Educate. Inspire. Grow. Teaching overseas can be a rewarding personal and professional experience. It is a great opportunity to enhance your professional skills and gain a new perspective of yourself, your home country, and to discover new parts of the world. A great way to find a position overseas is through recruitment services like TORF.
28th Annual TORF - January 29-31, 2016
This year we are pleased to introduce two exciting new initiatives!
- New online services to complement our recruiting fair, allowing you to connect with international school recruiters before and after the fair. If you are currently teaching abroad and unable to attend the fair, talk to us about our distance recruitment options.
- A partnership with the Council of International Schools (CIS) to provide our registered candidates with access to CIS member schools and their teaching positions, increasing the number of positions available to you.
If you have already registered for TORF and have received a Registrant ID and password from us, you can log in below:
International schools are usually private, tuition-based schools, and can be non-profit with a parent-run board of directors, sponsored by a corporation, or sponsored by embassies. Some are proprietary in nature. They can vary in size from as small as 40 students to as large as 2000 students. They are found in over 100 countries around the world. The language of instruction is English, but some offer a bilingual program. Fluency in another language is not a requirement to teach in an international school. For most schools, the academic year begins in August or September and runs until June.
Below is a list of schools who have registered for TORF 2016. This list will be updated as each school registers, so please check back often.
- 27 Countries - Quality Schools International
- Bahrain, Isa Town - Bahrain Bayan School
- Bangladesh, Dhaka - International School Dhaka
- Brazil, Brasilia - American School of Brasilia
- Brazil, Porto Alegre - The Pan American School of Porto Alegre
- Belgium, Brussels - International School of Brussels
- Cambodia, Phnom Penh - The Canadian International School of Phnom Penh
- China, Jiangmen - Boren Sino-Canadian School
- China, Macao - School of the Nations
- China, Macao - The International School of Macao
- China, Various Cities - Bond Schools International
- China, Various Cities - Maple Leaf Education Systems
- Colombia, Armenia - GI School
- Colombia, Bogota - Knightsbridge School International - Bogota
- Colombia, Bucaramanga - Colegio Panamericano
- Colombia, Cali - Colegio Bolivar
- Colombia, Cartegena - Colegio Jorge Washington
- Colombia, Medellin - The Columbus School
- Colombia, Manizales - Colegio Granadino
- Egypt, Alexandria - Alexandria International Academy
- Egypt, New Cairo - Canadian International School in Egypt
- Germany, Several Cities - Phorms Education School Network
- Honduras, San Pedro Sula - Escuela Internacional Sampedrana
- Indonesia, Jakarta - Bina Bangsa School
- Italy, Milan - Bilingual European School
- Japan, Saitama - Columbia International School
- Kuwait, Maidan Hawally - American International School of Kuwait
- Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur - Sunway International School
- Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur - Taylor's College
- Mexico, Monterrey - American School Foundation of Monterrey
- Mexico, Monterrey - Colegio Ingles
- Mexico, Queretaro - John F. Kennedy American School
- Myanmar, Mandalay - Ayeyarwaddy International School
- Niger, Niamey - American International School of Niamey
- Philippines, Manila - Brent International School Manila
- Qatar, Doha - International School of London in Qatar
- Singapore, Singapore - Canadian International School, Singapore
- St. Maarten - Caribbean International Academy
- Taiwan, Taichung - Cornel School
- Thailand, Bangkok - American School of Bangkok
- Thailand, Bangkok - International School Bangkok
- Thailand, Samutprakarn - Thai-Chinese International School
- Trinidad, Port of Spain - Maple Leaf International School
- Turkey, Istanbul - Hisar School
- Venezuela, Maracaibo - Escuela Bella Vista
- Venezuela, Valencia - Colegio Internacional de Carabobo
- Vietnam, Ho Chi Minh City - Canadian International School, Vietnam
The variety of positions available depends on the needs of the schools; they vary from year to year in both location and positions. Most opportunities at TORF are with schools in Latin America, the Middle East and Asia with fewer available in Europe and Africa.
School curricula can be based on one or more of: the International Baccalaureate (IB), American curriculum, the IGCSE from the UK, host country requirements, or others, including Canadian (usually Ontario). The majority of the students are university bound and can be entirely host country nationals or drawn primarily from the international community. Usually, the student body is a mixture of the two groups, as are the teachers.
Contracts at international schools almost invariably are for 2 years. Very few schools offer 1 year contracts. Contracts are not negotiable.
It can be a challenge to fully understand and compare the salary and benefit packages offered in international schools. When considered on their own, salary figures can be misleading and can provide an incomplete picture of the full value of the packages available. To fully assess the value of a package, one must consider more than the exchange rates of national currencies. The cost of living, what is covered by the package, and what expenses you will not incur overseas must also be taken into account.
