One of the biggest cities in Spain, Valencia is among the liveliest and most visited cities in the country. Strategically located near to the Mediterranean, Valencia boasts a beachy vibe in the shadows of a major city. With thriving cultural events and a great nightlife, Valencia is becoming an increasingly popular place to teach abroad in Spain. Since Spanish is the national language of Spain, there are a generous amount of English teaching jobs in Valencia, especially for TEFL certified teachers. Although teachers with limited Spanish skills will be challenged while teaching in Valencia, the experiences and professional skills they will gain will be worth it a hundred times over.
Teaching Jobs in Valencia
Most of teaching jobs in Valencia are focused on teaching English as a second language, regardless of the weekly time commitment or contract specifics. Spaniards are placing more and more importance on English language skills, mainly for professional development purposes, and learning from a native English speaker is seen as the fastest route to fluency.
Those who decide to teach in Valencia can choose to work full time or part time. For full time teaching jobs in Valencia, teachers will typically work in private, public, or international schools, teaching either elementary or high school students. Teachers are most frequently hired to manage their own classes or teach English to larger groups of students, but it is also possible to work as a language assistant under a local teacher.
Full time teaching jobs in Valencia usually entail contracts that last for an entire school year, or sometimes for a full semester only. Depending on their performance and the specific school, teachers may have the opportunity to renew their contract and continue teaching in Valencia for a longer period. Most full time teaching jobs in Valencia will require applicants to have an education degree, have a degree and a TEFL certificate, or have significant teaching experience. However, the requirements for each teaching job in Valencia will vary.
On the other hand, part time teaching jobs in Valencia normally come in the form of English language tutoring, either to families or individual students. In the case of English language tutoring for families, teachers are usually provided with accommodation and food (and sometimes an additional allowance) in return for tutoring sessions. This offers international teachers a flexible and unique way to teach in Valencia and intimately experience the local way of life. Teachers can also find independent tutoring jobs in Valencia, but the specifics, benefits, and legality of paid work for this type of arrangement vary. Part time teaching jobs in Valencia usually last for a shorter period of time, such as a few months, as opposed to an entire academic year.
Life in Valencia
Valencia is a melting pot of regional cultures, as it has been influenced by neighboring countries because of its geographical location on the southeastern coast of the country along the Mediterranean Sea. As a city of mixed influences, it is not surprising that locals in Valencia speak several Spanish dialects.
Teachers will be able to (if they play their cards right) enjoy a variety of cultural festivals and celebrations held annually in Valencia, and create memories they will never forget! While teaching in Valencia, teachers will no doubt have the opportunity to indulge in Spanish cuisine daily, tasting paella and orxata prepared locally will never compare to imitations from abroad.
Valencia is also a city filled with a youthful spirit, as it is home to some of the nation’s top universities, so finding something to do at morning, noon, or night will never be a problem. Along with a great nightlife and plenty of shops in the city center, teachers can travel to the outskirts of the city, where endless hiking trails can be explored to stay fit, or venture to the coastline for some sunbathing and relaxation.
The city of Valencia has a plethora of transportation options, both for travel within and out of the city (or country), from trains to planes to buses. Teachers can spend a weekend visiting Madrid or Barcelona, or travel even farther to experience Mediterranean cities like Rome or Athens. Daily transportation to and from work will also be efficient and enjoyable for those teaching in Valencia.
Salary & Costs
Those who decide to teach in Valencia will be provided with sizeable salaries, benefits, and allowances for their work. Teachers can earn up to 1,200 to 1,350 Euros a month, teaching for 20 to 25 hours a week. However, there are some opportunities to teach in Valencia that offer alternative forms of compensation, such as accommodation or meals, instead of simple monthly salaries.
The cost of living in Valencia will depend on each teacher’s lifestyle choices. It is possible to live on $800 a month, but it is also easy to splurge on daily luxuries and end up spending closer to $2000. The largest monthly expense will be accommodation, so teachers should consider teaching jobs in Valencia that include accommodation as a very beneficial opportunity. To put things into perspective, a bottle of beer costs between $2 and $3 and a liter of milk costs $1, while eating out at a nice restaurant could easily cost $15 to $25 per person.
Accommodation & Visas
Host schools or program providers will often provide accommodation for successful teaching job applicants, Depending on the type of teaching job, applicants might be provided with a shared apartment or flat or they may be placed with a local homestay family. Teachers will typically also have the option to live independently or rent a room and share an apartment with other international teachers. The cost of renting an individual room varies based on the type of apartment, amenities provided, and its location, but it is possible to rent a room for as little as $400 with basic amenities or pay $700 for a decent two bedroom apartment.
In order to teach abroad in Valencia, individuals will have to apply for a visa prior to arriving in Spain. Teachers who decide to obtain part time work in Valencia will be able to opt for a 90 day visa that is provided upon arrival, but this is typically limited to those that are not receiving monetary compensation for their work. For longer, formal teaching jobs in Valencia, teachers are usually required to apply for a working holiday visa or a general working visa, both of which will require the assistance of their host school or program provider.
Visa requirements will vary based on each teacher’s country of origin. For example, applicants from the European Union can live and work in Spain quite easily without much hassle in terms of visas. But many other nationalities will have strict visa procedures that must be followed in order to teach in Valencia legally. It is best for teachers to contact a Spanish embassy in their home country early on to get the most up to date visa requirements for their home country and job type.
Benefits & Challenges
Adjustment Period. Teaching in Valencia will require at least a few days or weeks to get used to the culture, way of life, and day to day requirements of the job. But, most teachers will find themselves happily and smoothly transitioning into the Spanish way of life without too many obstacles.
Language. Foreign teachers who plan to teach in Valencia are encouraged to take Spanish classes before and after their arrival in Spain. Developing Spanish language skills will not only help them become better teachers, it will also help teachers navigate daily interactions and get to know the local culture better. Since not all students will speak English, foreign teachers will have to be innovative and playful in their lesson planning to encourage active listening and participation in their classes.