As all International School Community members know, each of the 2225+ school profile pages on our website has four comments sections: School Information, Benefits Information, City Information and Travel Information. Our members are encouraged to submit comments 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 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 School Information sections on all the school profile pages? The current total number of submitted comments in the School Information section is 19653 (out of a total of 42453+ comments).
There are 24 subtopics in the School 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 an example comment that has been submitted there.
• Describe the different aspects of the school building and the school grounds. Also, describe the surrounding area around the campus. (1838 Total Comments)
Example comment: “The school is set in 3 separate building, one being a 5 minute walk and the other across the road. Crossing the road is quite a safety hazard with the kindergarten class due to taxis over taking them whilst they are on the crossing and the local police not doing anything to monitor this. There is no proper play area and students are taken to local parks for lunch breaks, which is difficult when having to share with babies. No proper gym areas make p.e quite difficult.” – Canadian International School (Tokyo) (Tokyo, Japan) – 93 Comments
• What types of accreditation does this school have? When is the accreditation up for renewal? Any religious affiliations? (1381 Total Comments)
Example comment: “It is a non-religiously affiliated school owned by a Christian affiliated college and operated on that campus. It is WASC accredited, but is not accredited by the Korean authorities and seems to be a limbo in regards to its local status.” –Global Prodigy Academy (Jeonju, South Korea) – 68 Comments
• Recent things that the school has taken on (i.e. new curriculum, specific professional development, etc.). (943 Total Comments)
Example comment: “The school is discussing becoming IB and has implemented Teacher’s College Readers and Writer’s Workshop as well as whole language learning in the primary schools. Secondary schools do MAPS-based action plans to show and monitor student improvement and compare them to US students.” – American School of Torreon (Torreon, Mexico) – 64 Comments
• Describe their hiring policies. Which recruiting fairs do they go to? How do they typically hire (e.g. face-to-face interview, Skype, etc.)? Are there any hiring restrictions mandated by the country? (1716 Total Comments)
Example comment: “Last year they were NOT hiring people with non-EU passports. Some positions that they had last year were local hires, even if the candidates weren’t the strongest of the CVs that they received. Most of this though is out of the school’s control and more the new/changing laws regarding hiring foreigners into the country.” – Southbank International School (London, United Kingdom) – 15 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? (1644 Total Comments)
Example comment: “The school is located near one of the hub stations in Tokyo, with easy access by several trains and subways. The school also has two school bus routes. The school will help the teachers find housing if necessary, but it does not itself provide housing. A transportation allowance is provided to cover the transportation cost from home to school and back.” – New International School of Japan (Tokyo, Japan) – 30 Comments
• Are the expectations high of teaching staff? Are there extra curricular responsibilities? Describe workload details. (970 Total Comments)
Example comment: “Expectations are high but the atmosphere is supportive. Staff are expected to undertake duties on a rota bais before and after school, at break times and lunch times. Staff are expected to run one extra curricular activity for one term per year. There is a decent amount of non-contact time at around 20% of timetable.” – Rasami (Thai-British) International School (Bangkok, Thailand) – 75 Comments
• Average class size for primary and secondary. Describe any aide support. (1010 Total Comments)
Example comment: “Class sizes are very small. In the primary, they are normally a combination of two grade levels (i.e. Grades 1 and 2 together) and about 16 kids with a teaching assistant. In secondary class size is smaller and can range from four to twelve per grade level.” – Hiroshima International School (Hiroshima, Japan) – 64 Comments
• Describe the language abilities of students at this school and what is the “common language spoken in the hallways”? Is there one dominant cultural group? (1364 Total Comments)
Example comment: “The Thao Dien (Primary) campus in the expat area has students from about 20 countries. The TT Campus, Primary, Middle School and Secondary is mainly Vietnamese. Korean is the next largest student group. Very few students from Western Countries. Has a large EAL population.” – Australian International School HCMC (Vietnam) (Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam) – 19 Comments
• Describe what kinds of teachers work here (local vs. expat, nationality, qualifications [or lack thereof], etc.) and staff turnover rate. (1417 Total Comments)
Example comment: “Primarily expat teachers, without any one nationality dominating things. When I left in 2011 there were teachers from Australia, Canada, US, UK, South Africa, Belgium, and Tanzania just within my department. Some teachers stay 7 to 10 years or more, while others just 2 to 4 years, as in most international schools.” – International School of Tanganyika (Dar es salaam, Tanzania) – 171 Comments
• What types of budgets do classroom teachers/departments get? (614 Total Comments)
Example comment: “budgets have been steadily dropping. Ownership slyly changed the school from a not for profit school to a for profit school, without notifying parents of the change.” – Makuhari International School (Tokyo, Japan) – 22 Comments
• PARENTS ONLY – General comments from parents of students that go to this school (312 Total Comments)
Example comment: “The mastery system is open to the interpretation of each teacher, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.” – QSI International School of Dongguan (Dongguan, China) – 64 Comments
