Located in Central Chile, Valparaíso is a seaport city essential in Chilean history and culture, due to its favorable location. Known as an education center nationally, Valparaíso hails many teaching job opportunities. With striking architectural colors, Valparaíso encompasses the vibrancy of Latin America mixed with Spanish influence, which makes the seaside city even more enthralling. The city is nestled in next to steep hillsides, and has architecture that warrants its status as a world heritage site, making it one of the nation’s most visited cities and an incredible place to teach abroad in Chile.
Teaching Jobs in Valparaíso
There are a wide variety of teaching jobs in Valparaíso, and throughout that country for that matter, because of the great importance that education holds in Chilean society. That being said, it is quite easy to find both volunteer and paid teaching jobs in Valparaíso, making your teaching goals even easier to achieve.
Public Schools provide many teaching jobs Valparaíso for international teachers, which span from kindergarten to 12th grade. Available teaching placements cover a wide variety of subjects, including language arts, math, science, technology education, social studies, and art. However, thanks to the Chilean Ministry of Education, English positions are the most commonly found type of teaching job in Valparaíso, and obviously best suited for English speakers. If you are a teaching full-time in a public school, you will most likely get the same monthly salary that a Chilean teacher gets. A degree in education is typically mandatory for applicants who want to teach in Valparaíso, and teachers with work experience are highly sought after.
Assistant Teaching is another viable option for teaching in Valparaíso, especially for teachers who are interested in gaining teaching experience but are not ready to take on a classroom of their own. This is also a great option for those currently studying education or teaching, allowing them to gain experience, and demonstrate their knowledge within the classroom in a real-life context in their studies back home. Not only will you be able to apply your teaching skills, but you will be able to do so in a more holistic way because of your international experience. Assistant teaching sometimes comes in the form of co-teaching, where international and local teachers will be paired up and evenly split teaching duties for a group of students.
Teaching English. The English language is incorporated into the education system in Chile from a very early age, and English teachers are always in high demand, making English teaching jobs in Valparaíso very popular prospects. With a wide variety of options, ranging from early education, public schools, universities, and private tutoring, English teaching in Valparaíso will give you the opportunity to gain teaching skills for the future, and this type of job also happens to pay better. Participating in private tutoring is a great way to make additional money outside of your teaching job in Valparaíso too.
Teachers will typically be paid for 40 hour work weeks, unless the job is noted to be part-time. While most teaching jobs in Valparaíso are dedicated to working directly with students, other aspects of a teacher’s schedule may include lesson planning, staff meetings, and parent conferences. Teachers are usually expected to arrive around 8:00 a.m. and stay until around 5:30 p.m., which is comparable to the schedule teachers have in the United States. The school year is different in Valparaíso, however, and runs from March until November. Those who choose volunteer teaching jobs in Valparaíso will likely get a monthly stipend that will meet their daily needs.
Life in Valparaíso
Life is Valparaíso, like its colorful buildings, is rarely dull. With a popular nightlife, and many hidden streets to explore, teachers will find that it easy to be entertained outside the classroom. Although teaching jobs in Valparaíso can range from full-time to part-time, it is true that most of your time will be dedicated to your students, but certainly not all of it. With the standard 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. commitment, your evenings will be free to experience all that Valparaíso has to offer. Once you have seen all of the popular landmarks, such as Museo a Cielo Abierto, Mercado Cardonal, and even Pablo Neruda’s house, you will begin to find your own hidden gems before heading back to the classroom for another week of teaching.
Salary & Costs
Teachers will usually be paid around $1,200 each month for teaching in Valparaíso, which should be more than enough to cover the cost of living in the city. This is especially true when considering Valparaíso’s affordability; the cost of living is typically less than $1,000 each month. Some teaching contracts, once completed, will even cover the cost of your flight home.
Accommodation & Visas
Apartments are the most common accommodations offered to teachers in Valparaíso, but teachers can also consider using an expat real estate agent to find a place to live. Apartments in the hills of Cerros Alegre and Cerros Concepcion will give you views of the Pacific Ocean, and are within close proximity to the city.
Getting a work visa in order to teach in Chile will usually involve help from your employer, which makes the process much easier. A contract proving legitimacy is mandatory, so if your employer is not helping you with the visa process, you must at least be contracted in order to obtain a work visa. In Chile, it is common for foreigners to come to the country on a tourist visa, and then begin searching for teaching jobs. Once they have succeeded in finding a teaching job in Valparaíso, then they apply for a work visa. Whether you have a job lined up before traveling to Valparaíso or not, it is important that you get a work visa before your first day of work.
Benefits & Challenges
Cerros & Cityscape. Valparaíso is known for its steep hillsides and labyrinth-like streets that overlook the Pacific Ocean, all of which make it a world heritage site. Not only does this mean your housing will most likely have a pleasant view of the ocean, but it also means that you will have the opportunity to live in a highly valued city in Chile.
Nepotistic Nation. While teaching jobs in Valparaíso are abundant, finding a job can still be a challenging task because of the popularity of nepotism. With family and friends being of the utmost importance, it is common for locals to give those they have a close relationship with a job before giving it to someone else. While you may be more qualified for the position, if a family member is also looking for a job, it often comes down to who you know.