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North American teaching in Europe - best/worst options?

 
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bluehighway



Joined: 20 May 2008
Posts: 5
Location: Waterloo, Ontario

PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2008 6:35 pm    Post subject: North American teaching in Europe - best/worst options? Reply with quote

Hello board.

I'm an American citizen currently teaching at a university in Canada. What are the easiest European countries to work in without an EU passport?

I have two Masters degrees - in Education and Applied Language Studies - and several years experience teaching writing to college/university students. I don't have a TESL certification, but I have lots of experience teaching ESL.

I would really like to teach ESL in Europe, preferably in a country warmer than Canada. What are my options? Suggestions/recommendations?

Is it possible to procure a job from North America, or will I have to go overseas to find work?

Thanks in advance.

P.
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spiral78



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
Posts: 11525
Location: On a Short Leash

PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2008 6:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Unless you land a (rare) international school position, European schools rarely hire from abroad.

Also, if you're looking for southern climes (and assuming you want to work legally) you probably need to limit your search to the 'new' EU countries or places like Croatia. Italy, Spain, Portugal, France...near-impossible for non-EU member citizens to get legal working papers.

I'm going to send you a pm with a bit more info - check your messages.
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naturegirl321



Joined: 04 May 2003
Posts: 9041
Location: home sweet home

PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2008 9:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The newest EU countries are the easiest. For example, Lithunaia and Estonia are much easier than France, Italy, Spain or the UK.

With your experience, aim for international schools or WHV if you can. I'd say you stand a good chance. But usually they hire earlier in the year for an August start. But you might be able to enter in January.

http://forums.eslcafe.com/job/viewtopic.php?t=4556 has links for international schools.

Check the PM I sent you as well.
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parrothead



Joined: 02 Nov 2003
Posts: 342
Location: Japan

PostPosted: Fri Jun 06, 2008 1:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It seems you have the qualifications to teach at an International School perhaps. Getting legal work is difficult in the EU for U.S. citizens, but you could also try non-EU countries, like Turkey.
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GF



Joined: 08 Jun 2003
Posts: 238
Location: Tallinn

PostPosted: Sun Jun 08, 2008 7:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

naturegirl321 wrote:
The newest EU countries are the easiest. For example, Lithunaia and Estonia are much easier than France, Italy, Spain or the UK.


The Baltics are not as easy to get into as they used to be. And the pay in relation to the cost of living tends to be horrible.
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bluehighway



Joined: 20 May 2008
Posts: 5
Location: Waterloo, Ontario

PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2008 5:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

GF wrote:

The Baltics are not as easy to get into as they used to be. And the pay in relation to the cost of living tends to be horrible.


On what are you basing this? Just curious... some people have told me precisely the opposite of what you just said.

I've talked to a lot of people now, and have been told that the easiest "ins" are Turkey, non-EU countries, and according to one website (Transitions Abroad, I think), Portugal...any support for that last assertion?

Most everyone seems to agree that international schools are my only chance for working legally in western European countries, but many are skeptical, esp. when it comes to finding work at one of these institutions from outside Europe.

Any other thoughts? I appreciate all the input, positive and negative.

Thanks to everyone for the advice.
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spiral78



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
Posts: 11525
Location: On a Short Leash

PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2008 6:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Both the laws and the economies of the Central/Eastern European region have been changing rapidly in the past few years. Work and residence visa rules have become tighter, and developing economies mean that cost-of-living has risen considerably.

While private language schools often advertise something like 'very good salary by local standards,' this isn't the entire picture. For example, locals in most cases don't pay rents at the same rate as expats. In Prague (I realize the Czech Rep is not under consideration here, but it serves me as a useful example) a local resident usually fits one or more of the following categories:

1. has a home which has been in the family long-term
2. belongs to a two + income family
3. has a well-paid job which he/she has worked up to by building local contacts, reputation, and language skills, and specific education in country.

All this means that the 'good local salary' of an expat English teacher is quite likely to be no more than double local rental rates - net. The translation in quality of living is that salaries tend to be subsistence level - enough to enjoy where you are, but where a new pair of jeans is a fairly major expense, and you've no hope of buying a car or flat in anything like a reasonable time period.

As for Portugal, I know several Americans who've tried and failed to find anything there - though that's not to say it's 100% impossible. But it's not a major loophole, for sure.
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Writer



Joined: 31 Mar 2008
Posts: 31

PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2008 7:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I worked in Turkey in 2005. I flew in January 1st and had six interviews set up in the first four days. Pay was enough to support both my spouse and myself as far as regular monthly expenses. However, I need to point out that we went there with some money. Usually you have to pay six months rent in advance for an unfurnished apartment. There are very few furnished apartments. Forget about used furniture, it's only fit for landfill. For a single person, easiest would be to ask around the school and see who need s a roommate.
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GF



Joined: 08 Jun 2003
Posts: 238
Location: Tallinn

PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2008 8:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

bluehighway wrote:
GF wrote:

The Baltics are not as easy to get into as they used to be. And the pay in relation to the cost of living tends to be horrible.


On what are you basing this? Just curious... some people have told me precisely the opposite of what you just said.

I've talked to a lot of people now, and have been told that the easiest "ins" are Turkey, non-EU countries, and according to one website (Transitions Abroad, I think), Portugal...any support for that last assertion?

Most everyone seems to agree that international schools are my only chance for working legally in western European countries, but many are skeptical, esp. when it comes to finding work at one of these institutions from outside Europe.

Any other thoughts? I appreciate all the input, positive and negative.

Thanks to everyone for the advice.


I base my comment on the fact that I have been living and working in Es