Becoming an English teacher in France

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Becoming an English teacher in France


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Old 2nd December 2010, 02:04 AM
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Hi there,

I am looking for information on becoming an English teacher in France.

I spent a year teaching there as an assistant de langue last year, and I realized during that year that this is what I would like to do with my life.

I've been looking around the interwebz trying to find something concrete in terms of what degrees are needed, which tests, what level of French I would need, (I assume near-fluent,) etc etc., but I cannot find it.

I would like to teach lycée-level English, but I do not have either a teaching credential (from any country,) or a degree in education. I have a bachelor of science degree in High Technology Management, which I realize is pretty useless now that I have decided I want to teach for a living instead, but I am willing to go back to school and get proper degrees as part of my transition to France.

Any information that I could get would be really helpful, as I am drowning in the amounts that I am finding online but that is not actually helping me. I am living in Australia currently, and I was thinking about the possibility of going back to school to get a Masters degree in education, but at the same time I know that my level of French is not satisfactory for being a professor - I would need a few years' study, I believe, to be able to speak French well enough. Still, I am not sure if this would even help me, as I cannot find what the requirements are for teaching in France.

Also, I am wondering if the requirements vary by region, or are different in public schools versus private ones.

I appreciate any and all help on this!

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Old 2nd December 2010, 04:22 AM
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Your best bet is to train in France if you are wanting to work in the normal education system. Working for private colleges, teaching English to business people etc is less regulated than being a normal teacher.

I dont' know much more than that and am in a similar situation to you as I've only got a year to go until I'm done with an Australian degree that will be useless to me when we arrive in France although I do speak pretty fluent French.

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Old 2nd December 2010, 04:35 AM
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...that will be useless to me when we arrive in France although I do speak pretty fluent French.

So you are "arriving" in France? How'd you manage that? I am trying to get back there, but that's half the problem. I'm wondering if maybe going in on an education visa, and getting a Masters there is my best bet, or if I could do it from Oz and then migrate over. It would be better for me if I were able to study here, become pretty fluent in French, then move over and teach, (even if it were in private colleges etc,) before sitting an exam, but... I'm clueless as to the entire approach I would need to take.

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Old 2nd December 2010, 05:15 AM
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So you are "arriving" in France? How'd you manage that? I am trying to get back there, but that's half the problem. .
Ahhh I'm lucky - I've got dual citizenship (British) so I'm fine to live there and in fact have been for 10 years until a couple of years ago when we came 'home' to Oz.

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I'm wondering if maybe going in on an education visa, and getting a Masters there is my best bet, or if I could do it from Oz and then migrate over. It would be better for me if I were able to study here, become pretty fluent in French, then move over and teach, (even if it were in private colleges etc,) before sitting an exam, but... I'm clueless as to the entire approach I would need to take
Education may be your best best. have you looked at the CampusFrance website to see what you could do in the areas that you are interested in? that may well be a good place to start. I would definitely recommend getting stuck in with the French language as well. There is an Alliance Francaise in Sydney and other capital cities, this would be a good place to start. There are also unis that offer French courses to bachelor level and beyond and also evening type courses too. I really need to get onto it as well and get my written and grammar up to speed as that is where I lack. There are heaps of good online resources as well.

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Old 2nd December 2010, 05:40 AM
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OK, first of all, you can pretty much give up on the idea of teaching English in the French public schools. Teaching is a civil service job and there is a competitive exam you'd have to get through (yes, in French). The government is currently trying to cut back on the number of teachers in the system, and taking on foreigners is not in the cards.

