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Old 28.09.2016, 17:57
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Qualified Secodnary School Teacher looking for Advice.

Hi all,

I have moved to Switzerland within the last year having been a fully qualified and employed teacher in Ireland. Teaching secondary school students, so aged 12-18. My subjects are Business Studies, Economics & Accounting.

In coming over I knew it would be difficult to find work in an international school. lack of contacts, lack of experience etc....

I found work in a school teaching English, Wall Street English School. I really enjoyed this and saw it as a nice way to integrate into teaching in Switzerland. At the same time I continued to search main-stream schools for an opening or opportunity.

Over the last 6 months, I have scoured the website of every International School that I could find almost on a weekly basis for a suitbale job posting. I have found very few and needless to say that any I applied for, I recieved very little feedback on.

I have phoned a few a times and had very positive conversations with schools but ultimately they came to nothing. What I am looking for here, is if anyone can offer me any advice. Current teachers out there, how did you get your positions, like most jobs in Switzerland, I feel I am just missing something and if someone could instruct me on what that is, it would help alot.

I will list a few of my questions, might give ppl an idea of my thinking. Alternatively if someone wants to get in touch, id be more than happy to call them to speak directly.

- Where did you find your current position? (online, contact, jobs fair, headhunted etc)

- Did you need to have your native qualification recognised in Switzerland?

- Did you apply for substitute work first and progress from there?

- What would you suggest being the best approach to getting teaching work over here now?

- Is it an option to teach in a local school? (I had tried this but obv had issues with my level of French)

- Do I need to do anything in order to prepare me to teach the IB course.

Any suggestions or advice would be really appreicated. Need to get back into the school environment soon.

Thanks
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Old 28.09.2016, 18:04
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Re: Qualified Secodnary School Teacher looking for Advice.

Schools are cutting back as International companies are paying less ex pat packages than before, thereforenumbers are down in a saturated market place (Vevey-Geneva area)
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Old 28.09.2016, 18:11
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Re: Qualified Secodnary School Teacher looking for Advice.

And they tend to look for teachers who can actually spell secondary.

Seriously though Today Only is right, international schools are having to cut back as companies are not paying school fees so much now so there are very few openings fir teachers.

Not sure why the OP felt it necessary to make two identical threads on this.
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Old 28.09.2016, 18:41
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Re: Qualified Secodnary School Teacher looking for Advice.

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Not sure why the OP felt it necessary to make two identical threads on this.
Maybe they think we stupid or need to read it twice....
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Old 28.09.2016, 19:35
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Re: Qualified Secodnary School Teacher looking for Advice.

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Maybe they think we stupid or need to read it twice....
A sort of secondary thread.
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Old 28.09.2016, 19:37
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Re: Qualified Secodnary School Teacher looking for Advice.

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A sort of secondary thread.
Yup, it went.
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Old 28.09.2016, 19:42
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Re: Qualified Secodnary School Teacher looking for Advice.

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Hi all,

I have moved to Switzerland within the last year having been a fully qualified and employed teacher in Ireland. Teaching secondary school students, so aged 12-18. My subjects are Business Studies, Economics & Accounting.

In coming over I knew it would be difficult to find work in an international school. lack of contacts, lack of experience etc....

I found work in a school teaching English, Wall Street English School. I really enjoyed this and saw it as a nice way to integrate into teaching in Switzerland. At the same time I continued to search main-stream schools for an opening or opportunity.

Over the last 6 months, I have scoured the website of every International School that I could find almost on a weekly basis for a suitbale job posting. I have found very few and needless to say that any I applied for, I recieved very little feedback on.

I have phoned a few a times and had very positive conversations with schools but ultimately they came to nothing. What I am looking for here, is if anyone can offer me any advice. Current teachers out there, how did you get your positions, like most jobs in Switzerland, I feel I am just missing something and if someone could instruct me on what that is, it would help alot.

I will list a few of my questions, might give ppl an idea of my thinking. Alternatively if someone wants to get in touch, id be more than happy to call them to speak directly.

- Where did you find your current position? (online, contact, jobs fair, headhunted etc)

- Did you need to have your native qualification recognised in Switzerland?

- Did you apply for substitute work first and progress from there?

- What would you suggest being the best approach to getting teaching work over here now?

- Is it an option to teach in a local school? (I had tried this but obv had issues with my level of French)

- Do I need to do anything in order to prepare me to teach the IB course.

Any suggestions or advice would be really appreicated. Need to get back into the school environment soon.

