Now there are 2150+ international schools that have had comments/reviews submitted on them on our website (up almost 80 schools from one year ago)!
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.
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.
Some of our schools that have many submitted comments will sometimes have over 15 comments in one comment topic!
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? This list comes from May 2020 with a sample comment for each school.
Here we go:
26. Hong Kong International School
(Hong Kong, China) – 148 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. American International School (Vietnam)
(Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam) – 153 Comments
“Now, it is extensive as it has not been done at all. Atlas Rubicon full steam ahead…”
24. Canadian International School (Hong Kong)
(Hong Kong, China) – 155 Comments
“CDNIS is an IB World School, implementing PYP, MYP, and DP. In a recent report by the IB governing body, CDNIS must make major administrative and governing reforms in the next year…”
23. American School of Warsaw
(Warsaw, Poland) – 155 Comments
“Since housing isn’t provided by the school, you get a lot of leeway in terms of what kind of accommodations you choose and whether you keep within your housing allowance or “top up” for a bigger/nicer/better place. As such, how well-appointed your apartment or hou…“
22. Colegio Gran Bretana
(Bogota, Colombia) – 156 Comments
“Many goods on display, if not found in supermarket, can be ordered online…”
21. Tarsus American College
(Mersin, Turkey) – 157 Comments
“Down to two weeks of holiday in January. No other breaks and we’ve been told that in addition to losing our fall and spring breaks for intensive staff-development other PD will be held on weekends…”
20. Tsinghua International School (Beijing)
(Beijing, China) – 158 Comments
“There is a new airport going in south of Beijing to relieve the traffic at the main airport…”
19. American School of Dubai
(Dubai, UAE) – 161 Comments
“Lately a number of teachers are heading to places like Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan. They report great experiences! Oman remains the number one travel option, however, as it is right next door (door to door to Muscat is around the five hour mark) and has lots of great outdoor…”
18. MEF International School Istanbul
(Istanbul, Turkey) – 162 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…”
17. 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…”
16. International School of Tanganyika
(Dar es Salaam, Tanzania) – 171 Comments
“The IT infrastructure has improved significantly, but is still not without its challenges. Internet speed is reasonably fast, much much better than it used to be. All teachers are provided with a Macbook. At secondary there are 4 computer labs. The science department has 25 m…”
15. Seoul Foreign School
(Seoul, South Korea) – 172 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.”
14. Cairo American College
(Cairo, Egypt) – 174 Comments
“The subway costs 2 Egyptian pounds per ride. Taxis vary, since you might have to haggle. Many people at the school use a regular driver. The one I use charges less than 200 Egyptian pounds for a trip to the airport, which is about an hour away…”
13. American School of Barcelona
(Barcelona, Spain) – 175 Comments
“The turn over rate is getting a bit higher because the cost of living in Spain is getting higher and higher and salaries are staying the same. Economically it is difficult in Spain right now. That being said Barcelona is a fantastic city to live in and no one wants to leave…”
12. Concordia International School (Shanghai)
(Shanghai, China) – 180 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…”
11. International School of Dakar
(Dakar, Senegal) – 181 Comments
“Very low turnover this year but we had a large turnover the previous year. Teachers tend to stay 3-4 years but some have stayed much longer…”
10. Oeiras International School
(Lisbon, Portugal) – 183 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…”
9. Lahore American School
(Lahore, Pakistan) – 193 Comments
“1/2 of the teachers are from North America and 1/2 from Pakistan, a few from UK…”
8. Ghandi Memorial International School
(Jakarta, Indonesia) – 203 Comments
“Bahasa Indonesia is the official language, with English spoken in major cities and tourist areas…”
7. Stamford American International School
(Singapore, Singapore) – 237 Comments
“The school is the north-east corner of Singapore with very easy access to the city center. Staff can choose their own accommodation location based on their financial and lifestyle preferences. Most teachers live 2-3 MRT (underground) stations away. Public transport is excellent…”
6. Singapore American School
(Singapore) – 278 Comments
“Transport options are good. The taxi queue right outside of arrivals can be long at times, but the system works well to get people moving as fast as possible…”
5. NIST International School
(Bangkok, Thailand) – 298 Comments
“With the start of construction on the street the school is located on, the entire schedule has shifted to a later start. Elementary students begin at 8:00 and secondary students at 8:30. So far the response has been overwhelmingly positive…”
4. KIS International School
(Bangkok, Thailand) – 326 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…”
3. Copenhagen International School
(Copenhagen, Denmark) – 375 Comments
“You can get travellers 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…”
2. Good Shephard International School
(Ooty, India) – 409 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…”
1. Western International School of Shanghai
(Shanghai, China) – 466 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…”
You can see rest of the Top 40 school profile pages with the most comments here on our website.
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I very much consider myself a third-culture kid despite living 25/31 years in Western Sydney. This area is the most culturally diverse area in the southern hemisphere and I grew up experiencing both Australian and Arab cultures.
Born in Kuwait, I spent the first four years of my life there before migrating to Australia. Throughout my life I frequently travelled to Jordan to visit my extended family. My family originates from Palestine before it was partitioned. And previous to that, we have routes in Egypt.
My schooling and tertiary education were completed in Sydney. When I was completing my high school studies, I was considering teaching as my profession. Although, I decided to study a Bachelor of Commerce first knowing that obtaining a Masters of Teaching would only take two years of full-time study on top of that.
Throughout my tertiary studies, I worked in a variety of education and community welfare jobs. At that time, I never thought I would be embarking on an international teaching journey. I was very much a typical guy in his 20s in Australia. I loved Rugby League, Touch Rugby and cycling and all my travels with friends via domestic trips. By the time I graduated, I was ready to experience a life-changing international journey.
During my last semester of university, I attended a job fair organised for the post graduate students completing educational courses in my university. At the fair were some recruiters looking for teachers to work in the UK and I immediately was interested. The process was straight forward. The recruiter organised an interview with herself and then a principal within a school. They liked my enthusiasm and how I was looking forward to the adventure and willing to learn about the UK curriculum. From there I had to collect documentation such as police checks, and I was helped to apply for a Youth Mobility Visa. Before I knew it, I was offered a short term maternity leave contract for a Grade 5 class and a few weeks after graduating, I was ready for a September start in the UK.
Before going to the UK, I took a detour to visit a close friend of mine in Shanghai for one week. He was about to begin his 2nd international teaching post. It was a wonderful visit which opened my eyes to a new culture. It wasn’t long before I was back there teaching kindergarten.
In my first year of teaching I was extremely lucky to have had the opportunity to have completed six weeks of casual teaching in Australia, a semester block as a Grade 5 homeroom teacher in an East London public school, and being the first teacher to open the one of two new kindergarten classes (a first for the school). My life was very different; I met so many new people, learned how to speak basic conversational mandarin, enjoyed a diverse lifestyle in two major world class cities and grew a lot as a teacher.
I have worked in England (Brookside Junior School), Egypt (Cairo English School), China (Shanghai United International School, Fudan International School and Guangdong Country Garden School), and Brazil (The American School of Belo Horizonte.) In this time I have had the opportunity to teach Canadian British Columbian, UK National Curriculum, American Common Core Curriculum as well as the International Baccalaureate. All schools were fun places to work.
Cairo English School stands out as the school with a stunning campus. It had over 1500 students and chaotic hallways but the students were always cheerful and there were always many extravagant events going on around the school.
An even bigger school was Guangdong Country Garden School. They had over 4500 students! It was impossible to even meet all the students. I worked in the kindergarten. I remember the play times with over four hundred 3-5-year-old students running around in many directions. It was a boarding school, and it was common to see even kindergarten students still having lessons in the evening.
Both Fudan International School and The American School of Belo Horizonte are smaller schools with approximately 350 students from K-12. I was the Grade 5 homeroom teacher at both schools so I was given a lot of freedom in planning a lot of the curriculum according to the American Common Core and IB syllabi, and the school’s scope and sequence.
It is still hard to decide whether I prefer the larger schools or smaller schools. They both have their advantages. Every school was unique in its own way.
I have been in Belo Horizonte for two months now. My impression is that Brazilians are very social and love to enjoy themselves. Every weekend there is loud music coming from different places in my neighbourhood and many social gatherings within my apartment complex. Just about everybody greets you in a friendly manner and people are usually excited to hear where I am from and speak of their desires to visit there.
Belo Horizonte is considered the Brazilian Belgium. It may not be known for having beautiful beaches like the other places in Brazil, but it is known for producing beers of good quality such as Krug Bier, FalkBier, Backer, Küd, Wäls and Artesamalte. To complement this you will find the popular night spot of Savassi heaving every weekend complemented by music festivals.
