Honesty and clarity. If the contract sets out the facts in a clear and easy-to-understand manner, employees will know what to expect and they will not feel cheated or misused. Salary, housing allowance, relocation allowance, job assignment, days worked, work hours–all should be stated.
Salary that is competitive depending on conditions, fair working conditions, no tax, transparent and pleasant relations with administrative staff, pleasant environment, return flights paid, baggage, medical and housing allowances.
1. Comfortable, single housing that is within reasonable distance of campus. 2. A salary that allows you to live comfortably AND save. 3. Flights in and out of the country without being nickled and dimed. Flight is part of salary even if you decide to walk home. 4. Shipping allowed at beginning and end of contract. 5. Medical insurance that covers preventative care and reasonable deductibles.
Clearly spell out the system of re-contracting, including the process for termination or non-renewal. Also, include how the payments will be calculated (local currency or USD etc.) and whether there will be a regular calculation of the exchange rate and a suitable method of keeping the salary at what was originally quoted, by altering it according to the exchange rate each month. No teacher should earn less than the original salary quotation, regardless of any fluctuation in currency. No contract should be deemed a “fixed term” contract unless the school is truly in flux and anticipates a decrease in enrollment.
Shipping/relocation allowance, flights, housing, salary, medical insurance, professional development, extra-curricular duties.
In addition to the usual dollars and cents, I would include a plan for formative evaluation of teachers, including expected visits and conferences with supervising administrator. I have had zero observations in two years.
If I were making a contract I would insure that future changes to the contract would benefit all current faculty members.
Salary, housing, commute, insurance, flights, kids’ tuition. Evacuation insurance!
1. Children’s education included
2. Great HOUSING
3. Good savings potential
4. Legal visas, medical checks etc. all paid for and taken care of by the school
5. Healthcare that covers both local, international, and evacuation
6. Costs of relocation and yearly r&r covered by the school.
Shorter and equal notice to leave both from employer and employee with no penalties, longer sick pay, pay rises covering the inflation rate, proper job description and adequate job title.
Money, housing, airport arrival/departure baggage allowance, labor law, medical insurance, bonus at end of contract completion, days off allowed, vacation, dress code, what other costs the school does/doesn’t cover, extra days required by staff to be in-school (amount), other things staff is required to do (clubs, committees, writing curriculum).
1) Consistency in value: Is the school taking the exchange rate into account? 2) Housing: Is the school paying for/providing adequate housing?
Salary payment in what currency and on what dates, work hours, work load with students, materials available to use to teach with, internet connectivity, number of children ESL vs. native English speaking.
Salary scale and specific benefits for all employees. Make the contract transparent for all.
Salary needs to be sufficient and comparable to home. Housing – most people prefer to live in nice places, especially those with families. Medical. Flights home annually.
Airfare, housing, utilities, salary, paid time off to recruit, a generous shipping allowance (not just $200.00 cash), health benefits, dental benefits, education for all my children, not just one or two, a clause that says if I want to get out of the contract, a teacher must give 3-4 months notice.
In case of problems, take account of teacher’s point of view before deciding who’s guilty.
Excellent salary (by which I mean a salary that allows one to live comfortably, save, and be able to afford life, COLA, Air fare annually, retirement plan, longevity bonus, sick leave buy-back plan, personal day buy-back plan, full health coverage, housing with utilities, and tax relief.
Protect teachers from being taken advantage of–should not be asked to teach a 2nd subject they are not comfortable with or substantial added classes per week without compensation.
While a contract must be clear and to the point it need not be full of negative consequences. Salary, housing, medical, pension, flights, etc. are all important in making the worlds’ nomadic teachers feel wanted and supported in their new home. Strangely, schools don’t also see that a shipping allowance will get teacher to their new location with the teaching materials that they feel comfortable working with. So it isn’t a single item which impresses me but the total package and the schools enthusiasm for my being there.
A salary that allows for living expenses, twice yearly reasonable travel, and 10% savings. Clean, comfortable housing and medical insurance that covers expenses equivalent to national medical care in most western counties. Shipping allowance that covers a reasonable amount of teaching resources and personal effects. A generous bonus for renewal of contract and no absence service. One significant professional development a year (course or conference expenses).
Portability in pensions. Paid time off to attend recruitment fairs.
1 )Housing allowance and assistance to find appropriate and affordable housing
2) Fair and tax free salary scale with higher ranges for experienced employees
3) Generous travel allowance rather than flight home.
4) Extensive and reliable medical plan including long term disability.
5) Generous in and out shipping allowance
6) All basic utilities paid except LD phone charges
7) Length of service bonuses and signing/resigning bonuses
Livable housing allowance, better moving-in allowance, a good orientation booklet.
