How many times have you applied to a school wishing that you knew somebody that worked there?
Knowing somebody and getting the ‘inside scoop’ on an international school could definitely help you in your quest to set up an interview there.
Currently, our top 40 international schools with the most members are (12 November, 2019):
26 members – American International School in Egypt
24 members – Copenhagen International School
22 members – Western International School of Shanghai
22 members –International School of Kuala Lumpur
21 members – International School Manila
19 members – Jakarta Intercultural School
18 members – MEF International School Istanbul
18 members – International School of Tanganyika
17 members – Seoul International School
16 members – International School Bangkok
16 members – American School Foundation of Mexico City
16 members – Graded School Sao Paulo
16 members – American School of Barcelona
16 members – United Nations International School (Vietnam)
13 members – Shanghai United International School (Hongqiao)
16 members – Nazarbayev Intellectual School of Astana
15 members – Brent International School Manila
15 members – Seoul Foreign School
15 members – Fairview International School
15 members – Shanghai Community International School
14 members – American International School (Vietnam)
14 members – Cairo American College
14 members – NIST International School
14 members – Qatar Academy (Doha)
14 members – American School of Dubai
14 members – Singapore American School
14 members – Istanbul International Community School
13 members – Anglo-American School of Moscow
13 members – American School of Kuwait
13 members – Good Shepherd International School
13 members – KIS International School (Bangkok)
13 members – Hong Kong International School
13 members – International School Beijing
13 members – American International School of Johannesburg
12 members – American International School Dhaka
12 members – Bilkent Laboratory & International School
12 members – Shanghai American School – Puxi
12 members – International School Dhaka
12 members – Shanghai American School – Pudong
12 members – Canadian International School (Singapore)
With 100-200 new members joining each month, this list will continue to grow and grow; with even more members showing up as potential people to network with.
It is simple to network on our website: just click on a member and then click on the ‘Contact this member’ button (premium member feature). Then write him/her a message. When your message is sent, the other member will get an email alert letting them know that they have a new message waiting for them on our website (so, hopefully he/she will get back to you in a timely manner!). Numerous International School Community members have already taken advantage of this unique feature on our website!
As far as we know, International School Community is the one of the only websites where you can quickly and easily network with real people at a specific international school. Meaning, if you want to get in touch with somebody from Suzhou Singapore International School in China and you are currently a premium member of International School Community, you now have 12 members that you can contact on our website that either work there now or have worked there in the past. Get the answers to your questions; now that is easy networking!continue reading
So many prospective international school teachers are always looking to answer these two questions: “What is it like working at XXX school?” and “What is it like living in XXX country/city?”
It is not so easy though to find answers to these questions.
At ISC, our mission is to show that information to these prospective international school teachers in a clear, easy to find format that is hopefully very informative to them.
But we don’t just stop there, we have added many unique features that make finding their answers faster, more interesting and fun. In this article, we would like to give an overview of the many unique features that ISC has to offer to its premium members.
Around two years ago, our dream came true when we launched our School Comparison page.
We placed each school’s submitted comments side by side, so that our members could make an easy comparison. It is a common request to know “which school is better?”, especially if you are considering two job offers at two sometimes very different schools.
The School Comparison page does just that. It places two schools “against” each other to see which one comes out on top. We are not aware of another website that does this!
The number one thing prospective teachers want to know about is “How much money will I make working at XXX school?”
Why then is it almost impossible to find information about salaries before you are offered the position?
Yes, we have 1000s of comments about the salary details of 100s of international schools on the ISC website. However, we took it further and made a unique page so that our members can compare these school salary details side by side with other schools. If you are considering working in Shanghai, China, you can now easily search for only schools in Shanghai on this page and quickly compare which school has the better salary package for you.
Many website deal with posting job vacancies at international schools, but ISC has brought this to the next level as we leave expired vacancies on our website so that you can see which vacancies has been posted on a specific school over time.
If you really want to work at a specific international school and you see that they have recently hired your position during the last school year, it could give you some more insight about whether that position will be available for the next school year.
Only ISC allows its members to search for specific comments. We have over 34000 comments that have been submitted on 1100+ international schools, but sometimes you just want to search for specific comments on a number of international schools, especially if you are open to working at a number of international schools in different parts of the world.
If you are looking for a school that often hires teaching couples, you can easily search those keywords to find 100s of comments related to that topic. Or if you are a single international school teacher, you might want to search these keywords as well to see which schools that might discriminate against single teachers and that prfioritize hiring teaching couples.
ISC actually has even more unique features, but here are four that really make our website standout. Of course, new features are always in the works. If you have a suggestion for another feature for the ISC website, contact us here. Otherwise, stay tuned for more unique features in the near future.continue reading
On of the most visited pages on ISC is our Recently Updated Schools page. It shows the international schools that were most recently updated with new comments.
Now there is a faster way to find those new comments with the Newest Comments link on each school’s profile page. It is located just under the Overview link in the left column of a school’s profile page.