• What types of sports programs and activities does the school offer? (803 Total Comments)
Example comment: “The school offers a wide variety of after school activities which are run by teachers. There is no extra pay for this. Teachers can choose which activity they would like to lead.” – International School of Koje (Geoje, South Korea) – 47 Comments
• Name some special things about this school that makes it unique. (802 Total Comments)
Example comment: “The school has an excellent music program that frequently presents music and drama to the local community and other schools. Students in the diploma program seek out ways to serve the community needs.” – Oeiras International School (Lisbon, Portugal) – 214 Comments
• In general, describe the demeanor of the students. (707 Total Comments)
Example comment: “The students are generally great, however there are no entrance exams or behavior requirements. The owners Tehmine and Stephan want to make as much money as possible. There definitely are no requirements to enter this school.” – Surabaya European School (Surabaya, Indonesia) – 20 Comments
• Has the school met your expectations once you started working there? (430 Total Comments)
Example comment: “I’ve really enjoyed working at the school. I have always been able to approach admin if I needed to.” – The Codrington School (Int’l School of Barbados) (St. John, Barbados) – 83 Comments
• What does the school do to create a harmonious state of well-being and high morale amongst its staff? (502 Total Comments)
Example comment: “The school has a health and wellness program where a lot of teachers connect and exercise together. Also, the PTO regularly hosts cocktail events after school. Plus there are scheduled tours and cultural events.” – Anglo-American School of Moscow (Moscow, Russia) – 69 Comments
• Describe the technologies available at the school and how people are/are not using them. (584 Total Comments)
Example comment: “Each teacher has a PC (windows only. The printer server won’t talk to macs) and a smart board. However, the smart boards are not all hooked up or working so it’s a very expensive video screen. Slow internet. Nothing Google, youtube, or Facebook works in China.” – Tsinghua International School (Beijing) (Beijing, China) – 182 Comments
• Details about the current teacher appraisal process. (368 Total Comments)
Example comment: “Get on your principal’s good side and you are fine. If they do not like you you will immediately get put on a corrective plan and ushered out. Just flatter the admin and you will be fine.” – Abu Dhabi International Private School (Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates) – 43 Comments
• Is the student population declining, staying the same or increasing? Give details why. (562 Total Comments)
Example comment: “The number of students has increased. There is a waitlist for Year 6 now.” – UCSI International School Subang Jaya (Subang Jaya, Malaysia) – 11 Comments
• How have certain things improved since you started working there? (294 Total Comments)
Example comment: “The one more important thing that changed for the positive, in around 2011-12, was the school initiated an 8000 RMB per year, per teacher, PD allowance. Before that there wasn’t an allowance. There was though PD for the DP teachers before that.” – Yew Chung International School (Shanghai) (Shanghai, China) – 53 Comments
• How is this school different or the same when compared to schools in your home country? (226 Total Comments)
Example comment: “Well one thing that my school had in the United States was a coordinator for reading in the Primary school. I feel that CIS would benefit from having one of those. We need somebody to coordinate how the primary school teaches reading and someone to coordinate resources. Also, someone to help us have a clearer stop and sequence across the grade levels.” – Copenhagen International School (Copenhagen, Denmark) – 407 Comments
• What controversies have been happening lately? Please be objective. (372 Total Comments)
Example comment: “The school hires foreign teachers but sometimes it is difficult for the teachers to integrate into the school. It is really a combination of moving to Chile and assimilating as a foreigner as well as the schools lack of support to receive foreign teachers. The administration has recognized this problem and is working to help future hires.” – Santiago College (Santiago, Chile) – 74 Comments
• What insider information would you give to a teacher considering working at this school? (535 Total Comments)
Example comment: “Remember state school teachers are paid twice as much for half the work. All the locals are on waiting lists for Govt. schools but they are years (centuries) long.” – International School of Paphos (Paphos, Cyprus) – 123 Comments
• How much curriculum development work are you expected to do? (Atlas Rubicon, Toddle, etc.) (343 Total Comments)
Example comment: “A curriculum coordinator offers huge levels of support for this. During the current year, this load is heavy because of where we are in the accreditation cycle. High School has used Rubicon for a while. Lower School is just starting to use Rubicon.” – American School of Marrakesh (Marrakesh, Morocco) – 29 Comments
• How did this school handle the COVID-19 situation? (14 Total Comments)
Example comment: “I was very impressed with ISHRs response to covid. No reductions in salary or positions cut, although some departing members of staff were not replaced. The school gave teachers the autonomy to work from home, although other schools in Germany asked staff to be on site. They checked in regularly to see how we were doing outside of school. I would go as far as saying it was probably one of the best responses in the international school world. We all got to keep our jobs, work from home when we felt like we needed to, and were treated with compassion…” – International School Hannover Region (Hannover, Germany) – 42 Commentscontinue reading
Our school profile search feature is one reason that makes International School Community unique. The search feature allows our members to search for the international schools that best fit their specific criteria.
