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Looking for jobs in Istanbul?

 
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biscuit853



Joined: 01 Jun 2012
Posts: 1
Location: Istanbul, Turkey

PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2012 7:46 am    Post subject: Looking for jobs in Istanbul? Reply with quote

Hi! I have been living in turkey on and off for the last 5 years. I have been permanent there the last year and a half. A few years ago I was searching for a way to find a job there before going for my MA. A friend of mine who was working there suggested I get a Celta and teach English. I did so, and it turned out to be something which I really love and,i am now looking into pursuing better qualifications in order to make it a beneficial and rewarding career. I noticed that the turkey forum has been a little inactive. I figured I would post a little bit about my experience and give some hints.
1. If you want a respected/serious teaching contract in Istanbul start applying in late April to may. Your last bet for a really good job is usually early summer.
2. As in many other locations, as I have also heard about through colleagues, beware of agencies. Dave's esl blacklist is a good resource, but it definitely needs more active postings for turkey. I will post my own agency story later.
3. Turkey is somewhat of a gem. Istanbul can be expensive for a foreign person, and paperwork regarding long term visas, work permits and insurance can be a hassle which should be taken on by any respectable employer. If you can wade through that, or are willing to work without a permit, turkey is a beautiful and exciting place to live. It is changing rapidly and dramatically. A few years ago I would have said it was old world mixed with new world. Today it is old world culture mixed with rapidly paced euro style development. You can find pretty much anything here. Istanbul is cheap if you are willing to live with a few roommates, and of course it depends on location. But usually, with the public transit, you can estimate a half hour to hour long commute. Once you figure out rent, utilities, and your paperwork you can live pretty cheaply. Be thrifty with restaurants and nighttime hangouts. Nice cheap places exist.
4. Make friends with a local. A colleague or roommate will do. Women beware of too friendly men, but if you are smart about it it works. Turkey is a country of 'knowing how to make something happen'. Being affirmative is a positive. But it's an intricate system which would greatly benefit from the knowledge of a well rounded local. It's not too hard to make good, caring friends in turkey though. Turkish people are not insincere in their willingness to go out of their way for you. Just never forget it, and prepared to do the same.
5. Be honest with yourself when applying for a position. Some schools are conservative, others are not. As a foreign person it can be difficult working in a conservative school.
6. Don't take your first offer. Everyone will make you feel like they are the only place around. Take the time and do your research. Join a forum or Facebook group. Even if you are in the middle of the semester, there are teaching jobs.
7. Ask questions when applying, some jobs will tell you have insurance when you will actually be waiting 6 months for the public insurance. The public hospitals are cheap,but kindof a hassle if you just want to go see a doctor. All sick days need a written note from a doctor. A good school will automatically enroll you in their private insurance.
8. ask about housing assistance, some companies will tac on a housing allowance to your pay. Be assertive.
9. Be cautious when seeking work in language schools. Most pay below minimum, 18-20 tl per hour. Your hours are greatly varied, and often classes get cancelled at the last minute. There are a lot of shady language schools in Istanbul and all over turkey. Some good ones are dragamon, rennert, britishside, tepum, and others. Some other good schools are those associated with big universities. Language schools can hopefully offer a work permit for full time work, or at least pay a decent wage per hour. Wages range from 20 to 100 an hour. If you are qualified and have experience ask for the higher range. Some companies will not do it, but some ( including the ones listed above) are honest and prompt in communications and payments.
10. Take the time to weigh the pros and cons against your own judgment and needs. Do not work in a primary school if you don't like kids, find a job working with adults. There are great opportunities in turkey. As a celta qualified native speaker you can expect to earn 2500 to 4000 lira per month. Add some street smarts and experience, you could earn possibly more. If you are more highly qualified, then you can expect to earn more with the right school or company. The British curriculum and training/ knowledge is preferred in better schools here. But other native teachers should still find a welcoming and exciting experiencence. It's not always easy, do not come if you think it will be easy. But if you come, and can successfully navigate it, turkey is really a great place to be.

