Friday 22 August 2014

Do You Need a License to Teach at an International School?

No Teaching License?
You can still get hired at an international school. Different schools have different rules. Your background will also come into play. Find out more by reading teaching at an international school. There are also a number of good books with information on how to get an international school job.
  • The type of school. Some schools, such as Christian schools may will accept teachers with no license.
  • Where the school is located. Those in less popular countries (such as Myanmar, China, Indonesia, Middle Eastern countries, Bangladesh, Azerbaijan) may accept teachers with no license.
  • Even if you want to work in a popular country you could get a job, depending on your background and experience. Schools need people with real life experience and know-how.
  • If you are already in country as a resident you might also be able to work full or part-time. The best thing to do is apply to schools and see what they say. 

What Do People At International Schools Think?
ISR wrote a post about in November 2009 called, International Teaching Without Credentials. They also have info about having a Master of Education, but no teaching cert. People are very opinionated about this topic, but many teachers as well as principals believe that non-certified teachers can be good teachers. Read their opinions below.
Against Teachers Without Formal Qualifications
  • syed hammeed says that teaching without credentials doesn't fit the profession.
  • Louis says quality of teaching doesn't matter; only licenses do.
  • Pete Janda hires teachers and says it's better to hire teachers with licenses because they know how to teach various levels, write a lesson plan, and know the current education trends.
  • Idaflorence says she can tell an unqualified teacher from far away.
  • Nicola Scales says that she wouldn't go to a dentist, doctor, or lawyer without certifications so why should teachers be different?
  • gaia says that they have had nothing but trouble with uncertified teachers. Schools can help people become certified as well.

Those On The Fence
  • Mercury started as a non-certified teacher, but decided to go back and get his license.
  • Amy says that good schools will not hire uncertified teachers but that there are also certified teachers who can't teach.

In Favour Of Teachers Without Formal Qualifications
  • cbp disagrees with Louis and said quality of teaching doesn't matter; only licenses do.
  • Chris Davis says that although he has an MEd and has homeschooled his three kids, been the principal of a school, and lecturer, he doesn't have a teaching license.
  • teach 2010 says that there are many credentialed teachers who can't actually teach.
  • Hellei has been teaching in international schools since 2000 and doesn't have a license. While it's hard to get a job, she shows that it's not impossible.
  • DB says that a piece of paper doesn't mean you can teach. There are many licensed teachers who are unqualified.
  • Between cultures says that she was raised abroad, but is a non-Japanese speaking Japanese citizen and because of that can't get a Japanese teaching license and can't get a US one because she's not American.
  • Agunshka says that some teachers can be good without a cert and that it's hard for overseas teachers to keep their qualifications current. In addition, some certified teachers get to the top not because they're good teachers but because they're good at politics.
  • Jill has over 25 years experience and has successfully taught at international schools without being a licensed teacher.
  • lostone says you shouldn't just be judged on a piece of paper.
  • D says that licensed proved nothing other than the fact that you can jump through the necessary hoops to get one.
  • grm says that you have to promote quality education, not bits of paper.
  • Soumaya is a school principal and has hired certified and non-certified teachers.
  • Indigo Blue says that having real life experience has helped her teach and her students are happy to learn useful info.
  • Chris states that although he isn't certified, there's a ton of useless info that students are learning in school and that is being taught by certified teachers.&
  • molson says that 90% of the things being taught are a waste of time.
  • Duras says that he say people switch their majors to teaching because it was the easier thing to do. He also saw qualified teachers stop teaching because it was too hard, they had too little vacation, were bored, etc. He also says there are too many programmes out there trying to get teachers.
  • anonymous says being a good teacher is innate.
  • Anonymous makes a good point by saying he would hire a person who has 10 years teaching experience with no certificate before a first year certified teacher. If a non certified teacher has managed to work hard for ten years, get hired by schools, make a difference in the classroom, and build a portfolio then why not? There are many exceptions to the rule, life is not one way.
Getting a Teaching License
  • Some schools may help you get certified. Many Christian schools accept certification through ACSI and certification is relatively quick and easy if you have a degree. Salaries at NICS may not be as high as secular international schools. 20% get a full salary and benefits. 30% are offered a partial salary and the other 50% have to raise their own support.
  • You can get your license online.
  • Some international school recruiters may help you as well. Search Associates used to do this and others may as well. Find a list of recruiters here.


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