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Leadership Opportunities in International Schools (Asia)

Discussion in 'Teaching abroad' started by seanknox, Nov 19, 2017.

  1. seanknox

    seanknox New commenter

    I am currently a senior leader (Assistant Principal) at a high achieving, Ofsted 'outstanding' secondary academy in the UK. I am exploring the possibility of teaching at an international school in Asia. My subject is geography and I have experience teaching KS3-KS5 as well as examining with OCR. My leadership experience includes: DSL, SENCO, co-head of Sixth Form - my preference is strategic responsibility for teaching and learning, inclusion or standards and attainment.

    I don't have any experience of teaching/leading an International School. What is the likelihood of gaining a leadership position without this experience?

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
    SPC2 likes this.
  2. february31st

    february31st Established commenter

    Your chances are very good, especially if you go for a VP role. Many international schools have a whole school principal/director with heads of primay and secondary under them.
  3. mbuch

    mbuch New commenter

    True. Very good chances for sure. EAL is also a big thing with over 40 to 50 different nationalities in international schools.
  4. SPC2

    SPC2 Occasional commenter

    Don't feel qualified to answer the OP's question but would just like to record how refreshingly different their tone is from past posts with the same sort of question.

    To the OP, good luck to you and full respect for obviously being (a) an achiever but with (b) humility about entering a new world. To you...

  5. makhnovite

    makhnovite Established commenter

    Another great photo SPC2!
  6. ducatinat

    ducatinat New commenter

    Educational Leadership in Asia? When you find it, PM me :)

    International Schools are run by business folk who sting the local population with heavy fees and low standards. In cities like Singapore and Hong Kong, International schools are seen as low value for money because the "leadership" care about profit before quality. Check out the case of ESF in Hong Kong who have just lost the support of most of the community because their fees have gone up 78% in 5 years, but with a lowering of academic success in final years. Reason is that not one person on in "leadership" is an educationalist of qualified teacher.

    Good luck.
    smorris71 likes this.
  7. amysdad

    amysdad Established commenter

    It can be difficult to move from a leadership role in the UK to a leadership role in an international school - you may have to look at Head of Department / Faculty roles as well (Search Associates, for example, I think insist on having international leadership experience before they will register you.) Also, how many years qualified are you? This could make a difference too.

    @ducatinat makes a good point, there are schools which are primarily businesses, but far from all, I think. Just pick carefully!
  8. dumbbells66

    dumbbells66 Lead commenter

    i have a feeling that you have had a negative experience of international teaching ;)

    because i would disagree with a lot of what you have said. but then i have only worked in non profit schools, and obviously i have seen a different side of international life.
  9. smorris71

    smorris71 New commenter

  10. clovispoint

    clovispoint Occasional commenter

    Spectacularly ill-informed. I note you are new commenter and this is your first post.

    The ESF fees have increased because the government subvention was removed for dubious reasons (colonial legacy was the excuse despite the non-colonial demographic. Politics in HK have become very complicated since 1997). The ESF has had to increase its fees to match the money being removed from its budget.

    The school results are spectacular for a non-selective school group- there is no decline.

    As to the leadership, I do not know what you are basing that opinion on but it is also ill-informed.
  11. grdwdgrrrl

    grdwdgrrrl Occasional commenter

    Not for profit schools also can suck.....just like any other.
  12. dumbbells66

    dumbbells66 Lead commenter

    not my experience of them:)
  13. makhnovite

    makhnovite Established commenter

    While I agree with the main point of your post Clovis the loss of the subvention has been a problem obviously. I am not sure about this point - 'there is no decline.'

    I would say that there has been a decline but its not just a matter of money. I would agree with ducatinat's first point that IMO there has been a decline in the quality of leadership in ESF and its rather incestuous policy of preferential internal promotion at the expense of 'new blood'.

    The money problem has also had an effect: on the package, class size, teacher contact time and the new/changing demographic, add to that the rise in the cost of living especially accommodation and this must surely have a knock on effect on recruitment.
  14. makhnovite

    makhnovite Established commenter

    I am a bit suspicious of ducatinat is it yet another reincarnation of; 'he must not be named'?
    binza87 likes this.
  15. sah79

    sah79 Occasional commenter

    That was my first thought too

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