Spain or Italy - CELTA

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Spain or Italy - CELTA

Unread postby Zebastian » 09 Oct 2011, 16:40

I am seeking TEFL work in Spain or Italy. I’m an Oxford graduate who has experience of working in Japan and Taiwan. I am doing a CELTA course in November. Is it possible to secure a position at a reputable company before completing the course or is best to apply for jobs after the course? I would like to start in January 2012.

Does anyone have any experience in applying for TEFL jobs in Spain or Italy before gaining a CELTA or equivalent qualification?
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Re: Spain or Italy - CELTA

Unread postby Briona » 09 Oct 2011, 19:07

If a job requires you to have a CELTA or equivalent, I can't see anyone hiring you before you've actually got one. After all there's no guarantee that you'll pass! Note that both Spain and Italy are popular TEFL destinations and thus there's no shortage of (qualified) teachers, many of whom are already in-country.

January is not a great time to be looking for work. The few vacancies available are due to teachers having gone home at Xmas and not returned. Finding work then means an immediate start and having to hit the ground running. And if you miss that window you're pretty much stuck until March/April when the summer jobs are advertised.
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Re: Spain or Italy - CELTA

Unread postby Zebastian » 10 Oct 2011, 09:27

Briona,

Thanks for your reply. It's very helpful.

Are there any other places in Southern Europe recruiting for that time? I simply want to be somewhere warmer than the UK and have half-decent holidays around Easter. Half-decent pay would also be excellent.

Any advice is greatly appreciated.
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Re: Spain or Italy - CELTA

Unread postby Briona » 10 Oct 2011, 21:15

Hi again,

Unfortunately European countries tend to have similar academic years (Sep/Oct to June) and thus the number of vacancies available in January depends very much on the number of non-returning teachers. There will definitely be some vacancies, but they might not be in your location/country of choice.

If long Easter holidays are important to you, Spain or Portugal would be your best bets. It seems that the further East you go, the less important Easter is! Last year while working in Portugal I had two weeks off. This year I'm in Poland and I think I've got five days off for Easter (one of which is a Saturday and so not one of my days of work!). However that's balanced out by my 'winter break' (two weeks off at the beginning of February).

In terms of pay, Portugal worked out nicely as the cost of living is quite cheap and the wage fairly Western! I was living in the north of the country in Portugal's third city and I managed to save a fair bit of money. I could have saved more too if I had done a bit less sightseeing! For the most part the weather was great - standing on a deserted beach in 20 degree heat in January was definitely a plus! However, the north of the country can be pretty wet (a good umbrella comes highly recommended!) and at times the weather could seem quite British. It didn't get colder than 6 degrees though! :)

Hope that helps.

Briona
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Re: Spain or Italy - CELTA

Unread postby MilanInglese » 09 Apr 2012, 10:35

Hmm..

Anybody looking for decent pay and holiday pay to boot would be best served giving Italy a miss. It is certainly possible to find work here and contrary to what a previous poster said, a CELTA is not required. Many schools advertise a preference for applicants to hold one, but that's for the benefit of customers who see the adverts. In practice they lok for the cheapest employees.

The largest schools in Milan, for example, have 'training' programs set up for new arrivals. They give you a few hours guidance and then chuck you into the classroom to see if you can swim. Their conracts mean that it doesn't matter if you can or not; if they don't like you they'll simply stop giving you lessons and if you don't work, you don't get paid. Full stop.

Working privately is the solution. I earn somewhere around 2000 euros a month working what amounts to part-time and don't work for a school. I could earn more, but I now choose not to work in Milan itself. I hate the place. However, working privately requires time. Private students don't wait at the train station for new teachers to arrive in Italy. Word of mouth only helps people who've been here for a few years. Schools help themselves. Advertising in papers is prohibitively expensive and the schools dominate internet searches for teachers. In my home town I have 3 different websites on google's first page of search results, but that took a long time to achieve.

As posted elsewhere, we (some friends and I) set up a teacher directory for Lombardia (www.milanoinglese.com and .it) but this won't help people who want to come here short-term. If you're here short-term, your best bet is to look at the 'summer camp' type jobs. Otherwise, find another country!

Brian
www.milanoinglese.it
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