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  • Writer's pictureAMISA

5 Incentives to Recruit Top International Educator Talent

By: Maria Castillo Diaz, Clements Worldwide

AMISA Note: Clements Worldwide will be in attendance at our Educators' Conference. Don't forget to visit their table!

Finding and retaining top talent has become more complicated, especially for international schools in Latin America trying to recruit educators. Plus, the direct and indirect risks the pandemic brought to Latin America are exacerbating some of the current problems it faces.

While coronavirus vaccines have become more widely available to the region, many of the current liabilities of living in Latin America, pandemic-induced or not, aren't going away anytime soon.

However, these risks shouldn’t stop your international school from recruiting top-tier educators. In fact, you can entice the best teachers, counselors, special education professionals, speech pathologists and others with competitive incentives that add meaning to their work and outweigh potential risks.

So, what are those incentives? Your international school may already have some already. Others you might have to invest in. Here’s how you can make your international school in Latin America stand out to top international educators:

1. Foster an Outstanding School Culture

When recruiting international educators, you may want to review your school's core values and ensure they accurately align with the talent you want to hire. Before you begin your search, you may want to ask yourself:

  • Do you currently have experienced staff?

  • Does your school teach from a global perspective?

  • Is your student body diverse?

  • Is compassion equally crucial to student success?

  • Does your school do enough to serve its students?

Answering these questions can give you a better understanding of where your international school stands.

You may also want to evaluate your school’s administrative operations. Are they good at planning ahead? Are they empathetic? Do they value school staff on all levels? When educators are interviewing at your school, since it’s overseas, many will weigh their opinion heavily on how your administration runs the school, as that can make or break their experience working there.

You can also foster a great school culture by investing in resources that support both students and staff, especially for students new to an international environment. Some of those resources can include after school activities, mental health resources for struggling students and paraprofessional assistance to close student learning curves.

2. Be in A Desirable Location

Each international educator has a different idea of what a “desirable location” is. Some may want to work at a school near other expats from similar backgrounds who share similar experiences. Others will want to fully engrain themselves in the local culture and take in everything it has to offer.

Even if your school's location isn't as desirable, there are accommodations you can invest in to make it safer and more appealing. For instance, if your school is in a high-crime area, you can invest in strict security standards to protect both students and staff.

When interviewing prospective staff, make sure you're honest about the location you serve in and any prevalent risks. Many will appreciate your school being honest and upfront about the circumstances. Additionally, it helps you screen out the right candidates for each position.

3.Provide Comprehensive Benefits

A solid and comprehensive benefits package is crucial, especially for attracting top educators to Latin America. But, how do you know what types of benefits they're looking for? Considering the potential risks of living and working in Latin America, top international educators want a school that provides comprehensive health, life and disability insurance coverage.

Plus, depending on your school's location, you can offer insurance benefits they may not have thought of but are absolutely necessary, like political violence or kidnap/ransom insurance. Even if you're in a safe area, when you show you're prepared for anything, you're demonstrating to prospective staff that your school cares about their safety and well-being.

Clements Worldwide can help you find, build and create the right insurance packages for your international school. That way, your staff can live and work abroad in Latin America with peace of mind. Check out our International Schools page to learn more about our product offerings.

And if you're an individual educator looking to buy your own insurance, we have solutions for you too. Learn more by checking out our International Teachers and Educators page.

4.Subsidize Living Costs

A common theme, especially in the United States, is that educators are underpaid. Unfortunately, their salaries aren't much higher at international schools in Latin America. At the same time, there are other unique advantages your international school can offer that a domestic one can't.

Subsidizing your staff’s living costs can help free up their income and give them more financial security. Plus, they can stretch their money a lot more in Latin America than they can in the US. So, what costs can you subsidize for current and prospective staff? Your international school could financially assist them with:

  • Schooling for their kids

  • Rent and bills

  • Transportation

  • Meals while they’re at school

  • Relocation expenses

What’s affordable for your school will likely depend on your current budget but offering any of these can garner attention from the right people.

5. Create Paths for Career Development

International educators, like many others, want upward trajectory in their careers and what that trajectory looks like can differ from educator to educator. That's why figuring out what opportunities your school can and should offer can be challenging.

You can start by developing pipelines that allow staff to work their way into administrative roles. Or, if they decide to switch international schools at the end of their contract, you can create programs to help launch their career to their desired international destination. And if they want to return to domestic schools, help hone and grow their skills so they can move into higher paying roles.

Your School Has a Lot to Offer

By investing in the right resources and highlighting the perks you already have, you stand a better chance at attracting the world’s best international educators.

No matter where your school is located, Clements Worldwide is here to help. We've been creating comprehensive benefits packages for international schools for more than 70 years and know how valuable they can be, especially in high-risk areas. Contact our international schools team to set up a consultation today!

About the writer:

Maria Castillo Diaz serves as the International Business Developer with Clements. She has been part of the Clements Worldwide Team since 2017. She primarily works with international schools in Latin America and Africa.

You can contact Maria via email at

More about Clements Worldwide


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