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Discussion in 'Teaching abroad' started by tigi, May 25, 2010.
try st-christophers school in bahrain
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You'll need a few quid to set yourself up with digs and health cover but the work is great, pay excellent (when it comes) and lifestyle a dream.
In terms of demand, is there any difference between primary and secondary teachers? I know a lot of schools (both UK and abroad) are crying out for "shortage" subject teachers at secondary, but you never hear much about primary teachers demands.
If you're looking for a place with a decent standard of living and somewhere you can basically support your husband (and your cat), consider the middle east. Jobs here pay very well when you factor in accomodation (free) and transportation costs (they'll get you here, and taxis are cheap). I'm currently in Kuwait but know that there are jobs ALL OVER this region although you didn't happen to mention what ages or subjects you teach. Plenty of British curriculum schools in the region so you won't have to learn a new system, either. 90% of the M.E. is not only not dangerous to expats, but works hard to welcome them and lure them away from home!
Everyone mentions the 'shortage' subjects...what exactly are they? I'm assuming that they are the same as here in the UK, ie physics chiefly followed by chemistry and then......
Does this not change with different demands in different countries and teachers qualified from all over the world, who may churn out many many physics and chemistry teachers? What about MFL teachers? Is there is the same need for them?
Just one thing that anyone who plans to teach abroad needs to remember is that, if you go for more than 6 months, and then return back to the UK, you'll have to pay for any hospital treatment which is nearly as much as private (I nearly got caught out by this). Just A&E treatment is free.
Different countries may have different subject shortages, and if so you may be able to use this as a bargaining tool if you teach a shortage ubject for that specific country. Just remember to get everything that they promise in writing, preferably in your contract.
Don't bother trying France. They don't recognise the UK teaching qualifications, despite the freedom to work anywhere in Europe bizzo. Lots of out of work teachers here. Limited jobs for TEFL teaching assistants, but these are being phased out in most regions. Money's rubbish here anyway, and you have to pay for top up medical cover, typically about 120 euros a month for a family, but could be much more depending on level of cover. Also the bureaucracy is mammoth, need doctors note for even half an hour off work(to visit the doctor!). Reimbursement of travel expenses is at cost of petrol, nothing more. Holidays are good though! Contracts are strictly limited to 10 months and nothing like supply rates in the UK.
Far East sounds good!
Beijing, China is a very good option, international school salaries are very good, i do not know if you can bring your pet, but you can definately get one here, they are more than common, I do not think you will have a problem bringing it only lots of paper work.
Salaries are good enough to suppost a spouse,
but if you do not handle language barriers well, you won't like it.
students are much more disciplined and easy to handle than any where else.
Good luck with your search
I would move to East or South East Asia if you want a good lifestyle and great teaching. The students are fabulous and the salary is very good in general. The lifestyle, food, travel are all tops. But you would have to be a pretty good teacher to be hired with a trailing spouse who doesn't teach. Ask yourself why a school would rather hire someone with a non-teaching partner than simply a single teacher. With your spouse, the school would have to pay an extra flight, pay more for a larger apartment, pay extra costs on health care etc. In pure economic terms, a single teacher would be preferred over a couple in which only one person teaches. Unless of course you can convince a school that you are a great teacher. Or perhaps your partner can offer something to the school (lab assistant, marketing etc). Good luck in your search.
I work in Hong Kong and all your requirments are met here. Salary is excellent, husband could get work on a dependent's visa, cat no problem- helpers are evey reasonable cost. The children love school, school is about teaching and very little discipline. Also being ex-colony it is very easy to get around and we have freedom of speech. And excellent opportunties to travel to other countries.
Which country best?
Started out in Scotland then taught for a few years in Londen ,which was so good, before heading overseas.
Italy - Milan, 3 years fantastic fun, friends,clothes, food, art,sking and romance.
Japan - Kobe 2 years- amazing eperiences, beautiful people, earthquake survivor, art, food and lots of fun.
Thailand- Bangkok 3 Years - wonderful friendships, fantastic people,the most incredible travel experiences, so much sport, wonderful students. ROMANCE
Hong Kong- 2 years. Fast, poluted, expensive but so many woinderful memories.
Melbourne Austarlia- 10 years and 3 kids later - but still love teaching.
Money shouldn't be your motivation- choose countries that interest you and that you want to embrace the culture of but choose good schools that will not only provide personal secuirty but also allow you to grow and develop proffessionaly.
...and get a bit of rumpty...
claremeehan so true. Godzone - NZ - even better than Aus! and we can spell too.
"The Thais are ruthless, selfish, dishonest, cowardly, cruel, treacherous, snobbish, nationalist, racist, bigoted, fickle, materialist and utterly superficial."
Well, thank goodness that no one in the Middle East is like that!
Further to my previous post ( 33 ) in reply to claremeehan ( 30 ), this is in response to ozrics ( 19 ).