Whilst Belo Horizonte seems to be unknown from the outside world, it is the third largest city in Brazil. It boasts the most bars per capita with over 12,000 bars in the city. Most of these are informal sit down spots where you can enjoy an informal meal. Beagá (the city’s nickname which is its initials in Portuguese) also boast a fine arts culture with beautiful street art sprawled around the city. It is definitely a hidden gem (and ironically the mining capital of the country).
It is very important to be responsible and choose your employer well. That means finding out as much as you can about the position and the school, where you will live and information about the country you will be living in. After you have found out as much as possible, evaluate what is really important to you.
For me, as I have moved around a few times in my 7 years of teaching. Now I am more inclined to look for supportive school that will offer me 2-3 year contracts and ongoing professional development so I can take my teaching pedagogy to the next level.
An amazing and unforgettable experience.
Thanks, Tareq Hajjaj!
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Do you think you have what it takes to be a veteran international school teacher like Tareq Hajjaj? What character traits does it take? We have an article on our blog that discusses this very question. It is called the “Top 10 Character Traits of a Seasoned International School Teacher“. Read the whole article here.continue reading
Around the world, there are cities that have more than one international school. Many times there is an American school, a British School, and an international school that uses an international curriculum.
Some cities, though, have MANY international schools! When that is the case, how do the comments about each school compare to each other?
This blog series looks at comparing some of these comments, all coming from international schools in the same city.
Currently, we have 32 schools listed in Cairo on International School Community.
21 schools have had comments submitted on them. Here are a few that have the most submitted comments:
Cairo American College (Cairo, Egypt) – 27 Comments
Cairo British School (Cairo, Egypt) – 30 Comments
Cairo English School (Cairo, Egypt) – 20 Comments
El Alsson British and American International School (Cairo, Egypt) – 20 Comments
Hayah International Academy (Cairo, Egypt) – 20 Comments
Misr American College (Cairo, Egypt) – 47 Comments
Nefertari International Schools (Cairo, Egypt) – 28 Comments
The International Schools of Choueifat in Egypt (Cairo, Egypt) – 22 Comments
American International School in Egypt (New Cairo City, Egypt) – 62 Comments
Modern English School Cairo (New Cairo City, Egypt) – 25 Comments
The International School of Egypt (New Cairo City, Egypt) – 43 Comments
“The previous comment is correct that foreign teachers are promised work visas but never receive them. Teachers just have to work with tourist visas. This is a dangerous position to be in because the Egyptian government is starting to deport foreigners, particularly Americans, who are working illegally in the country with tourist visas.” – The International School of Egypt
“This is a bit of an issue at AIS. They seem to hire people without checking references and most interviews are just over the phone or Skype. Several people get fired a year due to behaviors that I am sure would have shown before hiring should AIS do face to face interviews and checking references. I think this will change this year since there is a new Director. Currently, they do not go to any recruiting fairs, but are supposed to this year.” – American International School in Egypt
“The school can’t hire people over 60 years old.” – Nefertari International Schools
“Staff can choose where they want to live. A housing allowance is given at 1200 EGP per month Which is never enough to cover an apartment in a “good” neighbourhood. Rent costs on average per month for a single teacher only in a good working apartment 3000+ per month utilities are all billed separately which the teacher has to pay for.” –Cairo British School
“I found a great apartment for the housing allowance that the school gives. Some people rented much fancier places and paid more out of their salary. I lived in a great location and had a two bedroom apartment that my landlord also lived in so he was right there if I needed anything. He spoke English quite well to which helped in communication. My utilities were around $20 US per month. I had a cable bill and that was the same. I got internet on a USB stick from the telephone company which was $17 each month. I found the whole experience positive and cheap.” – Misr American College
“The apartments that teachers are placed in are fully paid for by the school.” – Cairo American College
“There is a housing allowance of 1500 LE if you don’t take the teacher housing, which is really terrible and disgusting. The housing allowance isn’t enough to actually rent an apartment though. Rent would be at least 2000 or more in the area, not including utilities.” – The International School of Egypt
“For the teachers that live in El Rehad and have their own car, it typically takes 15-20 minutes to get to work in the morning. You can hire a taxi through the school to get to school in the morning is 100 EGP. You can get a car through Careen though for 30 EGP one way. To drive to the city center from the school could take 45 minutes depending on traffic.” – American International School in Egypt
“The school is located in Ismailia Road, next to New Cairo and Heliopolis. Teachers get free transportation to and from your home to the school.” – Nefertari International Schools
“Teacher’s can live wherever they choose. The school is in the heart of the city that it is located in. Staff ride the school bus to and from school” – Cairo British School
“Expat teachers get a housing allowance and assistance in finding housing. I was easily able to find a nice apartment within the budget that is within walking distance to school.” – Misr American College
Language of Students
“Other comments are right on. Most students do not know much English so it is really hard to teach them using English language textbooks. There are very few who can write complete sentences, even in high school. The students all speak Arabic in the classroom, even though they are only supposed to speak English.” – The International School of Egypt
“All Egyptian nationals go to this school. In one classroom, you might find one kid that has parents with a non-Egyptian passport, but they will most likely be from another Arabic speaking country.” – American International School in Egypt
“Common languages spoken in hallways: Arabic.” – Nefertari International Schools
“English is the main language spoken in the school of course. from time to time you may hear the additional arabic being spoken. The school is made up of mostly high tier Egyptian families.” – Cairo British School
(These are just 4 of the 65 different comments topics that on each school profile page on our website.)
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Traveling Around: Cairo, Egypt
Can you relate?
• Getting off the plane and seeing the armed security forces casually strolling around the airport with machine guns hanging off their arms.
• Going to the Egyptian Museum and walking past tanks and armored vehicles ready to deal with any major problems. There is heightened security leading up to the elections but the armed forces are subtle and seeing them is reassuring. Very strange though seeing military checkpoints with umbrellas protecting the soldiers from the sun.
• Finally seeing Tutankhamen’s treasures including his Death Mask after 39 years of wanting to go and see it, including canceling a previous planned trip as it coincided with the weekend the last revolution occurred.
• Then, walking in his tomb and seeing his mummified corpse (and ‘negotiating’ with the guard to take photographs, even though cameras and pictures not allowed).
• No queues, no waiting anywhere. Before the revolution it would have taken 30 minutes at each of the four tombs in Valley of the Kings before you could even enter and then it would be full of people. I was in Tutankhamen’s tomb with just my mini tour group (total of three) we had the place to ourselves…
• The Pyramids and the Sphinx!!!
• Bargaining with the vendors whilst the Nile River Cruise ship goes through the lock (they throw their product onto the deck and if you want it you throw your money down to them) – best fun ever!!
• Finding out that snacks are really cheap at roadside stalls
• Encountering insane Cairo traffic – lanes are just a suggestion and horns are to tell a story – one hour just to drive around the roundabout at Tahir Square – cars were doing u-turns in the middle of the traffic – against the flow – just to escape…
• Shopping!!! Dealing with the vendors can be so much fun if you smile at them and have a laugh…
• Walking around the corner and seeing the immense statues of Rameses II at Abu Simbel (after a 3am start and a 3 and a half hour road convoy)
• Watching an artisan make papyrus and then seeing another use hieroglyphics to personalise it for you
• Seeing an Egyptian Muslim man propose to his girlfriend on the Nile Dinner Cruise – so beautiful
• Seeing an Egyptian wedding (different couple obviously :)) get married by the pool at the hotel you are staying and then watching the fireworks when they leave the party
• Experiencing all the different temples at different times of the day so the light reflects differently
• Mummified crocodiles!
• Meeting two amazing boys from Barbados to travel around Upper Egypt with (we became known as Two Cokes and a Sprite as that reflected the drinks we always ordered for dinner but it was also a cute description of the three of us)
• Being taken out to dinner by your guide (not included in the tour package) as an extra so you can taste ‘real’ Egyptian food at a restaurant that happened to be across the road from the Sphinx so we were entertained by the Light show as well…
• Experiencing the incredible hospitality of the local people (my tour guide and tour company owner really made sure that I was having the tour of my dreams).
• Realising that Egypt is currently a safe place to visit regardless what the media says – it is cheap to visit now (weather is best Jan – April) and the people appreciate you visiting as they are doing it tough since the revolutions…
• Independently kickstarting the Egyptian economy with all the shopping I did (seriously heavy bags (plural) on the way home!)
• New friends in Egypt and because of Egypt!
