Yeah, I said it.
Firstly, I used a teach abroad program that not only underpaid me, they also stuck me by myself at a high school in “the middle of nowhere” Factoryville, China where I was the only foreigner for miles.
Oh, and my school wasn’t legally allowed to hire foreign teachers, and had a stipulation in the contract that if I wanted to leave early, I could be fined up to $8,000 USD, aka MY ENTIRE SALARY FOR THE WHOLE YEAR.
How did this happen to me?? I’d studied abroad in China for 7 months. I was fluent in Chinese. I had traveled all over the country to off the beaten path places like Yunnan, Gansu, Qinghai, Tibet, and Xinjiang. I had lived on my own in Beijing for a month and taught English at a training center.
I thought I knew everything and I STILL got screwed over.
How is that even possible? If anyone was going to be successful in China, it should’ve been me, right?!!!
There were so many things I didn’t know. I was too trusting, too naive, and too overconfident. But arriving at my first school in the middle of nowhere was a nice big slap of reality, straight in the face. Maybe I didn’t know as much as I thought I did…
5 years later…
Fast-forward five years: I’m sitting in my private (purple!!) office with a view of downtown Beijing. I’m making literally four times the salary with a nice apartment, working as a college counselor at a high-level training center.
In just two years of working here, I’d saved up $40,000 USD (without even really trying), and completely paid off my student loans. I had 20 vacation days, a comprehensive benefits package, and a job that actually fulfilled me.
I went from making $800 USD a month to almost $3,000 a month. I moved from a teachers dorm with no mattress (seriously) to a fancy studio apartment in downtown Beijing. I went from teaching over 1,000 students who could barely speak English, to working with high-level students one-on-one.
So what, am I just some teach abroad genius or something? How did I do it??
I’m not a genius. I’m not special. I just finally became a teach abroad expert after 5 years of trial, error, and a LOT of bumps along the way.
I really honestly wish I could go back in time and give myself all of the information I know now. I could’ve saved myself so much time, money, stress, and anxiety.
Unfortunately, time travel isn’t a thing (yet), so I’m going to share all of my knowledge and advice with you instead.
After 5 years of living and working in China, I’ve cracked the code, and I want to help you skip five years of struggles and start your teach abroad journey the right way.
Imagine, you’re on a flight to China. You’ve got an incredible high-paying job you’re super excited for. You’re teaching in a city that’s perfect for you. You’ve packed all the right things, and know exactly what to expect. When you’re standing in front of your very first class, you feel calm and in-charge. You know what you’re doing. You know what to teach and how to manage a Chinese classroom. You’re ready to take on China!
That feeling is my goal for you. The idea that when you hop on that plane or step in front of that first class, you feel ready: mentally, emotionally and financially.
You don’t have to spend five years of trial and error to have my system. I’m going to take you by the hand, step-by-step, and get you there as quickly as humanly possible.
Most teachers have at least 1-2 “throw away years” before they finally start figuring things out. Then it takes another 2-3 years to finally get it perfect.
But what if you don’t have 5 years to waste on trial and error? What if you want to get started the RIGHT way RIGHT now??
With my program, you won’t have a “throw away year”. You won’t need to spend years of your life figuring things out. I want to bring you up to my level, and teach you all of the things I wish I knew before I moved to China.
The Teach Abroad Squad is my proven step-by-step system to help you find a high-paying job, become an incredible teacher, and survive (and thrive) in China once you get there.
Teach Abroad Squad is a 12-Module digital video course that will take you step-by-step through the teach abroad process, transforming you from a Teach Abroad Newbie to an Experienced Kick A** Teacher.
The Teach Abroad Squad includes instant and LIFETIME access to…
As soon as you enroll, you will get immediate access (via username and password) to the Teach Abroad Squad, all bonuses, and the Facebook Group.
And… have fun! Because teaching abroad should be fun, right?
#1 Have a high-paying job you ABSOLUTELY love
#2 Make AT LEAST an extra 2,000 RMB per month ($300) or $3,500 per year with our salary tips, contract negotiation training, and interview and resume advice.
#3 Feel confident managing a class and creating your own lesson plans
#4 Be emotionally and financially prepared to live and work abroad
#5 Have a built-in community of friends all over China!
Obviously, there are no guarantees in life, so it’s impossible for me to guarantee all of these things for you (duh). But if you do the work, take all of my advice, and follow the system step-by-step, you should easily attain all of the above, and more!
“While I was the Content Director at Go Overseas, Richelle was always our go-to writer for any questions about teaching abroad in China. Whether it was teacher salaries, job types, or navigating visas and scams, Richelle always had well-researched, practical, and relatable advice for our readers.”
12 Intensive Modules, 4 Butt-Kicking Bonuses, and Live Office Hours!
Join a community of like-minded teachers in China! Swap stories, share lesson plans, ask questions, and plan meetups. Arrive in China with a built-in community of other teachers around the country!
Choose from a list of incredible high-paying jobs in China! Browse a job board of hand-picked (by me) jobs that all pay well (and on time), offer great benefits, and have fantastic feedback from past employees.
