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Moving to Qatar to teach in August 2012!

Discussion in 'Teaching abroad' started by kjames3, Mar 15, 2012.

  1. Hello Everybody!
    This is my first post on the website so be nice :)
    I have accepted a teaching job for a Year 1 class in Doha, Qatar, starting in September 2012. I have read mixed reviews on the schools and life in Qatar. There but there doesn't seem to be any recent ones. Just wondering if anybody can give me their opinions on this...I am a single 23 year old female so I am hoping there will be others in the same boat. This will be my first year teaching after graduating.

    Is anybody else on here moving to Doha in August?Would be good to hear from you if you are.

    Katie x
  2. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    Dear Katie,
    I am sure that everyone on the forum will be nice to you. Welcome to this forum and welcome to the exciting world of international education! Doha is not too bad and there are some nice places to go. I am afraid that you are not allowed to mention specific schools on this forum, otherwise the TES moderators will delete this thread. However, I am sending you a Personal Message (PM) to you Inbox and then we can have a chat about your school, if you would like to. Mrs Hippo and I have now been in Qatar for four years and I suppose it was a bit of a shock at first, but you soon get used to it and other teachers will help you to adjust.
    The Hippo

  3. Hey katie,

    I am in the same position, also heading to Qatar in September teaching year 2! Ive heard mixed things too but everyones experiences are different and I think its going to be what you make of it! Im excited, scared, terrified all rolled into one ;)! What school u heading too xx
  4. dash201

    dash201 New commenter

    I have a feeling that all posters on this thread may be at the same school come September. Not me though. I am off to another in the area.

    And do listen to the hippo. A fountain of knowledge mixed with humour!
  5. Hi Katie,

    You will be fine in Doha. It's very much chilled out there in comparison to Dubai. I have also accepted a job as a year 2 teacher in Doha for a september start. Feel free to pm me for a chat. You never know, we may be at the same school.
  6. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    Did someone mention my name? I have published this advice for young teachers before, but maybe some of our young colleagues who are off to Qatar may find this useful. Anyway, this advice is based on my experiences of teaching in Kenya, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Romania, the UAE and of course Qatar, so you must decided how much is relevant for you and for your new job in Doha. First, get some tapes or CDs and try to learn a little Arabic. Even if you can just say a few pleasantries, it will go a long way. If you could find an Arabic-speaking person who would be prepared to teach you for a few months, then that would be even better. Yes, just about everyone in Doha speaks English, but even a sprinkling of Arabic will earn you brownie points with Arabic-speaking parents. Secondly, do not assume that your new school will have much in the way of resources. Even if the school does have some resources for this or that topic, you may discover that things have been moved around over the holidays and now no one knows where the handwriting books for Year 4 have been left. Of course you will need to know, as soon as possible, which year group or year groups you will be teaching and which subjects. (That always helps!) Remember that recruiting new teaching staff is a bit of a jigsaw puzzle, so some heads tend to be a bit vague about who is actually doing what! Then you should send off an e-mail or two and try to find out what they do have in terms of resources, but in the meantime start photocopying, laminating and scanning like mad. If you have not yet bought a scanner, hurry up and get one and learn how to use it. Save it all onto your laptop and make sure that you back it all up onto an external hard drive. Only silly people in the UK bother about stupid nonsense like the laws of copyright, so you won't need to worry at all about it once you are in Qatar. If there is a particular DVD that you simply must have for your teaching, then buy it from Amazon. My guess is that you will find that it will take just about forever to buy things from the UK once you are in Doha and the postal service can take ages! The Teachers TV videos are now on the TES website. Will you definitely have access to the Internet in your classroom? Well, maybe, but in the meantime I would download everything and anything NOW! Thirdly, get hold of a good map of Doha and start learning where everything is. The Rough Guide and the Lonely Planet guidebooks are good places to start, but you will need to do a lot more homework than that. You certainly do not want to leave all of this until after you have arrived. I am also a fan of www.virtualtourist.com and on this website you will find masses of helpful advice. When you actually arrive, try to get your hands on a most helpful guidebook called Marhaba. Another helpful source of information is www.qatarliving.com. Fourthly, some countries are a bit sniffy when it comes to qualifications, work permits and visas. Will your school require a CRB or what? Find out precisely what bits of paper you will need and what you need to do with them. You should assume that it will probably take longer than you had imagined. The wheels of bureaurocracy, especially Qatari bureaurocracy, can turn a lot more slowly than you had guessed and not having the right bits of paper can mean delays in the processing of your residency permit (RP). Don't forget to keep the receipts. A new passport is not something that takes five minutes, so get that sorted out as a priority. It is no good going off to Qatar with a passport that is going to expire in a few months' time. You might as well get a new one now. Brits can get a tourist visa on arrival in Doha, but other nationalities need to doublecheck this. (By the way, you will need a credit card to pay for your tourist visa.) Fifthly, get yourself to a doctor and have a thorough checkup. Ditto the dentist. It may be a while before you can get your Qatari health card. Sixthly, there are some interesting places in Doha, but there are not many good English bookshops. Treat yourself to a few paperbacks before you leave Old Blighty. Seventhly, find yourself a good accountant and talk over the business of becoming "non-resident for tax purposes". Would this be a good idea in your case? Not if you are only going to stay overseas for a few months, but it probably is worthwhile if it looks as though you will be out of the UK for several years. You will find this rather difficult to sort out once you are in Doha, so it might be a good idea to do as much as you can before you leave. Last but by no means least, hurry up and pass your driving test. Yes, there are taxis in Doha, but they are usually all booked when you really want one. Another little problem is that young ladies who stand around on street corners trying to flag down a taxi may find themselves in embarrassing situations. Walking back from the shops is also not much fun when you are carrying bags and it is more than 40 degrees C. Having your own car also means that you can experience one of life’s sweetest pleasures: filling up with petrol at 20p a litre.
    zdaea likes this.
  7. Thanks for the very useful post hippo. I too am heading to Qatar in August and have been reading many of your posts with interest.
  8. Couldn't agree more with the hippo! Scan scan scan!!!
    yakismom likes this.
  9. Congratulations Katie! Wonderful news...Year 1 hey...that'll be lovely! I smell phonics! :) Well done you x
  10. Thank you everybody! I am not sure if I have just posted this reply on the right bit but let's give it a go :) Very kind of you all to give all of the very useful information. I am excited and I am trying to get all of the nitty gritty bits sorted out now. Glad to hear there are lots of people in the same boat as me. I will PM some of you with the school that I am going to, maybe I can connect before I even leave!
  11. happygreenfrog

