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

Teaching in Kenya...

Discussion in 'Teaching abroad' started by michellezim, Jan 13, 2020.

  1. michellezim

    michellezim New commenter

    Afternoon all, I've scrolled through past posts about living and working in Kenya but wondered if anyone who is CURRENTLY or has RECENTLY worked in Kenya could shed some light on what it's like at the moment? I"m particularly interested in the school outside of Nairobi that goes by the name of a Scottish Saint.The move would entail both my partner and myself getting teaching jobs at the school and our 2 children (aged 8 and 10) moving with us. I'm not overly worried about the safety element as I grew up in Africa (elsewhere) myself but more about whether the education would be good for our kids/ what life is like out there from a social perspective/ pay? Thanks so much for any info :)
     
  2. 576

    576 Established commenter

    I've Pm'd you.
     
  3. 1lessonatatime

    1lessonatatime New commenter

    I moved here with young family last year. Best thing we have ever done. We love it! Work life balance compared to the uk is so much better. Took a pay cut to come here but have more money in the bank at the end of the month.

    Our kids have settled in very well, making friends and having amazing new experiences.
     
    michellezim and 576 like this.
  4. michellezim

    michellezim New commenter

    Hi 1lessonatatime, thanks for your reply. If you had a moment to tell me more, I'd b hugely appreciative. How old are your kids? Did you find the logistics a nightmare? Any other advice?? Thanks
     
  5. 1lessonatatime

    1lessonatatime New commenter


    Hi,

    Sorry I have only just seen this post - are you still interested in some more info?
     
  6. billinziemalcolm

    billinziemalcolm New commenter

    Hi,

    Could you please give me some insight into the pay in Kenya and the attractions for children.

    many thanks
    A
     
  7. lc547186

    lc547186 New commenter

    Please send me a PM, I can provide you with this information.
     
  8. billinziemalcolm

    billinziemalcolm New commenter

    hello

    Thank you for replying, I don't know how to send a PM, please could you start a private conversation with me.

    Thanks,
    A
     
  9. lc547186

    lc547186 New commenter

    Hi,

    I did not know either, so I contacted TES and apparently you cannot do it. If you let me know what you would like to know, I can do my best to give you an overview of what its like to live there, cost of living, salaries, schools (without mentioning names) etc. I was there fore 6 years, it is a greta country but there are things to consider based on if you have a family, location of school, cost of living etc.
     
    billinziemalcolm likes this.
  10. billinziemalcolm

    billinziemalcolm New commenter

     
  11. billinziemalcolm

    billinziemalcolm New commenter

    Hello

    Thanks for your reply.

    Yes that sounds great!
    Could you assist me in answering the following questions please:
    what it is like to live there?
    What is the cost of living?
    What is the approximate salary - I am 2 years post-qualifying-do they use scales?
    Which are the best schools - I am interested in the one after a price by the beach.
    housing- what do you get(compound)?
    Do the international schools keep the same holidays as per UK?
    Do the schools pay in shillings or usd?
    Nanny cost- I have a 4 year old (chancey) and I will require a nanny, would you so its best to have a live-in nanny or someone to come in from monday to friday? Also, how much will a nanny cost?


    Many Thanks,

    A
     
  12. lc547186

    lc547186 New commenter

    Hey, please see feedback to all your questions below. If you would like any extra advice or have any more questions then just let me know.


    QUOTE="billinziemalcolm, post: 13085492, member: 20880827"]Hello

    Thanks for your reply.

    Yes that sounds great!
    Could you assist me in answering the following questions please:

    what it is like to live there?
    Living there is really good, I enjoyed all 6 years that I was in Kenya. I spent the first 2 years in a school up country and then 4 years in Nairobi. It is a friendly place, the people are really nice, lots to do and see across the country. It is safe, although many houses and apartments, well actually all of them will be gated with a security guard. If you live in an apartment then this will be included as part of the rent, but for a house you may need to negotiate this or will be an additional cost. You do need a car to get around, so factor this in because they are expensive. You will be looking for about 3000-5000USD for a small run around and closer to 7000-10,000USD for a 4by4 if not more.

    What is the cost of living?
    Okay, so this really depends on where you live, but generally you need to budget as follows:
    Housing- 2 bedroom apartment around 50,000Ksh-70,000Ksh in an upmarket area of Nairobi. You can find places a little cheaper but this is really the range. Some will be slightly more if you want a pool, gym etc.
    Car- see above
    Utilities- You will spend about 3000-4000KSH/month on electricity, but sometimes it can be more due to poor service/corruption/poor management and you might be surprised by a bill as high at 10,000KSh. Water is very cheap, probably around 1000Ksh a month. Gas, if you need it comes by the cylinder so you just need to buy this as and when.
    Grocery Shopping- quite expensive in the middle-upper class supermarkets like Carrefour. You will probably spend about 10,000Ksh on a weekly shop for a family of three, although you can reduce this considerably if you use the local markets for all your fresh items.
    Petrol- This is pretty cheap, I think is was about 114Ksh/litre when I last left
    Driving- You can drive on your UK license ofr 3 months, then you need to get a Kenyan Driving License


    What is the approximate salary - I am 2 years post-qualifying-do they use scales?
    Some schools will have their own scales, some will just make up a number based on what you get paid in the UK. They will drop it a little. For example, when I first went out there I took a 10,000GBP pay cut. However, by the time I had left I was on considerably more than I was when I left the UK. Most schools pay in GBP, I think there is maybe a few American schools that may pay in US dollars, but I cannot confirm. You would be looking for no less than 300,000Ksh a month. If they pay below this then do not bother. This should also include return flights-sometimes annually, but at the end of the contract is common, medical insurance, pension, reduced school fees (I think you pay around 15%, but if in KG then it is normally full fees- once again this depends on the school though but I do remember the government was putting in a limit on it in some way based on tax) and maybe a few other benefits. Depending on the schools, you may get a housing allowance or a free house, but most do not do this (see below for more info on this).