A 40-minute lesson on the Chinese you need to know to survive in China! We’ll learn tones, pronunciation, and 30+ crucial vocabulary words and phrases. You’ll even get a cheat sheet to practice on the go!
Get 40% off my favorite premium 120-hour online TEFL Course. I’ve negotiated this special discount for Teach Abroad Squad members, so you can get my favorite TEFL for a fraction of the price. Grab this $300 value TEFL for just $180!
Once a month we host a LIVE Q&A session where all course members can log in and get their questions answered by Richelle. This is the perfect place to get long answers or explanations for complicated issues and share your own experiences with other teachers going through the process with you!
An entire section of awesome downloadable worksheets and cheat sheets! From an extremely nerdy budgeting guide that calculates EXACTLY how much money you need to bring with you to China, to an Expert Packing List, Good Jobs Checklist, China Survival Guide and more!
“The thought of moving to China alone can be overwhelming, but TAS goes over everything you need to know to be successful during your time abroad. Richelle makes the lessons very engaging and fun by providing personal insights and stories from her own time living and working in China. The biggest takeaway for me was how to avoid scams and what to look for in contracts. I’ve heard so many horror stories about companies promising one thing only for it to be taken away or changed later. I now know how to read contracts, how to negotiate salary and vacation days, and how to handle any complications down the road. I have also found great value in the group video chats and have made friends that I know I can turn to for any advice in the future.”
“I originally joined because I was overwhelmed by all the information out there of what you should and shouldn't do and I was getting lost in the sea of it all. Then I came across Richelle’s Instagram and blog and realized this is a real person giving real stories of life in China. I felt really good about enrolling in TAS because I knew I'd need help and have questions to ask. I honestly wasn't even sure where I wanted to teach, but I think what helped me decide was the fact that Richelle had done a lot of the work for me with everything China! Joining the Teach Abroad Squad gave me more confidence that I won't be going into teaching abroad blindly.”
Whether you’ve already taught in China, or you’ve never even been out of the country, Teach Abroad Squad is here to lead you step-by-step.
We’ll help you navigate the treacherous waters of the teach abroad world, to find a high-paying job that you will love. If for some reason you’re stuck at a school in China that you HATE, the Teach Abroad Squad can help you get out and switch to a school that’s right for you.
That said, there are some people that Teach Abroad Squad IS NOT right for.
Teach Abroad Squad is only for people who REALLY want to teach abroad in Mainland China. If you’re interested in a job outside of the education industry, or you’re not 100% sure you want to work in Mainland China, this course is not going to be for you.
Take the first step of your China adventure today!
I already have a job and a TEFL. Will this course work for me?
Ideally Teach Abroad Squad is best for people who are ready to make a change: whether it’s finding an amazing job, or switching to a better position.
If you already have your job and TEFL, there are still tons of amazing lessons you can gain from the later modules: how to teach, budgeting, classroom management, survival Chinese…
However, the course is designed for people who are ready to find a new, amazing position in China. You’re definitely welcome to join if you already have a job and a TEFL, just know that you won’t be able to benefit immediately from those portions of the program.
Do I get access to everything at once, or do I have to wait?
Yes, you get access to everything right away! You can attack the material at any pace you want (I recommend staying in order). Many people think I’m nuts for having such a flexible 30-day refund policy and giving full access, but I know how life-changing Teach Abroad Squad can be when you learn and implement it.
Can I download all the videos and other cool stuff?
YES! Everything is digital and downloadable. Enjoy!
I'm not teaching abroad for another two years. Is it too early to take the course?
NO!! Honestly, the earlier the better when it comes to preparing for your teach abroad adventure.
Teach Abroad Squad is designed to be taken at any time, whether you’re still a year away, or you’re already in China right now. While I have actionable advice for people who are already in China and need to switch jobs or get out of a disaster, it will be much easier if you take the course a year (or more!) before you plan on leaving.
This course will help you plan your timeline, and teach you about things you can do RIGHT NOW to make yourself a better candidate in China. You’ll also have access to the Facebook group sooner rather than later, which means more time to make friends, ask questions and develop connections with other teachers.
Remember, you also have lifetime access to the course, so if anything changes, you will have access to updated videos and information. You can also go back and re-watch any of the course videos when it gets closer to the date you plan on leaving.
I'm not a native speaker. Can I still take this course?
YES. Just be aware that if you are not a certified teacher in your home country, you will not be able to teach legally in China.
If you’re NOT from one of the 7 approved countries (US, UK, Canada, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa), you need to be a certified teacher in your home country to teach legally. You do NOT need a TEFL. You’ll need a teaching certification. This will allow you to teach a subject in English at an international school or high-level training center.
If this isn’t an option for you, it’s still possible to work in China on a tourist or business visa, it’s just not legal.
Teach Abroad Squad covers BOTH non-native speakers working legally AND non-native speakers working on tourist or business visas. So either way, you will still be able to learn a lot from the course.
However, if you choose to teach on a tourist or business visa, there will be fewer options for you when it comes to job placement. But I will give you the skills you need to find a great job.
I don't have a college degree. Can I still take your course?