To compare the value of one package to another, or to one's living expenses at home, it is important to focus on the savings potential rather than the salary alone.
"How much can I save?" is the only question that takes into account all the variables including salaries, benefits including housing, taxes, exchange rates, cost of living, and others. It also takes into account that many of your current expenses here in Canada will be non-existent overseas or may be covered by the school. For example, a basic salary of $25,000 in one location could produce annual savings of $15,000 while a salary of $50,000 in another location could result in no savings at all.
Benefits offered by international schools vary widely. Airfare at the start and at the end of the contract for the hired teacher is always provided. A few schools will also offer airfare for the summer break in between school years. Housing is almost always included – the school either will provide furnished housing or will provide a housing stipend above and beyond the salary. Shipping allowances, signing bonuses, professional development, and health insurance are typical benefits offered by international schools around the world. Some schools will offer enrolment in a Master’s program as a benefit; some schools offer sports club memberships. Some offer daily lunches! All of these variables affect the savings potential at the individual schools.
International schools are looking for dedicated strong teachers who are able to embrace, withstand and thrive within the challenges of living in another culture. The qualities they are seeking include flexibility, sense of humour, self-reliance, tolerance, open-mindedness and a sense of curiosity. We have been told that international school recruiters like to hire Canadian teachers, as they have a positive attitude, an open-ness to other cultures, and strong preparation for teaching.
The International Schools are looking to hire teachers with an undergraduate degree and teaching certification in the K-12 range from Canada or the US. If you have teaching certification from outside of Canada or the US, or have any questions about your qualifications, please be in touch firstname.lastname@example.org.
International schools prefer to hire single, experienced teachers or experienced teaching couples. Yet, many schools can and are happy to hire teachers outside of this description, including teachers with non-teaching spouses or partners, newly graduating teachers with less than two years’ teaching experience, teachers at or near retirement, and teachers with children. Please consult the various categories below, to see how your personal circumstances will affect your marketability with international schools at TORF. Please contact us if you have any concerns about your personal circumstances – we are here to help!
I have a Non-teaching Spouse or Partner Accompanying Me Overseas: Hiring teachers with non-teaching spouses or partners can be problematic for international schools. The problems encountered are logistical, including obtaining entry visas for the spouse or partner, complicated housing issues, an insufficient salary to support dependents, among other issues. Based on our experience, approximately 25% of candidates in this situation have experienced success at TORF. But every situation is different.
I have a Spouse or Partner Not Accompanying Me Overseas: International schools are reluctant to hire teachers whose spouses or partners will not be accompanying the teacher overseas. In the schools’ experience, there are many precedents where a long distance, separated relationship has not worked well in the past. Based on our experience, approximately 25% of candidates in this situation have experienced success at TORF. To increase your chances of being hired, you will have to reassure international recruiters that a separated, long distance relationship for the better part of two years will work for you and your spouse/partner.
I am Near Retirement: In some countries, there are age restrictions on visas imposed by the host country government. Please contact us if you have concerns.
We are Not Married: Local standards or national laws in certain locations, such as North Africa and the Middle East, require that couples living together be legally married.
I have Children: Please be aware that not every school will be able to accommodate teachers with dependent children. However, in our experience roughly 80% of schools ARE able to hire teachers with dependent children.
I have more than Two Dependent Children: Couples with more than two children may find reduced chances at TORF. This is a logistical problem, due to the limits of housing, the cost to a school for transportation, benefits, tuition for staff dependents, or because the school enrolment is at capacity.
I have less than 2 years’ experience or am a Non-Queen’s Teacher Candidate: Given the demands of adjustment to a new culture, professional environment and climate, most international schools prefer to hire teachers with their teaching skills be 'in place'.
However, many schools will consider new teachers. At TORF, we set aside about 25% of the places for teachers with less than two years' experience. Priority for these spots is given to current Queen's B.Ed./M.Ed. students. We are usually able to accept a small number of applications from teachers from outside Queen's. Teachers in this category are eligible to apply for the online TORF services and will be visible to and will be able to contact international school recruiters about positions advertised on our website. Teachers in this category who apply will be placed on a Wait List for the fair.
In January, we will be able to determined how many teachers from the Wait List we are able to accept, and will be in touch. More information about the Wait List and the admission process will be explained to each candidate from this category who completes the first registration step. If you have questions, please be in touch directly with Pamela Goodspeed, TORF Registrar.
