Thursday, November 16, 2006

International Education Issues

I'm picking up the conversation from Jeff Utecht this week re 'The Places You'll Go' and the dilemma of being an international educator. Having been 'out' of Australia for 9 years and essentially loving every minute of it this observation is just as it is and not a complaint by any means. Yes, the way it works is that we are usually required to resign before getting another job. This is so the school administration can work out who they need to recruit for the following year. Therefore we all end up at the various job fairs and recruitment events in different locations around the world going out of our way to impress each other hoping to find a good match for the next part of the journey.

Going to an international job fair can be both soul destroying and/or an exhilerating experience. My husband and I have had both sides of the coin and have been to fairs in Boston, London, Kualar Lumpur and Dubai over the years. However, it is almost an essential part of the whole deal as going to a job fair allows both sides (employers and teachers) to have more interviews and therefore potentially more chances of getting a new job. We will be off to the Search Associates fair in Bangkok in January....and if unsuccessful will be flying to London in February for another fair. The word lately is that there are more jobs than teachers this year, however finding the positions you really want is never easy. Despite our vast experience over 3 main educational systems (Australian, British and IB) and our 50+ years of combined teaching and our combined ability to teach ICT, Technology, mathematics, music, english, ITGS, TOK....and more...hey, wait a minute, maybe we should start our own school!!

What really worries me about searching for a new job is finding a supervisor/principal/CEO etc who is tech savvy and can understand what I am talking about! There are not many out there who I can converse with about Web2.0, ubiquitous and mobile computing and wiki centric classrooms. However, putting the 'tools' aside, I know we will find people of vision and passion and energy and we will gravitate towards them. Being an international educator is not just about which country can provide the best holiday opportunities, it is about contributing to and being part of another culture for a period of time. It is about developing internationalism amongst the faculty and students. It is also about sharing 'flat classroom' experiences and exploring life-changing experiences for us as a family.

I want to thank Jeff also for pointing me in the direction of Blaugh! These examples and more can be freely put onto a blog.....they are priceless!

A Deal's a Deal

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Anonymous said...

I am so interested in international education and would love to hear about your experiences at the fairs. I attended international schools all my life and now teach high school English in Colorado, USA. I plan to apply for overseas positions once I finish my MA.

Anonymous said...

The world may be flat, but we still need to model good grammar for our students:

"If Thomas Friendman WERE here...."

Anonymous said...

oops....spelling counts, too...make that Friedman.