YES. While you can not work legally in China without a Bachelor’s degree, I do cover working on a tourist or business visa in China. Throughout the course, I will give tips and tricks specifically for those who are not teaching legally.
That said, if you’re not teaching legally, there will be fewer options for you when it comes to job placement, however, I will give you the skills you need to find a great job.
Do I get lifetime access?
YES! You get these videos FOREVERRRRRRRRR
If I update or make changes to the course, you will get these updates as well.
How long does it take to go through the course?
It’s up to you! Binge it like Netflix and it will take you 2-3 weeks, or watch it slowly over time and it will take you 2-3 months.
We have 12 modules, and each module has 1-5 videos. Each video is between 20 minutes to 1 hour, and we have 25 course videos in total.
You’ll also have the bonus material, including one 40-minute Survival Chinese video.
How does the job placement work?
Great question! We have a curated job board full of jobs for you to choose from. These jobs are all approved directly by me, and fit my “Good Job Checklist”.
They all pay well and on-time with above-average salaries, offer comprehensive benefits packages, and have good reviews from past teachers. It is up to you to scan through the list and tell us which jobs you’re interested in, and we will help connect you with the employer or recruiter.
This gives you complete control over the jobs you’re applying to. We don’t force you to sign with a school or “place you” at a school that’s not a good fit. Instead, we give you all of the information and allow you to decide which jobs fit you. That said, if you would like me to help you decide which ones to apply to, I am happy to assist!
If for some reason you find your own job, that’s great too! Feel free to run your contract by us in the Facebook group and we can help you decide if the job is a good opportunity.
What if I don't like my job placement?
Personally, I hate job placement programs. I had a bad experience with this my first year in China, which is why I want the job decision making to be solely in your hands.
Rather than forcing a job on you that might not be a good fit, we give you a comprehensive job board full of trusted recruiters and positions, allowing YOU to make the decision.
After Module 1 you should have a clear idea of what types of jobs, cities, and schools you’re interested in, and you can use that information to select jobs that fit you and your needs.
If you need some help or guidance in making a decision, you can always email us. Otherwise, it’s up to YOU to decide which job you want!
What's this TEFL discount thing?
In order to teach legally in China, most of you will be needing a TEFL certification. If you don’t already have your TEFL, I’m offering a 40% discount for MyTEFL, my favorite online TEFL. This HUGE discount is only for course members and is a special deal only found on the Teach Abroad Squad!
MyTEFL’s 120-hour online TEFL course usually runs $300, but with the discount, you can get it for just $180, saving you $120 USD!
Once you’re a Teach Abroad Squad Member, you’ll be given the discount code so you can purchase your online TEFL.
I HATE my job in China. How will you help me change schools?
Great question! If you’re in a situation like I was my very first year, I feel for you. I know what it’s like to feel stuck in a school you don’t love, and I’m going to do everything in my power to help you get out.
Firstly, we have an entire module (Module 6) that covers this “worst case scenario”. We talk about how to switch schools, your legal rights in China, what happens if your school doesn’t give you a release letter, or if they’re not paying you on time.
In Module 5, we’ll also cover how to analyze your contract. This will give you the skills you need to pinpoint elements of your contract that will help you with an exit plan. This way you’ll know exactly what you need to do to leave legally, and how to notice if your school is not following their end of the contract.
My goal is to make sure you know all of your legal rights and responsibilities so that you can switch jobs without having to leave China.
Also, if you have any major problems or concerns, you can always post to the Facebook group for advice!
What's the difference between this Facebook group and your free Facebook group?
For those of you that are already members of my free Facebook group, China Teach Abroad Community, you might be wondering what the difference is.
While I’m very involved in CTAC, it is a community-driven Facebook group. If I see a question, I’ll stop by and answer it, but as the group grows, the focus will be more on the community: teachers helping teachers.
The Teach Abroad Squad Facebook group is much different. Here you will have direct access to me. I host Facebook live bonus training and office hours. I even refer directly to modules and videos to help answer your questions further.
This Teach Abroad Squad Facebook Group is also a tighter knit community, full of teachers who are part of the “squad”. This group is much smaller, full of teachers all going through the same process together. This makes it much easier to form friendships, plan meetups and travel together once you’re all in China!
How do the office hours work?
Once per month I host LIVE office hours for course students to pop on by and ask me questions. These office hours are hosted on Zoom, where you’ll be able to type questions into a box for me to answer.
If for some reason you can’t attend the office hours, you can submit your questions beforehand and I will answer them live. You can then watch the video replay later when I post it in the group!
Don’t have a question? No problem! You can still join the group call and listen in on all the questions and answers.
Richelle, what if I buy and want a refund? What's the policy?
If within 30 days, if you are unhappy for whatever reason just email our customer support and you will receive a full refund. My team and I stand behind Teach Abroad Squad 100%, which is why we have such a lenient refund policy.
You don’t have to prove to me that you actually took the course. I’m not going to ask to see if you did the homework, or ask you WHY you’re refunding. Just contact us within 30 days and you’ll receive a 100% refund.
I have a question, who do I ask?
We pride ourselves on having epic customer service, headed up by my fiance Chris Walker Bush. If you have any major questions, you can get in touch with him at email@example.com