( Hope I haven't started anything... )
I wish you luck at your school in Cambodia. I have tried teaching here on and off over the last six years and have now given up.
It's not that the people are unpleasant; quite the reverse is true. They are generally very friendly to Westerners and I don't think that's just because they depend so much on foreign assistance for national survival - which is essentially an attitude that has been adopted by their appallingly corrupt government. Above all, the students would be a delight to anyone who has endured the rigours of the education system in the U.K. as a teacher. They are on the whole courteous, co-operative, well-motivated and attentive. However, they are also critically intelligent, and will see straight through anything that you do not adequately grasp yourself or have prepared badly. They are cultured, and you can perceive very quickly they have a pedigree the Thais wholly lack. ( The average Thai student, if you will permit me to expend a few more adjectives, is arrogant, lazy and mendacious. Copying is absolutely endemic in Thai schools, and would qualify as their national sport were not that recognition already accorded to malicious gossip and backbiting. In Cambodia, a little pressure is usually enough to stop them cribbing off each other, which is never on the same scale as it is in Thailand anyway. )
Sadly, it has to be recorded Cambodians are not as nice to each other as they are to foreigners. It has been claimed, and I think this at least plausible, that their sense of national identity - eroded in the first place by centuries of Thai and Vietnamese domination before the French came and more or less saved their country from complete obliteration - and of community was almost terminally damaged by the Khmer Rouge.
What is the problem, then, if Cambodian students can be given such a glowing testimony? The answer is the schools themselves that appear collectively to be run by idiots ( if you're lucky ) or crooks ( if you're not ). Education here is strictly a business and money will shout down your professional principles, priorities and ethics again and again and again. Don't even try to approach management with any issue or concern that won't reflect favourably in the bottom line. Students are customers and they are entitled to their qualification once they have paid their fees. The tragedy is that no certificate ever awarded is worth the paper it's printed on and that the country would effectively be a vocational basket-case were it not for foreign NGOs who provide training or for Cambodian students rich enough to get an education abroad. Even then, the government, via the courts and police, cramp the employment of skills through enterprise by a deeply-embedded system of extortion, or even intimidation if they believe there is a threat to their own security.
Why is Cambodia like this? Again, you might blame the Khmer Rouge, whose economic destruction has not yet been entirely reversed, but there might be a reason that lies much deeper within the country's past. The Khmer, ( who are 85% of the population ), had a political culture in which power was equated with divinity. ( Just visit Angkor for an illustration. ) This has perhaps now mutated in a post-Pol Pot society, in which traditional structures have mostly gone and people must look after themselves first and foremost, into a belief that with money you are your own master, provided, of course, you do not offend anybody more powerful than you - which, with money, is easy to ensure. Therefore, if you run a successful business, you are virtually above the law and unaccountable in almost every way. If that business is a school, why should you care what your teachers think?
The only sanctuary is probably working at an international school where the examinations are external - and where government ministers tend to send their children. ( I wonder why? )
There must be one...
Oh dear. Poor old Pickles. I am on my 3rd year in Bangkok and find it to be an amazing place. Some of the Islands nearby are just wonderful. Koh Phi Phi, Krabi etc.
There again, I made an effort to learn Thai and made some good friends.
Poor old Pickles probably lost 10 quid to some hottie local and has been on a rant ever since.
Please let me know where you managed to SAVE that much in 5 years - I'd love to work there, if I can spend money on a good lifestyle and still have that left over.
I've been teaching overseas for about 4 years now. I'm onto my second country (third school) and I'm really enjoying it. I think it really depends on the overall situation as well as the school, package and your own phase of life.
I've worked alongside people who have hated and loathed the school and country when I've completely loved both. I've worked in OK schools and situations I've kind of just made the most of, while people working alongside me loved the setup and wanted to stay in that particular city forever and considered themselves to have landed their dream job.....
If you're lucky you'll get it right first time. But not enough people do research. E.g. single people on a manhunt/ womanhunt; older couples looking for an easy ride into retirement, young family looking for family lifestyle and serious saving potential....etc
And then there' individual interests, e.g. mingling with locals vs living in expat bubble, wild exotic nature vs city life with UK supermarket chains .......
If you do your research carefully you can end up in a great situation. Unfortunately though, I've found a significant propotion of overseas teachers are simply BORN TO MOAN and nothing is ever good enough for them!
I've got something out of every post I've been in and have no regrets so far...except for maybe wishing I'd saved a bit more cash one or two years, but learning to budget overseas is one of those things you have to work out for youself eventually.
Kuwait with tuitions, teachers are making more than that - doubling their salaries easily.
Teaching couples in Cairo (at the better paid schools) could save 45 to 50 grand a year. A careful couple I know are probably saving more than that!
In Dubai, 36 to 40 grand a year salaries are paid but Dubai can be expensio.
Hong Kong also pays silly money but the cost of living is pretty odd too.