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Looking for info on Teaching in Moscow

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Joined: 19 Jan 2003
Posts: 1
Location: Seoul, South Korea

PostPosted: Sun Jan 19, 2003 9:57 am    Post subject: Looking for info on Teaching in Moscow Reply with quote

I am currently teaching in South Korea and am interested in coming to Moscow when my contract is done at the end of June. I have been teaching for one year and have a bachelors but do not have any other certification. I am looking into taking the Celta training with BKC and then pursuing a teaching position as soon as I finish the class. Does anyone have any suggestions or advice on what would be the best way to secure a teaching position. I am also looking for any information on what schools to avoid and which to accept positions with. General salary information would also be much appreciated. Thanks for your help. Replies can be directed to Have a great day.
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Joined: 16 Jan 2003
Posts: 15

PostPosted: Mon Jan 20, 2003 2:33 pm    Post subject: Your plan A sounds good Reply with quote

Hello there! Doing a CELTA, then get a job with them is a start. It might be easier for you to work in a bigger school to start with, as they can give you better educational support. You will earn more money if you freelance, which usually comes with a lot of travelling between places. Most schools need more teachers in September/October than other times of the year. So, my advice is to do your CELTA before that. Moscow is a lovely city to live and work in. So good luck to you.
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Kent F. Kruhoeffer

Joined: 22 Jan 2003
Posts: 2129
Location: 中国

PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2003 3:01 pm    Post subject: Some general advice on salaries Reply with quote

Dear SeoulBoy2002,

Getting a CELTA is not a bad idea, but it is *not* absolutely essential to finding a good job in Russia, as long as you have a legitimate university degree and some bona-fide teaching experience. I am living proof of that.

Some schools (like BKC International House) earn big bucks (i.e. US dollars) by offering these CELTA courses, so be very wary of forking over that money if they are unwilling or unable to guarantee you a teaching position upon completion of their course.

Personally, I consider the "take our CELTA course in hopes of landing a possible job with us" to be a *scam*. Evil or Very Mad And, I would not work for them for that reason alone.

Regarding salaries, here are a few pointers: In either Moscow or St. Petersburg, you need to be earning at least US$600 per month (net) to make ends meet, and to enjoy yourself a little, provided your apartment is included at no extra cost. That $600 translates into roughly 19,000 Rubles per month, divided by 30 days per month, leaving you with about 600+ Rubles per day... to blow on food, beer and other assorted stuff. You can do ok on that if you don't have any illusions about living like Tsar Peter.

Less than $600, however, is unacceptable for those 2 cities, as the cost-of-living *is* indeed considerably higher than other, smaller cities like Samara, where I live.

In my humble but frank opinion, in Moscow, $750 per month (net ) would be considered a very good offer, might want to use that figure to judge your other offers by. A target, if you will.

Also, be advised that the big chain schools will often try to hire you at $500 per month (or less! Mad ) by telling you how cheap it is to buy a kilo of potatoes. Well, ok; potatoes are cheap, true enough. But man does not live by potatoes alone. You'll need to buy razor blades, shampoo, clothes, etc, ***all*** of which are IMPORTED these days, and definitely NOT cheap.

To be perfectly blunt, you should take any job offer in Moscow or St. Petersburg of less than $500 and throw it in the trash can. If you are considering a position in a smaller town or city, that same $500 per month would be ok to live on, but you would most certainly not save anything.

Hope this helps a little. Don't hesitate to write again with more questions. I'll try to help. Very Happy

From Russia With Love,

Kent F. Kruhoeffer
Samara, Russia
22 January 2003
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Joined: 16 Jan 2003
Posts: 13

PostPosted: Thu Jan 23, 2003 11:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am in the same position as the dude in Korea. I am currently teaching in Korea but would like to relocate to either Russia or Central Europe. I am slated to take the International House CELTA thing maybe in June, but dont know where to go after that. I just hear that the crime rate in Moscow may be pretty high. Any tips for finding work that pays well would help.
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Kent F. Kruhoeffer

Joined: 22 Jan 2003
Posts: 2129
Location: 中国

PostPosted: Fri Jan 24, 2003 7:32 am    Post subject: Regarding Moscow Reply with quote

Dear Josh,

I'd love to be able to help you with some specific ideas about finding decent employment in Moscow, but...since I teach in Samara, my advice for Moscow is severely limited. Let's hope that some of these teachers who live and work in Moscow will sign up to the "new & improved" forum and post their comments for you asap. Very Happy

I can tell you this: The "Big 3", BKC, Language Link and English First, all have multiple branches in Moscow and do advertise from time to time here on Dave's, as well as the website. They all have their own websites as well, so there's an idea for you to pursue.

In addition to the Big 3, there are many, many smaller schools out there to choose from. least in my experience, the smaller schools often treat you better and offer better contract terms than the big 3, who sometimes tend to view native teachers as easily replaceable commodities.

As one of the earlier posters mentioned, most schools in Russia hire the bulk of their staff for the Fall Semester, which begins in September. Therefore, you will find many more job offers in the summer months leading up to that major intake.

And one 'caveat emptor' for you as well: Be careful about the previous poster's recommendation regarding freelancing. Yes, you can make great $$$ that way, but be aware that you CAN NOT sponser your own visa in Russia. You MUST have an invitation from a school in order for you to get that legal working visa. Now...if the school that hires you doesn't mind you teaching privates, then that's just great. Laughing However, most schools, including the one I work for here in Samara, strictly forbid this practice, and some even consider it to be cause for dismissal. If you plan on teaching privates, do check your contract carefully for this clause before signing on the bottom line.

Ok, Josh. Good luck and "Anyong-ha-sey-yo" from Russia! (I taught for a year at SLP in Chonju, by the way. Really miss that KimBap!)

Warm regards,
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Joined: 16 Jan 2003
Posts: 15

PostPosted: Mon Jan 27, 2003 2:13 pm    Post subject: Do the big three really pay less than US$500 a month? Reply with quote

Hello there! If you want a good steady pay, then go to the British Council. But, they don't really like newly trained teachers. Language Link gives one-week training courses free of charge and you can start working for them at US$400 for a period of time. Then if they think you are okay, they give you a payrise to US$500 a month. Please don't forget to add things like housing benefit, travel allwance, medical cover, visa and bonus. BKC does similar things. Their starting salary for a newly untrained is USD$500, plus benefits. But they prefer people with CELTAs. Experienced, or inexperienced. Unfortunately they don't offer free one-week training courses for those new to TEFL. English First prefers to give out lump-sum payments and let prospective teachers worry about details themselves. There's Sunny Plus, which urgently needed a teacher 2 weeks ago. They have a smaller set up, similar to the three mentioned above. Then, there's Denis School and many more. Look carefully and take your pick! Surely there is a place for everyone!
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