Information for Members

The 40 Most Viewed Schools on International School Community

April 13, 2018


So interesting, our top 40 school profiles with the most views page.

It’s like, which school is the most popular amongst our 13K+ members?  Before reading below or checking out the page, which schools do you think show up on this list?

Are the ones at the top those “Tier one” international schools that we all hear about? You might be surprised which schools are really on this list then!

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The school that has the most views right now is the American School of Barcelona (160 total comments), which currently has around 1444 views. Who wouldn’t want to work next to the Mediterranean Sea?!

Here are some of the other top schools on our list (along with a sample comment from its school profile page):

Copenhagen International School (329 total comments) Copenhagen, Denmark (1385 views)

“I feel like we are getting more new students lately and classrooms in the primary are definitely reaching their maximum.”

NIST International School (236 total comments) Bangkok, Thailand (1104 views)

“Most of the large shopping malls have gourmet markets that include Western foods and ingredients, and two or three chains specifically cater to them as well. A huge number of expat-oriented pubs and restaurants can be found, especially along Sukhumvit Road.”

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International School of Kuala Lumpur (107 total comments) Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (998 views)

“Pay is good, with a great retirement (EPF) program that can go up to 42% of salary (including both employer and employee amounts). Teachers are paid 10 times (August through June) but in June they also get their July salary.”

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KIS International School (Bangkok) (183 total comments) Bangkok, Thailand (872 views)

“KIS has just gone through its five-year accreditation for both the CIS and the IB as well as the one from the Thai Ministry of Education. Obviously the full reports have yet to be made public but the feedback from the team leaders was certainly constructive and said that the school was certainly heading in the right direction.”

Seoul Foreign School (133 total comments) Seoul, South Korea (837 views)

“I literally think these are the best students to have on the planet. I can’t think of a country where the student caliber is any higher. Wonderful and attentive students who perform well. Require work to get them to think outside of the box and problem solve.”

Hong Kong International School (127 total comments) Hong Kong, China (833 views)

“The school is a very well established school and has been a part of Hong Kong for nearly 50 years.”

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Western International School of Shanghai (325 total comments) Shanghai, China (805 views)

“Tons of activities if one wants to do something. It’s pretty easy to fund running, cycling, hiking, tennis, basketball, rugby, and so forth. Pretty much anything is on offer here!”

Singapore American School (90 total comments) Singapore, Singapore (789 views)

“Short term disability benefit. Worldwide health insurance coverage.”

Concordia International School (Shanghai) (161 total comments) Shanghai, China (722 views)

“The school buildings are quite modern. Many students walk to school as there are many neighbourhoods near the school.”

International School Bangkok (19 total comments) Bangkok, Thailand (610 views)

“There are scholarships available for staff children to attend the school.”

Canadian International School (Hong Kong) (128 total comments) Hong Kong, China (600 views)

“A fair number of teachers make multiple stops on their way back to “home” in Canada, USA, Europe, Australia, or New Zealand. Since these are long flights (~10-18 hours), it is easy to find extended layovers en route.”

Bangkok Patana School (21 total comments) Bangkok, Thailand (579 views)

“The school provides free transportation for teachers who live within areas adjacent to the school. Teachers who live outside the defined area and who require transportation are required to enroll in the transportation service offered by the school. The teacher will then be respo…”

American School of Dubai (98 total comments) Warsaw, Poland (578 views)

“The area across the street from the school, Barsha Heights (previously known as Tecom) has a number of highrise buidlings and good number of restaurants and shops in the area. It’s a 10-15 minute walk from there for the teachers that live in that area. On the opposite side a…”

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American School of Warsaw (101 total comments) Warsaw, Poland (578 views)

“In connection to the school’s growing percentage of ELL students, every grade level in the elementary and middle schools now has a dedicated ELL coach/teacher/classroom aide.”

Check out the rest of the schools on our list here.

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Information for Members

Top 26 Schools With the Most Comments/Reviews on ISC (UPDATE)

February 4, 2018


Now there are 1007+ international schools that have had comments/reviews submitted on them on our website!

Once schools have over 70 submitted comments, then it is very likely that you will be able to see how a specific comment topic has changed (or not changed) over time; with all the comments being date stamped.

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NIST International School in Bangkok, Thailand

If there is more than one comment in a specific comment topic, the more recent comments either add on, compliment, or amend the previous comments.

A few of our schools that have many submitted comments will sometimes have over 15 comments in one comment topic!

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Copenhagen International School (Copenhagen, Denmark)

Just click on the “Show all” link to see the complete history of comments in this comment topic.