    happygreenfrog Occasional commenter

    Dear Katie, why oh why?
    And you've chosen the ME, just to add to the fun.
    Good luck, fingers crossed.
  13. Thank you! I am definitely going with an open mind and have done masses of research to know what to expect a bit more. Very much looking forward to it now :)
    I just need to find out about CRB checks as I am not in a school at the moment so don't have one :s
  14. Great post, thank you.
  15. BahrainB

    BahrainB New commenter

    Before you come over - get yourself on eBay or to the sales and stock up on swimwear , sandals and summer clothes . There are shops in Doha but selection isn't wide and prices high .
    For work it's best to have more conservative and those little cardigans that cover a short sleeved top or dress are good for covering/ac .My school is strict about boobage and bum flashing and prefer tops to cover your bottom . So trousers with a tunic is my staple .
    You won't need many winter items but do bring some .

    I have never worn a coat here but needed light woollen jumpers , boots and tights for some of Dec/Jan/ Feb .
    sara2323 likes this.

  16. <font size="5">Hiya,</font>

    <font size="5">I had a job
    interview for a post in KS1 in Doha today. It went well and i find out in a
    week or so, to see if i have the post.</font>

    <font size="5">Im also a 23
    single female and am glad to hear there is someone else in the same position. I&rsquo;m
    an NQT at the moment, so it will be my 2nd year teaching.</font>

    <font size="5">What school will
    you be working at?</font>

    <font size="5">Be good to hear
    from you.</font>

    <font size="5"></font>

  17. Well Katie, Hippo has given you some sound advice. I too am heading to Qatar this August but have been on the international teahing circuit a few years. Take heed of the comprehensive advice offered in these posts, then you can be sure to enjoy yourself fully and experience some fantastic opportunities whilst there.
  18. Hiya did you hear back from the school. I am also starting at a school in Doha in September, it will be my third year of teaching. I am excited but also vey nervous..... I understand we can't mention our school names but some could be the same so I may PM some of you if thats okay....
  19. Hi,
    This is also my first post on the site but I am in desperate need of some advise/info.
    I have an interview for a school in Qatar on Sunday - Skype interview and I have been doing some research. However, I have read some horror stories.
    I have been on supply for a year now with no perm jobs to apply for, hence looking for jobs in other places.
    Any advise would be greatly appreciated. :)
  20. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    I have sent you a PM, as well as my e-mail address. If I can be of any help, please e-mail me because I hate those nasty little message boxes.

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