Where – besides the International School Community – do you go to learn about and stay connected to International Education? We have a new one-stop shop for you! It’s called Educators Going Global.
We just started a new enterprise with multiple channels organized around school life, recruiting, transitions, finances, and travel.
The central portal of our endeavor is the Educators Going Global (EGG) website. There you will find a podcast, a blog, a resource library, and links to our YouTube videos where international educators share their “Going Global Stories.” We also have a Facebook group where we post resources and crowdsource questions on topics such as potential guests, questions we need help with, and lots more.
We hope you will see our website as an additional tool for your international teaching toolkit. Have a question about finances or your upcoming transition to a new school? Visit our site to select “Finances” or “Transitions” to see podcast episodes, blog posts, books, and website resources for your review.
At the same time, you can subscribe to the Educators Going Global podcast on your device using your favorite podcasting app to listen to our shows. We have posted 15 shows now and we have many more in the works. Our guests have been interesting and informative, and there is something there for everyone, whether you are new to International Education or a long-time veteran like ourselves.
We will share with you how to travel, teach and connect!
That should cover What Educators Going Global is. Now, here’s the Who! We are Audrey Forgeron and David Carpenter.
Audrey is a thirty-year international teaching veteran of seven international schools on four continents. She has variously taught Health and Physical Education, Social Studies, French, Film and Design Technology in grades three through twelve and has been an instructional technology educator. She is now a trailing spouse and mother of two grown Cross-Cultural Kids (CCKs), and she is currently training to become a life coach.
David is also a long-time international educator, having worked in ten international schools over a 30-year period. He has worn many hats, from Social Studies teacher to Counselor to Curriculum Designer to Instructional Technologist to Instructional Coach for Wellness. David is now semi-retired, wearing his dad hat whenever possible to support and learn from his adult sons, Maxwell and Samuel.
So Why are we keen to share our insights and the expertise of our guests? We want to give back to the community of educators that gave each of us so much. We see our effort as a public service.
Our mission is to inform both veteran and aspiring international educators about working overseas – What it’s like and how it’s changing, Where to find more information, Why “going global” is so attractive, and How and When to work through the recruiting process. We do this via targeted podcast episodes that include informational interviews and personal vignettes related to these five Ws of international education.
We work to tell the whole story, so you are really in the know about international schools. Our motto is: Eyes wide open!
The bottom line is that just like when we worked in international schools, we want to build community and be of service. Please connect with us as we go global together!
International School employers often promote overseas postings with the promise of ‘tax-free’ income. For U.S. teachers working abroad, this can be a bit deceptive. U.S. international school teachers are required to file a tax return reporting all income from all sources if the taxpayer’s income exceeds the filing threshold. However, the Foreign Earned Income Exclusion and the Foreign Tax Credit help to avoid double taxation and in many cases may result in no tax being due when filing your U.S. tax return.
The Foreign Earned Income Exclusion or FEIE allows the taxpayer to exclude up to a given amount of earned income from income taxes; however, there are a few items to keep in mind. First, this only applies to earned income – the income you earn from your job as an employee or the income you generate from self-employment while living abroad. Second, this only applies to income tax. If you owe Social Security taxes on self-employment income, you must still pay that. Social Security or self-employment tax cannot be excluded using either the FEIE or form 1116 the Foreign Tax Credit.
To claim the FEIE you must first qualify as an overseas resident. This means that either you were in the United States for no more than 35 days during any 365-day period or qualify as a bona fide overseas resident. Assuming you meet one of these requirements, you must then calculate the portion of the exclusion for which you qualify. If you were an overseas resident or a bona fide resident for the entire tax year, you qualify for the entire amount. If you moved overseas during the tax year or moved back to the United States during the tax year then you qualify for a percentage based on your qualifying days of overseas residency. Form 2555 accurately completed and included with a timely filed tax return allows the taxpayer to claim the FEIE.
The Foreign Tax Credit provides another means of avoiding double taxation. This credit allows you to apply income taxes paid to your host country against the income tax owed to the United States on the same income. This requires the filing of form 1116 with your annual tax return. Again, this only applies to income tax and this credit can only be applied to income earned while you were physically present overseas. If you work for a foreign company while residing in the United States, the Foreign Tax Credit is not permitted.
If your income exceeds the FEIE and you pay income tax to your host country, you may be able to apply any taxes allocable to the difference to your US tax bill by using Form 1116 in addition to the FEIE. For example, if you earned $150K with an FEIE allowance of 108,700 that would leave $30,700 of taxable income. The income tax paid to your host country on that $30,700.00 could be applied to your US tax obligations on a pro-rata basis.
While at first glance it may seem better to utilize the FEIE, especially if your income falls below the exclusion limit, there are times when the FTC may prove more advantageous. Using the FEIE automatically excludes you from certain child tax credits. Also, by exempting all of your earned income you become ineligible for IRA/Roth contributions. There may be state considerations as well with one method or the other so a holistic view is needed.
The important thing to remember is that once you stop using the FEIE you must wait 5 tax years before you are eligible to use it again. You cannot switch back and forth each year. Working with a tax preparer who is experienced in helping US expats will enable you to make the decision that is best for you right now and help you to determine if and when a change may be beneficial.
If this sounds overwhelming, we can help set up and file! Just reach out to us at www.tietax.com or Stephen.Boush@tietax.com and reference code:
for preferred rates.continue reading
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!continue reading
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 (email@example.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!continue reading
The recruitment fair season has started!
International School Community is the place to gather information and ease your mind.
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
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)
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.
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!continue reading