The Newest Comment page lists the last 20 comments that were submitted on that school.
Each of those 20 comments shows the date it was submitted, the Comment Topic Section and Comment Topic it was submitted in. And, of course, the new comment itself.
Once you are finished checking out the last 20 comments to be submitted on a school, then you can read the rest of the comments by clicking on the Comment Topic sections in the left column (School Information, Benefits Information, City Information, Travel Information).
It is what makes ISC so unique. Our mission was to have our members share information about the international schools they know about. But instead of having that information hiding in long paragraphs, etc. we’ve organized all of the information to be easily found into 66 comment topics. This organization helps our members find the information they are looking for faster!
Also, one of the best ISC features is the ability to see how the submitted comments in one comment topic have changed over time. Here is an example from Western International School of Shanghai’s profile page about housing allowances, etc.:
ISC is always looking to improve the user experience of our members. If you have other ideas for improvement or new feature ideas, please send us a message here.continue reading
At International School Community, we now have over 2100 international school profiles listed on our website!
Colegio Americano Menno (La Mesa, Colombia) – 0 Comments
The Village School (Houston, USA) – 24 Comments
The International School @ ParkCity Hanoi (ISPH) (Hanoi, Vietnam) – 1 Comments
The Escola Internacional del Camp (Salou – EIC) (Salou, Spain) – 0 Comments
PaRK International School (Lisbon, Portugal) – 0 Comments
American International School in Egypt (Main Campus) (New Cairo City, Egypt) – 25 Members
Copenhagen International School (Copenhagen, Denmark) – 24 Members
International School of Kuala Lumpur (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia) – 22 Members
International School Manila (Manila, Philippines) – 21 Members
Western International School of Shanghai (Shanghai, China) – 18 Members
Colegio Granadino Manizales (Manizales, Colombia) – 37232 Views
American International School of Budapest (Budapest, Hungary) – 19338 Views
American School of Barcelona (Barcelona, Spain) – 2735 Views
Copenhagen International School (Copenhagen, Denmark) – 2593 Views
International School of Kuala Lumpur (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia) – 2553 Views
International School of the Hague (The Hague, The Netherlands) – 63 Comments
International School of Helsingborg (Helsingborg, Sweden) – 13 Comments
World Academy of Tirana (Tirana, Albania) – 21 Comments
Colegio Roosevelt Lima (FDR) [The American School of Lima] (Lima, Peru) – 28 Comments
Renaissance International School Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam) – 23 Comments
But check them all our yourself! Get answers to your questions about the international schools you are interested in by clicking on the geographic region of your choice. It’s a great way to learn about different international schools around the world and gather information!
International School Community has the following 2110 international schools listed on our website (last updated on 29 September, 2019)
Central America (45)
Central/Eastern Europe (114)
East Asia (309)
Middle East (282)
North Africa (65)
North America (108)
SE Asia (322)
South America (98)
Sub-Saharan Africa (172)
Western Europe (318)continue reading
We have 66 comment topics on our website in 4 main categories: School Information, Benefits Information, City Information, and Travel Information.
ISC now has over 33000 comments that have been submitted on over 1100 international schools from around the world. Basic and Premium Members can access all of these 33000 comments for free on our Browse All Comments page.
After almost 9 years since our inception of ISC, which of the 66 comment topics are our members submitting into the most? Take a look below at all of our comment topics with the total comments submitted in them at the end of each one. Some of our most popular topics that have over 1000 comments are related to: School building, Accreditation, Hiring policies, School location, Language abilities of the students, Kinds of teachers/staff, Salary, Housing, and Allowances.
