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The Importance of a Diverse Teaching Staff

Have you ever taken a family vacation to another major city?  

What kind of people do you see? What race are they? What religion? From which socio-economic background do they come?  

The easy answer to all of these questions is, many!

We at the SIS Group of Schools believe that one way we can prepare your children for an ever globalizing landscape is to put teachers from all over the world in their classrooms.  At SIS Medan more than 70% of our teachers hail from G20 countries.  This means that your child will be exposed to several different accents, several different cultures and several different systems of belief.  We have teachers from all over the world and this small sample of professionals is a great representation of what major hubs all over the world are actually like.  

There is no one true definition of international mindedness which can really be agreeable to all, however the crux of the meaning is certainly present in the day to day activities and operations of every SIS School.  From the different languages we offer to our students to the variety of international celebrations we take part in, SIS Medan understands the need for providing a conscious effort towards global understanding and creating students who value and appreciate diversity.

One of the greatest benefits of having a diverse teaching staff is the fact that it promotes empathy and reduces prejudice. When students live and attend schools in racially isolated environments they can develop prejudices. Being educated about diversity can counter discriminatory stereotypes. Through understanding various cultures and social groups, students are able to make connections from their own lives to the lives of their peers. Teaching diversity increases cultural competence, which in turn allows students to be empathetic to the experiences of others.  By overcoming cultural bias or any preconceived notions, a child may have, will ensure that they do not come off as naive or uneducated once they are overseas or simply dealing with people from abroad via an online platform.

Here is a great example of a very simple question that accidently trips over the imaginary line between cultural understanding.

“How would an economic recession affect the business of a bakery?

Now this is a question that could be taken two ways depending on where you are from.  A student of Asian descent perhaps may see the bakery as a place to buy cupcakes and specialty cakes for special occasions.  However, a Western perspective may see the bakery as a place where bread is bought on a daily or weekly basis. As rice would be the major staple item of your typical Asian household, students may not see bread as a staple item.  Therefore since bread is a staple item, one could say that the bakery would still be doing fine, as regardless of the state of the economy, people will always need to buy bread.  

As the world continues to globalize, cultures begin to merge and the more industries require cross border collaboration, it will be those who possess the solid foundation in dealing with a number of nationalities, cultures and social groups whom have the advantage.  SIS Medan and the SIS Group of Schools continue to understand the trends which will shape the landscape of the future and this is why such crucial planning is done. Everything from our lesson plans to our diverse teaching staff play a role in how we prepare our students to be successful for an ever changing world.