Teaching ESL in the Czech Republic
The growing ESL market of the Czech Republic draws teachers to this historic country in the heart of Europe, where they can gain valuable experience while making significant contributions.
Peak ESL Hiring Season in the Czech Republic
How to Find Jobs Teaching English in the Czech Republic
Chain Schools in the Czech Republic
Tips for ESL Teachers in the Czech Republic
Teaching Requirements for ESL Teachers in the Czech Republic
Embassy and Consulate Information for the Czech Republic
While ESL teachers are in demand throughout the year, ESL teachers in Czech Republic typically start teaching in September. Teaching positions are available through public and private schools, language schools, universities and colleges, and through private tutoring. As well, opportunities exist in business settings.
Public and Private School System
Literacy in the Czech Republic is about 99%, due to a great extent to the fact that formal education is free (in the public school system) and compulsory for students from 6 to15 years of age. The school system is divided into four main categories: Preschool, Elementary, High School and University; and within the Elementary category, there are two sub-categories, Primary (Grades 1 - 5) and Secondary (Grades 6 - 9).
Private schools generally receive government subsidies.
The two-semester school year begins in September and lasts through June, with a two-month summer vacation at the end of the school year.
Opportunities to teach within the public or private school system would require that teachers have a Bachelor’s Degree and TESOL/TESL certification. Formal teaching experience makes candidates preferred. Teaching positions are available through various agencies easily found on the Internet.
Private Language Schools
Private language schools provide supplementary education for students who require additional tutoring. Classes are offered during after-school hours and at other times typically convenient to students. As private language schools do not follow the semester system of conventional schools, teachers are generally hired year round.
As private language schools each operate on their own independent set of policies, teaching requirements vary; however, most schools, particularly in the city centres, require a Bachelor’s Degree and TESOL/TESL certification.
Universities and Colleges
The academic year for most universities in the Czech Republic begins mid-September and runs through mid-February for the first semester, and begins in late-February and runs through the end of June for the second semester. Most universities in the Czech Republic are heavily subsidized by the government.
Teaching opportunities in universities are not as abundant as those in primary and secondary schools, and typically require higher credentials and previous teaching experience.
Many ESL teachers conduct private tutoring in addition to formal teaching. Technically, private tutoring is illegal without proper documentation and licencing, and could result in deportation if discovered. In addition, some contracts clearly disallow tutoring on the side as it is considered to be competition, or at the very least, a distraction from school duties. Those who choose to do private tutoring can charge between 200 - 400 CZK per hour.
There are many resources available to ESL teachers searching for teaching positions abroad, including:
- Oxford Seminars' English Language Schools Directory
- The Prague Post
- ESL Jobs
- Dave’s ESL Cafe
- Overseas Job Center
- Prague TV
Graduates of Oxford Seminars receive our Graduate Placement Service with access to established schools and recruiters throughout the world.
Tutor boasts an enrollment of over 10,000 students and claims to be the largest language school in the Czech Republic. It offers language training in 18 different languages for all age levels.
Caledonia has been in the Czech Republic since 1992 and offers language training in various languages, including English, throughout the country. It has six centres in the nation’s capital, Prague.
Established over 130 years ago, this language school has over 550 centres in over 70 countries around the world. In the Czech Republic there is a company presence in Prague and Brno.
- Watts English
British company with centres throughout the Czech Republic.
Jobs Teaching English in the Summer in the Czech Republic
Summer teaching positions in the Czech Republic do exist and when available can be found on popular job boards like: ESL Jobs, Dave’s ESL Café, or TEFL.com, Watts English, a private language company, regularly offers summer programs. Private tutoring can also be a good source of income during the summer months provided one can do so legally.
Additional ESL Resources to Help Teach English in the Czech Republic
There is an abundance of ESL resources for teachers to help teach English as a Second Language on the Internet. Examples are listed below:
- Oxford Seminars' ESL Teaching Resources
- BBC Skillswise
- About.com - ESL Teaching Resources
- Classic Reader
- ESL Junction
- Discovery Education
- Songs For Teaching
- Genki English
There are opportunities for teaching business or conversational English in a business setting as many employers hire in-house English teachers to train their employees. These opportunities would most often be during employee lunch hours, or before or after work hours.
