Realistic Goal? Teaching In Actual Schools

RQH

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Buenos Dias!

I'm a mid-30's man with 10 years of teaching experience (English grammar and Lit) in the US. I've been looking around to find a job teaching in a local school, though I'm not sure if I'm wasting my time. I see that it's pretty easy to find a job at an ESL school - and I'll do that if I need to - but I'd love to find a bilingual school instead. I've looked at the international schools for the past 6 months (Lincoln, BAICA, etc), but they haven't had any openings.

Am I spinning my wheels here? Should I just suck it up and teach ESL? Am I being unrealistic to hope that there's a bilingual school out there for me?

Thanks for your help!
RQH
 

Noesdeayer

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RGH:
I don't really know if you are wasting your time or not. However,if you are interested in staying in Argentina for a while.I would first read the article in today's (July 11) BA Herald," Gov't Concerned by Skilled Labour Shortage" epecially the paragraph "Hard and Soft Skills".Expand your insight into what soft or people skills in English are.After that develop the ones you have into a course offering.
I have been teaching interface skills in English in in- company courses here since 1980.Now,with the new gov't even at 74 I am planning to continue.The first rule in business is to fill a need.The need here is English for employment.Work on that angle.
 

gpop

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I don't know about available opportunities, but I will say this: what some people pass off as English education in Argentina is laughable.
My 10 year old daughter has English classes 2 times per week and is still coming home with homework material fit for a first grade student.
I will not say all, but many of the educators [that I've come across] cannot even carry a conversation in English with me. I think that many people achieve a certain level/certification and go on believing that they are able to communicate and - dare I say - teach.

I'm sure that to parents like me, you would be a welcome addition to any institution. Having said that, I'm sure that therein lies the problem: locals will get jobs first (and I'm sure that there's a union aspect to it).
If you are not already using linkedin.com; get an account and start adding local contacts in your industry as well as head-hunters and HR folk. This network is used quite a lot here.
EDIT: How long do you plan on staying in Argentina (and do you have a DNI, CUIL/CUIT)? Having residence and these documents make you readily employable.
 

Roxana

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There are few openings for teachers at bilingual schools, I suggest you to focus on your transferrable skills to the local market. Good luck and welcome!
 

Girino

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I've looked at the international schools for the past 6 months (Lincoln, BAICA, etc), but they haven't had any openings.

The recruiting process is a lot different here. Most employers don't really have 'openings' - they just make a Career page, if any, but their website is not updated regularly.
Or they simply rely on word-by-mouth, with dubious results. If they do really need somebody, they might use a recruiting company to handle the search.

As far as local vs. foreigner hires, locals are cheaper and if they audience is made of locals, there is no point in hiring somebody who is more expensive if they can find someone equally skilled for the job. We might argue that quality should play a role, but unfortunately it isn't so.

I was offered a job at a bilingual school (not Spanish-English) and the fact that I was a native speaker of the target language was valued ZERO. They were offering a "standard Argentine hiring contract, whereas I was expecting a custom-made offering. I declined.
 

sergio

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You cannot live on what you would be paid teaching ESL. You will also not find a full-time ESL position, just a few hours here and there. The top bilingual schools (St, Andrews, for example) hire a few teachers from England and pay decent salaries plus offer free air tickets to BA, accommodation, health care and other benefits. They seldom, if ever, consider American applicants. Local hires are paid considerably less. You say that you taught literature and grammar. This is what you would be hired for, not teaching ESL. Contrary to what someone posted here, at the top bilingual schools the English level of the faculty is good to excellent. I think you'd be wiser to look for an international school in another country where there are more opportunities for Americans.
 

syngirl

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The recruiting process is a lot different here. Most employers don't really have 'openings' - they just make a Career page, if any, but their website is not updated regularly.
Or they simply rely on word-by-mouth, with dubious results. If they do really need somebody, they might use a recruiting company to handle the search.

As far as local vs. foreigner hires, locals are cheaper and if they audience is made of locals, there is no point in hiring somebody who is more expensive if they can find someone equally skilled for the job. We might argue that quality should play a role, but unfortunately it isn't so.

I was offered a job at a bilingual school (not Spanish-English) and the fact that I was a native speaker of the target language was valued ZERO. They were offering a "standard Argentine hiring contract, whereas I was expecting a custom-made offering. I declined.

Actually the extremely elite schools here -- Lincoln, St Georges etc -- do a lot of their hiring abroad at international expositions for elite private schools. Some of the very elite schools require you to have a Masters in the subject that you are wishing to teach, the same as elite private schools in the US/Canada. (Sorry I may mean St Andrews? St Georges is the elite private boys school in Vancouver but I`m not sure that the one here is at that level... anyway it's all the same deal, there are job fairs specifically for this class of private schools all around the world, in Argentina there are not a lot of institutes of that level, but that may be who the OP needs to target, rather than the schools themselves, they need to get their CV to private school recruiting agencies -- there's a few working with Argentina, do a search for private school job fairs -- http://www.searchassociates.com/schools/argentina/)
 

sergio

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Lincoln is in a completely different category from the bilingual schools. It's an American school with an American curriculum. They will favor Americans when it comes to employing people from overseas. I am almost certain that they pay the best of all the schools if you are hired from the US. BAICA (Buenos AIres International Christian Academy) is an evangelical Protestant American school. I don't know about their hiring policies but they almost certainly hire a few people from the US and I imagine they expect teachers to adhere to the school's conservative Christian philosophy. St. George's College is a very old and elite school, originally boarding but I am not sure if they still have any boarding. I believe they now have two campuses. St. Andrews is probably the #1 bilingual school. Like the other elite bilingual schools they hire mainly from the UK and expect teachers to be familiar with a British curriculum. They may hire an American but most likely a local hire for far less money and without a free apartment, tickets home etc. The top bilingual schools started out as British schools for the British, now Anglo-Argentine community with the same curriculum that was taught in Britain. Over time they had to adapt. The English curriculum (this includes subjects like math taught in English) are non-official so students must take state mandated courses to graduate. The school day, for this reason, is long. I'd say that for an American Argentina does not offer many opportunities to teach literature. It would be better to look at postings in other countries in Europe or Asia, for example.
 
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