Shanghai High School International Division Reviews | Glassdoor

Shanghai High School International Division Reviews

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  1. "Great place to work!"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    Flexible Interesting Intellectual Freedom Open

    Cons

    Disorganized Lacking Transparency Changes often


  2. "A Good Starting Opportunity"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Teacher
    Current Employee - Teacher

    I have been working at Shanghai High School International Division full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    - decent salary and benefits (including ample opportunities for international travel)
    - great deal of autonomy (ability to tailor curriculum to own interests and experience; little oversight after prove oneself)
    - good working hours (with plenty of time to grade and lesson plan)

    Cons

    - limited opportunities for professional development and upward growth (and thus high turnover)
    - little guidance for inexperienced incoming teachers (who make up the majority of the teaching force)
    - run more like a business than a school (administration is often not looking out for the best interests of the students)
    - poor relations between Western and Chinese staff (missed opportunity for cross-cultural collaboration)
    - bureaucratic

    Advice to Management

    - have higher expectations for students and staff


  3. "SHSID: Lovely campus. Pity about the mgt and the foreign staff."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend

    I worked at Shanghai High School International Division full-time

    Pros

    Beautiful, historic campus. On-campus housing quite good.. Free lunch if you can eat the awful food. Excellent students in IB Diploma Program and AP. Pay is adequate to good.

    Cons

    Management and senior administrators are more concerned with the SHS brand than with quality education. The SHS Local Division is justly famous as one of the finest schools in China; SHSID is a cash cow feeding the Local Division. For example:
    * Very low-tech, inferior classroom resources; some 25 years behind.
    * The SHSID library is an entirely unprofessional joke.
    * Cheating is pandemic throughout Chinese schools and SHSID is no exception. The Administration turns a blind eye and does not provide the formal training program in Academic Honesty required by the IBO. Students caught cheating or plagiarizing are never flunked; rather they write "I am sorry" essays, then go right back to cheating.
    * The majority of the foreign teachers are tourists, kids right out of college with no teaching experience who are taking a year off before grad school or a first job. They need a great deal of guidance and supervision, especially if the Admin expects them to teach IB or AP courses. And they act like college kids in the foreign teacher dorms. Then they leave after a year or two. Turnover is 70%-80% every year.

    Advice to Management

    Where to start?!
    * Just get over your pretensions to excellence. Send a delegation to a series of truly excellent American schools to learn what is required to be a world-class high school. Public and private, IBO or non-IB0, learn what excellence really is.
    * Come into compliance with IBO requirement for Academic Honesty. One of the two major reasons Chinese students flunk out or are expelled from U.S. colleges is cheating. You ought to be ashamed about that fact.
    * Stop hiring tourists as teachers; hire professionals with IBDP and AP experience. (Getting up to speed on IBO teaching and grading requirements is a steep learning curve.)
    * Fire Tommy the librarian if he is still there, or ask him to teach. Hire a professional librarian.
    * Invest in classroom teaching technology.
    * In general, try to be more professional.


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  5. "Rewarding, great benefits, and good work/life balance... if you are adaptable"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I worked at Shanghai High School International Division full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    -Great benefits & time off
    -Many great coworkers
    -Free lunch
    -End of year bonus & automatic raises
    -Honors classes have many smart kids who really want to learn
    -Most facilities are great
    -Beautiful main campus
    -Excellent overall experience

    Cons

    -Minimal training
    -Often limited resources
    -It takes a lot for the school to fire bad apple coworkers
    -Some students do not put in effort & it is often difficult to fail those that deserve it
    -Existing curriculum quality varies, although this was being overhauled when I departed

    Advice to Management

    -Keep the perks & bonuses - they are a big draw for quality teachers
    -Don't be afraid to let teachers go who fail at their duties or disrupt the teacher community
    -Spend more on teaching resources & library books
    -Adopt the Dewey Decimal System to better sort library books and make books easily searchable


  6. Helpful (4)

    "Primary School section: Great, happy, and friendly place to work!"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends

    I have been working at Shanghai High School International Division full-time

    Pros

    Amazing facilities.
    Cosy, clean, friendly living dorms.
    Great classrooms.
    Friendly co-workers.
    Little stress.
    Beautiful campus in a perfect location. Shanghai centre a short distance away.

    Cons

    The school is set in it's Chinese way and is very reluctant to changes or Western ides. (But you're in China so respect it!)
    Sometimes it's hard to find someone who will give you a straight answer. (Again, you're in China, they are afraid of giving you a wrong answer, losing face, so you have to deal with it and solve you're problem your self!)

    Advice to Management

    The management are fantastic here! They work so hard trying to make the teachers happy and all they get are complaints from selfish, unappreciative expats . I think the people who wrote these terrible reviews about administration need to stop for a moment and realise how much pressure FAO are under, and how hard they work to solve you're problems! FAO are awesome and so caring! They appreciate their teachers and are only trying to do right by the school.


  7. "Amazing learning experience, but very test heavy"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at Shanghai High School International Division full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Children are amazing brilliant individuals. I'm sure I am teaching some of the future leaders of tomorrow in my classroom. I got to teach ACTUAL subjects in English versus ESL which is what most Chinese schools want from their teacher. Staff can be friendly once they get to know you. This job throws you into the thick of it which I will point out the negative aspects of below. But the positive aspects is you gain two to three years teaching experience in a matter of months! It's definitely a job that gets you prepared for teaching!

