International teaching

Publicerat den 3 maj 2019

I detta inlägg får du läsa om CJ Bradleys resa från att ha varit biträdande rektor på en skola i Australien till att ta rollen som rektor på en skola i Vietnam...

Approximately, 12 months ago my journey begun on becoming an international school principal. I had been working for a good school in Australia and was looking for something different. I had worked hard with my career and made many sacrifices to ensure I could progress into leadership so was reluctant to take any risks.

An opportunity came up in Vietnam. After speaking with my prospective employer it began to make more sense that this was the right decision. Although I did change my mind in my head a few times, the positives were adding up. The decision was made and my life became instantly chaotic, getting documents ready, trying to sell my house, selling possessions, preparing for removalists and researching my new school. As the deadline grew nearer things became even more frantic and it was a mix of hesitation and not having a choice to back out but to embrace the change.

I remember the first few days were filled with sensory overload. A packed induction program, bikes and traffic, busy markets, a range of foods to try, and a language barrier to overcome. I was able to find accommodation quickly and establish some roots and began to invest into my new school community.

Every school is different. But my current school was a welcomed surprise, finding motivated students committed to learning, skilled teachers from all over the world, a team of hardworking local staff, and a positive parent group, who spend time at the school conversing with staff and each other while their children play before and after school. Most classes finish at 3:30pm and while we have some additional classes and clubs for students to participate in a large number of the students will stay till 5:00pm. There is a real sense of community and the school is the hub for creating this.

The lifestyle of International teaching staff in Vietnam is a privileged one. With most staff travelling both locally and Internationally on holidays. Most teachers would eat out most nights of the week and can find good food for less than $5 US a day. The dollar goes a long way here.

Being away from home you look for a little familiarity. I was very fortunate I was able to recruit two friends who are teachers from Australia. I connect with other expat staff and watch Australian Football and other sports in the bars of Saigon.

I look back and think what I have achieved in a year. I have learned a whole new curriculum, using the Singapore curriculum for primary and the Cambridge IGCSE for secondary. We also cater for an Integrated program for local Vietnamese students. Some things are the same regardless of the context, quality teaching is the best way to increase student achievement.

Sometimes the biggest risks bring the greatest rewards. I am now a committed International School leader. I would encourage others to seek out and be open to the right opportunities. I would like to end by encouraging others to share their talents on the International stage and quote Shakespeare, ‘be patient for the world is broad and wide’.

Om skribenten:

Hello fellow Educators, My name is CJ Bradley and I am a passionate educator who works in Vietnam. My background is that I have worked as a Teacher, Guidance Counsellor, School Principal. I am currently working as an international school Principal.

CJ Bradley


CJ Bradley