So let’s get to it, which schools are in the top 26 (from February 2018, with some including a sample comment)?

Here we go:

26. International School of Kuala Lumpur (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia) 107 Comments
“There is a clear and structured pay scale. You enter it according to experience and qualifications, up to a maximum experience level. Within the school you receive an annual ‘step’ for every year of experience, plus there are usually small inflationary raises to the salary scale. Additionally stipends are paid for team leader responsibility. There are resigning bonuses after four years of employment.”

25. Stamford American International School (Singapore, Singapore)108 Comments

24. Fairview International School (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)111 Comments
“Teachers share their unit plans, but write their own lesson plan. All has to be submitted to the subject heads for vetting and approval.”

23. American School Foundation of Guadalajara (Guadalajara, Mexico)111 Comments

22. MEF International School Istanbul (Istanbul, Turkey) – 120 Comments
“Teacher turnover is high. Everything from 1st year teachers, teachers new to being over seas, to very experienced international educators. Living in Istanbul is a big draw.”

21. American School of Asuncion (Asuncion, Paraguay)122 Comments

20. International School of Phapos (Phapos, Cyrpus) – 123 Comments
“State schools pay a lot more but it takes a lifetime for locals to be accepted it is strictly by seniority.”

19. Tsinghua International School (Beijing) (Beijing, China)126 Comments

18. Sekolah Victory Plus (Jakarta, Indonesia) – 127 Comments
“Due to new Indonesian regulations, all salaries must be paid in Rupiah. However, the school guarantees a portion of your salary (~30%) in USD calculated at the official rate each month. A sort of best of both worlds scenario.”

17. Hong Kong International School (Hong Kong, China)127 Comments

16. Canadian International School (Hong Kong) (Honk Kong, China)127 Comments
“Hong Kong is one of the major stops for big name concerts and theatrical productions. Tickets can be expensive, but some large music festivals, such as Clokkenflap and Party in the Park, are more reasonably priced.”

15. Bilkent Laboratory & International School (Ankara, Turkey)128 Comments

14. Rowad Alkhaleej International School (Dammam) (Riyadh, Saudi Arabia)129 Comments
“Foreign hired teachers are given a furnished apartment in a company owned compound (built in 2014) right next to the school. Basic WiFi and cable TV are provided.”

13. Seoul Foreign School (Seoul, South Korea)133 Comments
“Tutoring through the school is available if it is not your student. The school takes a portion leaving you with about $20 for 30 minutes of tutoring. Coaching stipends from $350-900 and lifeguarding at the school pool can bring in 25-45 dollars an hour.”

12. Wycombe Abbey International School (Changzhou, China)140 Comments

11. Oeiras International School (Lisbon, Portugal) – 142 Comments
“Back in the re-accreditation mode again with the self study this year. The visit will be a joint visit next year with IB, ECIS and NEASC.”

10. International School of Dakar (Dakar, Senegal)144 Comments

9. Concordia International School (Shanghai) (Shanghai, China)154 Comments
“The “common language spoken in the hallways” depends on the grade level. Students who are only 3 or 4 might not have a lot of English. As the students get older, they are quite skilled in English.”

8. American School of Barcelona (Barcelona, Spain)160 Comments

7. Pechersk School International (Kyiv, Ukraine)162 Comments
“Apartments are furnished by landlords so it can vary – but generally pretty basic. School gave me a metro card and a SIM card and phone til I sorted out my own.”

6. International School of Tanganyika (Dar es Salaam, Tanzania) – 171 Comments

5. KIS International School (Bangkok, Thailand) – 178 Comments
“Using a mobile is now so cheap that many teachers do not have a landline. The Satellite TV provider is dreadful, neither their offerings nor their boxes have changed in 20 years. If you want to watch sport most teachers just go to the pub.”

4. NIST International School (Bangkok, Thailand)210 Comments

3. Western International School of Shanghai (Shanghai, China) – 317 Comments
“Airport is okay. It’s clean and easy to navigate. Immigration can take a long time to get through at peek times during the year but it’s okay. They have water fountains, which as a frequent traveller I really appreciate.”

2. Copenhagen International School (Copenhagen, Denmark)321 Comments

1. Good Shephard International School – (Ooty, India) – 406 Comments
“Presently they are having their Trinity College London Music Examinations. This is an option but they try to maintain high grades although most students only take Initial to Grade 1 due to restrictions of the admin to practice music…”

You can see rest of the Top 40 school profile pages with the most comments here on our website.

Keep the schools that you work at now (or have worked at in the past) updated with new comments. Want to share what you know and get unlimited premium access to our website? Become a Mayor today!