Should one be looking for a teaching position while visiting the Czech Republic, it is advisable to have a prepared lesson (30-90 minutes) should a school ask for a teaching demonstration.
- The Czech Republic has a low violent crime rate and is considered to be very safe; however, pick-pocketing is very common and as such vigilance is advised in crowded areas. Backpacks and shoulder bags should be carried in front of you.
- Some restaurants don’t accept credit or debit cards, so it is always advisable to carry sufficient cash when dining out. However, It is unwise to carry overly large amounts of cash as pick-pocketing is common.
- Tap water is safe for drinking.
- If asking for water in a restaurant, you will likely receive bottled water and be charged for it.
- Tipping a taxi driver or waiter is increasingly expected in the Czech Republic, particularly in Prague. If no service charge is added to a bill in a restaurant, a 5-15% gratuity is appropriate. Leaving the tip on the table when leaving a restaurant can be considered rude; it is better to give it directly to the waiter/waitress.
- It is considered polite to remove your shoes when a guest in someone’s home.
- Business casual attire is appropriate for the classroom. It is best to dress modestly and conservatively. Avoid wearing shorts unless involved in a sporting event.
- Adopt an adventurous attitude and experience the cuisine, culture, and historic sites of the Czech Republic.
- The voltage in the Czech Republic is 230 volts/50 Hz, making the purchase of a transformer necessary if relocating to the Czech Republic from North America.
- Consider getting an international driver’s licence in your home country before going to the Czech Republic.
The requirements and guidelines below are listed for ESL teacher applicants to the Czech Republic who are citizens of: Canada, United States, UK, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand or South Africa.
Minimum Requirements to Apply for Teaching Positions in the Czech Republic:
- Oxford Seminars TESOL/TESL/TEFL Certificate
- Bachelor's degree (3 or 4 year) degree in any discipline – for teaching in a private school*
- Licenced as an English Teacher (to teach in city-based public schools)
- Native English speaker
*Some schools in smaller towns may not require a completed degree as long as the applicant is a native English speaker and has a TESOL certificate.
Types of Applicable Visas:
- Visa Exempt Entry: Extended to several countries (listed on the Czech Republic embassy website). Valid for a maximum of 90 days.
- Short-term Visa (C Visa): Designed for those staying in the Czech Republic for a maximum of up to 90 days. For those who enter the country for the purpose of: tourism, study, work, etc.
- Long-term Visa (D Visa): Designed for those staying in the Czech Republic for a period of time longer than 90 days up to a maximum of six months. Extending a visa beyond six months must be done from within the Czech Republic. For those who enter the country for the purpose of: employment, study, etc.
- Green Card (Long-term Residence for Employment Purposes): Designed for use with specific jobs in the Czech Republic which have not been successfully filled by workers from the Czech Republic or the European Union. It is advisable to inquire of one’s potential employer as to whether the Green Card is an applicable visa.
- Spousal Visa: designed for those married to a Czech citizen. This visa can be used to teach English, provided the necessary requirements are met.
- Citizens from the Canada, United States, Australia, and New Zealand can enter the Czech Republic on a Visa Exempt Entry for a maximum period of 90 days.
- Foreigners are prohibited from engaging in any type of gainful employment without an applicable visa. Deportation is a potential consequence of violating this law.
- Entry to the Czech Republic will only be granted if there are at least three months remaining on the applicant’s passport after stay in and departure from the Czech Republic.
- Documentation for proof of pre-arranged accommodations, sufficient funding and medical insurance are required for entry into the country. Details can be found on the website of the embassy of the Czech Republic.
- A visa can only be issued at the embassy/consulate where the application was submitted.
- All documents must be presented to the embassy/consulate in original or legalized form and translated into Czech. Passports do not need to be translated.
- Visas can take from 60-120 days to be processed.
- It is advisable to apply for a visa from your home country.