Thanks

A lot of it is right place, right time and, crucially, having the correct qualifications to teach that specific subject. I don't think most schools would employ you as an English teacher, for example, as you aren't qualified in that subject, any more than they would employ me as a Business Studies, Economics or Accountancy teacher.

Getting your face and name known as a reliable substitute teacher is never a bad idea as you're well placed to hear about vacancies or long term sick leave etc.

You ask about the IB. Which subject? And yes, you need to do a lot of research, just as you would need to if you switched exam boards and syllabi etc. If you're thinking if teaching IB English, then be prepared for a lot of reading.

Good luck, I know it's not easy finding full time teaching work here.

Last edited by RufusB; 29.09.2016 at 19:30.
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Old 28.09.2016, 20:55
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Re: Qualified Secodnary School Teacher looking for Advice.

Hi there,

You need to get your name down, in the school address book, as a supply teacher. The international school I worked at, up until this academic year, was always desperate for supply teachers. Admittedly, it was rarely for day-cover, as this is normally covered internally, but you can guarantee that a maternity or long-term sickness needs covering each year. If you're Irish, it will go down particularly well ;-)
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Old 29.09.2016, 17:23
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Re: Qualified Secodnary School Teacher looking for Advice.

RufusB, Halc3,

Thanks, appreciate the advice. I will definitely look at getting myself set up in a school address book as a supply teacher/substitute teacher.

Seems persistence is key by the sounds of it.

Thanks again.
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Old 02.10.2016, 12:15
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Re: Qualified Secodnary School Teacher looking for Advice.

I think part of the difficulty may be your subject area. Those subjects are only taught at upper secondary here (at least at local schools), 16-18yr olds. You would have to check with the EDK if your teaching qualifications are equivalent to the Swiss ones for upper secondary. This may also be a hurdle at international schools.
To teach English at local schools you would have to get your teaching certificates recognised by the EDK. You would need French for that.
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Old 02.10.2016, 13:39
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Re: Qualified Secodnary School Teacher looking for Advice.

Have you had your qualifications recognised here? Usually a formality for EU nationals but every little bit helps.

"You are a teacher, special education teacher (curative pedagogy), speech therapist, psychomotor therapist and would like to work at an upper-secondary school within Switzerland's general education sector?

Contact:

Swiss Conference of Cantonal Directors of Education (EDK)
General Secretariat, House of the Cantons
Speichergasse 6, Postfach 660
CH-3000 Bern 7
T +41 31 309 51 31

www.edk.chl"

Might not be as important for the international schools, but if you do want to move over to public then they will need to be officially recognised.

And of course work on improving your French.
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Old 02.10.2016, 19:50
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Re: Qualified Secodnary School Teacher looking for Advice.

You can sign up with the recruiting agency, Search Associates http://www.searchassociates.com/. Many international schools both in Switzerland and throughout the world find candidates for teaching jobs through Search.
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Old 04.10.2016, 15:16
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Re: Qualified Secodnary School Teacher looking for Advice.

Thanks to everyone for their advice and relevant links.

Really appreciate it.

I am registering with the relevant sites and agencies as suggested.

Thanks
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Old 04.10.2016, 17:37
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Re: Qualified Secodnary School Teacher looking for Advice.

EDK degree recognition process is not a formality, depends on: credits, courses and their content and major. It is also only possible if the local language is certified C1 for teaching regular subjects or B2 for foreign language teaching. The Swiss system is not the same for specialists/generalists (as they tend to call them here), depends on age of the pupils. So - while it could be a formality for some degrees, others have to retake some courses in local pedagogical universities.
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Old 04.10.2016, 17:53
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Re: Qualified Secodnary School Teacher looking for Advice.

I can chime in with what MusicChick said, although if you have an EU teaching degree there is some assumption that you will get recognition in Switzerland.

As for the EDK process. My husband's approval took two years and in the meantime he was allowed to teach. That is with an Australian primary school teaching degree, working as an English speaking primary school teacher in a Swiss-approved bilingual school. He works alongside a German-speaking approved teacher.

With those subject areas, and not being able to teach in one of the national languages, you really are limited to international 'English' secondary schools or re-developing your career teaching adults.

The IB (International Baccalaureate) is a system all of its own, and you'd definitely be well-advised to get specialised training to deliver the IB. This would not only serve you better as a teacher in an IB school, it would set you apart from others who lack the specialist IB knowledge or training.
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