I am not able to attend the fair in January: Many school recruiters prefer to only hire candidates they are able to interview in person (for more information, please see the benefits of attending the TORF fair below). Schools will let us know their preferred method of interview when they register, and we will make this available for candidates. The fair offers added value by allowing formal and informal networking opportunities with other teachers and international school recruiters, in person financial and international tax advice, several workshops, and school presentations.
Registration for TORF 2016 is an online process will open in September on this webpage. Please note, that positions advertised at TORF 2016 are for an August/September 2016 start date.
Attending the TORF recruitment fair in person still remains the most successful way of securing a position at an international school that is right for you. Teachers who attend TORF tell us that being at the fair is an education in international teaching, and that the support they received helped them to make the best decision about their future. We are committed to providing the most trustworthy advice and support during the recruitment process.
- Many schools will not hire a candidate without a face to face interview
- TORF occurs during the height of the recruiting 'season' - there are hundreds of positions available
- You can attend multiple school presentations
- There are formal and informal networking opportunities with other teachers and with international school recruiters
- Experienced individuals are on hand all weekend to help you through your decisions
- Financial and international tax experts are on site to advise you on your financial matters
- When you register for TORF, you automatically are registered with our online service
Our new online service is intended to complement the onsite TORF fair in January. It is designed to meet the needs of teachers seeking international positions throughout the year.
International schools (both those that attended TORF and other accredited international schools) will advertise their vacancies with us. As a registered candidate with our online service, you will have access to the schools' information and vacancies, and our support in your international job search. Please note that the positions and location of the schools vary widely, and that the numbers of positions will decrease after the peak period during TORF. As a result, we offer no guarantee that an appropriate vacancy in your preferred location will be available.
To register for out online services only, follow the registration to TORF. During the registration process, you will be asked if you intend on attending TORF or if you prefer to use our online services only.
A partnership with the Council of International Schools has been established to increase international opportunities for our TORF registrants. CIS has over 30 years' experience helping school educators and leaders find opportunities in high quality schools around the world. Working with CIS provides educators with access to positions in more than 680 member schools that offer quality international education. Through the CIS Educator Database, educators and staff looking for new international positions can use CIS as a central resource, as a result of this partnership.
Please note, you will need to complete an application package to CIS in addition to your application to attend TORF. There is no additional fee to use CIS services.
The fee to be part of our online TORF database is $125, payable once your application has been reviewed and accepted. There is no additional charge for attending the TORF onsite fair in January. The fee allows you to be active in our database, to apply for positions with our registered international schools, and to be visible to registered international school recruiters until the end of August 2016. All currency is in Canadian Dollars.
Registration fees for teachers are extremely low, thanks to support from the Queen’s Faculty of Education and the registration fees paid by International Schools.
Please follow the registration deadlines carefully, as we cannot accept late submissions. Please note that international school recruiters will be able to see your documents online as of Sunday, November 15, 2015. It is to your advantage to submit your documents and fee before November 15 to activate your file and become visible.
- Registration Form: Tuesday, January 12, 2016 at 11:59pm EST
- Payment & Document Submission: Friday, January 15, 2016 at 11:59pm EST
Queen's B.Ed. Candidates
- Registration Form: Monday, January 11, 2016 at 11:59pm EST
- Payment: Tuesday, January 12, 2016 at 4:30pm EST
- Document Submission: Friday, January 15, 2016 at 11:59pm EST
Teachers with Less Than 2 Years' Experience or BEd Candidates from Other Institutions
- We reserve 25% of the places at the TORF fair for beginning teachers, with priority going to Queen's B.Ed./M.Ed. students
- When you apply for TORF online services, you will have the option of indicating whether you would like to be considered for the fair
- You can continue your application, submit documents and pay the fee and be visible online to the international school recruiters, and apply for positions
- You will be placed on a wait list for the onsite fair, if you have indicated a preference to attend
- Once we know how many Queen's students wish to attend, on January 12, we can invite people from the wait list to attend the onsite fair
- We are only able to extend invites to the onsite fair to those candidates who have paid the fee and uploaded all of their documents by January 12, 2016 at 4:30pm EST
Please read Registration Instructions carefully before you begin.
Please complete the Online Data Form, a series of 6 screens. Please note that this process will take up to 30 minutes, and requires detailed professional and academic information. Once submitted, the TORF Registrar will respond to your application within 2 business days. Registration will open in September.
You will receive instructions from the TORF Registrar with details about submitting your documentation and the registration fee. Please refer to the registration instructions for more details on what documents are required.
The TORF Registrar will confirm your acceptance into TORF online and/or onsite services.
For questions about eligibility or registration, please contact:
- Pamela Goodspeed, Registrar, Teachers' Overseas Recruiting Fair