Noted schools which were not mentioned in the language schools section: Bilfen, ata koleji, small hands, dogus, And other schools often associated with universities. ITI is one of two companies (Britishside as well) which offers Cambridge certified celta and delta courses in Istanbul. They also give you good advice on job searching. Good luck and happy hunting Smile

If anyone finds that I have forgotten anything, feel free to comment Smile
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Eagle Eyes



Joined: 26 Apr 2012
Posts: 121
Location: Istanbul

PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2012 9:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes you forgot to mention that times have indeed changed in Istanbul regarding TEFL earnings...earnings have remained stagnant (and in many cased have dropped significantly) for over the past two decades or so due to the tens of thousands of EFL teachers here looking for work. This combined with the fact that prices have inceased dramatically (including overall cost of living) making savings less and less for the average TEFL teacher. Actually Istanbul is beccoming a very expensive city to live in day by day especially as it now appears it will be joining the EURO very soon. Dreaming is sweet but reality hurts! Shocked
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Dedicated



Joined: 18 May 2007
Posts: 751
Location: UK

PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2012 5:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Eagle Eyes wrote :

]...tens of thousands of EFL teachers here looking for work....

What a gross exaggeration ! Have you actually been to Istanbul?

[/quote]...it now appears it will be joining the EURO very soon
Quote:


Turkey applied for full membership of the EEC in 1987 and has been in formal accession negotiations with the EU since 2005. This is likely to take at least until 2021 to complete, even if the process goes in Turkey's favour, according to European Commission President, Jose Barroso. The issue of Cyprus continues to be a major obstacle to negotiations and Austria, Germany and France are opposed to their membership.

There's no way they are joining the Eurozone anytime soon. I doubt any country wants to join the Eurozone at present !
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The Steakinator



Joined: 13 Apr 2012
Posts: 71
Location: Oman

PostPosted: Mon Jul 30, 2012 7:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Eagle Eyes wrote:
Yes you forgot to mention that times have indeed changed in Istanbul regarding TEFL earnings...earnings have remained stagnant (and in many cased have dropped significantly) for over the past two decades or so due to the tens of thousands of EFL teachers here looking for work.


More like a few hundred teachers looking for employment, many of them Non-natives (and thus, don't have 'magic' in Turkish eyes). Most of the language schools are dying for natives. That doesn't mean they'll pay a lot, but they're dying for teachers and that wouldn't be the case if there were tens of thousands of teachers roaming around.

So long as the manager was there and I had my CV in hand, I would say that easily 4 of 5 places offered me hours at about 20 TL an hour. The catch, though, is that the hours at all these places coincide so you can really only hold down one job at a private language school/institute at a time. Of course, the institute you're working at will always tell you, and quite sincerely, that there will be more hours next month, which rarely seem to arrive. Trying to have two was, in my experience, impossible. I did know some Turks who taught in primary, elementary, and high schools and then worked in institutes on the weekends or evenings - they said it worked perfectly for them. That being said, my experience was that Turks don't work hard, per se, but they do work a lot and they just accept it as normal.

I think a bigger issue of why the TEFL wages dropped so heavily while cost of living went up is that more and more Turks with English anywhere from semi-broken to fluent entered the workforce and were cheaper than foreigners. On top of it, Turks already "know the game" are less of a hassle than dealing with teachers who have Anglophone notions of education (not bashing Western or Anglophone ed, I'd prefer it any day of the week), employee-boss relationships, time, etc. Let's face it, in many of the countries TEFLers head to, taken as a whole, we're as much a liability as an asset whether it's inside or outside of work. That's the case in S. Korea, which is one of the central destinations for TEFLers.

At the end of the day, Istanbul is not a cheap city, it's pretty expensive, especially compared to locals' wages.[/i]
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Aristede



Joined: 06 Aug 2009
Posts: 117

PostPosted: Tue Jul 31, 2012 2:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dedicated wrote:
Eagle Eyes wrote :

...tens of thousands of EFL teachers here looking for work....

What a gross exaggeration ! Have you actually been to Istanbul?


Yes, Eagle Eyes regularly makes this claim...nothing new about it. Plus, on the Turkey board he pretends he's in Turkey and on the Thailand board pretends he's in Thailand and says false things there. All part of a regular trolling regimen, God knows why.
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Mr. Kalgukshi
Mod Team
Mod Team


Joined: 18 Jan 2003
Posts: 6017
Location: Anxious? Stressed? Repeat the following 300 times daily: A wet robin never flies at night.

PostPosted: Tue Jul 31, 2012 11:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Eagle Eyes is no longer with us.

Should he reappear in the future, please advise the Mod Team by Report Post or PM.
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