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MISR American College, Maadi, Cairo, Egypt
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M.M.



Joined: 18 May 2008
Posts: 24
Location: St. Louis, Missouri USA/New Maadi, Egypt

PostPosted: Sun May 18, 2008 11:22 pm    Post subject: MISR American College, Maadi, Cairo, Egypt Reply with quote

Let me preface this that I posted this on the "Newbies" section instead of here where I wanted it! Thank goodness for "copy and paste"! Wink
Hello everyone! I am brand new here and am soooo glad I found this site! I am relocating to Cairo, Egypt mid June 2008 to live with my Egyptian husband, and am looking for a job teaching. I am an American Muslim and have been to Egypt once before.
I have my M.Ed. as well as Early Childhood and Special Reading K-12 certifications, and have been teaching in public schools for 8 years as a classroom teacher.
I have interviewed (on the phone) with MISR American College and am interested if anyone here knows anything about it? I understand that Maadi is a fairly International city, but am not sure exactly where we will get a flat. I am awaiting a second interview with the Director of Curriculum and Academics to discuss benefits.
Any advice, pointers and suggestions will be appreciated!!
Thanks,
Debi
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mishmumkin



Joined: 01 Sep 2007
Posts: 896

PostPosted: Mon May 19, 2008 1:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is a good school. A dear friend of mine has been working there for the past 5 years or so. Not a bad place to land at all!

Maadi is really a suburb of Cairo-wouldn't call it a city. It draws a lot of western expats. It's quite green (compared to the rest of Cairo), and many of the businesses cater to western preferences. It's one of the few parts of Cairo where you can find a quiet street, and even those are on the decline.

Does your husband have housing in Cairo already? As you are married to an Egyptian you will likely be offered a local contract. This typically means no airfare, no accommodation, etc. I hope this isn't the case, but it is something you should prepare yourself for.

Good luck!
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ILOVEEGYPT



Joined: 03 Dec 2007
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Fri May 30, 2008 7:42 pm    Post subject: misr Reply with quote

Hi,
I am also a newie on the egypt scene but i do have a varied amount of experience going for interviews at a lot of school in egypt. I went to misr in Giza last week for an interview and my opinion of the school (med)
The school grounds are not much to look at and there is no air con in the class rooms which seems quite weird as they are at the bottom of the pyramids and it gets really hot . I was met by a russian sec who spoke really bad english but was pleasant enough who then pointed the direction in which i should walk to see the admin officer.

The lady at the school is very nice and she really wants quality teachers. I was shown around then offered a job on the spot. The package was 1500 US per month with no extras except that you have to pay for your own visa which is deducted on a monthly basis.

I am currently employed at a (Hitla)like school but the grounds are nice and the work load is not excessive. I am paid 13000 per month plus housing and a ticket home. So i think i better stop bagging my school out and be happy as i have seen that the grass in this case is not greener on the other side Rolling Eyes
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mishmumkin



Joined: 01 Sep 2007
Posts: 896

PostPosted: Fri May 30, 2008 7:50 pm    Post subject: Re: misr Reply with quote

ILOVEEGYPT wrote:
Hi,
I am also a newie on the egypt scene but i do have a varied amount of experience going for interviews at a lot of school in egypt. I went to misr in Giza last week for an interview and my opinion of the school (med)
The school grounds are not much to look at and there is no air con in the class rooms which seems quite weird as they are at the bottom of the pyramids and it gets really hot . I was met by a russian sec who spoke really bad english but was pleasant enough who then pointed the direction in which i should walk to see the admin officer.

The lady at the school is very nice and she really wants quality teachers. I was shown around then offered a job on the spot. The package was 1500 US per month with no extras except that you have to pay for your own visa which is deducted on a monthly basis.

I am currently employed at a (Hitla)like school but the grounds are nice and the work load is not excessive. I am paid 13000 per month plus housing and a ticket home. So i think i better stop bagging my school out and be happy as i have seen that the grass in this case is not greener on the other side Rolling Eyes


Misr American College is located in Maadi, not Giza.
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ILOVEEGYPT



Joined: 03 Dec 2007
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Fri May 30, 2008 9:11 pm    Post subject: MISR Reply with quote

Hi,

As i said i went to an interview at Giza of Haram rd, Fayoum Hwy to a school called MISR. It is a national, American and French school. I am a newie but i do know the difference between Maadi and Giza , there must be another school with a similiar name.
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mishmumkin



Joined: 01 Sep 2007
Posts: 896

PostPosted: Fri May 30, 2008 9:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Since "Misr" means Egypt (and is also sometimes used to refer to "Cairo"), I suspect you were at a school of a similar name, but seemingly not Misr American College.