    Cons

    Staff doesn't always warm up to you at first. There were particular department heads that went on the attack from day one before they even knew me. Many kids (yes I said kids) hired are in their first year out of college and this job is daunting for them. They offer you a mentor but that doesn't always mean your mentor is able to take the time to talk with you and help you out. I was put in some personal conflicts with certain coworkers that caused me to breakdown and lose my ability to function. No one seemed to understand that, and rather looked at me like I didn't know what I was doing, when I have ample teaching experience. By the end of the year, I have turned around some of the weakest students in this school to having some of the highest grades as well as improving their social skills and work ethic. I have made my kids love to learn which to me goes beyond the notion of just remembering facts to pass tests and hit the marks to make your school look good.

    Advice to Management

    Don't give up on teachers if they are committed but show you their weaknesses. It's not all about status. Please give us unlimited wifi so we can do our job properly. No more 30 GB's. it's absurd!


  8. "A good school overall"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends

    I worked at Shanghai High School International Division full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    After your first year management is quite good and doing their best to accommodate grade/subject preference, they will do their best to do this before your hired but obviously it is impossible to give everyone what they want. The salary and benefits are good and the teaching hours also allow for many planning periods which is a bonus. I am surprised about the review that women and men receive unfair pay. When competing for a promotion the other candidate was a man, I got the job and the raise. They will consider your experience, education and also years at the school. You will get a raise each year and the bonus is good.

    Cons

    The housing is on campus mostly when I was there and a bit far from the city. Also, due to being abroad there is turnover in staff and cultural challenges-but hey if you move to China it would be odd not to expect that!

    Advice to Management

    Continue to improve on strict hiring practices and professional development.


  9. ""an opportunity worth checking out""

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at Shanghai High School International Division full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    on campus housing provided
    beautiful spacious campus
    competitive salary and benefits
    large group of expat coworkers
    lots of Chinese holidays

    SHSID offers a relaxed teaching environment that encourages student involvement. The teacher student ratio is relatively low compared to past teaching experiences.

    Cons

    a variety of class preps
    team teaching can be challenging

    Most teachers are expected to teach different grades and levels. This leads to coordinating with many teachers and a variety of preps a week.

    Advice to Management

    management should keep up the level of service they provide to the foreign teachers. They oversee all of the paperwork and shield the expat staff from the bureaucracy of working and living abroad. Annual teacher reviews would help staff know what they need to improve on and help for a more transparent work environment.


  10. "This is a good International School."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Shanghai, Shanghai (China)
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Shanghai, Shanghai (China)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at Shanghai High School International Division full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    This is a great school to work at and a pretty relaxed environment. Teachers usually stay on average 2-3 years, but many stay longer than that. I have been here for over 5 years myself.

    Despite what another post says, female teachers are paid the same as men. The majority of teachers are down to earth people. There are a lot of certified and experienced teachers, who have experience in the States that stay for a number of years because it is a good job.

    The students are very hardworking (regardless of level) and are better than the most of the students that I worked with in the States. Most are of East Asian heritage, but they come from many different countries including the U.S. They are extremely well-behaved, and respectful to both the teachers as well as their classmates. There is no actual curving of grades and the school has a system in place to ensure that the students make it into the right classes based upon their ability. The majority of students go on to attend top 50 schools in the States.

    The benefits included nice on or off campus housing, free western lunch, a competitive salary, yearly bonuses and automatic raises, coaching opportunities, a beautiful campus and the majority of facilities are great. The school provides easy access to the city center and the teacher student ratio is relatively low. Overall, it's a great place to work, provides many different opportunities, a chance to create a nice little nest egg, and a great experience overall.

    Cons

    The fact that the school has over 100 western teachers makes it impossible to keep everyone happy and will obviously lead to some negative reviews. While there can be a bit of culture shock for people moving out the the States for the first time, there is a great support staff and plenty of teachers to help people adjust. However, the majority of teachers have a great experience here and there have been a number of teachers who have left the school only to return later on. The team teaching can be challenging on occasion if someone does not pull their wait, but most teachers are pretty hardworking. It also provides opportunities to exchange resources and techniques.

    The administration has been working hard to continue to improve the school and are willing to work with teachers to resolve any issues they might have. They are also more than willing to put prospective candidates in contact with other teachers at the school so that they can get more details about the experience.


  11. Helpful (1)

    "Micromanaged school"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Shanghai High School International Division full-time

    Pros

    Nice campus, Decent pay, Feel you are learning a lot

    Cons

    Unfair wages between men and women. For example, I was paid 2.7 month, despite having taught for 7 years with an MA and TESL. Male colleagues in my office who had only an MA (no TESL) and teaching for only 3 years, were paid 3.2 a month for no other reason than being a woman.

    Ageist, Sexist and Racist in general. They prefer white, attractive males, who for the most part are young. Virtually no diversity in who they hire and the 180 teachers who pretty much all look the same reflect that.

    Spoiled and entitled students. Although there will be certain students that are respectful and want to learn, the rest hate it at SHSID and are over-worked with too much pressure. They are on their phone in class, and sleep. They don't want to do the work but they expect the high grade and there is subjectivity in the grading. Teachers will often give high grades just to keep the students happy and their 'rating's up.

    Extremely micromanaged with many observations/rules. The school is pretty much run like a business. Keep the students happy and the money coming in!

    Also many teachers here that give themselves 'airs' because of the subjects they teach which is ridiculous considering it's an International school that will hire very young, and inexperienced teachers without a teaching licenses. In comparison to other international schools, the hiring standards are quite low here.



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