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Moving Overseas with Children
Moving abroad with children requires a lot of planning in advance to make the transition as easy as possible for everyone. There’s no doubt that you’ll be faced with hitches along the way, but everything that you can do to prepare in advance for your children’s new school needs will help you move your whole family overseas successfully.
Teachers International Consultancy (TIC) has helped hundreds of teachers and their families move to new jobs abroad. Here is some of the advice TIC offers to anyone moving overseas with school-age children, whatever the reason for your move:
- Find out what schools are available in the area that you are moving to. Your company may well offer one, or a limited number of schools that you as a family can send your children to. This may include full payment or a contribution towards school fees. Make sure you know exactly what your company is paying for and the additional costs that you will incur. Tuition fees can just be the start of the expenses with costs for such things as uniform, resources and school trips ending up being very extensive.
- Investigate the curriculum your children will be learning in their potential new schools. It may well be a school delivering the English National Curriculum or a curriculum that your children have learned in their home country, but the approach to learning and the standards may be very different. Your child may well have done some of the work before or may have missed out on parts of the curriculum.
- Be prepared for your children to be learning alongside many children where English is their second language. Some parents see this as a very positive experience, others feel that their children are being disadvantaged. Your child may be one of just a few children in the school speaking English. This may be an issue when it comes to making friends. Children can feel very isolated in situations like this or may end up in a very tight group of ‘friends’ they may otherwise not have chosen, just because of language similarities. Help your child to prepare for this, suggesting ways to make friends through non-verbal actions.
- Check out the pastoral care provided within the school. Some schools have an onsite counselor or assign a pastoral head of year, some schools have a buddy system for new children. Some schools are much better than others at helping new children settle.
For more advice about moving overseas go to www.findteachingjobsoverseas.co.uk