When I first arrived in Egypt I recall seeing "Misr" Insurance, Misr Banks, etc. I remember saying to a colleague, "This must be a large family business." Wink
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M.M.



Joined: 18 May 2008
Posts: 24
Location: St. Louis, Missouri USA/New Maadi, Egypt

PostPosted: Sat May 31, 2008 1:01 am    Post subject: MAC Reply with quote

Prior to the Supt. calling me for an interview, he called all my references (teachers, parents and he tried to contact my principal but even his own staff can't locate him half the time,lol). After an hour long phone interview, I accepted the job I was offered, teaching third grade at MAC. The pay, by American standards is...well.....almost embarassing. However, my husband tells me that with such a salary in Egypt, I will live very, very comfortably. The perks are great--it's the standard package I suppose. If they had offered me anything less I wouldn't have accepted the job.
I have been teaching children of low-income families in the inner city for the past 8 years, and am VERY MUCH looking forward to a change. I have talked to a few staff members at MAC (however, your contact didn't reply yet, Mismumkin) including teachers and HR staff. Everyone has been so helpful, especially with all the paperwork, etc.
If I like it there, swell. If I don't, well, then I always remember that nothing lasts forever, and that doors work both ways. That's just how I am.
If they don't have a/c, it's not too big of a deal. I've been teaching in a 93 year old brick school with no a/c for 8 years and have survived (with at least a gallon of cold H20 a day!).
I am fortunate to have a family there in Egypt and a husband, so I won't feel so alone and will have help adjusting to everything. I'll have plenty of time to adjust before school starts. I am disappointed that there isn't a teacher supply store, and am going to spend half a fortune sending some of my things over-but hopefully it will be worth the cost.
I have heard wonderful things about the school, and not one negative thing. Negatives don't scare me though.....Ohhhh...if you only knew the school and district I am leaving!!!! It takes a lot to scare me. Wink
I will arrive in Cairo one month from today. Between now and then, I need to pack everything in my home, put it in storage, close on the sale, move back to mom's for a week or two.....and then.....I'm off!!!!! Thanks to everyone for their input and advice. I have enjoyed reading it, and of course it was helpful!!
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mishmumkin



Joined: 01 Sep 2007
Posts: 896

PostPosted: Sat May 31, 2008 1:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

MM, give her a bit of time to reply-she's got a young one that keeps her busy. Smile There are not teacher supply shops, but my former employer managed to get loads of classroom supplies (posters, borders, art stuff, etc.) inside the country. Not sure how, since you pay such a big tax on shipments. When I taught primary there I took a few books, some posters, and pre-cut letters...things for the pin-boards.

Schools in Egypt w/o AC tend to end earlier in the year than those w/ AC. I worked in a school w/o it. It was only uncomfortable for a few weeks out of the year. Most of those places have ceiling fans. Keep up posted on how things work out!
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M.M.



Joined: 18 May 2008
Posts: 24
Location: St. Louis, Missouri USA/New Maadi, Egypt

PostPosted: Sat May 31, 2008 1:32 am    Post subject: MAC Reply with quote

Ohhhh.....she has a little one!!! That explains it! I was wondering......lol. I have also been in contact with a G4 teacher there, and she has been great. Believe me when I say that so far, everything has been flawless.
My garage is sooo full of classroom supplies, I need to sort through it and determine what I want to take. I'm not taking too much-some of my Reading Specialist materials, some chapter books...you know, the usual. My classroom library has been my pride and joy for years---I'll be boxing thousands of books for storage now. It kills me!! I am looking forward (kind of) to NOT having a teacher supply store. Perhaps this will awaken the creative side of me that has been in a deep slumber for the past few months. Idea I have downloaded and printed the curriculum, so after going through it briefly, I'll be better able to determine what stays and what goes. SIGH....sooooo much to do!! Very Happy
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veiledsentiments



Joined: 20 Feb 2003
Posts: 16066
Location: USA

PostPosted: Sat May 31, 2008 1:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good Luck MM. Many people find the Egyptian kids to be a handful, but I expect that with your experience in the inner city, you will find them a piece of cake. Cool

You do get two suitcases to fill with stuff. The first time I went to Cairo I left with 4 - 70 lb suitcases. I wonder what that would cost these days. I think they've lowered the per bag weight down to 50 lbs. If you carry it in this way, you shouldn't have to pay any customs - just the excess baggage charges... only an arm and a leg...

VS
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M.M.