Currently we have 23 international schools listed in Cairo, Egypt on International School Community. Here are a few of the them that have had comments submitted on them:
Cairo American College (27 Comments)
• Cairo British School (30 Comments)
• Cairo English School (17 Comments)
• Ecole Oasis Internationale (17 Comments)
• El Alsson British and American International School (20 Comments)
• Hayah International Academy (19 Comments)
• Misr American College (37 Comments)
• The International Schools of Choueifat in Egypt (22 Comments)
This Can you Relate article was submitted by an International School Community member who is Australian and currently works in the UAE.
If you are on a trip right now, away from your host country, write to us at email@example.com with your “Can you relate?” traveling experiences. Tell us where you are traveling in the world, what you are seeing and how you are coping with any culture shock. Once your Traveling Around experience is posted on our blog, International School Community will give 6 free months of premium membership!continue reading
I am originally from England, from Colchester in Essex. Just under twenty years ago, I was teaching Sociology and History at The Sixth Form College in Colchester. I took my BA and did my doctorate at Essex University and my PGCE at the Institute of Education in London.
How did you get started in the international teaching community?
A friend of mine moved in 1994 to Oman, and invited me to visit her. While I was out there I met an international teacher. Before that, I thought you could only teach ESL overseas. I had no idea that international schools even existed. A tiny seed lodged in my brain, and two years later I set out to teach Humanities in Thailand.
Which international schools have you worked at? Please share some aspects of the schools that made them unique and fun places in which to work.
I started at TCIS (Thai-Chinese Int’l School Bangkok) in Bangkok, in 1996. It had only been open for two years then, and was a very exciting place to work. The students were wonderful, and all of the teachers were thrilled to be in at the start of something big. Since then I have worked at several international schools, the most memorable of which were AIS (the American International School in Cairo) and the International School of Tanganyika, in Dar es Salaam. I now teach IB Diploma Psychology online for Pamoja Education, and write materials for MYP and DP.
What made these schools unique was the nature of the students: in these years I was teaching firstly a mixture of Thai and Taiwanese students – extremely polite and charming and in general very keen to learn, but often afraid to admit to not understanding; then the Egyptian students – much more challenging when it came to classroom management, but very warm and humorous with some great characters in the classes; finally, at IST in Dar es Salaam, there was quite an international mix of students and a huge opportunity to learn about many different cultures in a wonderful location.
In all of the international schools in which I have worked, the teachers have also been sometimes crazy, always interesting and always committed to education in its broadest sense.
Describe your latest cultural encounter (or reverse cultural encounter) in your current placement, one that put a smile on your face.
I am a little puzzled by the term ‘reverse cultural encounter’ – they are all just cultural encounters, I think. There have been several memorable ones. The earliest (rather than the latest) is one of the funniest. TCIS In Bangkok supplied a white minibus to take the teachers from the housing compound where most of us lived to the school. It used to pick us up outside the small launderette on the compound. During our first week, several of us new teachers were waiting for the bus. It came, and the driver popped into the shop with his washing, while we got in. When he came out, he did not seem to know the way to the school, so we assumed he was a new driver, and showed him with a map, as our Thai was as non-existent as his English. On arrival at the school, the security guards would not let him in: it seems he was a driver just dropping off his washing, and nothing to do with the school. He had been startled by the five foreigners sitting in his bus and thought it was best to do what they asked! Poor man…and a real introduction to the warmth of the Thai people.
A more recent example happened at IST in Dar es Salaam. We had a severe water shortage and a message was sent around asking us all to conserve water at school. The school gardener immediately turned on the hosepipe. When we asked him what he was doing, his reply was that he needed to water the garden before the water ran out. An example of the different ways of thinking that are possible.
What are some important things that you look for when you are searching for a new position at an international school?
I am past that now, but important things that I used to look for were the educational philosophy and curriculum (preference given to IB); quality of the training given to teachers; the health care package; the location of the school; the teachers’ housing; the attitude of the local community to women; and nature of the social and sporting life outside the school; the profile of the students and teaching staff.
It sounds like a lot, and none of these was a real ‘deal breaker’ but together they make the experience.
In exactly 5 words, how would you describe the international school teaching experience?
Eye-opening, educational, humbling, challenging, fulfilling.
If you are a member of International School Community and would like to be our next member spotlight, contact us here. If we choose to highlight you, you will get a coupon code to receive 6 months free of premium access to our website!continue reading
Random year for international schools around the world: 1945
There is much history in the international teaching community. We have international schools with founding dates of 1838 and 1854 and we also have many, many international schools with founding dates in the 21st century. The numbers are increasing for sure.
Utilizing the database of the 1328 (14 December, 2012) international schools currently listed on International School Community, we found 7 international schools that were founded in 1945. Here are a few of those schools that also have had comments and information submitted on them on our website (excepts about their founding are taken from the schools’ websites)
Lincoln School (San Jose) (18 Comments) (San Jose, Costa Rica)
“In 1945, a group of visionary Costa Rican parents and US immigrants founded Lincoln School to provide a bicultural and bilingual education for their children. Lincoln is a non-profit, private educational institution offering programs from Preschool to 12th grade. It is governed by an elected Board of Directors, where parents are encouraged to participate actively.”
American School of Guatemala (Colegio Americano) (0 Comments) (Guatemala City, Guatemala)
“The School was founded in 1945 by a small group of parents who wished to provide their children with a bilingual, coeducational, quality education. Legal statutes were drawn up embodying the founding principles and establishing a framework for an enduring institution. Under these original statutes, a board of directors was elected by members of the American School Association. In addition to establishing a governing board, the statutes clearly outlined the non-profit, non-denominational, non-political character of the school and established a sound basis for decision making. The statutes also made provision for a separation of board and administrative functions.
The first classes were held on June 10, 1945, in a large family home in zone 9. Thirty four students were enrolled in grades Kindergarten through five. By the end of the first school year, there were 75 students and 12 teachers.”
Cairo American College (19 Comments) (Cairo, Egypt)
“In the fall of 1945, fifty students enrolled in grades one though eight at The Cairo School for American Children and began attending classes in a rented, three-story, vine covered villa located at 36 Road 7 in Maadi. Fourteen high school students were admitted at the beginning of second academic year when the high school curriculum was added.”
American Community Schools Athens (3 Comments) (Athens, Greece)
“In 1946, the British Army School was established in several homes in the Glyfada area to educate the children of British military personnel who were stationed in Greece at the close of the Second World War. The history of ACS begins here; for shortly after its inauguration, the school began to admit British and American civilians. In 1949, many more American children arrived in Greece, and a high school was opened for them in Kolonaki. Also established was an elementary school , in Psychico, which was later moved to a facility in Filothei. The British Army School had metamorphosed into the Anglo-American school.”
American School of Paris (8 Comments) (Paris, France)
“Americans in post-war Paris ask Ms. Edward Bell, whose husband was a Director of Missions for the Northern Baptist Conference, to come to France and open an American school in the American Church on the Quai d’Orsay. Founders include the American Embassy, Guaranty Trust, the Morgan Bank and the American Express Company.”
The Newman School MA (4 Comments) (Boston, United States)
“The Newman School was founded as Newman Preparatory School in 1945, the centennial of Cardinal John Henry Newman‘s conversion to Catholicism, by Dr. J. Harry Lynch and a group of Catholic laymen, for the purpose of providing college preparation to veterans returning from service to their country in World War II. Over the years, “Newman Prep” evolved into a co-educational, diploma-granting program, and eventually began to accept younger students into the ninth grade. During the 1960s, the school operated The Newman School for Boys as a separate four-year (grades nine through twelve) and then six-year (grades seven through twelve) college preparatory school. Walter J. Egan was head of the School for Boys during most of its existence. ”
Check out the rest of the international schools listed on International School Community and check out their histories as well! We have over 1328 international schools that have profile pages on our website.continue reading
Random year for international schools around the world: 1990
There is much history in the international teaching community. We have international schools with founding dates of 1838 and 1854 and we also have many, many international schools with founding dates in the 21st century. The numbers are increasing for sure.
Utilizing the database of the 1264 (18 August, 2012) international schools currently listed on International School Community, we found 22 international schools that were founded in 1990. Here are a few of those schools that also have had comments and information submitted on them on our website (excepts about their founding are taken from the schools’ websites)
International Christian School (Caracas) (5 Comments) (Caracas, Venezuela)
“It was founded in 1990 as Academia Cristiana Internacional de Caracas. The school provides preschool (3 year old) through 12th Grade and is accredited by both Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and Association of Christian Schools International. ICS Caracas is a part of the Network of International Christian Schools.”
