The costs and benefits of being an international educator

*** Several folks contributed to this piece. To read their comments in full, here is the LinkedIn post.


  • Teaching students from various countries
  • Working with a diverse faculty and staff
  • Exposure to different educational systems
  • Being a member of a new community
  • Personal and professional growth
  • Opportunity to travel/explore new places
  • Financial saving power

  • Access to a high-quality, well-rounded education for dependents (Thank you, Jeremy Majeski)
  • In some cases, access to a superior medical system with full coverage, no deductibles, and shorter wait times to see specialists (Thank you, Jacqueline Mallais)

  • Students tend to take their studies more seriously (Thank you, Kristen Silvas)
  • Smaller class sizes (Thank you, Claire Gaul)
  • Other benefits?

  • Seeing extended family less often, but if family is open and able to travel internationally, international educators can open the world to them as well (Thank you, Matt Battani)
  • Cultural adjustment (In the end, it can become a benefit)
  • Language barrier (Learning a new language becomes a benefit)
  • Repatriation challenges
  • Managing long-term financial planning as one is not contributing to the social security and pension systems in one's home country (Thank you, Claire Gaul)
  • International school leadership experience being undervalued when returning to one's home country (Thank you, Paul Kelly and Jim Wild)

  • Raising children away from the support system of family (Thank you, Jennifer Tunguz)

  • Uncertainty around international teaching contracts i.e., waiting to find out if your contract will be renewed and for how long and having to turn in your notice before you have secured another position (Thank you, Jenny Swift)

  • At times, lack of special education services for dependent children (Thank you, Claire Gaul)
  • Dependents potentially viewed as international students at universities back home. This could increase the cost of higher ed (Thank you, Joanna Brown)
  • Other costs?

The costs and benefits of being an international educator