TIPS FOR WORKING IN AN INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL
1. PICK THE JOB, RATHER THAN THE CITY.
Unless you are desperate to live in a particular place, prioritise finding the right school for you. The typical pathway to employment is to attend a reputable Job Fair run by an organisation such as CIS or Search Associates, but don’t rule out applying directly to schools via their websites.
2. INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL POLITICS.
International schools are not subject to the same level of regulation as their counterparts, and some can be ruthlessly ‘for-profit’.
Perhaps a toothless board is all that stands between your welfare and the kids.
So it’s crucial to try to make contact with others who have taught at the school to ensure that staff is well treated and the working conditions are relatively favourable, including pay scale and teaching load.
The best paying jobs are usually in the Middle East and north Asia, but it does vary depending on the school and other aspects of the package. Irrespective of your salary, try to enjoy the opportunities to travel in the region. It’s possibly half the reason you took the job in the first place!
4. MAINTAIN PROFESSIONAL FOCUS.
International school teachers can at times be guilty of playing too hard outside the classroom. Remember the job comes first, and in many cases the school community is very tight so your behaviour does not go unnoticed. By all means blow off steam, but don’t blow your opportunity!
5. CONSIDER A CAREER IN INTERNATIONAL EDUCATION.
Look for unique PD conferences and workshops that expand on issues particular to international students, or about international education in general.
It’s a booming field filled with rich data to explore. Get stuck into it!