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New Teacher Orientation is Now Underway: 14 Must-Haves

August 1, 2022


Stressing out about what your new international school is actually going to be like once you finally arrive?

Want to get a good idea of what you can expect (or not expect) during your first few weeks at your new international school?

Wondering what you can do before and after your move to put yourself more at ease and to be better prepared?

Take some time then to read this 14-part series on the ISC blog. It is the go-to series for staff in charge of inducting their new staff members.

Here are the 14 must-haves with a little excerpt of each article:

1. “A trip around the city

“A friend just told me that there is a hidden rule amongst international school teachers, and that is that you shouldn’t accept any visitors to your new home within the first six months of living there.  I suppose that is true in some ways and not true in other ways.  One time I did have a friend visit me during…” READ MORE

2. A pick-up from the airport from administration

“To start things off right, it might be the most ideal if the person who hired you picks you up from the airport when you first arrive. Starting off on the right note is very important for an international school teacher, especially when you are bound to experience a bit of culture shock.  One way to start off in the right way is how you get…” READ MORE

3. Lunches provided by the school during the orientation week at the school campus.

“Having a catered, home (cafeteria)-cooked lunch is NOT a given when you start working at an international school.  Some international schools include free lunches in their benefits package all year round (for all teachers mind you!), but some international schools don’t offer this benefit…not even during PD events or during new teacher orientation. It is definitely a nice gesture on the school’s part to offer…” READ MORE

4. Help finding a place to live!

“Finding a place to live in any country can be a headache! When you involve different languages, different cultural traditions and norms, etc. finding an apartment can be even more of a headache. In turn, it is much appreciated if the administration/business staff at your new school can help you out. Some international schools just place you in a compound that the school owns and you must live there for…” READ MORE

5. An organized trip to help you get furniture for your new home.

“It is not ideal to arrive the first day/night in your new host city only to arrive at your new apartment and find it VERY unfurnished.  It doesn’t necessarily start you on the right foot with regards to settling-in with your new life when maybe you do not even have a bed on which to sleep.  For sure there are many international schools out there that place their new teachers directly into…” READ MORE

6. A settling-in allowance given to you in cash (local currency)!

“You just get off the airplane.  You have what seem to be a million bags with you. You are quite tired from your long flight journey to your new host country.  You are frantically looking for the person that said that they were going to pick you up from the airport.  You find them and they bring you to your new place that will be your home for the next few years.   So many things on your mind, so many things to worry about, and SO many things to buy…” READ MORE

7. A dinner outing with the director and administration

“In some cultures, it is very much of a bonding moment between people when they share a meal together.  It is a time when you can really relax and have some nice conversations with each other.  Getting to know your director and other new teachers in this kind of setting will help you with future encounters with the director and also with your potential new good friends. Having a meal with your bosses can really…” READ MORE

8. A starter supply of groceries for your new home.

“Luckily, many international schools out there are getting this one right.  Someone in the “new teacher orientation” committee is going out to a grocery store before you arrive and getting you the basic necessities for you. What are the basic necessities?  Typically you get some…” READ MORE

9. Resource person with a contact number and email address

“There is so much going on for international school teachers in their first days, weeks, and even months after starting at their new school.  There is just as much going on for you before you arrive in your new host country.  Being that there is so much to think about, one of the most important things that international schools can do for their new hires is set up so that they have a resource person.  New teachers actually need…” READ MORE

10. Getting access to the internet AS FAST AS POSSIBLE!

“Please schools (the ones that help teachers find apartments or have new teachers move into school-owned housing), the best thing you can do to help out your new staff is to think ahead and somehow get the internet set up in their houses…before they arrive or VERY soon after they arrive…” READ MORE

11. Beginning-level host country language classes.

“At times there is nothing worse than the feeling of not know how to communicate with the people in your community. Many of us decide to move to countries where we do not know the host country language.  It is impossible for people to know every language spoken in this world, especially really local languages that are not even possible to learn in universities in your home country…” READ MORE

12. A tour of your new campus

“Finally you are at your new school!  After the initial shock on seeing the campus for the first time and getting introduced to tons of important people at the school, you take a deep breath and get ready to really see the campus…” READ MORE

13. Learning how to get reimbursed and meeting the business office staff

“It takes so much money to move yourself from one place to another.  Now add in the fact that you are shipping boxes and whatnot half way across the world, and the cost just gets higher and higher. Many times, international school teachers need to pay for these shipping costs upfront.  Hopefully you are getting an relocation allowance…” READ MORE

14. A sit-down with an admin to go over each part of your contract

“Contract details can be easily overlooked. They are not overlooked because you are not interested in them (because of course you want to know ALL the details when you are in the initial stages after being offered a contract), but because there are too many fine details to fully understand everything you see…” READ MORE

Do you have another must-have to add to our list? Email us here and ask about submitting a new article for this series as a guest author on our blog. All guest authors receive one free year of premium membership to our website!

