• international schools
Where are all the teachers coming from for the growing international schools market?

The world’s English-medium international schools market is considered a major sector in global education today. Not only because of the number of students this market is now educating, but because of the number of teachers it is employing and the impact of these teachers on the reputation of these schools:

 

The world’s English-medium international schools market is considered a major sector in global education today. Not only because of the number of students this market is now educating, but because of the number of teachers it is employing and the impact of these teachers on the reputation of these schools.

According to ISC Research, which has been collecting data and intelligence on the international schools market for over twenty years, the demand by parents to enrol their children in international schools has increased significantly around the world over the last 18 years.  In the year 2000, a total of 988,600 students were attending the K-12 international schools around the world.  At the end of the 2017-2018 academic year, over 5.34 million students were enrolled in international schools. This growth in demand is continually gathering pace. Over the past five years, the compound annual growth rate of student enrolment at English-medium international schools has been 6.7% as more parents, aware of the education options available to them in their locality, are selecting a fee-paying school offering international learning and qualifications in the language of English to prepare their children for global higher education and careers.

The success of the international schools market is, in large part, due to the language of learning and qualifications these school offer. But no education sector could grow at such pace without the reputation of its teaching and learning; a provision that is entirely dependent on the calibre of teachers and leaders.

Returning to the year 2000, the global international schools market then employed 90,000 full-time teaching staff. By the end of the 2017-2018 academic year, 492,000 teachers and leaders were working in international schools. The vast majority are qualified English-speaking teachers who have trained and gained teaching experience in the UK, USA, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.  By 2023 ISC Research predicts that demand for qualified, English-speaking teachers will have reached 589,000.

The professional capital supply challenge is one that many international schools are facing today. It’s evident in the race for the best new recruits and in the salary and benefits packages that schools have to offer. It is a supply challenge that will increase while student enrolment continues to grow.

All specialist international school recruiters agree that the candidate pool is not expanding quickly enough. Although more teachers are seeking out the professional and personal opportunities of working internationally, the number of available candidates is barely keeping pace with demand. Meeting the need for skilled, experienced teachers who are trained in the teaching and learning approaches that international schools require, could well be the biggest challenge for the future of the international schools market.

However, changes are happening. The Huili Institute of Learning in China, which partners with the UK’s Durham University, is now offering a PGCE (Post Graduate Certificate in Education) in international or bilingual context for Chinese graduates. Many of them are returning from overseas to train at the Institute and become qualified teachers within the growing international bilingual schools market in China. This is just one of a number of initiatives emerging to respond to the challenge of professional capacity.

More details and data about the international schools market is available from www.iscresearch.com

 

  • International schools
  • teacher recuitment