North Jakarta International School (20 Comments) (Jakarta, Indonesia)
“NJIS, previously known as North Jakarta International School, is an independent, co-educational international school. It was founded in 1990 and is fully accredited by the Accrediting Commission for Schools of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). NJIS is also a member of the East Asia Regional Council of Overseas Schools (EARCOS).”
Berlin Brandenburg International School (10 Comments) (Berlin, Germany)
“The International School Berlin-Potsdam (ISBP) was founded on 2 October 1990 and located in an eastern area of Potsdam in a large, rented villa on the Heiligensee waterfront. In September 1994, the school opened a second facility in a recently renovated villa down the street for its growing upper school. On 1 June 2002 the school announced that it was changing its name to Berlin Brandenburg International School (BBIS) as of 1 September 2002. This change recognizes the fact that the school is no longer in Potsdam, that it is grateful for the strong support of the State of Brandenburg, and that it serves students and families in a large geographical area very well known both inside and outside Germany.”
American International School in Egypt (13 Comments) (Cairo, Egypt)
“The American International School in Egypt has been one of Egypt’s leading schools since it opened its doors to its first 240 students in 1990. Today, AIS Egypt has two campuses, with a combined student population of over 2000 students.”
American International School of Mozambique (11 Comments) (Maputo, Mozambique)
“The American International School of Mozambique, founded in 1990, is an independent, coeducational day school offering an American-style educational program in English from PK through grade 12. The school year begins in mid-August and ends in mid-June. The School is governed by a 7-member Board of Directors, 6 of whom are elected by the AISM Association and one appointed by the U.S. Ambassador.”
The English Modern School (Doha) (7 Comments) (Doha, Qatar)
“Founded in 1986 as an independent and private educational institute, Stafford is a coeducational, international school. It follows the British curriculum which prepares the students for the London University IGCSE and Advanced (A/S, A/L) Level examinations. High performance in these British exams qualifies students for entry into British and other foreign universities. The curriculum is stringent and comprises a broad and balanced range of subjects.”
Check out the rest of the international schools listed on International School Community and check out their histories as well! We have over 1264 international schools that have profile pages on our website.continue reading
Random year for international schools around the world: 2002
Utilizing the database of the 889 international schools currently listed on International School Community, we found schools that were founded in 2002 (excepts about their founding are taken from the schools’ websites):
The International School of Macao (Macao, China)
“TIS was established in 2002 to provide a Canadian curriculum and accreditation to local and expatriate students. English is the primary language of instruction.
TIS opened with an initial total enrolment of 58 students on the campus of Macau University of Science and Technology (MUST) in 2002. By 2006, the School had grown to over 500 students and had become accredited with the Alberta provincial (Canada) government. Students graduate from TIS with an Alberta High School diploma that is accepted in universities around the world.”
Northfield International High School (Port Louis, Mauritius)
“Northfields International High School (NIHS) is a privately owned secondary school situated in Mapou, district of Pampelmous in the north. From its small beginnings in 2001 NIHS has now over 280 students.”
Canadian International School of Egypt (Cairo, Egypt)
“The Canadian International School of Egypt (CISE) opened its doors on September 15, 2002. It is the first Canadian school certified by the Ministry of Education of Ontario in Egypt and the Middle East. The Egyptian initiators of this project chose the Province of Ontario, Canada’s most populated province, to provide the curriculum and most of the teaching staff for the school.”
Al Jazeera Academy (Doha, Qatar)
“Al Jazeera Academy opened its doors to students in September 2002. It is a modern international educational institution which comprises three separate schools within a single campus to cater for all students from Preschool to Year 13.”
Vale Verde International School (Burgau, Portugal)
“After the acquisition of a property suitable for the conversion of a school in 1997, the De Beer family developed the idea to fruition. In 2002, Vale Verde International School was founded following years of investment required to bring the buildings in line with Ministry of Education requirements.”
International Montessori School of Prague (Prague, Czech Republic)
“The International Montessori School of Prague (IMSP) was established as a private school in 2002. It was originally located in the Blatenska campus of Prague 4. IMSP started with 16 children in two classes : Toddler (1.5 – 3 years), and Primary (3 – 6 years). In September 2003 the school was moved to a much larger facility in the Hrudickova campus of Prague 4. That school year we started with three classrooms: one Toddler, one Primary, and one Elementary. In 2005 a second Primary class was added, so now IMSP had 4 classrooms: Toddler, Primary 1 and Primary 2, and Elementary. In 2006 the Primary program extended its afternoon component with Yoga, Music and Movement, Arts and Crafts, and Czech languge and culture.”
Logos International School (Phnom Penh, Cambodia)
“Logos opened its doors in September 2002 with an enrollment of 58 students ranging from pre-kindergarten to grade seven. At that time,Logos consisted of a single renovated house and an adjacent empty lot where a basketball court and small swimming pool were soon built. Since that time,Logos added an additional grade level each year. In the spring of 2008,Logos held its first graduation ceremony for 13 seniors. Logos’ brand new campus consists of a basketball/volleyball/hockey court,athletic field,playground,library,cafeteria,2 computer labs,2 science labs,multi-purpose assembly room,and a swimming pool. All of the classrooms are air-conditioned and equipped with essential teaching tools. Our new facility is twice the size of our former location. We are very excited about this new provision.”
New Zealand International School (Jakarta, Indonesia)
“On 14 April 2003 Mr. Chris Elder, Ambassador of New Zealand to Indonesia, officially opened the School and the enrolment reached 35 students. The school grew quickly, and in August 2004 space was secured at LPPI, The Banking Institute, on Kemang Raya, to house the Senior Secondary Students. Since that time our enrolment has steadily increased in all aspects. The growth had the effect of moving expansion plans ahead of schedule; the search for additional premises has been an exciting time.”
Bromsgrove International School (Bangkok, Thailand)
“From the vision of the school founders Riza Sripetchvandee and Ian Davison, a new school was opened in 2002 under the name of Windsor International School and ownership of Windsor Education Co. Ltd. The School was constructed at Soi 164 Ramkhamheang Road, Minburi, in Eastern Bangkok. Over the course of the next two years pupil numbers grew steadily. A new building was opened in September 2004 to meet the demand from Early Years students. In April 2004, the School became affiliated to the prestigious and world famous Bromsgrove School UK and changed its name to Bromsgrove International School Thailand (BIST). Bromsgrove School UK was founded over 450 years ago and is a leading co-educational independent day and boarding school for some 1,500 pupils and is situated in the English Midlands and provides a first-class education with excellent facilities and resources, as well as enjoying considerable distinction in Sport, Music and the Arts.”
International School of Wuxi (Wuxi, China)
“International School of Wuxi (ISW) is part of the International Schools of China (ISC) – an organization that, for the last 20 years, has offered academically excellent programs to meet the intellectual, physical and emotional needs of students.”
International Community School (Atlanta) (Atlanta, United States)
Kongsberg International School (Kongsberg, Norway)
“Kongsberg International School is a non-profit foundation established in 2002 by Kongsberg Gruppen ASA, FMC Kongsberg Subsea AS, Kongsberg Automotive ASA and Kongsberg Nærings- og Handelskammer (Chamber of Commerce and Industry). The school opened its doors in August 2003. The purpose of the school is to serve Kongsberg and its surrounding communities by providing a high quality international education for students, based on the International Baccalaureate Programme (www.ibo.org), using English as the principal medium of instruction. Although many of our students are Norwegian, a growing international community in Kongsberg and Buskerud has provided enrolment of students from over 22 nations.”
Access International Academy (Ningbo) (Ningbo, China)
“The AIAN student body is comprised of students from over 20 different nationalities. Faculty members are predominantly from the United States. The teacher-pupil ratio is approximately 1:4, which promotes individualized instructional practices.”
Singapore International School (Indonesia) (Jakarta, Indonesia)
“With the help of international consultants, SIS was able to redesign, construct and eventually turn an “abandoned” clubhouse into a school that is the talk of the town, in a housing complex of Bona Vista, South Jakarta. Located in a quiet neighborhood bordering the elite Pondok Indah real estate, the School is only two minutes from the Outer Ring Road making it accessible from many parts of Jakarta. The SIS complex boasts of an open, airy concept amidst lush, contoured gardens. In Bona Vista, SIS is able to enjoy all the amenities in this complex and this includes a competition-sized pool, soccer field, basketball courts and tennis courts. After a busy construction schedule, SIS finally opened its doors in its new complex in January 2002 with bigger classrooms and better facilities. The enrollment today includes a student population coming from at least 25 different nationalities.”continue reading
v2011.05 – 10 September, 2011:
School is back now in session. Many teachers have been at work and teaching students for a few weeks already. A teacher just wrote to us talk to share what life was like starting year #2 at their “relatively new” international school. Things on the teacher’s mind during the first few weeks so far were related to the following topics:
Getting to know the new director starting this year, knowing the school’s curriculum better now, knowing where things are located in their city and not being new to everything like in year #1, feeling more at home now that their apartment is already decorated, getting used to all of the school’s new equipment and materials, working with new teams of teachers at school and also getting to know the new teachers, making a bit more money now that they are moving up the pay schedule a bit, planning new holidays and vacations to explore more of their region of the world, going to the new shops and stores that have opened up in their city which is making shopping for certain things a lot easier and lastly, getting to inherit the old things of departing teachers from the previous school year!
