BASIS International Schools are different. Any school can say that their students are what makes them different and special, and we certainly think that ours are. But the excellence of our teachers themselves, and the outstanding results they guide our students towards, is the true differentiator for BASIS International Schools.
Interest in teaching with our expanding school network is growing every year, and we get many questions from prospective teachers, ranging from our unique curriculum, to teacher support during COVID-19. Early in 2021 we held a webinar about teaching and career opportunities with our schools, and answered a few of these frequently asked questions.
Q: What are the differences between an international school and bilingual school?
A: The main difference is blending the Chinese national curriculum with the BASIS Curriculum at the bilingual schools. At a typical BASIS International School, students usually take at least 5 AP courses, and frequently 8 or 10. At the bilingual schools, because there are additional Chinese curriculum requirements, students will have fewer AP course requirements. The AP courses offered and taught, however, will be the same between the schools.
Q: How big are classes?
A: Early years (Pre-K/Kinder) classes are capped at 20 students. Grade 1 and above (BASIS Primary Program) will be 25 students or less.
Learn more about the unique LET/SET co-teaching model from our teachers here.
Q: Are teachers with different curricular background able to excel at the BASIS Curriculum?
A: One of the things we take pride in at BASIS International Schools is the variety of our teachers’ experience and backgrounds. We blend the strengths of different curricula together, to bring out the best aspects of the various systems. For example from the IB curriculum in China, specifically, teachers have incorporated aspects of the IB learning model, because the curriculum emphasizes understanding and applying knowledge. We encourage our teachers to collaborate and learn from each other to incorporate different curriculum into their own practices from around the world. This is a key reason many teachers choose to join us.
Q: What support is in place for teachers to learn the BASIS Curriculum?
A: All new teachers coming to BASIS International Schools will participate in the BASIS Summer Institute–a one week training about the BASIS Curriculum, what is taught in their courses, and includes training on the systems we use within our schools. On top of that, teachers are partnered with a Subject Advisor–a mentor teacher they can work with. We also have a repository of all syllabi and assignments from every teacher’s course across all the BASIS Curriculum Schools network in Asia and the U.S. to serve as guidance and inspiration for lesson planning.
Continued professional development takes the form of teacher mentoring, and each school looks at their teachers’ needs and desires, and develops specific PD to provide support for teachers at department, grade, and whole school levels. There are also opportunities for teachers to propose other outside PD courses and present that for school administration support.
Subject Advisors lead web based training throughout the year, and are able to provide ongoing training and support specific to each grade and subject. They are also available to answer questions, provide feedback, and give additional support as needed.
Subject Advisors share about their role in this post.
Q: What are some of the ELL supports available?
A: We have ELL Coordinators and teachers on site at every campus. They are responsible for collaborating with teachers to problem solve issues teachers may be having, and providing ideas and support to teachers in how to solve issues with the language learning of the students their own in their classroom. ELL best practices at our schools are always evolving, and are part of a highly collaborative relationship with the teachers.
Teacher Support and Questions for the Future
Q: What has BASIS International Schools done to support their teachers throughout the last year?
A: BASIS International Schools have gone above and beyond to support their teachers. Last year (2020), after the Chinese New Year break, the schools went on hold during quarantine. During this quarantine period, the schools provided food, and other necessities to teachers, and even some additional niceties such as card games, virtual exercise sessions, and opportunities to engage with colleagues virtually during that time. They were also provided with the training needed to begin virtual teaching as school resumed.
Further, all of the teachers hired to start the 2020-21 school year were guaranteed that we would hold their position, regardless of where they were located. We also provided global health coverage to them, even before they arrived in China, regardless of location, as well as funding and pay while waiting to come to China. The school operation teams secured access to priority healthcare for all teachers during this time, and provided transportation for teachers at our schools in China if they had medical needs.
The schools reopened in the spring of 2020 with additional cleaning and social distancing protocols in place, and as conditions have improved in China, have now returned to very close to normal activities and a pre-COVID environment.
Check out our post on teacher support during COVID-19.
Q: At the end of their assignment, can teachers transfer between BASIS schools in China or the U.S.?
A: This is one great benefit of being a part of the BASIS Curriculum Schools network–you are given priority consideration for positions across the international network, whether at a new campus or an existing location.
Q: With the rapidly changing visa requirements, what should I do to be considered for the 2022-23 school year?
A: Stay connected with us on our social channels, also visit our careers website, and sign up for our interest list. These are the places to receive updates and notifications about our schools, as well as new positions and new schools opening. We are looking forward to opening several new schools in the coming years, and will continue to be looking for outstanding teachers to join our team.
Check out our jobs page for teaching opportunities for the 2021-22 school year.