    Tax is 30%! Then you also have like a social security fund and a medical fund that comes out but thats only about an extra 20 dollars in total.

    Which are the best schools - I am interested in the one after a price by the beach.
    Mombasa Schools are okay, although they do not pay very well at all. Maybe reduce your expected pay to 200,000Ksh/month maximum if you are looking at Mombasa- although do not quote me on that. I just had a friend who worked there before they came up to Nairobi and they were on considerably less, even less. It is cheaper to live there though and you get a great lifestyle. So it depends what you want really. In Nairobi, there is a large group of schools beginning with a B that are great (clue: both are IAPS Schools). Two in Nairobi are very good, the Mombasa one is also pretty decent. Upcountry schools are decent, especially the Christian Boarding School and then all the American Schools are good, along with the school which has two campuses, either side of the city. I hope you can understand which schools I mean from that. They are my preferences anyway and schools that I would consider to be very good and would work at. They are through schools (KG, primary & Secondary). If you are looking just at a primary, school for employment then go for an IAPS School, they are all good. In Mombasa, just go for the one beginning with B.

    Schools that pay the most include the American School with Kenya in the title, the large group of B schools, the school with two campuses, a school that has a prep and secondary school but are on different campuses with the secondary being slightly outside of Nairobi.

    housing- what do you get(compound)?
    No, not a compound. So my first school was a boarding school so we lived on site, housing was basically included but they took about 70USD out per month to cover costs, we go free food and just paid a small amount for utilities. My second school had a housing allowance included in the pay. The large group of schools beginning with B, if you are at the one in Nairobi in Lavington then they have staff housing, the one in Mombasa I am unsure of. If it is boarding you can general get accommodation. If not, you will maybe get time in boarding to find somewhere, or they will put you in a hotel for a few weeks. This differs between schools.

    Do the international schools keep the same holidays as per UK?
    This depends which one. Most are on the same as the UK.You normally get 1 week off in October, 3-4 weeks at Christmas, 1 week in Feb, 3-4 weeks at Easter and 1 week in June. However, this will change based on the schools.. Some have reduced Feb and June half term to just a long weekend. Most schools will finish by the first week of July. Although, because A Level exams etc were getting earlier and earlier, some were starting to begin term mid August and end Mid June.

    Do the schools pay in shillings or usd?
    Most pay in KSH, as previously stated this may differ for some of the American Schools.

    Nanny cost- I have a 4 year old (chancey) and I will require a nanny, would you so its best to have a live-in nanny or someone to come in from Monday to Friday? Also, how much will a nanny cost?
    Okay, so you can have either. If you have a live in Nanny then you will need to provide them with a room on their own. This will mean you need a 3 bedroom, so budget between 60,000-100,000 in Nairobi, a lot less in Mombasa. If you live in more 'local' areas of Nairobi, then you could reduce this to 50,000Ksh. It depends what you want and the standards you have. If you have a live out, they will cost anywhere between 20,000Ksh-30,000Ksh per month. This depends on if you just want a nanny, or if you want cooking and cleaning included as well. There are a lot of agencies you can use or online on FB lots of expat groups where people will be leaving and trying to find a job for their nanny. Most schools start early, so you will need to be in school by 7.30am and the workload is quite a lot, with work on weekends in most schools as well, so you need to be prepared to be at work till 5pm and then plan that you will work some Saturdays. This will depend on how busy the school is, what subject you teach and so forth. I worked in PE/Sport and it is crazy busy in Nairobi, but not so busy in Mombasa.

    Please remember if you have a garden and a house with a compound, you will need to probably get a gardener and security as well. So maybe think about discussing this with landlords, or living in an apartment.

    Another thing you need to consider with a small child is how they get to school. Will they be at school full time? Will they go in at the same time as you in a morning? if not, how will they get to school? Will you need to hire a driver or pay for the school bus? You can obviously take you child into school early with you, as most KG's and Primary teachers are in early anyway, but just something to consider.

    What I would like to say is I had a great life there. I went on holiday in and around Kenya and outside of Kenya during every holiday. I had a car, never had to worry about money and could save, although I never really did. I think that if you are both working, then supporting a family, having a good lifestyle and saving is possible, however if it is just one of you, you will then be on a tight budget, depending on the school and location.


    Obviously this is based on my experience and my opinions. Some people may have a different opinion.


    Many Thanks,

    A[/QUOTE]
     
    motorhomer likes this.
  13. lc547186

    lc547186 New commenter

    Sorry, I was supposed to type, most schools pay in Kenya Shilling (KSH).
     
  14. science_geek_2020

    science_geek_2020 New commenter

    I have a good friend in Nairobi who has a lot of British friends who live in the city too. From what I can tell, they all love it there. Your quality of life is much higher, good weather, and very cheap in regards to childcare in schooling. It seems that when people go off to Kenya, they never come back.
     
  15. Pina_Colada

    Pina_Colada New commenter

    [/QUOTE]
     

Share This Page