*s*s from sick days. So if you missed 5 cla*s*s because you were sick, they'll move them to other days for you, even if you didn't have a doctor's note and weren't paid for the days you missed, they still expect you to make up the work. Also, the insurance you get from the school doesn't cover traffic accidents, so those situations (and they've happened repeatedly here) need to be paid out of pocket. They also don't have a nurse at this school and refuse to get one even though a student was seriously injured, someone is going to end up dying at this school from their incompetence.
4. Overtime isn't paid most of the time. You will do weekend recruitment, sometimes they will pay, just be careful how they word it, they try their best to make everything unpaid, you'll need to check your payslips which they make as obscure as possible and get them to you as late as possible. Sometimes they'll change the schedule for special events, this means you'll start work early, work some of your unpaid lunch and finish the same time as usual, but you won't be paid for that. Also, they make the international teachers do all of the night studies and they just keep piling on the amount of time. First it started with one per week from 6:30-8:30, then they bumped it up to 2 per week by notifying everyone during a mandatory lunch meeting. You'll be paid 40 yuan (that's before taxes) per hour for your evenings to disappear. They also want to change the night studies to 3 hours per night since the students run free after night study for an hour before going to the dorms.
4. Everything is your job at this school. They won't help with discipline or anything that has to do with your cla*s*s and really only suspend or expel students for non-academic reasons (like violence or being messy in the dorms). This means there are some students in cla*s*s that literally won't do anything and there isn't anything teachers can do about it. They'll call their parents, but if the parents don't care, either does SNA. You'll need to get all supplies ordered yourself and textbooks (if you want them or at least good ones). It's good for experienced teachers that know what they're doing, they'll give you free reign. It seems inexperienced teachers just give up, show movies and stop caring after awhile. The students are a mix though, some are really good, some are really bad. SNA will do everything for the select few students that they decide are good (through grades or guanxi) and they'll get fixed grades and schedules.
5. Management is insane. They've got multiple principals and each has a different idea of how things should be done. None of the departments get along at this school or communicate well, if at all. No one will clearly define what their job or role is and that's because they don't know and those roles constantly change here. No one ever wants to help with anything because no one here ever wants to be responsible.
Free reign to do anything you want with your cla*s*s.
Salary (at least that's the reason everyone ever gave for coming to SNA, but the extras they ask are a lot).
Terrible location, far from everything, and built on swampy land.
Unpaid overtime and sick days.
Has teachers working illegally.
Teacher dorms are small and over watched.
No help in emergency situations requiring the hospital.
Advice to Management
Stop being such terrible people and get rid of the way too many people you have in management roles that don't have anything positive to contribute. Support your teachers and try to plan beyond surviving day to day, week to week at most. So many problems could be resolved if management were willing to help instead of turning teachers into scapegoats and firing them, then bringing in new teachers and putting them in the exact same situations with zero support.
Wuzhong, Suzhou, Jiangsu, China