Am I ready to teach overseas in an international school?

International school headteachers explain the qualities they look for in new teachers

Teaching overseas in an international school is a big life decision - so how do you know if you're ready to make the move abroad? We spoke with leading international school Headteachers to find out what three qualities they look for when hiring:

Dr John Moore, The British School Kathmandu, Nepal

The British School Kathmandu is a small international school following the British curriculum. Here's what John values in teachers:

  • Hardworking with a self-reflective approach
  • Have a social conscience, a love of social justice and want to make a difference in the community
  • Don't already think they're excellent: "we want people who want to improve and do better."

Ken Page, British Embassy School Ankara, Turkey

Located in the Turkish capital, this international school has students from nursery to Year 9 using the International Primary Curriculum and National Curriculum of England. Ken Page looks for teachers that are:

  • Flexible enough to adapt to both the school and the different living environment
  • Willing to muck in, get their hands dirty and do a bit of everything, whether or not it's their area of expertise
  • Prepared to be part of the community: "the teachers who are unsuccessful go home after school and shut themselves in their apartment."

Malcolm McKenzie, Keystone Academy, China

Keystone Academy was established in 2014 to serve a mixture of Chinese, American and internatioanl education to expatriate and local children. Malcolm is interested in teachers that are:

  • Internationally minded, with a geniune interest in China
  • Prepare to work with colleagues to establish a positive school culture
  • Inspirational, interrogative thinkers and compassionate mentors

Mick Farley, Harrow International School Bangkok, Thailand

Harrow Bangkok was the first Harrow school established outside of the UK. It now provies the British curriculum to over 1,500 students. Mick says the qualities he looks for are:

  • Highly qualified, with threee years of successful teaching experience, preferably in good quality or challenging schools
  • An adventurous spirit, with a positive attitude and a sense of humour
  • Enthusiastic and comfotable with the ethos of the school

Laurie McLellan, Najing International School, China

Established in 1992, Nanjing International School has 690 students and teachers from 18 different countries. Laurie says he looks for teachers that have:

  • A combination of experience, skill and personality: "experience alone is not important if the other two qualities are missing."
  • Good interpersonal skills with both children and adults
  • An interesting personality: "not just a 'cookie cutter' teacher; children want to know a teacher as a person with a personality."

Do you have the qualities international schools are looking for? Are you looking for a new challenge in an exciting location? Check out our new vacancies and start your teaching overseas adventure today.

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