1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Hi Guest, welcome to the TES Community!

    Connect with like-minded education professionals and have your say on the issues that matter to you.

    Don't forget to look at the how to guide.

    Dismiss Notice

A plea for sanity.

Discussion in 'Teaching abroad' started by hullstokey, May 6, 2019.

  1. hullstokey

    hullstokey New commenter

    Ive been on the international circuit/circus for a while now and I would like to reflect upon the amount of energy that is wasted. Naively I kept trying to cling on to the virtues of the profession. I.e schools want to educate.. Ive finally given up I surrender to the presence. I’m not fighting anymore.
    What were the issues that grinded me down.
    Lack of honesty. I wanted to write reports that reflected on ability. I know this is difficult for Principals but come on surely there’s some parents who would be happier with something approaching the truth.
    Spending time doing my job. The lack of trust.. please stop feeling the need to control us. The constant fighting for power/ manipulation just drains us all of energy.
    Stop looking to get rid of everyone who doesn’t agree or at least to pretend to agree to everything you say. It would be nice to stay long enough at a school to actually improve the learning.
    Please please seek help, don’t let ego run your life. Try and find the real you.

    Thank you. I Feel better now.
    DocShew, Alice K, ATfan and 3 others like this.
  2. hullstokey

    hullstokey New commenter

    Oh and if there’s any owners out there. Please run a sanity check before you appoint someone in charge of human beings.
    sinmac21 and ATfan like this.
  3. SPC2

    SPC2 Occasional commenter

    Can I add 'management by indiscriminate email' to your list please?
    towncryer and ATfan like this.
  4. february31st

    february31st Established commenter

    Changing the format of the reports every time the principal is exchanged for a different model. It always appears that the format and content of reports formatted by a predecessor is inadequate to modern pedagogy and needs to be replaced and revised.
    towncryer and ATfan like this.
  5. makhnovite

    makhnovite Established commenter

    Unfortunately guys its too late the lunatics have taken over the asylum. Sorry to go over old ground but hey, these are my prejudices and I like them!

    On a slightly more serious note, its thanks to the changes that were introduced by Thatcher and her tame poodle Baker, and then pursued with the same vigour by every government since.

    Teachers can't be trusted as they are all looney left wingers so we have to scrap the previous method of teacher training (i.e. the four year B.Ed) and leave it up to a subject degree and a very brief PGCE.

    We also have to scrap the idea of the professionals i.e. teachers, deciding on the curriculum (lets leave it up those who really know; politicians!!!) and have a national curriculum.

    Of course schools are really just businesses, and students and parents are actually customers, so lets introduce a business model of management; i.e. production targets (SAT's and performance pay) and ticking boxes. All this leads to a macho style of management; i.e. any new manager has to be seen to make changes quickly, to show that he/she is a new broom, it also leads to management by fiat and fear.

    Of course it used to be different on the circuit/circus but of course most of the teachers and managers moving abroad in the last 15-20 years are form this brave new world and seem to like it or don't know anything else.

    Cynical - Moi?
  6. frogusmaximus

    frogusmaximus Occasional commenter

    To the OP, time for a move mate.

    I've worked in more than ten schools and only ever worked under one headteacher I respected and who had his brain in gear, and he was in his 60's.

    I could use plenty of adjectives to describe the actions and character of the rest but i'll stick with the simple phrase . . . OUT OF THEIR DEPTH.
    towncryer likes this.
  7. february31st

    february31st Established commenter

    There is only one thing worse than working for an incompetent ”b a s t a r d”, that's working for a competent ”b a s t a r d”!
  8. bead

    bead New commenter

    And of course the spread of the deadly virus worldwide British School Overseas(BSO)
    I have seen the changeover in local schools who concentrated only on PUPILS(not students) learning being infected by it. Not a pretty sight with teachers leaving in their droves just like England(surprise surprise.)
    towncryer likes this.
  9. hullstokey

