International Schools Review
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Prospective New Teacher. Expectations & Advice

Re: Prospective New Teacher. Expectations & Advice

Postby Old Republic » Sat Dec 09, 2017 12:10 pm

I need to start getting my reference letters and CV ready.

For the reference letters. How exactly do I go about this?

Send an email to my mentor teacher and all the principles of the school I student taught at asking them if they would write me a reference / LOR?

I plan to sign up to TIE, Search, and other job boards, recruiting sites, etc.

Am I going to have to have them write it more than once? Does it have to be a physical letter? Can they email it to me?

I am clueless how to go about this.

I student taught for 1 week in November 2015 through TeacherReady. I doubt this teacher even remembers me. Also, the principles never observed me. I assume all would just have to make up BS if they write me a letter?

Confused and stressed out by this to say the least.
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Re: Prospective New Teacher. Expectations & Advice

Postby wrldtrvlr123 » Sat Dec 09, 2017 7:15 pm

Old Republic wrote:
> I need to start getting my reference letters and CV ready.
>
> For the reference letters. How exactly do I go about this?
>
> Send an email to my mentor teacher and all the principles of the school I
> student taught at asking them if they would write me a reference / LOR?
>
> I plan to sign up to TIE, Search, and other job boards, recruiting sites,
> etc.
>
> Am I going to have to have them write it more than once? Does it have to be
> a physical letter? Can they email it to me?
=========================
It would be good to have some physical/open reference letters as you may need them at some point and once you are gone it becomes harder to track people down. Those could be mailed to you. These are good to have but will generally be discounted for the most part because it's assumed most people will have been able to obtain glowing open references.

Search will require you to provide contact information/email addresses and then you request that their system sends the form/link directly to your references, who reply directory to Search, thereby creating a confidential reference. I'm not sure about how TIE etc. work. At the least you will need contact information for prospective employers to contact several references.

And yes, ideally you should have someone write something from your brief student teaching experience. Write a bunch of people and beg until you get something.
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Postby PsyGuy » Sun Dec 10, 2017 2:13 am

@Old Republic

Start by contacting the mentoring DT/IT where you did your field work and ask for a LOR from them. regardless of what experience or exposure you ahd with senior leadership where you did your field experience in the absence of anything else an IS can contact them as simply as doing a Google search and you should prepare this individual even if they would have no meaningful comment. Then I would contact anyone you worked alongside or next door with other DTs in your department such as the HOD and then maybe the SEN/SPED/ESOL IT if you had any contact with them. Finally reach out to a parent if any student particularly liked you.

You will want open letters of course and they can email them to you as scanned documents or mail them to you as hard copy, but these arent of much value, its assumed that any candidate can find someone to say nice things about them. You also need to prepare them for closed references. They do not submit letters, but the various premium agencies send a survey form to be completed. Its more a how would you rate this IT on these factors on scale. TIE has more free text entry boxes than the premium agencies. The open letters are what will keep your references from writing multiple letters, you include them with an application and if the IS wants to move forward they can contact the reference by email or phone. When getting contact information (especially in the future) try to get a personal or more permanent email address, as moving around is common in IE.

In your situation with such a limited field experience they will probably give you neutral letters that you taught this course during this time and you successfully completed the experience without complaint. Ask them to include the phrase" I would hire this teacher in the future", if you can, its the most meaningful claim that you can get on a LOR.
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Re: Prospective New Teacher. Expectations & Advice

Postby Old Republic » Sun Dec 10, 2017 2:44 am

Ok so how many people total should I contact?

Mentor Teacher

Principle

Assistant Principle

HOD Teacher

Parent - Can I just use a friend to fake being a parent? I do not know any student or parents that I taught.

Ask for - LOR as a scanned document + Email (work + personal) + Phone Number + Kindly include the phrase "I would hire/recommend this teacher"
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Postby PsyGuy » Sun Dec 10, 2017 3:12 am

@Old Republic

You will need at least 2 and one of them (at a minimum) needs to be a supervisor/leadership. Though I would get as many as you could, there really isnt such a thing as having too many references. Sure you can use a friend to fake being a parent.
You should have at least one strong contact point for each reference whether it is email or phone, understanding that (especially in the future) in IE people move around a lot. A personal email has the greatest longevity (in IE people change number when they move to other countries) and of course will have no access to any email or phone, etc. when they move to a new IS. Even in DE people move, retire, etc.

Yes of all the things written in a LOR the phrase "I would hire this teacher in the future"" is the most transcendent.
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Re: Prospective New Teacher. Expectations & Advice

Postby Old Republic » Sun Dec 10, 2017 3:21 am

Thanks,

I will register at all the agencies, job boards and recruiting sites in a few weeks when I have Christmas break.

See how many references those require. Then get my CV made and start looking / applying for work in August.