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Great Resource

Do U.S. citizens have to file taxes when living overseas?

April 3, 2022


A general lack of information regarding expat tax filing requirements has often led to incorrect information circulating in expat communities and, as a result, some international school teachers from the USA think that US tax filing requirements are waived when residing overseas.

However, every international school teacher holding a US passport is required to file an annual report of worldwide income that exceeds IRS minimum filing thresholds.

In addition to this requirement, the reporting of foreign bank accounts (FBAR) and foreign assets has become increasingly stringent and requires most US expatriate taxpayers to report such foreign holdings on an annual basis. International school teachers can sometimes have a number of bank accounts in a number of countries, and penalties for failing to report these accounts can be steep.

TieTax is available to help navigate this increasingly complex arena!!

TieTax is a full-service tax advice and preparation service specializing in returns for US taxpayers resident overseas. TieTax Service serves clients in over 50 countries and is ready to answer your questions and meet your tax preparation needs.

TieTax strives to provide personal service and exceptional quality. Our services include tax advice; tax preparation and submission of all required extensions and federal and state tax returns; and a guarantee to pay any penalty or interest arising from any errors or omissions on our part.

Normally returns are filed electronically, signed copies are provided to you via e-mail in encrypted form to preserve your privacy, and a secure bill payment system is used to ensure your personal financial information is protected.

No matter what your status, whether you are a new expat or need to catch up on missed tax filings, please feel free to contact us for a no-cost / no-obligation discussion.

Global Benefits Group    
In conjunction with our partner organizations, we are able to provide a full range of retirement and financial planning services through our fully licensed brokerage as well as provide international health, life, travel, and disability insurance for individuals and groups.

This article was submitted by TieTax representative Stephen Boush. Please contact Stephen (stephen.boush@tietax.com)  for more details on maintaining compliance with IRS and Treasury requirements as an overseas citizen, retirement and investment planning as a US national abroad, or for international insurance needs!

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Great Resource

The International School Recruitment Fair Toolkit

January 8, 2016


The recruitment fair season has started!

International School Community is the place to gather information and ease your mind.

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Over the past five years, we have amassed a vast array of informative materials for everything to do with recruitment fairs.

The following is a list of all of our materials and statistics to help you stay well-informed:

Hate recruitment fairs, some say they are fun!
Top 10 reasons why attending an international school recruitment fair is super fun!

Think Search and ISS are your only options?
A New Kind of Recruitment Fair for International Schools in Asia

Got multiple job offers to consider?
• 
Comparing the Schools and Comments
• 12 Tips for Selecting an International School

Think living overseas is easy?
Ten Commandments of Relocating Overseas

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Get a glimpse of what your new journey to work will be like.
The Journey to School

Want to stay one step ahead against the other candidates?
9 Lessons Learned Regarding International School Hiring Fairs

The survey says!
• On average, how many interviews do you go to at an international school recruitment fair?
• Which international school recruitment fair have you had the most success at?

Why not get firsthand information from veteran international school teacher blogs?
• Three Job Fairs, Three Jobs: An International Teacher Hiring Saga
• Which international school job fairs do you recommend and the job fair circus!
Are you ready? The international school recruitment fair season is a few weeks away! (A Search Associates fair experience)

asleep-at-computer
A director who thinks recruitment fairs are a thing of the past.
“From the Principal’s Office” (A principal working in Sudan)

Now if you didn’t get a job after attending an international school recruitment fair, take a look at the results of our recent survey of our members.

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Almost 40% of people survey said that they got their last job via Skype interviewing; that is basically double the number of people who got hired at a recruitment fair.

Skype is truly the future of getting a job at international schools!

Good luck recruiting this year, everyone. May you get the job of your dreams! And may the schools find the best fit for the positions they have!

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Great Resource

Great Resource: International School – a website about the many international schools in China.

March 23, 2012


Are you interested in reading about the numerous international schools in China?

Then you might want to check out the “International School!” website.

China is one of the countries where the economy is booming.  As a result, the number of international schools there is also booming.  Many teachers are finding themselves taking a chance on China and having a great time working at an international there.  Many of the international schools there offer some excellent benefits, thus making the choice to live and work an easy one.

China has so much to offer too in terms of culture and travel.  With an endless list of interesting places to visit, international schools teachers will never get bored when wanting to explore the country.

Some people think the language there (Mandarin Chinese) is too difficult to learn and acquire, but after working in China for two years myself, I met and worked with many expats there that had become very highly proficient.