    hullstokey New commenter

    Also you can’t buy integrity. You have to have it. Putting someone from a marketing background in charge of a school is like putting a furniture manufacturer in charge of a rain forrest.
    DocShew, towncryer and ed717 like this.
  10. amysdad

    amysdad Established commenter

    Like I said elsewhere, the Peter Principle is alive and well in international schools!
  11. february31st

    february31st Established commenter

    The insanity of dropping A Levels and switching to IB because of the ”nice” brochures!
    towncryer likes this.
  12. mummalea

    mummalea New commenter

    Personally, I feel that IB is far more of an effective preparation for university and college life than A levels...more of a 21st century, international-minded and cross-curricular qualification set. You can't blame them for having pretty PR. Isn't that how all international services and products are promoted these days?
  13. swsimp160

    swsimp160 Occasional commenter

    The 'circuit', in the vast majority of cases, is rock bottom when it comes to teaching. Get yourself a good, long established, private school in the UK, Oz, Canada etc. But, then again, many on the circuit don't have what it takes to land such a position. That is why they are on the 'circuit' in the first place.
  14. swsimp160

    swsimp160 Occasional commenter

    No comparison between the IB and A levels. IB do things properly. In terms of UK uni points an IB 45 equals 5 A* A levels.

    However, there are IB 45's and IB 45's as I tell my kids. Proper 45's with HL Maths,Chemistry, physics and the rest which are not nearly as good.
  15. amysdad

    amysdad Established commenter

    feb31st - hey, if nice looking brochures work.....! Did they actually read them though or was the content above them...
  16. amysdad

    amysdad Established commenter

    I think what you're talking about here is two different things. Firstly, integrity is something you either have or you don't - it doesn't matter what your background. If you know someone understands something better than you, you allow them to guide and inform you without manipulating you.

    Your second point, though, depends very much on the school. In a big school, the role of the headmaster can be very much separate from the classroom - in fact, at times (s)he can become too remote. In those cases, the role becomes much more like a chief executive role rather than a teaching one - and in most companies, a chief executive doesn't necessarily know or understand how every part of the company works, but ensures that he has in place directors and other staff who do and can inform him. The problem comes when the people who report to the CE can't challenge him without being overruled or simply bullied in return (I know of at least one school where this happens.)

    Yes, the headmaster needs to have a general understanding of education - but even a headmaster who was a teacher in, say, secondary, won't fully understand the issues and structure of primary or early years areas. It's how he approaches that which will make the difference - and that's where integrity comes in.
    Mr_Frosty likes this.
  17. taiyah

    taiyah Occasional commenter


    When you understand and accept the directions and reality of the international teaching sector then you will be more resilient.

    There are outstanding schools out there. Some pay well, whilst others not so much. But they are great schools to work for..

    Keep Calm... Roll on... Or Move on...
    Last edited: May 8, 2019
  18. RUS1

    RUS1 New commenter

    Wow! Thank you for your thoughtful input. There are a lot of good teachers on the circuit who cannot move back to those places because of a range of issues including labyrinthine processes for spousal visas, Brexit, Trump, extortionate living costs etc. I know many international teachers who would shine in these institutions you mention. I can't believe how arrogant and small minded this response is.
    motorhomer likes this.
  19. dumbbells66

    dumbbells66 Lead commenter

    i would be aware that commenters like this @RUS1 . they have openly stated on this forum in the past that they actually have no experience of the "circuit", and were burned by an extremely low level school in Nigeria but never actually worked there, and thats the sum of their international experience.
    Mr_Frosty and motorhomer like this.
  20. frogusmaximus

    frogusmaximus Occasional commenter

    I've taught in 4 different international schools. Ignoring the odd chancer who was hiding among the teaching crowd - never quite sure how they get away with it - the quality of education offered in each was really quite good. Either i've been quite fortunate in my situations - though, none of the schools were of the elite variety - or this negativity of international teaching is very much over exaggerated.

    Further, i've never quite understood the term 'circuit' in international school terms. Suggests we all simply move from one place to place filling contracts before being shunted onwards. Concluded it is a throwaway term used by idiots.

Share This Page