· Featured article: Moving Overseas with Children by Teachers International Consultancy (part 1)
“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…”
· The Wonderful World of Int’l School Hiring Fairs: Lesson #1 – Bad interviews are good things
“No matter the reputation of the school, the people sitting across from you in the hotel room asking you questions in that school’s name are a stronger indicator of how it would feel to work at that school …”
· Member Search Feature: What positions do International School Community members have?
“After using the member profile search feature on the main homepage of International School Community, we found the following results…”
· Great link: Want to work at an international school in Thailand?
“We are often asked for ‘foreign schools’ in Bangkok and Thailand. None of the international schools in Bangkok and Thailand is really a ‘foreign school’ since they are all accredited by the Ministry of Education in Thailand…”
· How to Break into International School Teaching
“Some of the applications for recruitment fairs like Search and ISS can take months to complete. Especially the confidential references that you need to get your references to submit….”
TIC website. Highlights from this page: TIC provides a personalised, reliable and responsive recruitment and training service tailored specifically to international schools and teachers worldwide. TIC are experts in international schools having over 25 years experience in international education. They have a huge network of contacts in great international schools all over the world; this enables them to help you find your perfect overseas teaching job. They offer a tailored recruitment service whether you are a teacher looking for a job overseas or a school looking to recruit.
A great facebook group page for international school teachers. Check it out here. It is a community of educators working in international schools across the globe. TIST is a site dedicated to a number of interests:
– Sharing instructional strategies
– Integrating instructional technology
– Insights on international teaching
– Questions and concerns about IB
– Cross-curricular and cross-continental collaborative projects
– Job fairs and the recruitment process
– Advice about future teaching destinations and cultural adjustment
– Keeping up with old colleagues and making new contacts
Random year for international schools around the world: 1978
Utilizing the database of the 840 international schools currently listed on International School Community, we found schools that were founded in 1978 (excepts about their founding are taken from the schools’ websites):
The American International School of Nouakchott (Nouakchott, Mauritania)
“The founding of the school in 1978 was very much an effort of the American and international community, and its strengths corresponded with the talents and the generous volunteer spirit of the community. The school was initially in one wing of the Grayzel house. There were two classrooms and an atrium with a garden. Initially instruction was from the Calvert Correspondence course.”
Lycee International School of Los Angeles (Los Angeles, United States of America)
“The school opened in a small house in Van Nuys with only seven students. Some 30 years later, the school has grown to five campuses with more than 900 students and has earned an enviable reputation with its placement of graduates in French universities, grandes écoles and within the American university system.
Of the original 1978 founders, two are still on the Board of Trustees. Others have joined the Board which now renews itself regularly. By combining those who have been Trustees for years with new Trustees bringing a fresh perspective, the Board is prepared to meet the 21st century with both maturity and vigor.”
New Cairo British International School (Cairo, Egypt)
British School of Kuwait (Safat, Kuwait)
“The British School of Kuwait (BSK) traces its origins to 1978 when Vera and Sadiq Al-Mutawa established a small kindergarten which became known as The Sunshine School. Steady growth took place through the 1980s and, having recovered from the ravages of the invasion of 1990, by 1992 the School accommodated 550 kindergarten and primary students. The decision having been made to serve the community at both Primary and Secondary levels, a move to the present site in Salwa took place and in September 1992, newly-named, The British School of Kuwait opened to 900 students.”
Vienna International School (Vienna, Austria)
“The Vienna International School was founded in September 1978 to serve the children of the United Nations and diplomatic community in Vienna. It is also open to children of the international business community and of Austrian families. Over 100 nationalities are represented among its 1,400 children.”
Acs International School – Hillingdon Campus (Hillingdon, England)
“The main house: The handsome and substantially built mansion was originally constructed in white brick and stone in the classical style, between 1854 and 1858, by P.C. Hardwick for Sir Charles Mills, an international banker from one of the most affluent City families of the 19th century.”
International School São Lourenço (Almacil, Portugal)
Sotogrande International School (Cadiz, Spain)
“The school was opened in Cortijo Paniagua with just 11 pupils and very soon developed into a successful and popular primary school. The school was governed by a Board of Governors who retained close links to Sotogrande SA, the company that owns the prestigious Sotogrande estate and provided premises for the original school. By 1990 the school had a roll of 250 pupils and included a high quality secondary school offering UK O-level and A-level courses. For twenty years the school grew steadily and established itself as a leading British-style school in Spain.”
Fairview International School (Kuala, Lumpur)
American School of Douala (Douala, Cameroon)
” Founded in 1978, the American School of Douala (ASD) is an independent coeducational, non-sectarian school, which provides an English language educational program from pre-school through tenth grade.”continue reading
v2011.03 – 9 July, 2011:
The summer has now officially arrived for basically all international school educators. Some will continue their summer vacation until the end of August, but many international schools start up again at the end of July/early August. If you are moving to a new school this year, many new teachers must start work around that same time frame or even earlier! Take this time of relaxation (on a beach in Thailand or Mexico for example!) to fill out some information about the schools you know about on International School Community. So far, our current members represent more than 45 different international schools!
http://peacequilt.wordpress.com/ is a blog. This project began as an idea back in September 2008, the idea being to unite schools all around the world, in some way, potentially as a celebration of the London Olympics, 2012. The people involved asked themselves to think of an idea of uniting schools all over the World. Many international schools have become involved already. A teacher who is inspired can inspire students and other teachers!
What do you mean by “kinds of student” in the school search function?
For many international schools the kinds of student there can be very important to know for certain teachers who prefer a certain type of students population. “Mostly int’l” means that the majority of the student population is from other countries in the world, even if the majority of the population is from one specific country that is not the host country. “Half int’l/half local” signifies that around 50% of the student population is from the host country. “Mostly local” means that the majority of the student population is from the host country.
Incentive program for free premium membership:
Recent blog entries:
· International schools that were founded in 1996 (China, South Korea, Moldova, etc.)
Recently updated schools:
· American School of the Hague (5 new comments)
(The Hague, Netherlands)
“Take home pay examples: single teacher BA step 10 = 3488 EUR, single teacher…”
· Cairo British School (31 new comments)
“The school building is very small, no sporting facilities, the students have to go by…”
· Pechersk School International (11 new comments)
“Travel in the city is easy; taxis and mini-buses are plentiful and cheap. A single taxi fare…”
· The International School of Azerbaijan (5 new comments)
“Azerbaijan has a varied climate; notably hot summers, warm autumns and…”
· Qatar Academy (5 new comments)
“I interviewed with 2 administrators at the Search fair in Boston (2011). They were very…”
· American International School Bucharest (1 new comment)
“The interview went very well, she was willing to allow me to lead the interview by…”
Recently added schools:
Requested schools to be reviewed:
This last month we have had visits from 51 countries around the world!
Survey number 4 has arrived! Topic: Which curriculum do you have the most experience in?
Have you ever been at a job fair and had a school say “sorry were looking for…” teachers with more experience in a certain curriculum? I know I have. Sometimes I wish I had experience in every curriculum so that I could be a more desirable candidate. Because I have experience in one curriculum, does that mean I should teach in that curriculum the rest of my life? I hope that teachers get an opportunity to experience other curricula (if a school will hire you without experience in their curriculum), as it will broaden your frame of mind about your teaching and teaching in general.
So, which is it? Go to the homepage of International School Community and submit your vote today!
As all International School Community members know, each of the 2180+ school profile pages on our website has four comments and information sections: School Information, Benefits Information, City Information and Travel Information. Our members are encouraged to submit comments and information on one or all of these sections if they currently work at an international school or have worked at one in the past. It is important that we all share what we know so that we can in turn help other new teachers make a more informed decision before they sign any contract! *Additionally, for every 10 comments you submit (which are anonymous by the way), you will automatically get one free month of premium membership added to your account! The more comments you leave, the more free membership you get!
