When most think of France, they imagine strolling along the Seine River or gazing up at the Eiffel Tower at night in Paris. But imagine transporting Parisian luxury and glamour to the South of France. Enter Aix-en-Provence, with its chic boulevards, cozy cafes, designer shops, and glorious sunshine. Not only is it the culture and tourism capital of the Provence region, but it has also developed into a charming university town, meaning there are endless opportunities for educators. Get ready to sip espressos and snack on sweet, tangy calissons as you impart knowledge on your future students as you teach abroad in Aix-En-Provence!
Teaching Jobs in Aix-En-Provence
Aix-en-Provence is one of France’s top educational centers, with over 40,000 students wandering the colorful boulevards. With such a large student population, there are many different types of teaching jobs throughout the city, whether you want to work with young children, language students, or adults.
The most popular placement for teaching abroad in Aix-en-Provence is teaching English. Why not take advantage of your native English language and teach French students who want to learn a foreign language? Many English teaching abroad programs begin with a TEFL or TESOL course, so teachers can earn their certification once they arrive in Aix-en-Provence. The course usually lasts four weeks with 150 hours of study. Not only will you be guaranteed a placement in this beautiful city upon completion, but you’ll also have a certification that will allow you to teach English all over the world!
If you love kids, join a teaching program that offers childcare placements. This could range from full-time nannying to part-time tutoring for young students. Many childcare placements offer a homestay option with a laidback work environment. Teachers live with a local family, combining “work” with everyday life. As you care for the children and offer one-on-one tutoring, you’ll also become a student yourself as your family teaches you all about French culture.
Other teachers consider looking in the university setting for their English jobs in France. This gives the opportunity to work with adults of all ages, teaching more than just language. Placements range across a broad spectrum, from liberal arts universities to military academies, bilingual schools to political institutes. Don’t be afraid to seek a placement that allows you to teach your passion!
Teaching jobs normally begin at the start of the French school year in September and again at the start of the second semester in January, with most contracts ending in June. Short-term placements are also available over the summers, beginning in June. Keep these dates in mind as you begin planning your next adventure abroad.
Life for ESL Teachers in Aix-en-Provence
Aix-en-Provence is one of the top destinations for travelers in France, and for good reason. This city is home to many inspirational artists, and art is reflected in every aspect of life: the winding cliff-top roads, brilliant sunsets, Roman architecture, and Mediterranean cuisine. Teachers will fall in love with this sunny and seductive French paradise.
Located in the South of France, Aix-en-Provence features a warmer climate than other parts of Europe. With 300 days of sunshine per year, teachers can embrace the lovely outdoors. Stroll along the city’s main thoroughfare, Cours Mirabeau, admiring the sandstone buildings, colorful houses, rows of plane trees, and exquisite fountains. Sip on espresso in cafes that inspired Ernest Hemingway, or discover the passion that lies in French cooking, gracing your palette with olive oil, wine, tomatoes, and garlic. Can you say, “bon apetit!?”
The city is divided into two sections by the main boulevard: the New town extends south and west, while the Old town extends north with its narrow streets and historic mansions. When you aren’t teaching, travel back in time as you explore medieval abbeys, Roman amphitheaters, and ancient churches. Admire the gothic architecture and Renaissance art that will leave you feeling inspired. What better location to teach abroad than in a city that feels like you’ve stepped inside a history book!
Salaries & Costs
The best part of English jobs in France is that you get paid to travel the world! That being said, prepare to put a dent in your wallet when getting started with your teaching placement in Aix-en-Provence. Not only will you need to save enough for a flight to France, but if you plan to take a TEFL or TESOL course, you may be looking at spending $1300 to over $2000 before your placement begins. Depending on the placement, you may have extra living expenses as well, such as housing and transportation around the city.
Once your English teaching job begins, you’ll make more than enough to support yourself while living in Aix-en-Provence. The city may be a bit pricier than some less known French towns because of the upscale nature, but it is a significantly cheaper location than Paris. With a teaching salary averaging 15 Euros per hour, you’ll make more than enough to pay your bills, and enjoy the occasional 2.50€ cappuccino or a bowl of bouillabaisse (a fish lover’s dream) for only 12€ at one of the city’s cozy restaurants.
Accommodation & Visas
Whether you want independence, an experience shared with new friends, or full immersion into French culture, teaching jobs in Aix-en-Provence offer housing options for every type of teacher. Many choose to live in an apartment in the city. This could be a flat shared with other teachers, or a single bedroom with plenty of privacy. This option is best if you want to live in the city center, with shops, cafes, and galleries at your doorstep.
If you don’t mind sharing your living space, consider choosing a homestay. Local families will love to teach you about their country, and there’s no doubt you’ll feel like a part of the community with your own personal tour guide, instant family and new friends, and home-cooked French meals every night. You’ll also have the opportunity to learn a new language when you aren’t teaching students your own.
Your visa for teaching abroad in Aix-en-Provence will differ, depending on your country of origin and placement. If you plan to take a TEFL course, you will need to obtain a student visa, which allows you to study and teach up to 20 hours per week. Others may need to obtain a work visa if they are not from the European Union, but this is often organized by your future employer. If a teacher is planning on staying for longer than six months, they also must register with L’office français de l’immigration et de l’intégration (OFII). Most programs offer assistance, but it is best to check with a French consulate for the most up to date information.
Benefits & Challenges
There is no lack of inspiration in Aix-en-Provence. You may not be the next Van Gogh or Cézanne, but there is no doubt you will develop a love and appreciate for this city that will inspire you in your work. Watch the sunrise over the Alps, taste fresh pressed olive oil, breathe deeply as you drive by lavender fields, and listen to the melody of the French language. You’ll appreciate every moment in Aix-en-Provence.
France as a whole is a popular location for teaching abroad. With popularity comes competition, so be prepared to fight for a teaching placement when choosing Aix-en-Provence. If you can beat the odds, you are sure to have a unique experience that will make your resume shine.
Teaching ESL in Aix-En-Provence is more than just a job. You’ll experience a new culture, build lasting friendships, settle into a new home, and grow as an individual. There’s no doubt you’ll fall in love with the charm, history, and chic vibes of Aix-en-Provence. Dive into French paradise and get paid to travel the world!