|• Describe the different aspects of the school building and the school grounds. Also, describe the surrounding area around the campus. (1467 Comments)|
|• What types of accreditation does this school have? When is the accreditation up for renewal? Any religious affiliations? (1105 Comments)|
|• Recent things that the school has taken on (i.e. new curriculum, specific professional development, etc.). (690 Comments)|
|• Describe their hiring policies and procedures. Share your interview experience. Any hiring restrictions? is there a particular curriculum experience required? How about single parents/number of dependents sponsored? (1456 Comments)|
|• Describe school’s location in relation to the city center and to the teacher’s housing. How do staff get to school before and after school? (1371 Comments)|
|• Are the expectations high of teaching staff? Are there extra curricular responsibilities? Describe workload details. (761 Comments)|
|• Average class size for primary and secondary. Describe any aide support. (780 Comments)|
|• Describe language abilities of students at this school and what is the “common language spoken in the hallways”? Is there one dominate culture group? (1156 Comments)|
|• Describe what kinds of teachers work here (local vs. expat, qualifications [or lack there of], etc.) and staff turnover rate. Is there a native English speaker or nationality requirement? Is it LGBT friendly country/school? (1196 Comments)|
|• What types of budgets do classroom teachers/departments get? (475 Comments)|
|• PARENTS ONLY – General comments from parents of students that go to this school. How was your child’s education and socialisation at the school? (164 Comments)|
|• What types of sports programs and activities does the school offer? (643 Comments)|
|• Name some special things about this school that makes it unique. (654 Comments)|
|• In general, describe the demeanor of the students. (565 Comments)|
|• Has the school met your expectations once you started working there? (314 Comments)|
|• What does the school do to create a harmonious state of well-being and high morale amongst its staff? (362 Comments)|
|• Describe the technologies available at the school and how people are/are not using them. (437 Comments)|
|• Details about the current teacher appraisal process. (277 Comments)|
|• Is the student population declining, staying the same or increasing? Give details why. (414 Comments)|
|• How have certain things improved since you started working there? (222 Comments)|
|• How is this school different or the same when compared to schools in your home country? (157 Comments)|
|• What controversies have been happening lately? Please be objective. (281 Comments)|
|• What insider information would you give to a teacher considering working at this school? (416 Comments)|
|• How much curriculum development work are you expected to do? (Atlas Rubicon, etc.) (259 Comments)|
|• Average monthly salary after taxes and in what currency (explain taxation situation). How often do you get paid throughout the year? (123• 7 Comments)|
|• Details about the staff housing or the housing allowance. If there is no housing allowance, how much are rent costs and utilities? (1234 Comments)|
|• Average amount of money that is left to be saved. Describe the survivability for a family of four on one salary. (643 Comments)|
|• Detailed info about flight, shipping and settling-in allowances. Any other benefits (e.g. free lunches, etc.)? (1115 Comments)|
|• Health insurance and medical benefits. Describe your experiences using these benefits and going to the local hospitals. (947 Comments)|
|• Ways to make extra money (tutoring, after-school activities, etc.). (410 Comments)|
|• Information about benefits for teachers with dependents. Describe the childcare in the area. (737 Comments)|
|• Professional development allowance details. (507 Comments)|
|• Pension plan details. (588 Comments)|
|• Describe your experience bringing pets. (240 Comments)|
|• Explain how salaries are decided (e.g. is there a pay schedule? extra step for masters degree? Annual pay raises? Bonuses?). (522 Comments)|
|• How do the school’s benefits compare to other international schools in the area/city? (313 Comments)|
|• How is the school calendar? Is there ample vacation time? (492 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? (262 Comments)|
|• Details about the maternity benefits of the host country and school. (129 Comments)|
|• What is the process of getting reimbursed for things? (166 Comments)|
|• Details about new teacher orientation. (194 Comments)|
|• In general, why are people staying at or leaving this school? (292 Comments)|
|• Details about the teaching contract. What important things should prospective teachers know about? (199 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? (35 Comments)|
|• Name your favorite restaurants, favorite places to go to and favorite things to do in the city. (552 Comments)|
|• Locations in the city geared towards the expat lifestyle (grocery stores, bars, etc.). (490 Comments)|
|• Sample prices for food, transportation, average hourly rates for a housekeeper, etc. (491 Comments)|
|• Detailed info about lifestyles: singles vs. couples, gay vs. straight, nightlife vs. quiet and big city vs nature. (392 Comments)|
|• Languages of the host city and the level of English spoken there. (502 Comments)|
|• Sample activities that you can do around the city? Including ones that you can do with a family (children)? (357 Comments)|
|• Describe the city’s weather at different times of the year. (549 Comments)|
|• Places, markets and stores where you can find really good deals. (256 Comments)|
|• Describe a funny culture shock moment that you’ve had recently in this city. (115 Comments)|
|• Where did the school take you in the city when you first arrived? What were some staff outings/party locations? (156 Comments)|
|• What is the best part of living in this city for you? (243 Comments)|
|• What advice can you give on how to set things up like internet, phone, experience dealing with landlord, etc.? (200 Comments)|
|• Tell your experience moving your items to this city. What company, insurance policy, etc. did you use? (81 Comments)|
|• Tell about your experience with the local banks and dealing with multiple currencies. (208 Comments)|
|• What are some locals customs (regarding eating, drinking and going out, family, socializing, etc.) that you find interesting for expats to know about? (146 Comments)|
|• Tell about your experiences in the local grocery stores. What can you get or cannot get? Which ones are your favorites. (182 Comments)|
|• What is the most challenging/difficult part of living in the city? (237 Comments)|
|• Sample travel airfares from host city airport to destinations nearby. (355 Comments)|
|• Describe proximity of major airport hubs to the city center and give sample taxi, train, subway and/or bus fares to get there. (496 Comments)|
|• Popular travel websites to buy plane tickets or tours that are popular for expats living in the city and/or country. (240 Comments)|
|• Places to travel to outside the city by bus or train. (454 Comments)|
|• Are there many teachers that travel during the holidays? Where are they going? (290 Comments)|
|• What are the airports like in this city? (arriving, departing, shopping, customs, etc.) (332 Comments)|