Add to that, your need for a long-stay visa with an employer sponsor. The civil service here does not sponsor employment visas. But in any event, here is the government's page on teaching as a career, including info on the exams and recruitment: Concours, emplois et carrires - Ministre de l'ducation nationale, de la jeunesse et de la vie associative

You could try going through a private school, in which case you'd have to meet their requirements for employment - possibly some form of teaching credential and/or TEFL, TESOL or another form of English language teaching qualification. Depends on the curriculum of the individual school (i.e. British, American, international, etc.).
Cheers,
Bev

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Old 2nd December 2010, 09:38 PM
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Okay, well at least someone spelled it out for me. That really sucks. I guess I was looking into teaching because it was something I really enjoyed, but... that may not be a possibility I guess. You know, when I was living in France, I found so many immigrants there, but I can't seem to find any way to get back there, even though I am college-educated and want to contribute to the country. Maybe I should take a note out of their playbook and just go there illegally - it's not like France will ever make me leave.

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Old 2nd December 2010, 09:42 PM
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You're originally from the States, Bev, and now you're living in France. What was your secret? Do you think, if it is truly my desire to go back, that getting a Masters there would be my best bet? I know that (or at least I am roughly positive that) if I were to get a Masters there, upon graduation, I would be able to apply for French citizenship, having spent 2 years getting a higher education degree there. If I really want to go back, and teaching is not an option, maybe that would work.....

You have no idea how strong my desire is to go back there. Both my wife and I are ready to leave Aus, (although we really like it here!) and go back to France, and live there for the rest of our lives. It is driving me crazy that I cannot find a way to do that....

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Old 3rd December 2010, 06:14 AM
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Originally Posted by lordterrin View Post
You're originally from the States, Bev, and now you're living in France. What was your secret? Do you think, if it is truly my desire to go back, that getting a Masters there would be my best bet? I know that (or at least I am roughly positive that) if I were to get a Masters there, upon graduation, I would be able to apply for French citizenship, having spent 2 years getting a higher education degree there. If I really want to go back, and teaching is not an option, maybe that would work.....

You have no idea how strong my desire is to go back there. Both my wife and I are ready to leave Aus, (although we really like it here!) and go back to France, and live there for the rest of our lives. It is driving me crazy that I cannot find a way to do that....
If you're interested in a teaching position in Europe, teaching American kids on US installations, here's a career option for you: DoDDS Europe - Welcome Check out the benefits.

If you can get a position in the Kaiserslautern Germany area, you're only 40 minutes away from France or 30 if you're pedal to the metal on the Autobahn. Metz is about an hour away.

Good Luck

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Old 3rd December 2010, 12:33 PM
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You're originally from the States, Bev, and now you're living in France. What was your secret?
I married a French guy, which in your case is kind of off the table. But even that way, I had significant immigration problems thanks to the ever-changing immigration laws and rules here.

Quote:
Do you think, if it is truly my desire to go back, that getting a Masters there would be my best bet? I know that (or at least I am roughly positive that) if I were to get a Masters there, upon graduation, I would be able to apply for French citizenship, having spent 2 years getting a higher education degree there. If I really want to go back, and teaching is not an option, maybe that would work.....
Frankly, I wouldn't recommend that route - but that's just my personal opinion. It depends on the subject you get your masters in, plus I think there is some requirement that you actually find a job after you put in your two years in higher education (not sure of that, but it wouldn't surprise me a bit). There are plenty of native born French people I know who are having real problems finding a job based on a brand spanking new diploma. Unless you're willing to go the hard sciences route, I wouldn't count on a "masters" (which doesn't actually exist in France) giving you a "ticket" to either a long-stay visa or nationality.

The system here has yet to adapt to the anglo-saxon university system. If you continue past your initial university diploma, it's more or less assumed you're going into "research" or university level teaching.

For the moment, your best bet is probably exploring the private and international schools to see what they might have to offer for employment (and visa sponsorship).
Cheers,
Bev

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Old 4th December 2010, 09:13 AM
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If you're interested in a teaching position in Europe, teaching American kids on US installations, here's a career option for you: DoDDS Europe - Welcome Check out the benefits.

If you can get a position in the Kaiserslautern Germany area, you're only 40 minutes away from France or 30 if you're pedal to the metal on the Autobahn. Metz is about an hour away.

Good Luck

Wow. This is an excellent resource! I had no idea this existed, but it might be a great way for me to get back to Europe. I will read into it and see what the qualifications are. Thank you so much for this!

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