This fast and easy-to-use search feature also helps international school teachers find the school profile pages on our website that have some useful comments and information on them. You can easily see how many comments have been submitted on each school profile page by looking to the right of each school listed on the Schools List page.
The “Schools with Comments” tick box feature is at the bottom of our school profile search box (see above picture). If you only want to see school profiles that have comments on them in your search results, tick this box! Then on the search results page, you will only see the schools that have comments. Genius!
Example: First we selected East Asia in the Region drop-down menu. Then we selected China in the Country drop-down menu. Finally, we selected Shanghai in the City drop-down menu. But instead of getting ALL the school profile pages for schools in Shanghai, we put a tick next to the ‘schools with comments’ part before we pressed the Search button.
Here are the results of this search:
As of 23 May 2021, 26 schools in Shanghai have had comments and information submitted on their school profile pages.
Log-on right now to our website and start your searches using our ‘schools with comments’ feature (which is available to all members).
It is also important to note that there are over 40575 individual comments and information that have been submitted on our website. All of these comments mean more informed teachers in our international school community! We encourage all international school community members to share what they know by submitting comments on the international schools they currently work at or have worked at in the past. Why not become a Mayor of a school for unlimited free premium membership? Become a Mayor today!continue reading
It’s true, ISC now has over 40000 comments!
Here is a bit of history about how many comments that we have had on our website since it started back in January 2011:
0 Comments – January 2011
71 Comments – May 2011
939 Comments – September 2011
2147 Comments – January 2012
4578 Comments – May 2012
5965 Comments – September 2012
6767 Comments – January 2013
8004 Comments – May 2013
9109 Comments – September 2013
10018 Comments – January 2014
10689 Comments – May 2014
11455 Comments – Sept 2014
12981 Comments – Feb 2015
15023 Comments – Nov 2015
16017 Comments – Feb 2016
18000 Comments – Sept 2016
19000 Comments – Dec 2016
20200 Comments – March 2017
22010 Comments – August 2017
23000 Comments – November 2017
24000 Comments – January 2018
27000 Comments – May 2018
30000 Comments – January 2019
33000 Comments – Sept 2019
36000 Comments – March 2020
40000 Comments – March 2021
We would like to formally thank our community of members (now at over 21000!) for submitting all of the comments on our website.
Are you an International School Community member that wants to submit some comments but currently doesn’t have premium membership?
48 hours of Premium Membership Promotion: Right now EVERY member on our website has premium membership access for 48 hours. Just log on and enjoy free, full access to our website.
* This 48 hours free promotion will expire on 4 April, 2021 (11:59pm PST)
Don’t forget to submit comments during this time (which are done so anonymously, by the way) because during the next 48 hours you can get EXTRA premium membership added your account.
We want members who participate and share what they know to have free premium access to our website. For it is them that keep our website up to date and full of useful comments!