Joined: 18 May 2008
Posts: 24
Location: St. Louis, Missouri USA/New Maadi, Egypt

PostPosted: Sat May 31, 2008 1:51 am    Post subject: MAC Reply with quote

[quote="veiledsentiments"]Good Luck MM. Many people find the Egyptian kids to be a handful, but I expect that with your experience in the inner city, you will find them a piece of cake. Cool

I won't miss the drive by shootings, lock down drills (or actual occurances), violence, profanity, or blatant disregard for authority AND education. The Egyptians are paying a lot of money for the American public school education (and curriculum) we're throwing down the tubes. I have to respect that!! Imagine, today, awards day at school. A man walks up to me and introduces himself as the father of one of my students. He has NEVER stepped foot into the school...and she's going into 3rd grade next year. It saddens me. Take me back to good 'ol family values!!
You do get two suitcases to fill with stuff. The first time I went to Cairo I left with 4 - 70 lb suitcases. I wonder what that would cost these days. I think they've lowered the per bag weight down to 50 lbs. If you carry it in this way, you shouldn't have to pay any customs - just the excess baggage charges... only an arm and a leg..

Well, I have 2 suitcases (1 lg., 1 sm.) and a duffel bag (all under 50# so far). I'll pay what I have to....since I have to. One way or another....my wallet is the only thing that will NOT be over filled upon my arrival!! Sad
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mishmumkin



Joined: 01 Sep 2007
Posts: 896

PostPosted: Sat May 31, 2008 4:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The thing about Egyptian parents is that you won't be able to keep them out of the school! They tend to be very involved...sometimes too involved. Smile
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ILOVEEGYPT



Joined: 03 Dec 2007
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Sat May 31, 2008 12:58 pm    Post subject: MM Reply with quote

Hi MM,

Can you be more specific on your package deal as it is very helpful to other out there who are looking for employment to know what to expect. You can give a ball park not exact figure.

Thank you
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M.M.



Joined: 18 May 2008
Posts: 24
Location: St. Louis, Missouri USA/New Maadi, Egypt

PostPosted: Sat May 31, 2008 1:55 pm    Post subject: benefits package Reply with quote

Hi IloveEgypt,
I won't discuss salary, as that is something you would have to negotiate yourself. I don't know your qualifications or credentials, and am new to this whole experience.
From what I have read and researched online, most schools offer RT airfare, medical insurance, some offer a housing allowance and a welcome bonus. Only you know your needs and what you are willing to accept or negotiate. I'm sure this doesn't help too much, but I am not going to discuss my personal package until after I sign the contract.
M.M.
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sarina



Joined: 03 Jan 2004
Posts: 26

PostPosted: Sat May 31, 2008 4:05 pm    Post subject: Re: MAC Reply with quote

[quote="M.M."]
veiledsentiments wrote:
Good Luck MM. Many people find the Egyptian kids to be a handful, but I expect that with your experience in the inner city, you will find them a piece of cake. Cool

I won't miss the drive by shootings, lock down drills (or actual occurances), violence, profanity, or blatant disregard for authority AND education. The Egyptians are paying a lot of money for the American public school education (and curriculum) we're throwing down the tubes. I have to respect that!! Imagine, today, awards day at school. A man walks up to me and introduces himself as the father of one of my students. He has NEVER stepped foot into the school...and she's going into 3rd grade next year. It saddens me. Take me back to good 'ol family values!!
You do get two suitcases to fill with stuff. The first time I went to Cairo I left with 4 - 70 lb suitcases. I wonder what that would cost these days. I think they've lowered the per bag weight down to 50 lbs. If you carry it in this way, you shouldn't have to pay any customs - just the excess baggage charges... only an arm and a leg..

Well, I have 2 suitcases (1 lg., 1 sm.) and a duffel bag (all under 50# so far). I'll pay what I have to....since I have to. One way or another....my wallet is the only thing that will NOT be over filled upon my arrival!! Sad



I remember there was a store around the Dokki suburb where you could buy craft materials and other posters...all Egyptian made and much much cheaper than importing.
Can't remember the street address but other Egyptian teachers should be able to tell you where it is, or similar stores like it.
I agree with MishMumkin though about the "over-involvement" of parents in the private school system. You have to have a fairly high tolerance for ambiguity...won't say much more...
I appreciate you have had a very good apprenticeship and "seasoning" in the inner city school system - you'll find Egyptian private schools have issues of quite a different nature. Not life threatening, but frustrating and angst causing in their own way till you wade your own path through.
I'm sure you'll manage fine.
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