Accommodation that includes utilities being covered. Internet access should be included in this. Annual return airfare that is covered in full. Shipping allowance that enables you to have your ‘home’ with you, rather than a couple of suitcases! Good medical access and insurance. Insurance needs to be valid in our home countries during the summer breaks also. A salary that recognizes years of experience beyond the typical 9 years.
Benefits that facilitate the transition – shipping, settling-in allowance, and transportation allowances should be enough to make the new employee comfortable. Salary should be equitable and fair in terms of the candidate’s experience and the “market value” for the community of international schools. Sick and personal leave should be included and all contract protocols (termination, evaluation, contract renewal) should be clearly articulated.
Keeping the ‘basics’ (good salary, shipping, flight, etc.), but making sure that a cost of living annual adjustment is included in the contract. This is a small, simple, and fair way to retain teachers.
100% payment of child tuition, number of contact hours per week + additional for extracurricular activities, meetings and the like, the title and specification of the position and its duties, days off, sick leave policy, salary table and position on that table, quality of housing, school transport, lunches etc. ALSO: clear definitions of each benefit.
Any issues involving money need to be clearly spelled out: allowances, benefits, salary, etc.
1. Salary – cost of living, ability to save needs to be factored into the calculation of a fair salary
2. Retirement package or scheme
3. Housing – single housing, safe area, relatively close to the school
4. Flights – it’s not always possible to get direct flights from different points in the world, but reasonable consideration of the route home is essential (i.e., not many stops or low cost airline)
5. Signing bonus – if you extend your contract
6. Work conditions – reasonable teaching load; low class sizes; available resources
9. Mentoring program – returning teachers are recruited to mentor incoming staff. The mentors should be honest and not minions of the administration staff.
Contracts that are legally binding.
That the contracted amount is paid in actual US dollars, or the exact equivalent to it. That all taxes, fees and “additional costs” be made clear. Any time off for personal days, including recruiting not be tied to perfect attendance bonuses.
Salary and any coordinator or HOD stipends, number of working days + number of “extra” days (PD) or number of hours expected outside the number of working days, an outline of the health insurance plan, r/t plane ticket w/ option of equivalent of cash, baggage allowance, settling in allowance, housing allowance or housing for single person (shared accommodation for a single person should not be mandatory), probationary period where school or individual can leave w/out unreasonable repercussions for 6-week period
Mental health days for schools that have students with serious behavioral issues.
Specific expectations of teachers, like a normal American union contract.
A translation summary into English of all of the details and the laws of the country that pertain to the contract and would take precedence over the written contract.
Salary (with no minimal taxes); a top quality medical plan; strong emphasis on professional development; a shipping allowance that increases to the equivalent of an apartment’s worth of goods (over time – five years); full return airfare each summer.
Housing-Flights home each year – Emergency leave – Investment options.
I think a contract should have a salary that is comparable with others in the area, allow for a minimum of 25% savings, and should include a yearly flight home, at least $1000/year for shipping, housing and utilities fully paid all year round, medical insurance should also be fully paid and be a good plan ie. without huge hassles for reimbursements. It’s also good to have a ‘no absence’ bonus or allow for a certain number of sick/personal days.
Fair and transparent wage scale – accurate description of duties – length of school day and calendar – medical insurance – retirement plan – assistance with housing/shipping/visas – annual flight home – bereavement leave.
1. A pay package that allows for savings of at least 25%
2. Internationally accepted medical coverage
3. Housing that is spacious and is completely paid for by the school
4. Moving allowance equivalent to at least $4,000
5. 5 weeks of vacation spaced throughout the year or school starting in early September and ending in early June with 4 weeks of vacation
6. Round-trip home airfare each year of the contract
7. A retirement payment equal to 15% of the teacher’s salary
8. An annual allotment for professional development
9. A commitment to refrain from asking the teachers to come in on weekends and evenings except 4-6 times/year
10. 10 Days of sick leave/year or a bonus at the end of the year if a teacher uses less than 3 days of sick leave. And, personal necessity leave of up to 10 days for family emergencies
11. Insurance that pays to return the teacher to their place of origin if there are natural disasters or political upheavals
12. Free tuition for up to a maximum of two children and 1/2 tuition for additional children
Benefits in many ways are more important than salary. In Japan at the moment the exchange rate is quite unfavorable, which is why an improved benefits packet would do us more good than salary (which anyway has been frozen for years). Housing should be covered. Insurance should be paid in full. Annual fares after initial contract.
Absolute clarity and precision. Duties, responsibilities, work hours, obligations clearly stated.