So, what are the recent statistics about the Benefits Information sections on all the school profile pages? The current total number of submitted comments in the Benefits Information section is 12207 (out of a total of 39249+ comments); that is up 1503 comments from around 13 months ago (Nov. 2019).
There are 20 subtopics in the Benefits Information section on each school profile page. Check out each one of these subtopics below and find out the total number of comments in that specific sub-topic and also an example comment that has been submitted there.
• Average monthly salary after taxes and in what currency (explain taxation situation). How often do you get paid throughout the year? (1415 Total Comments)
Example comment: “Salary is paid regularly each month directly into your bank account which the school will help you set up. It is paid in $US…” – Northbridge International School (Phnom Penh, Cambodia) – 59 Comments
• Details about the staff housing or the housing allowance. If there is no housing allowance, how much are rent costs and utilities? (1414 Total Comments)
Example comment: “Rent prices went up all over Shanghai in the past 1-2 years and even places near the school cost more now, as landlords start seeing that there’s many expats in the area willing to pay more…” – Western International School of Shanghai (Shanghai, China) – 481 Comments
• Average amount of money that is left to be saved. (761 Total Comments)
Example comment: “A teaching couple could easily live and travel on one salary and save 100% of the other. Savings opportunity is obviously significantly less on one salary, but still possible…” – Singapore American School (Singapore) – 309 Comments
• Detailed info about flight, shipping and settling-in allowances. Any other benefits (e.g. free lunches, etc.)? (1236 Total Comments)
Example comment: “$4000 per teaching couple moving allowance (once you arrive in cash), optional $10,000 loan from school interest free (to buy car), annual flights home…” – American International School of Lagos (Lagos, Nigeria) – 21 Comments
• Health insurance and medical benefits. Describe your experiences using these benefits and going to the local hospitals. (1085 Total Comments)
Example comment: “Teachers must pay for their own health insurance here as Switzerland doesn’t have a social health care program model. Some of the staff’s partners are actually the local doctors in Leysin, so expect to get seen or have your children get seen by them..” – Leysin American School (Leysin, Switzerland) – 113 Comments
• Ways to make extra money (tutoring, after-school activities, etc.). (523 Total Comments)
Example comment: “As the April 6, 2016 comment below states, there are many opportunities for increasing your monthly pay. Other than that, it is illegal to work for anyone but your visa provider (the school) in China. Lots of teachers tutor or work otherwise on the side anyway, but it is illegal.” – Kang Chiao International School (Kunshan, China) – 82 Comments
• Information about benefits for teachers with dependents. (825 Total Comments)
Example comment: “Teachers with dependents need to pay some fees. These vary and are at the discretion of the school so they could conceivably become higher each year. They do not like to hire people with dependents.” – MEF International School Istanbul (Istanbul, Turkey) – 162 Comments
• Professional development allowance details. (617 Total Comments)
Example comment: “The PD allowance allows you to travel and pay for one IB workshop (or any conference) per year. Or you can do two IB online workshops…” – The International School of Dakar (Dakar, Senegal) – 181 Comments
• Pension plan details. (676 Total Comments)
Example comment: “It is not a pension. Due to Brazilian law, each teacher pays 8% of their salary each month into a guarantee fund. This is more or less an unemployment insurance. At the end of your contract, the school agrees to “fire” you, so you can access that fund. Based on the exchange rate at that time, it can vary in USD. At the beginning of my contract is was estimated around $12,000. But, now it will be much closer to $7,000. There is no way to know how much it will actually be in the end.” – American School of Belo Horizonte (Belo Horizonte, Brazil) – 78 Comments
• Describe your experience bringing pets. (310 Total Comments)
Example comment: “Some teachers bring their pets from the USA (and other countries like UAE and Qatar). Some do it via the airlines or a pet relocation service. You need to make sure you pet has their up-to-date shots and whatnot to avoid certain delays and hassles along the way. The shorter your flight to Egypt the easier it might be to get your pet to Egypt.” – American International School in Egypt (Main Campus) (New Cairo City, Egypt) – 62 Comments
• Explain how salaries are decided (e.g. is there a pay schedule? extra step for masters degree? Annual pay raises? Bonuses?). (617 Total Comments)
Example comment: “Each teacher is paid differently. No pay scale. Some teachers with lots of experience paid less than teachers with little experience. Men get paid more than women…” – American School of Durango (Durango, Mexico) – 54 Comments
• How do the school’s benefits compare to other international schools in the area/city? (393 Total Comments)
Example comment: “The pay is lower than other international schools in the area but the school fees are also lower. It is the mid range between the “posh” international schools and the ones that don’t hire internationally trained teachers.” – Ican British International School (Phnom Penh, Cambodia) – 74 Comments
• How is the school calendar? Is there ample vacation time? (592 Total Comments)
Example comment: “Point of contention. Clearly we are in a Muslim country so we have to abide by the holidays, but as Ramadan keeps pushing up 2 weeks every year, so does Eid (which usually falls in the first term. But we are in one of those awkward times where Eid is falling the first week of school so that means no break from the start of school until December. There is only one week at xmas this year, because we have to make sure to finish school around the start of Ramadan, it will be too hot to come to school while the kids (majority) will be fasting or they just won’t attend school. We will still have a week in Feb and a week in April. No long weekends here. 3 months off for summer.” – Qatar Academy (Sidra) (Doha, Qatar) – 97 Comments
• What are some things that you need to buy/pay for when you first arrive at the school that you didn’t know about beforehand? (330 Total Comments)
Example comment: “If you have a pet you have to pay an extra deposit to the landlord, not covered by school…” – Pechersk School International (Kyiv, Ukraine) – 162 Comments
• Details about the maternity benefits of the host country and school. (169 Total Comments)
Example comment: “Women get 12 weeks at 80% pay. She can take more time off, but without pay and at the business’ discretion. I think men don’t get any time off to be with their newborn.” – Zurich International School (Zurich, Switzerland) – 59 Comments
• What is the process of getting reimbursed for things? (226 Total Comments)
Example comment: “Fill out a simple form, submit the receipt, and the money is deposited into your account after the purchase has been approved. If you are concerned as to whether or not you will be reimbursed, seek out approval first. I have never been turned down.” – Daegu International School (Daegu, South Korea) – 25 Comments
• Details about new teacher orientation. (270 Total Comments)
Example comment: “We were picked up at the airport by a school driver who drove the Superintendent there to meet us. We were taken directly to our house, and someone had purchased some staple foods for the refrigerator. There were new towels, sheets and pillows. Other teachers/admin in the neighborhood came to greet us that evening and brought over hot food for dinner. It was an excellent welcome. We immediately felt very much at home…” –Lahore American School (Lahore, Pakistan) – 193 Comments
• In general, why are people staying at or leaving this school? (403 Total Comments)
Example comment: “Everyone leaves because the salary scrap and administration is crap. If you had any moral integrity you would also leave after a week.” – Colombo International School (Colombo, Sri Lanka) – 64 Comments
• Details about the teaching contract. What important things should prospective teachers know about? (250 Total Comments)
Example comment: “Read carefully. 3 page contract is very vague and WILL be used in favor of the administration against you. Expect them to try and keep as much of your money as they can. Hence the 2 month salary withholding which you are assured you will get at back end of contract. This does not usually come to fruition.” – Pan Asia International School (Bangkok, Thailand) – 70 Comments
• Information on trailing spouses. Can they work under spousal visa (also availability of work) or is it possible to live only on one salary? (95 Total Comments)
Example comment: “Trailing spouses can only be sponsored if you are earning a certain amount. It is not very easy to get a job in some professionals; however, this might change soon with the sponsorship system changing often as we near the World Cup 2022.” – The English Modern School (Doha) (Doha, Qatar) – 91 Commentscontinue reading
When I was a kid, three of my closest friends went off the rails. They ended up in prison. In each case, they apprenticed with a bit of shoplifting. Things went downhill from there. I didn’t grow up in a bad neighborhood. But it wasn’t all sugar and lollipops.
That’s why my mom didn’t work when I was young. She stayed home. She wanted to give my brothers, my two sisters and me stability in a world that wasn’t stable.
My mom was careful with money. My dad was a mechanic. They had four kids. That’s why I was surprised when my parents asked if I wanted to take trip around the Mediterranean Sea with a bunch of other 7th grade students. “I’ll take a part-time job to cover the cost,” said my mom. “But you have to save at least $350.” It was 1982. I was a 12-year old with a paper route. The trip cost $2,800. That was five times more than what my cash strapped parents had paid for their family car.
Today, I understand why they wanted me to do it.
For 4 months, I took weekly night lessons with a dozen other kids in a retired teacher’s home. The teacher volunteered. We learned about the countries we would see. We studied their geographies, cultures, architectures and religions. I became our 12-year old expert on Islam.