After you submit some comments, check out the other things you can do with premium membership access:
1. Check out our the latest posted job vacancies.
2. Take a look at our compare school salaries page. (783 schools with 1438 comments about salaries are listed on this page)
3. Make a search on our Comments Search page. Find the specific comments you’d like to read about, faster!
4. Do unlimited school profile page searches and check out our easier-to-use/updated school results page.
5. Contact one of our 21200+ members and use our Member Search feature to find someone to network or ask a question to.
6. Go to our School Comparison page and compare 109 schools using eight different comment topics. Who will win?
Do you have a question about a specific international school that you are considering interviewing with? Do you have experience working at an international school and have information and current news to share?
Besides being able to check out and read 22600+ submitted comments on our school profile pages, we also have the school profile page walls. Similar to a forum, there is a wall on each school profile page. If you don’t see an answer to your question in the submitted comments and information area, then the wall is the place to ask your question. Also, if you have some information to share about an international school (that you presently work at or have worked at in the past), then we encourage you to also start up a discussion or share some important information on the school’s wall as well.
The wall is located under the map feature and basic school stats on a school profile page’s Overview tab.
You can also check out the latest discussions on all of the school profile page walls on our Latest Wall Discussions page. On this page you can check out the last 40 comments that have been submitted on all the walls.
International School Community would like all the discussions on the school profile page walls to follow our Community Guidelines for our website. Please take a moment to check out our Guidelines for posting on a school profile page wall.
Guidelines for posting on a school profile page Wall:
• Ask questions that you have about this school that haven’t already been answered on the Comments and Information page.
• Start up a topic about this school related to the School, the Benefits, the City it is in and what it is like to Travel from the city it is in.
• If you know about this school, make sure to respond to previously submitted questions and topics to which you know the answers.
• If you currently work at this school or have worked there in the past, leave a helpful comment or positive statement about the school that would be informative and useful for potential candidates interested in working at this school.
• Stay positive. This wall is not a place to complain or say hurtful things about the school, administration, teachers or the students.
• Keep the topics constructive and non-subjective. It is not a place to talk about your unique and negative personal experience at the school.
Finding information about what it is like to working at international schools can sometimes be a challenge. On other international school forums, it can get a bit tiring and cumbersome to find the information you need. In other words, those forums can be too complex and unorganized. Now if you want to know about a specific international school, you can just go directly to check out their profile page on our website. If the answer your looking for hasn’t already been submitted, then make sure to utilize our wall feature. All the information discussed on this wall will only be about that specific international school. The mission of our school profile page walls is to be convenient, useful, and organized. All information discussed about that school will be in one place…saving you time in your search for answers!
We encourage all members to actively participate on the school profile page walls, so that we can all stay the most up-to-date and informed about our international school community!continue reading
International School Community’s goal is to have a website where the information that international school teachers want to know about is very easy to find. Thus we are always working on improving the organization of our website and its features to better serve our members.
Recently, we have made some changes on our school profile page:
We now have 1083 (31 January, 2012) international school profile pages on our website. On each school provide pages there are many, many different features and information. One of the most important sections on this page is where members can read and submit comments and information.
In turn, our comments and information section has been revamped. Now the four comment categories (School Information, Benefits Information, City Information and Travel Information) are on tabs. This change was made so that members could go from one section to the other much easier and faster.
The City and Travel Information sections have also changed. Now they been linked up with other school profile pages that share they same city. For example, if a members has left comments and information in the City Information section on an international school in Shanghai, those submitted comments will now show up on all the other international schools in Shanghai listed on our website! Now it will be much easier to access information about the city and travel information on international school profile pages that share the same city!
Another improvement made has been with how our members view, write, submit, and then edit or delete their submitted comments on each school profile page. For each topic in the four comment sections members will now be able to only view the last 3-4 comments submitted and the dates they were submitted.
Then to read all the comments that have actually been submitted, members can now click on the “Show more” link. In a pop-up screen members will be able to read every submitted comment and information (in full) for that section’s topic. Members can also submit a new comment on this pop-up screen at the bottom.
From this pop-up screen members are now able to edit or delete one of their previously submitted comments. Only the member that has submitted the comment will see the “Edit” and “Delete” buttons; other members are not able to edit or delete other member’s comments.
There are more improvements to come!
International School Community is indeed to new place to go to gather and share information about life at international schools. Become a member of International School Community today! You currently get 1 month of free premium access to our website when you sign up. If you are already a member of International School Community, share what you know and submit some comments and information about the international schools you know about today!continue reading