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Information for Members

‘Where Our Members Have Worked’ feature update: Check out the latest stats!

January 8, 2017


Our 9150 current members (up 3825 members from January 2015) work at or have worked at 1019 international schools (up 253 schools from January 2015)!

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How amazing is that?!  In almost six years now, our “international school community” has grown into an excellent network of international school teachers.  With so much experience and knowledge about life working at over 1000 international schools on our website, the other members are able to stay updated and the most informed about schools in which they are interested.  Additionally, now it is even easier to find the right members to contact for networking purposes and for gathering more information about the specific questions you may have about working at a certain international school.

This useful feature page lists all the international schools that either our members currently work at or have worked at in the past. We have organized this list of schools alphabetically by country, all on one page.  But for faster access to the country you are specifically looking for, just click on the letter that the country starts with at the top of the page.

Which international schools on our website have the most members you ask?  Here are our top 10 schools:

International School of Kuala Lumpur
(16) members

Copenhagen International School
(16) members

Seoul International School
(14) members

American School of Barcelona
(14) members

American International School in Egypt
(14) members

International School Manila
(12) members

Brent International School Manila
(11) members

International School of Tanganyika
(11) members

Istanbul International Community School
(11) members

American School Foundation of Mexico City
(11) members

Want to see the top 40 list of schools with the most members?  Check out this page which displays the names and avatar pictures of each member that either currently works at that school now or has worked there in the past.

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So take a moment to have a look at our “Where Our Members Have Worked” page. Maybe you will find that we have some members who know about the international school about which you are looking to gain more information.

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Top 10 Lists

Nine Reasons How International Schools Create a High Morale Amongst its Staff

April 24, 2016


“Morale and attitude are fundamentals to success.”
Bud Wilkinson

A school can be a complicated place. There aren’t many jobs where you surround yourself with hundreds of children every day!

But like any other place of “business”, a school needs to have a think about how they will keep their staff feeling good about where they work and how they are doing their job.  We all know that teaching can, at times, be quite stressful on the teachers.

When you are feeling good about your workplace and job performance, everyone benefits; namely the students, but also your colleagues and bosses. But when teachers are stressed out and with a low morale about working at their school, typically nobody benefits.

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You can, of course, be with high spirits on your own doing. But it is important to feel valued by the whole school community as that plays a factor as well. Feeling like you are part of a team can help you stay positive and optimistic at your school.

What, then, do international schools do to make sure their staff is feeling valued?

International School Community is full of thousands of useful and informative comments…16780 (24 Apr. 2016) to be exact. We scoured our database of comments, and we found nine that stood out to us as being some of the coolest ways to show appreciation and boost staff morale.

9. Khartoum International Community School (Khartoum, Sudan)65 Total Comments

“The school administration does a lot to make life easy for expats. They have put systems in place that make it very easy to live here and feel looked after. Along with the board they also put on big social events for teachers and staff at least once a semester (start of year / xmas party / end of year etc). There is a social committee as well which has organised coffee afternoons, Nile boat trips, picnics and so on. Truth to say the morale in the Senior Section has dipped in recent years but many of those who were not happy have now left so we are all hoping that things will now improve. Morale across the rest of the school is great.”

8. Western International School of Shanghai (Shanghai, China) – 202 Total Comments
“Welcome back brunch and lots of staff socials. Set up a Social Committee to feedback ideas to Director on all aspects of school. Director regularly thanks and acknowledges staff through e-mail and meetings. There have been 3 cases of surprise bonus’ paid to all staff as a thanks.”

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7. Copenhagen International School
(Copenhagen, Denmark)282 Total Comments 
“One way to create some “social capital” at our school year this was to have a whole-staff scavenger hunt the first day back. It was VERY well received, and everyone had a great time. There were like 30 teams of 5-6 people and we all went around the city to collect items and/or take pictures of certain things, all for various amounts of points. Super fun! It was all organized by teachers actually.”

6. Yew Chung International School (Shanghai)
(Shanghai, China)27 Total Comments

“There is a social committee at this school and they arrange different activities for the teachers. Like one night could be bowling or everyone meet at a bar. The group tries to do something every month. A lot of people participate. There was also a karaoke night and laser tag.”

5. Kampala International School (Kampala, Uganda)50 Total Comments

“At the beginning of each school year, we go to a resort for an overnight training and social. There is a PD during the day, evening there is dinner and a band. The next more there is breakfast and maybe go for a swim in the pool. There has been training in from people abroad. Last year, it was somebody with pivotal education, Darryll.”