I left for my month-long trip on March 28, 1982. I still remember the date and most of what I saw. We went to England, Greece, Egypt, Israel and Turkey. I spent two extra weeks with relatives in England.
It was, by far, the best educational experience that I ever had.
Thousands of parents take it one step further. They raise their children overseas. Their kids attend international schools. These aren’t French schools servicing French children, or Thai schools servicing Thai students. Instead, they support the families of expatriates working abroad. They’re like the United Nations.
For many kids and parents, these schools are a dream. Almost every child who graduates from an international school eventually goes to college. In the 12 years that I taught at one, I wasn’t aware of a single high school drop out.
Although it may have happened, I wasn’t aware of a single teen pregnancy. Racism was almost non-existent. There was a heightened awareness of different religions, cultures and demographics, both social and financial.
I taught at Singapore American School. It’s the largest American school outside of the United States. There are 4000 kids from Kindergarten to 12th grade. Most are U.S. passport holders. But the student body represents more than 50 different nationalities. Most of the teachers have children.
In 2014, ICEF Monitor stated that there are more than 7000 international schools worldwide. Devin Pratt and his wife Dianna have worked at six of them. Devin began his career as a Social Studies teacher in Texas. He’s now the Assistant Head (Superintendent) at Frankfurt International School. Dianna works at the same school as an educational technology coordinator. Their two children, Dagan and Dominique, have lived in Cote-d’Ivoire, Africa; Saudi Arabia; Taiwan; India and Singapore.
I sat with Devin on his porch in Frankfurt. Some of the neighbor’s homes peeked through the trees on the sunny hill below. Birds chirped. I couldn’t see or hear a single car. I couldn’t hear another voice.
“For part of my childhood, I grew up in government subsidized apartments in the Dallas, Texas area,” said Devin. “We eventually moved to Plano when my mom remarried. It’s a high socioeconomic area where many of the kids’ parents expected them to go to college. Just having that influence helped me.”
Devin says that there are few negative distractions at international schools. “Almost all of the kids are focused on education and their school based activities. Most don’t consider not going to college. They’re positively pulled by their peers and by supportive communities that value global education and diversity.”
But raising kids overseas isn’t perfect. Derek Swanson is from Colorado Springs, Colorado. He teaches at the American Community School of Abu Dhabi, in the United Arab Emirates. Previously, he and his wife taught in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. The couple has two sons. The youngest is four years old. The oldest is seven. “Maintaining relationships with grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, and other family members is challenging at times,” he says. “But technologies [like Skype] help considerably.”
Derek’s children follow a U.S. curriculum. But they learn much more. “Our two boys have learned a fair amount of Vietnamese, Arabic, and Tagalog,” says Derek. “They also have a fair understanding of the conflicts in Vietnam and how that affected the people there.”
Kate Smith (I’ve changed her name to protect her identity) is another American overseas. She teaches 2nd grade at Pechersk International School, in Kiev, Ukraine. Kate, her husband, and their thirteen year old daughter have also lived in Turkey and Belgium.
“My daughter has been exposed to many different cultures, languages and different ways of thinking,” says Kate. “She has grown up thinking it’s normal to be able to speak 3 languages. She isn’t as materialistic as her cousins who live in the U.S. and she has learned to value experiences and people over things.”
Kate credits a lack of exposure to U.S. based television. “When she was younger, I asked my daughter what she wanted from Santa. She looked puzzled and didn’t know how to reply because she has what she wants and needs. She hasn’t been exposed to the advertising on American TV.”
But living overseas, for Kate, isn’t without its challenges. “Buying clothes and shoes in foreign countries is always interesting. In our current country, they speak Russian or Ukrainian (and I know neither). I have bought some foods expecting them to be something they are not!”
Gael Thomlinson and her husband, Brad, teach at the British Columbia Canadian International School, in Cairo Egypt. It follows a Canadian curriculum. As with most international schools, the students come from dozens of different countries. Gael teaches music. Brad teaches math. Previously, the couple taught in Abu Dhabi, in the United Arab Emirates.
Their two nine-year olds, Lisa and David (I’ve changed their names to protect their identities) enjoy living overseas. Gael says, “We’ve made great friends from so many different countries. We travel a lot and have visited places like Sri Lanka and Nepal– places I had never dreamed of going. My kids are comfortable amongst many nationalities and they get over language barriers quickly so they can play with new friends.”
Broad cultural acceptance and confidence are common traits among these global kids. Stacy Bradshaw (I have changed her name) is a high school English teacher. She’s a single mother of two children, aged nine and six. For two years, she and her children lived in Taiwan. They recently moved to Korea. This fall, her children will attend Osan American Elementary. It’s a U.S. Department of Defense School.
Stacy and her children have visited 10 different countries in the Pacific Rim region. “My daughter is now a fluent speaker of traditional Mandarin,” says Stacy. “She’s also my translator. My children love the adventures that come from exploring new cultures, which have provided a hands-on, visual learning experience that they continue to reminisce.”
Devin and Dianna Pratt’s daughter, Dominique, is now a Master’s student at Clark Univeristy, in Massachusetts. She earned a scholarship through the Global Scholars Program for international students. She grew up in six different countries. Dominique graduated from high school in Singapore.
“I’m proud of how I grew up,” she says. But Dominque admits that living overseas has created a pull to live in other places. “I don’t feel like I’m a local anywhere. I like the idea of moving on. I feel myself getting antsy about moving somewhere else.”
I asked her about U.S. based teachers. If they have kids, and a sense of adventure, should they consider moving abroad?
“If I were to have kids,” she says, “I would see it as a positive thing.”
This article was originally posted on Assetbuilder.com.continue reading
Over 10,000 teachers will this summer be packing their suitcases, finalising their visas and saying goodbye to their families and friends as they start a new life teaching overseas. They will be joining 293,000 other qualified, English-speaking teachers already working in international schools around the world.
For the new teachers who will be making this move within the next few weeks, now is the time for last minute plans. And who better to ask than those teachers who have already done it
Teachers International Consultancy (TIC), an organisation that specialises in recruiting teachers for international schools, recently surveyed many teachers who had moved overseas this time last year. The big question was, just exactly what matters most when emigrating?
TIC asked international teachers for their advice on the five most important things to take with you when moving abroad.
Everyone agreed that you need to be as fully prepared as possible before you arrive in a new country, so researching such topics as currency and culture are vital. Many teachers suggested having copies of your accommodation arrangements and school details with you when you arrive in your new country and to keep these with you, along with your passport and any visa details plus a pocket guide book, during your first few weeks. Other ‘must haves’ in those early days include international plug socket adapters, a laptop and a flash drive or memory stick with all you have accumulated electronically, some of your favourite teacher resources, your camera, adequate currency of the country, all your banking details including direct contact information, pillow cases, favourite toiletries, basic emergency medical supplies, and photographs of family and friends. One teacher said the one thing that made a huge difference to her were some simple household items: “it’s great when you arrive in an empty house or apartment and can at least make yourself a cup of tea,” says Suzie King who is now teaching at the British School of Egypt in Cairo.
Many people said to think about appropriate clothing for your destination to ensure it suits the climate (not only upon arrival but also year-round) and also to meet the cultural expectations. With international schools located in virtually every country of the world, this can range from fur coats and hats necessary for places like Russia and Kazakhstan, to linen and cotton for Singapore, outfits that keep arms and legs covered for many countries in the Middle East, and Abayas for women in Saudi Arabia.
According to the teachers who were researched by TIC, one of the hardest things to adjust to when moving abroad is leaving friends and family. There were plenty of suggestions for coping with this in the very first few days. These included setting yourself up as soon as you can with Skype, email and Facebook in order to communicate easily, cheaply and regularly with friends and family. Other tips were to talk and socialise with other teachers from your new school. Some schools have a buddy system to help teachers settle into the first term or year, but don’t just rely on that person. Several respondents said talk to as many people as you can, say ‘yes’ to as many social invitations as you can, and don’t just wait for people to come to you. One teacher said “invite people over or take food you cook to school to share as a way of making friends with the staff.” Another said “if it’s safe, walk around, get a map, look for the local stores and explore them, go to the international church, talk to other teachers for tips on where to shop or where to go in general.” Mary-Ann Shelley who is now teaching at the International School of Qatar says “ask questions, be open to new ideas, and listen and absorb rather than comparing things to ‘back home’”. And Jenny Cleaver who moved to El Gouna in Egypt last September says “learning a few words in your new language helps with the locals; they really appreciate it.”