- Apply for a visa in person if possible. If the embassy or consulate is too great a distance away, the application can be processed through the mail.
Standard Process for Obtaining Legal Documentation to Work Legally in the Czech Republic:
- The applicant secures a contract with a legitimate school.
- The employer initiates obtaining a work permit on behalf of the applicant through the local Employment Administration Office.
- Required documentation must be legalized and verified. Specific processes and requirements can be obtained from the local embassy/consulate in which application is being made.
- Required documentation must be translated into the Czech language and verified at the embassy/consulate.
- Once a work permit is obtained, application for a work visa is made through the applicant’s local Czech embassy or consulate.
- The visa application is processed by the Ministry of the Interior.
- When approved by the Ministry of the Interior, the visa is entered into the applicant’s passport and returned to him/her.
- Upon arrival in the Czech Republic, visa holders must report to the Czech Foreigners Police Office within three days.
Standard Required Documents for Visas:
(Important to check with embassy/consulate as variations in requirements sometimes occur)
- A valid passport with at least three months remaining after travel dates. (This should be confirmed with local embassy/consulate).
- Completed visa application.
- Passport photos (Specifications outlined on embassy/consulate website).
- Authenticated Criminal Record Check.
- Proof of sufficient funds.*
- Proof of purpose of stay (e.g. work permit).*
- Proof of accommodation.*
- Proof of health insurance.*
- Additional documents as requested by the Ministry of the Interior.
*Details can be found on the Czech Republic embassy/consulate websites
American Embassy and Consular Offices in the Czech Republic
Embassy of the United States, Prague
118 01 Praha 1 - Malá Strana, Prague
Phone: (+420) 257 022 000
Fax: (+420) 257 022 809
Canadian Embassy and Consular Offices in the Czech Republic
Embassy of Canada, Prague
160 00 Prague 6
P hone: (+420) 27210 1800
Fax: (+420) 27210 1890
Hours of Operation: Monday - Friday: 08:30-12:30; 13:30-16:30
Australian Embassy and Consular Offices in the Czech Republic
Embassy of Australia, Prague
Solitaire Office Building
110 00 Prague
Phone: ( +420) 221 729 260
Fax: ( +420) 296 578 352
Hours of Operation: Monday – Friday: 09:00-13:00; 14:00-17:00
British Embassy and Consular Offices in the Czech Republic
Embassy of the United Kingdom, Prague
Chancery, Consular/Visa, Commercial,
Political, Defence Section
118 00 Prague 1
Phone: (+420) 257 402 111
Fax: (+420) 257 402 296
Hours of Operation: Monday - Friday: 08:30-17:00
Irish Embassy and Consular Offices in the Czech Republic
Embassy of Ireland, Prague
118 00 Prague 1
Phone: ( +420) 257 530 061 (-4)
Fax: ( +420) 257 531 387
Hours of Operation: Monday – Friday 09:30-12:30; 14:30-16:30
New Zealand 's Consular Offices in the Czech Republic
Consulate of New Zealand, Prague
Václavské náměstí 11, 110 00 Prague 1
Phone: +420 234 784 777
Fax: +420 234 784 445
Contact: Mr. David Chirnside, Honorary Consul of New Zealand
Hours of Operation: Monday – Thursday: 09:00-13:00; 14:00-17:30
* The embassy of New Zealand for the Czech Republic is located in Berlin, Germany: http://www.nzembassy.com/germany
Embassy Offices Outside the Czech Republic
The Czech Republic Embassy in the United States
Embassy of the Czech Republic, Washington, DC
3900 Spring of Freedom St. NW
Phone: +1 (202) 274-9100
Fax: +1 (202) 966-8540
Hours of Operation: Monday – Thursday: 08:00-17:00/ Friday: 08:00-14:30
The Czech Republic Embassy in Canada
Embassy of the Czech Republic, Ottawa
251 Cooper Street
Canada K2P 0G2
Phone: +1 ( 613) 562 3875
Fax: +1 ( 613) 562 3878
Hours of Operation: Monday – Thursday: 08:00-17:00/ Friday: 08:00-14:30