If I don't get an offer that motivates me to leave my current life here in Vietnam for Fall 2018, I will just stay another year here and then plan to return to the US for the UNI fair in Feb.

Things that would entice me to leave would be a position in South America or a position that would allow me to save 2k+ a month. I save 1k a month now working 18 hours a week with zero prep and minimal admin work. So could easily stay put 1 more year.
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Postby PsyGuy » Sun Dec 10, 2017 4:47 am

@Old Republic

I believe most of your previous issues have been addressed in other posts, but in summary:

1) All the premium agencies is pricey and overkill, with your experience ISS isnt likely to be a positive experience, SA and the BOS fair potentially the SF fair are your best shots but UNI and AASCA will focus on your region the most. SA and TIE and the free resources should be plenty. You could probably even forget SA since they would accept you as an intern and if you arent going to those fairs you can find plenty of LCSA appointments on TIE alone.

2) They are two. Though with your resume they may request a third. TIE doesnt have a minimum they just offer the opportunity to store them. You can be a member of TIE and not do anything but pay the fee. COIS is now 180€/3years.

3) LCSA is doable of your options, the coin is low and its a hardship region, even come the summer, there should be a couple vacancies still around the region. Your USD$2K savings is unrealistic (at your career point). The average IT salary is USD$30K/year, that means at your USD$2K/month means you have to save 80% of your coin (and living off of USD$500/month, which I dont see even with an OSH package), which with your resume isnt very probable considering you arent the average IT candidate. I see you getting into LCSA at the USD$15k-$18K/year type of offer more than I see you making that saving potential. There are just to many places that are unsuitable for you:
You cant go to the EU because you arent marketable enough to find an IS that will offer you some kind of housing package, meaning you cant save anything. You cant go to SG or JP or HK and live on USD$500/month. LOS is an option , but Id hate being in BKK on a USD$500 budget that wouldnt be a lot of fun and defeat the purpose of living in BKK. You could probably do that saving in the ME even as an intern class IT but youd be a homebody as all the fun in the big cities in the ME costs coin and USD$500 isnt going to cut it, though outside the capital cities there isnt much to spend your coin on. What your options really are is some IS in China out in the country where there isnt much to do and thus spend coin on or being a homebody in Myanmar. Of course you could stay in VT, there are some of the worst ISs in VT and they may hire you, but your going to be working a lot more and will probably still take a cut in lifestyle to get anything close to a USD$2K savings.

Really you are in a very sweet spot it sounds like, most ITs (those who arent on the far end of the salary scale) work a lot more than you do and can save about what you are. Coin and effort doesnt scale very well in IE. You cant double your productivity (work) and double your savings potential it doesnt scale in a linear fashion like that. What happens is getting on the scale for a certain tier gets you the biggest net coin and then you scale in small average increments until you get to the point youve adapted efficiencies that make the work easier. In 10+ years as youve progressed through IE you will be able to save USD$2K/month and still have a comfortable lifestyle, but thats a decade down the road and with transitions along the way.
Thats where EE and IE differ. In EE you can scale your coin by increasing productivity because everything is hours. Youre not sitting around doing nothing, in EE if you have a lesson your getting paid, if youre at a meeting your getting paid and when you arent you can hustle up your own work with privates, virtual conversation, etc. Youd have a better success probability staying in EE and increasing your workload to around 30 hours/week (at USD$25/hour) and banking an extra USD$1K in coin (getting you too USD$2K/mth) where you are than you would be in IE where ITs are on the clock for 40hrs/wk compared to your 18 hrs/wk. Doubling your workload by entering IE isnt going to double your bank at this point in IE, not with your resume.
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Re: Prospective New Teacher. Expectations & Advice

Postby Old Republic » Sun Dec 10, 2017 5:22 am

Yea it seems like I don't even really need SA. Could prob get by with TIE and other recruiting services.

I should have clarified. If I were to go to South America, it would be a year or 2 for fun and cultural experience before moving on else where. So I wouldn't be expecting to save x amount of money.

However, if I go to Saudi Arabia or a school in the middle of no where China id expect to save 2k a month. I can easily live on 500 dollars a month assuming housing is taken care of in the package. I could live off 500 dollars rather easily here in Saigon if I had free housing and thats with having an active social and dating life. Housing eats up the bulk of my spending at 300-400 dollars.

Now, I just teach (babysit) English at one of the better centers in Ho Chi Minh City. Premade company lessons on a smart TV. It is a sweet gig. Net'ing 23 dollars an hour all things considered 18 hours a week. Allows for an active social life and can still save 800-1,000 a month.

However, I want to transition to IS and teaching math. Teaching ESL can be annoying and stressful. Ideally I would like the Middle East (or anywhere) net'ing 2,500 a month and living like a hermit (500 dollars a month) saving money while tutoring on the side.
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Postby PsyGuy » Sun Dec 10, 2017 6:07 am

@Old Republic

If you arent doing a fair and with your resume TIE will be fine with the tier of ISs you are going to be marketable to.

