Poland is an increasingly popular TEFL destination for first-time teachers. Students tend to be attentive and eager to learn as English can vastly improve their career prospects. There are many, many vacancies for native speakers so finding a decent position even without experience should not be difficult at all. As may be expected, it is much easier for EU nationals to find jobs because of European bureaucracy. It is crucial that you read the contract carefully before signing as there could be ‘small print’ which demands that you travel a considerable distance to give classes but are not paid for the travelling time. Salaries are not great and you will probably need to give extra classes in your spare time to make a comfortable wage.
|Type of Institution||Typical salary (USD/month)||Typical hours||Typical annual leave|
|Language centres||800 – 1,200||Various but usually including evenings and weekends||2 weeks plus national holidays|
|International schools and universities||2,500 upwards||9am – 4pm Monday to Friday plus some weekend work||10 weeks plus national holidays|
Main places for jobs
Warszawa, Krakow, Lodz.
Degree, TEFL certificate.
1. It may be worth considering giving private lessons alongside your main job in order to supplement your modest income.
2. Do your research before signing contracts. Ask to speak to former teachers about their experiences. This is important because given the very large number of language centres in Poland it is only natural that quite a few are dreadful places that will not pay you on time, if at all. International House has a good reputation.
3. Americans with little or no experience may consider taking part in the month-long cultural exchange program run by the Kosciuszkco Foundation.
As with most countries in Europe, it is a lot easier for EU nationals to find work as the paperwork required is significantly less than when applying to employ non-EU nationals.
Cost of living
Food and transport is cheap but accommodation costs are rising in the main cities.
Tax and salary information
Employers generally pay your income tax for you and as usual you should expect to be paid on a monthly basis.
|A vast number of teaching opportunities||Lots of red tape for non-EU nationals|
|Fascinating history and exciting nightlife||Rather low salaries|
|Excellent public transportation||Expensive accommodation when compared to average starting salaries|
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