The International School website has many different sections to it.

The advantages of International Schools

“Mr. Kai said that the nationalities of the students in his ACS schools are of more than 69 countries. Fitzmaurice from Nord Anglia said that all the children studying in the three schools in China received one lesson of Chinese mandarin once a week from the first beginning, so that when they leave they can reach the proficient level although they may not speak Chinese quite fluently…(more)”

The system and approval of International Schools

“The international schools for foreigners’ children are set in the name of middle school, primary school or kindergarten. The courses offered, the teaching materials and the teaching plans are determined by the school itself. Generally, the system is the same as that in the founder’s motherland, or the popular IB system, and even the school can set its system by itself.

The NCCT in China provides the authentication service for the international schools. The international schools which are set for more than three years can apply for authentication voluntarily. And each time of authentication is valid for 5 years. The international schools receiving this authentication means that the graduation certificates conferred by the international schools are directly acknowledged by China’s official.

Western Academy of Beijing is the first one to get this authentication and this authentication system is first proposed by Western Academy of Beijing…(more).

There are also separate pages for the 3 different sections at international schools (Primary, Middle School, and Secondary).  In each section, you can find the following information:  the latest news from international schools in that section, highlighted articles, the latest news that is recommended to read, a list of recommended international schools, articles about the perspective of the students in that section, a FAQ section, a section about when there are Open Days at various international schools, etc.

Primary Schools in China
Middle Schools in China
High Schools in China

Currently there are 106 different international schools listed in China on www.internationalschoolcommunity.com.  The cities with the most international schools listed on our website are:

Hong Kong (22)

American International School (Hong Kong) (22 Comments)
Hong Kong Academy Primary School (14 Comments)
International Christian School (Hong Kong) (11 Comments)
Li Po Chun United World College of Hong Kong (11 Comments)

Shanghai (18)
Concordia International School (Shanghai) (15 Comments)
Shanghai Community Int’l School (10 Comments)
Shanghai Rego International School (72 Comments)
Western International School of Shanghai (27 Comments)

Beijing (16)
Western Academy Beijing (23 Comments)
International School of Beijing (15 Comments)
Tsinghua International School (Beijing) (10 Comments)
Beijing National Day School (12 Comments)

Taiwan (11)
Morrison Christian Academy (3 campuses) (13 Comments)
Ivy Collegiate Academy (7 Comments)

Guangzhou (5)
American International School of Guangzhou (12 Comments)
Alcanta International College (6 Comments)

Take a look at the numerous comments and information that have been submitted about these international schools in China!

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Great Resource

Great resource: ISAT – International Schools Association of Thailand

February 22, 2012


If you dream is to work at an international school in Thailand, the ISAT website can be a great resource for you.

About ISAT

The International Schools Association of Thailand was established in 1994. Its principal purpose is to act as a link between international schools which are members of ISAT on the one hand and the Ministry of Education, in particular the Office of the Private Education Commission, on the other.

During the past year, ISAT has been extensively involved with the Department of Export Promotion in the joint marketing of international education both in Thailand and overseas.

The issues of new education legislation and educational reforms have also featured high on the agenda over the past year. ISAT has lent its support to this process through assistance in in-service training by arranging placement for Thai teachers and administrators in international schools where they are able to observe modern approaches to teaching and learning first hand.

In addition to disseminating information to its members on educational issues both at home and overseas, its regular meetings provide a forum for discussion, debate and the exchange of views and information. The organization of in-service training courses, particularly in the fields of cross-cultural management and Thai language teaching, also features highly on the list of ISAT’s priorities.

The promotion of Thai language and culture in international schools and support for charitable causes are other major aims of the Association as is support for culture and sporting links between international schools in Thailand and abroad and between international schools and Thai educational institutions.

Laws and Regulations about living in Thailand

List of Schools on their website

Currently on International School Community we have 34 international school listed in Thailand.  Many of those school profile pages have comments and information that have been submitted on them by our members.  Check out some of them here:

International School Eastern Seaboard (ISE) (7 Comments)
St. Stephen’s International School (Khao Yai) (12 Comments)
British International School (BIS) Phuket (8 Comments)
Phuket International Academy (3 Comments)
Chaing Mai International School (5 Comments)
Prem Tinsulanonda International School (9 Comments)
Bangkok Patana School (14 Comments)
Bromsgrove International School (7 Comments)
International School Bangkok (7 Comments)
Thai-Chinese Int’l School Bangkok (7 Comments)
St. Stephen’s International School (Bangkok) (8 Comments)
New Sathorn International School (5 Comments)
KIS International School (Bangkok) (4 Comments)

If you currently work at one of these international schools in Thailand, become a member today and submit some comments and information of your own!

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