Advice that all teachers who were interviewed agreed upon was to be open to new experiences when arriving in a new country. “You chose to live in a different country where the culture is different and things are done differently,” says Suzie King. “Learn from that. I’ve definitely become more internationally-minded as a result of this. Every culture does things its own way. It has been very interesting for me to get to know so many people from so many different cultures. I think it’s great to see similar things done in a slightly different way.”
For more information on moving overseas, including advice and case studies on other peoples’ experiences, visit the Teachers International Consultancy website at www.findteachingjobsoverseas.co.ukcontinue reading
Tamara Thorpe, a primary teacher from New Plymouth, New Zealand, is one of over 250,000 English-speaking teachers currently working in international schools around the world.
Tamara had always been interested in the idea of working internationally. “And the tax free option was extremely appealing!” she adds. So when a teaching job became available at the Sharm British School in Sharm el Sheikh in Egypt, Tamara grabbed the opportunity. She has since moved to the El Gouna International School which is near to Egypt’s Red Sea. “The first year here was very exciting and different,” says Tamara who is now into her third year of teaching in Egypt. “We teach a version of the UK curriculum. The children are well behaved and there is a great mix of nationalities here. Due to the revolution and changes occurring here, I have seen more Egyptian children enter our international section of the school. The staff are also from all over; the majority from the UK. I am the only Southern Hemisphere teacher on staff.”
Socialising and Exploring…I love it!
Tamara says that most of the friends she has made are work colleagues or are friends of work colleagues. “Socially there are lots of people from different countries which is always interesting,” she says. “I met my fiancé here; he is from Barcelona and lives and owns a company here, so that is a great aspect!” Another great part of living in Egypt for Tamara is the exploring. She describes a recent trip to the desert: “We spent three days on a White Desert Safari. Wow, I absolutely loved it! We had a Toyota Land Cruiser 4×4 and all that desert to explore! We camped in tents, had fires every night, no luxuries as in bathroom facilities but that’s part of the experience! Being a New Zealander, I’ve grown up camping so it was all good for me! I would recommend it to anyone visiting Egypt.
As for recommending teaching in Egypt, Tamara says “Look into the region and the school. Read as much as you can about the country; Lonely Planet is great. Make sure you know exactly what you are getting in to. I found TIC very helpful (Teachers International Consultancy) and will continue to use them for future job searching.”
International teaching jobs – many opportunities
TIC is an organisation that provides free support to teachers who are considering working in an international school. This includes recommending international schools that best suit a teacher’s experience, personality and location preferences. The options for skilled and experienced English-speaking teachers are wide.
With over 6,000 international schools throughout the world, it’s a market much bigger than most people – even those within the education sector – realise. International schools are those that use English as the language for teaching and learning, and they offer an international curriculum. Most typical curricula used are the English National Curriculum, an American curriculum or an international curriculum such as the International Primary Curriculum or the International Baccalaureate. Most international schools are independent, highly respected, well-equipped and skilfully managed employing fully qualified English-speaking teachers from around the world, mainly from the UK, New Zealand and Australia, South Africa, Canada or America. These schools not only attract English-speaking children from expatriate families but also children from the local population; typically the wealthiest of the local families who recognize that an international, English-speaking education opens a lot of career doors for their children. “In fact, international schools are now catering for the richest 5% of the non-English-speaking world,” says Nicholas Brummit, Managing Director of ISC Research, an organisation which supplies data on the world’s international schools and analyses developments in the international schools market.
It’s a market that is developing significantly as ISC figures attest. “There were 2,584 English-medium international schools in 2000,” says Nicholas Brummitt. “By April 2008 that number had grown to 4,827. Currently there are 6,000 international schools and by 2021 we predict that number to be 10, 000,” he says. That means a lot of jobs for English-speaking teachers and Headteachers and the reason why they’re looking, says Andrew Wigford of Teachers International Consultancy, isn’t just about salary. “In research that TIC carried out recently, the number one reason for teaching overseas was the adventure and the opportunity to travel,” he says. “Every single one of the respondents said that the experience of living and working internationally had enriched them as a person and the vast majority said that the experience had been good for their career too, with 89% saying that it had improved their skills and job opportunities.” Andrew adds: “For Tamara, she’s learnt to work with a new curriculum and she’s gained excellent experience of teaching children from many different countries which will help her significantly with any new job application, both internationally and back home.”
If and when she chooses to move on from El Gouna, Tamara will have plenty of options. There are another 130 international schools currently in Egypt; 69 alone in Cairo. And, according to ISC Research, there are many more further afield. Qatar has 362 international schools and Pakistan has 355, with 307 in India, 218 in Japan and 155 in Thailand.
So what is the best advice for other teachers considering a move to an international school? “Apply to accredited international schools or schools that are part of respectable organisations such as COBIS, BSME, FOBISSEA and others,” recommends Andrew Wigford. “You can find details of these organisations on the TIC website. If a recruitment organisation is helping you with your search, make sure that they only recommend you to accredited international schools, or that they personally vet non-accredited schools in advance of your interview. Also make sure your cv is up-to-date and well written. International schools will be looking for strong personal skills as well as teaching experience. More and more international school interviews are being conducted through Skype so be prepared for this. Make sure you have the correct equipment set up and have practiced communicating through Skype in advance of any interviews. Work through a reputable organization when searching for foreign teaching positions. There are a few unscrupulous owners in some international schools who do not take the appropriate procedures to ensure that foreign teachers have the correct health and safety coverage, visa back-up, or suitable accommodation. Teachers have been known to find themselves in difficult circumstances, sometimes a long way from home. So working with an established organisation to oversee your placement will give you the security you need. If you work with an organisation that is specifically experienced at recruiting for the international school market, they will be able to give you all the advice and expert support that you need and will know – and may well have visited – many of the schools that you are considering. This will help you significantly during your job search. Once you’ve been offered a job, make sure you cross-check all your terms and conditions and know exactly what you will be receiving and when, including any relocation support. If a recruitment agency is representing you, they will review your contract with you. If you are still considering a job move for this summer, it’s not too late to do something about it. There are still vacancies left. But take action now or you’ll miss the opportunity.”
To read over 3800+ comments and information about working at over 1160+ international schools go to www.internationalschoolcommunity.comcontinue reading
A great resource for all things educational, especially international education.
This website has great information and article entries that are directly related the professionals in the international school community. Make sure to check out what happened to the International School of Stavanger and their recent experience with internet pirates. You do indeed need to be careful where you find vacancies for jobs at international schools.
“Editor Caroline Ellwood turns her focus on creativity in the classroom, as she notes in her comment piece at the start of the issue.
‘The power of creativity in learning has become increasingly recognised in education. Its impact has been explored by teachers in many different schools across the world. It is considered good teaching practice, especially in schools that invest in training and where faculty have strong admistrative support and encouragement. Being creative means taking risks and that needs to be shared out, so administrators, teachers, students and, to some extent, parents need to be convinced. No, not just convinced: they need to be enthusiastic.’
Contributors to the magazine include curriculum heads at the International Baccalaureate; teachers at The American School of Budapest, The International School of Azerbaijan; the International School, Dhaka; Pre Vert International School, Cairo; and the Yokohama International School in Japan.”
“Over the past several months, the International School of Stavanger has been challenged with a new and unpleasant phenomenon – being taken ‘virtual hostage’ by internet pirates.
In February, 2011 we started getting some emails from candidates applying for non-existent ESL and English teaching jobs. They referred to having seeing ads on various ESL employment websites.
When I went onto one of these websites, sure enough there was a posting for an ESL job at our school starting in May 2011. The job would pay benefits including 1800 Euro per month and the advert suggested applicants write to an individual (who really does work here), referring to her as the ‘Recruitment Manager.’
Of course, the job was pure fiction. Probably the silliest part is the idea that we would be paying a Euro-based salary. The Norwegian Kroner is the only currency we use for salary payments. (However, that last piece of information is also what has led the police to believe that this mischief had been accomplished not by a disgruntled individual with a possible connection to the school, but was probably was a ‘phishing’ expedition.)”
“Dr Carber goes on to state his belief that the book has as much to offer educators in national education systems as those in international schools. He notes in the preface:
‘It is my wish that the best practices of these international schools will help and inspire public education systems and all schools that wish to internationalize their offerings. To draw from Kevin Bartlett’s words in the concluding chapter, it is a shared wish that national schools, including those in developing countries, do not merely exist to be the grateful beneficiaries of our laudable service learning programmes, but that they become beneficiaries of what we know about learning. We have created exemplary schools and practices; now the challenge is to refine and replicate the model.’ ”continue reading