Opinions? Should I accept?

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Artsmg
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon Jan 16, 2017 10:13 pm

Opinions? Should I accept?

Post by Artsmg »

Hello,

First time posting on this open forum. First time perspective international teacher- 5 years art certified teacher in the U.S.

I've been given an offer for a newer school in China. The principal is very friendly and very responsive and the package is really wonderful. I am really excited about the prospect of living in this area as well.

But... before I make a decision I decided to ask to speak to another expat teacher at the school- specifically the other art teacher I would be working with. The school is new and doesn't even have reviews on ISR yet.

The teacher ended up agreeing and we spoke for awhile on the phone.
The problems lies in that she isn't very positive about it and is quite vague, understandably. She shared some more contacts with me from a previous and current employee that are American. I'm sure that also aren't positive.

I think the main difference and why this isn't exactly a deal breaker is because she commented that she only moved there out of desperation/necessity because she had no other job prospects in her country. She isn't interested in the aspect of being an international teacher and is less interested in the challenges of being in a new country. She said she knew it would be challenging starting a new program as well but said several times that it is challenging and asked why I would want to leave my job in America.

I am sending out some more applications to cover myself. I've had really good luck in the search even outside of this offer so I think there could be more opportunities out there, but I also know this is a good contract.

What would you do if you were me? Any suggestions? Thank you!

joe30
Posts: 230
Joined: Thu Jul 07, 2016 4:10 am

Re: Opinions? Should I accept?

Post by joe30 »

How much money are you been offered? Where exactly is the location? China is a big place, and what might be a tolerable set of circumstances in Shanghai will be totally different in some arse end of the country.

wrldtrvlr123
Posts: 1166
Joined: Sat Feb 06, 2010 10:59 am
Location: Japan

Re: Opinions? Should I accept?

Post by wrldtrvlr123 »

You say you have had luck, but this is apparently the first offer? Worth keeping in mind.

If the package is really good (for you) and you are excited about the location then you just need to be comfortable with the organization you will be joining. What challenges did the current teacher admit to? The students? The country? Do they pay on time and honor the contract?

Art is a fairly rare cert but the jobs are also fairly rare by comparison. Do you have any other irons in the fire that are likely to translate into offers? How good is the package (maybe get some 2nd opinions if you are not 100% sure).

All things to consider.

Nomads
Posts: 151
Joined: Mon Nov 04, 2013 2:08 pm

Re: Opinions? Should I accept?

Post by Nomads »

Artsmg,

Follow up with the other contacts. You are presuming they are bad, but maybe not. If nothing else you will get different perspectives.

global_nomad
Posts: 72
Joined: Thu Jan 07, 2016 12:12 pm

Re: Opinions? Should I accept?

Post by global_nomad »

Yes, be very careful about getting information from only one source. Even the so-called "best" international schools in the world have teachers who are negative about working there.

PsyGuy
Posts: 9565
Joined: Wed Oct 12, 2011 9:51 am
Location: Northern Europe

Response

Post by PsyGuy »

These are the things Id consider:

1) What is the package and does the contact support that the IS honors its package?

2) If this is the ISs cheerleader there are some real problems. No IS is going to put someone in touch who trashes the IS, and if this is the best they could provide then there are serious issues. Its nothing for the leadership recruiter to say that so and so IT isnt available, and put you on the phone with someone else in leadership who claims to be the past art IT.

3) Id be concerned that the recruiter was in the room for the conversation. Why be vague, if the current IT is as you say on the way out and out of the profession why hold back.

4) Id take the ITs position at face value, so lets look at the problems they are leaving behind:
A) Its a new IS, so they are still in the stage of growing pains.
B) The current IT didnt do very much, thats what challenging means. Your going to walk into an art room that is probably a shambles.
C) There are likely a lot of stakeholders who are unhappy, and your going to be walking into that mess, your going to have to put in twice the effort and resources to fix whatever happened in the past.

5) Id followup online with this IT and with the recruiter. Where they an actual DT and they couldnt find a job in DE, and went into IT? How did they get their 2 years previous experience, and if they didnt, why did the IS hire them? Does this person have a portfolio, or are they basically an unemployed artist who needed to make some coin?

6) Whats the budget? New ISs are always cost intensive, and art isnt cheap. What are the expectations is it just paper and pencils maybe crayons and pastels, or are they going to do some 3D. What about Design Tech, any budget for that? An art program gets WAY easier the more coin the IS throws at it.

7) What was challenging? Whatever challenges there were they are likely still there. It doesnt sound like anyones addressed them and leaderships solution is to make their challenges your challenges.

You state youve had other positive experiences in recruiting, why this offer to bring to the contributors attention? It screams run away, and my instinct is they are dangling really good coin for it?

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