By now you probably have heard about VIPKID! The concept is simple enough, North American teachers who teach children in China the English language. Although I am a contracted employee with them, I don’t exactly drink the VIPKID “Kool-Aid” so I have no problem giving you my unfiltered opinion.
First things first, I do not believe VIPKID is some type of pyramid scheme or shiesty company. With that being stated, they do usually offer a small incentive if you refer someone who becomes a teacher added to the VIPKID teaching pool. This can create spammy like behavior among some of the contracted employees (I’ll get to the contracted employee part later) leaving their referral codes everywhere.
You must create a short video introducing yourself and have a short bio. Having great, clear photos is pretty important too. You are selling yourself and your expertise, which leads to another thing . . .
As a POC (Person of Color) I feel that VIPKID is pretty fair in their hiring practices However it might not be easy to get fully booked if you don’t fit the Chinese ideal of American. It has been noted on several Facebook post in VIPKID groups that some people are fully booked the day they get started while others take a little longer. Usually, the fully booked on day one people aren’t the most experienced but young, cute, and non-minority.
A good way to fast track your bookings is to literally stay up all night (I’m on EST, so that is a twelve hour difference from China) and build your clientele that way. I have done that a total of zero times! Although I have heard of that being a fast track way for bookings, I had no desire to do that. VIPKID is a side hustle for me, I am currently teaching full and I am the mother of five year old twins. I already don’t get enough sleep as is.
I grew my small clientele organically. My small group of regulars have kept me busy last month. July was an especially slow month but I was booked weekly. Not fully booked, but booked.
My experience with VIPKID has been great. There is still a lot that VIPKID needs to work out between with their contracted employees (you are a teacher until a problem arises, then you are a contracted employee). Definitely become familiar with their teacher cancellation policy as you are only allowed a certain number (I think it is six) during your contract. It will be grounds for dismissal if you go over the number. There is no sick leave so if you cancel because of illness, this will count toward one of the six cancellations.
If you like more information on VIPKID or have any thoughts comment below.