I dont see you saving USD$2K a month, that USD$30K salary is average, you arent average yet, I see your salary at being USD$2K a month (USD$24K/year) leaving you having to live off of nothing. Some scenarios would be the exception, and luck, timing, can be determining factors, but all in all with zero experience on your resume youre going to have to settle for less than that USD$2K bank for a few years and then your still living like a hermit.

Teaching maths can be annoying and stressful (teaching anything can be annoying and stressful). Parents that dont get it there child just isnt good with numbers and they want the grades changed because obviously you are a poor teacher.
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Re: Reply

Postby Old Republic » Sun Dec 10, 2017 6:24 am

@Psy

People actually go teach / work full time in Saudi Arabia for 24K a year?!?!?!

Must be some seriously desperate individuals in this world. Holy cow lol

When I say teaching ESL is annoying I mean in the way of singing and dancing. Dealing with super young kids acting like animals with mental capacities of ants. Highly for profit industry that can change teachers at a whim easily at any time.

I never remembered dancing or singing in math class growing up.....

If the principle wants me to change a grade I wont have much problem doing it.
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Postby PsyGuy » Sun Dec 10, 2017 6:43 am

@Old Republic

Yes, they do because USD$24K/yr PLUS an OSH package is easily banking USD$1K/mt and some fun and professional experience that builds a resume compared to some CAN Lit. DT in Toronto working at Starbucks, because if thats you, you cant get a DT appointment in Toronto if you dont know someone or are married or dating someone who can hire you and thats true from BC to PEI.
Its even less in other places the high end of LCSA is USD$20K and falls down to as low as USD$12K (with shared housing). Theres a program in Bhutan that pays USD$4400/year (thats USD$400/mt and half pay during the summer) and there is no OSH package.

IE has highly for profit ISs and IS chains, and you could just as easily be in an EC program at a upper tier IS and still doing the genki monkey dance, but I get your meaning. You want students sitting in orderly rows and not having to entertain them like some lunchtime kids show.

Oh not the principal this would be some tiger mom telling you in your classroom youre not a very good IT and you must change their childs grade for reasons. Principals dont usually ask and if they do its just to save them from telling the counselor to change the marks.
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Re: Prospective New Teacher. Expectations & Advice

Postby Old Republic » Sun Dec 10, 2017 6:51 am

@Psy

But people can go babysit / do nothing teaching ESL or teach at an IS in a fun city and save 1k a month. In my case I only work 18 hours and can save 1k a month and live great here in Saigon.

Don't see how schools in hardship locations get people to go there when people can go to other locations for the same pay and much better lifestyle. Can literally snap your fingers and get a job in Korea or Vietnam by tomorrow saving 1k a month.

I guess I underestimate schools and people haha.

Well, guess I might have to lower my expectation to saving 1.5k a month. I will cast a wide net and take the best offer I can muster.
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Postby PsyGuy » Sun Dec 10, 2017 7:22 am

@Old Republic

ESOL does nothing for your resume, spend 10 years in ESOL and you will start on the bottom step in IE. Sure there are fun locations and more expensive ones. You would be hard pressed to save anything in JP for instance on USD$30K/yr not without a housing and OSH package and EEs dont usually provide that. As you build that IE experience your moving up to better ISs, higher tiers, and into better regions. Average DTs in Switzerland make USD$70K/yr and thats average. Salaries in the ME (The Kingdom) hit 6 figures.
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Re: Prospective New Teacher. Expectations & Advice

Postby Old Republic » Sun Dec 10, 2017 7:28 am

I heard one could get hired in IE in 3rd tier China fairly easy.

Seems that would trump a post in Saudi making 24k easily on all accounts.

To increase my savings I am going to need to tutor on the side.
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Postby PsyGuy » Sun Dec 10, 2017 7:49 am

@Old Republic

Maybe, for some people it would. Some people also like to breath air. An intern class IT with no appreciable years of experience would be making about the same USD$24K in the bottom tier of China as they would in the ME. So it would come down to personal factors, and some difference in priorities in the OSH or appointment. At that level something like grade/year/class assignment can make all the difference because your not seeing a lot if any variability in comp or there are appreciable differences in lifestyle. A recent female IT took an appointment in year 6 (as an HRT) in the Kingdom at an all girls boarding IS. Shes loved it because even though her salary is low ($USD25K/yr) she lives in an apartment on the grounds and spends very little because board is included in her comp package, and there is nothing for her to spend coin on. She spends a weekend visiting with one of the girls when they go home on a weekend, but otherwise its just teaching and girl talk. They watch movies, have dance competition nights, and she has plenty of time to herself. Shes going to bank about USD$22K but she can receive gratuities at the end of the year so that could be anything.
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