International Schools in the Middle East
Educators Overseas recruits teachers to teach at international schools around the world. If you’ve never heard of an international school, below is a brief introduction.
There are more international schools in the middle east that cater to wealthy host country nationals rather than foreigners (Americans or British). Consequently, the schools reflect Middle Eastern culture and values more than Western and their curricula are a hybrid of local requirements and a Western curriculum from the US or Canada, for example. These “localized” international schools will often feature fewer Western teachers than at an American or other Western school, so you might be one of just a handful of Western teachers, meaning you’ll be looked upon as the leader and expert to some extent in Western education. The wealth of the middle east in general translates into exceptional school facilities and schools will generally be shiny and new, with gymnasiums and pools galore, and as a teacher you will often have access to the latest teaching technology.
International School Defined
International schools come in all shapes and sizes. Some schools are non-profit and are affiliated with a embassy (most often British or American), while others are proprietary and “for profit”. Originally established to educate children of expatriates, or “expats”, (diplomats and international business people who have relocated to that country) international schools have become the elite schools of most major cities around the world. International schools now serve not only expats, but K-12 children of prominent host country nationals, or for anyone who can afford the often high tuition rates.
School sizes vary from ten students to hundreds. The class sizes in most international schools are small, with low teacher/student ratios, allowing for more individualized attention. Internationally accredited, many international schools follow a U.S. or British curriculum, but in Asia most implement the International Baccalaureate (IB) program (find out more about the IB program here: www.ibo.org), as a truly international education. Whatever the curriculum, international schools offer teachers competitive salaries, excellent facilities, and an outstanding student body.
International School Students
Teaching at international schools is a joy, thanks to the small class sizes and the outstanding students. In some countries only females can teach students below a certain age (for grades of boys and girls, below age 12-13) and above that age only males can teach males and females can teach females. Not sex discrimination, just the law. In cases of mixed gender you might find a perceived favoritism toward males in the class. This is just an extension of old societal rules which are trying hard to be changed, and in which you can help bring about reform in shaping the next generation of regional leaders. Regardless of their nationality, most all students speak excellent English, as the curriculum of international schools is taught in English.