4. American School of Barcelona (Barcelona, Spain)157 Total Comments

“There was a social committee in place for a couple of years, but it was a volunteer position and the demands of it weren’t worth the time anymore. There is an HR person in place now who has set up a wine tasting and other events for staff. The staff tends to socialize quite a bit outside of school, even with kids! The school puts on holiday parties and festive lunches around holidays, though not extravagant, most of the food-drinks are free.”

3. Anglo-American School of Moscow (Moscow, Russia)66 Total Comments

“The school has a health and wellness program where a lot of teachers connect and exercise together. Also, the PTO regularly hosts cocktail events after school. Plus there are scheduled tours and cultural events.”

2. Hiroshima International School (Hiroshima, Japan)64 Total Comments

“Christmas and end of year staff parties. It is also traditional to bring “omiyage” gifts (cookies and other small snacks) from teachers who have attended a conference or tournament elsewhere in Japan.”

1. KIS International School (Bangkok) (Bangkok, Thailand)70 Total Comments

“There are a lot of teacher and admin getaways as well as plenty of room for professional development. The management goes out of its way to answer questions before issues come up, and western holidays are recognized with food and decorations from home.”

If you would like to share what your school does to create a high staff morale, log in to International School Community and submit your comments. For every 10 submitted comments, you will get one month of free premium membership added to your account!

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Surveys

New Survey: How is your experience using your health insurance and medical benefits?

July 15, 2015


A new survey has arrived!

Topic:  How is your experience using your health insurance and medical benefits?

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It is not fun worrying about your health when you live abroad, as medical systems can vary from country to country in their efficiency, price and quality.

Some cities have only local hospitals on offer; meaning ones that are staffed by locals and that serve mostly locals. It is not uncommon for these hospitals to have a staff with poor English or any foreign language fluency. It might be necessary for you to find, or in a best case scenario – for your school to provide someone who can accompany you at the hospital to serve as an interpreter. KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERAThe quality of these hospitals isn’t necessarily poor, as one may suggest, but not knowing the local culture of “how things work” in a local hospital can indeed be quite nerve-wracking.

Other locations have more expat-oriented medical facilities and/or special-health insurance plans for foreigners. These types of hospitals can put expats at ease in how they are served.  They have foreign-hired doctors on hand that can speak their language.  Expat-oriented hospitals typically also have all the different types of medicine and prescriptions that you may need while living abroad. In less developed areas (ones that have lower employment desirability), you are in luck if you have access to these types of expat-oriented medical facilities.

8566688298_45da9904cc_zIt is all fine and dandy to have super accessible and well-resourced hospitals in your host country, but let’s not forget out the health insurance benefits package that you are receiving through your school.  It is clear that your medical insurance coverage can vary from school to school in their efficiency, price and quality as well. In one international school, they give you amazing health coverage with everything covered (including health insurance for you around the world), no co-payments, with most dental needs included. In the next school, you find yourself very limited to what you can do with your benefits.  A less desirable health insurance package might not include dental or cover you during your travels around the world or back in your home country.

Your health insurance benefits package should always be talked about and maybe even negotiated with your international school before you sign the contract.

Because things are so different for each of us at international schools across the world, take a moment to go to the homepage of International School Community and submit your vote today!

If you are interested, you can check out the latest voting results here.

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We actually have a comment topic related this to this issue. It is called: Health insurance and medical benefits. Describe your experiences using these benefits and going to the local hospitals.

Right now there are over 598 individual comments (about 100s of different international schools) in this comment topic on our website.  Here are a few of them:

“The insurance is pretty good. At hospitals that accept it, you pay approximately $13 U.S. for the visit, treatments and prescriptions. The difficulty is not with the insurance, but the hit and miss quality of care available in town.” – Liwa International School (Dubai, United Arab Emirates)23 Comments

“You can get travelers and accident insurance from your bank here, like at Nordea. It is really cheap and it gives you health insurance coverage anywhere in the world! It is important to know about this option because now the Danish CPR health social health care card doesn’t cover you anymore in Europe, well for non-Danish people with a CPR card.” – Copenhagen International School (Copenhagen, Denmark)244 Comments

“Macau offers free health care coverage to all residents and all who hold work permits. This kicks in after about 3 months of living in Macau. The school helps facilitate private insurance until the government insurance starts up.” – The School of the Nations (Macao, China)20 Comments

“Health insurance is not the best. It only covers emergencies and specialist doctors, not a General Practitioner. I have been to the doctor here, and it was a good experience. Doctors were efficient and I got taken care of pretty quickly. I would advise asking people who have lived here a while, who to go to though.” – The Codrington School (Int’l School of Barbados) (St. John, Barbados)70 Comments

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