Teach English in the Czech Republic with 150 Hours TEFL Course

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About

Teach in the Czech Republic with CIEE and experience a side of this beautiful country that is rarely seen by tourists. You'll become part of a community on the outskirts of Prague, working as an English language assistant in a primary or secondary school, all while learning about Czech culture and language. Host schools encourage language assistants to participate in cultural and athletic activities outside of the classroom. You might even be invited to join your students on school ski trips in the winter!

From deciding where you would like to teach abroad, to preparing to return to your home country after your time abroad, CIEE will be there to support you. In addition to finding a job for you in the Czech Republic, you will be provided complete pre-departure support to help you prepare for your adventure in the Czech Republic. You will be given visa guidance, and travel insurance. Our 24/7 support and in-country orientation will ensure supported throughout your experience.

Discover CIEE’s 150-hour TEFL certification course. This course offers an interactive and immersive experience into teaching English as a foreign language that will fully prepare you to teach abroad, at home, or online.

Highlights
  • Job placement at a public primary or secondary school
  • Czech national health insurance
  • CIEE’s 150-hour TEFL certification course
  • iNext international insurance with 24-hour emergency assistance services
  • Five-day orientation in Prague

Questions & Answers

Reviews

8.2 Rating
based on 15 reviews
  • 9-10 rating 66.67%
  • 7-8 rating 20%
  • 5-6 rating 0%
  • 3-4 rating 13.33%
  • 1-2 rating 0%
  • Benefits 1
  • Support 2
  • Fun 4
  • Facilities 4
  • Safety 8
  • Instruction 8.1
  • Support 8.9
  • Value 8.3
  • Academic Rigor 6
  • Job Assistance 8.8
Showing 1 - 8 of 15
Default avatar
Miles
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

The Full Service - Both Home and Abroad

CIEE's Czech Republic teaching program really is top notch! I highly encourage anyone who is interested in experiencing a unique European culture, traveling across Europe, and/or learning about themselves to apply to this program. I have many reasons for my recommendation, but I will condense my list to a few prominent ones (listed below).

1) CIEE provided me with excellent support during the preparation phase of the process. It did more than provide a means to obtain a TEFL certificate, which is, from what I have since learned, the common approach of other similar organizations. Instead, CIEE provided a full service! This included assistance with locating a job in the Czech Republic, the provision of pivotal support when applying for an employment card and a long-stay visa (I cannot understate how vital this was), help with the health insurance process, and important arrival information regarding the Czech Republic's cultural norms, climate, and people's typical in-country needs (i.e. electrical voltage, cell phone, and other information).

2) CIEE's preparation-phase support was surpassed only by its phenomenal in-country orientation. The orientation included the full service as well! My fellow program participants and I were not merely given information on how to obtain Czech cell phone SIM cards and bank accounts and how to use the public transit system. Instead, we were split into small groups and paired with locals (who spoke both Czech and English). These immensely helpful individuals physically took us to a Czech cell phone store, bank, and public transit office. Not only did they help with these necessary things, they also taught us some Czech (which supplemented our formal lessons give at the CIEE Study Center during orientation) and took us to other cool cultural places and events, such as local bars, restaurants, and parks. My group even attended one of the fiftieth anniversary gatherings held in remembrance of those who lost their lives during the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968!

3) Lastly, during the in-country orientation, CIEE provided high-quality, temporary housing in Prague to all of the participants. CIEE also helped those who did not have employer-provided housing to locate it and even allowed those who struggled to locate permanent housing to stay in the temporary housing until they did. This housing was included in the initial fee to CIEE and was located in a great location. This allowed the participants to explore the beautiful city during the non-orientation hours!

If you have made it to this point in my review, I commend you. CIEE's Czech Republic teaching program is phenomenal and I most certainly recommend it! However, there are certain realities that prospective applicants should bear in mind (see below).

1) You will not get rich working part-time in the Czech Republic as an English teacher. You will likely need to teach private English lessons or bring additional funds if you would like to travel. Because private lessons are readily available to those who want to teach them, do not be deterred by this reality.

2) The food, culture, and language of the Czech Republic are different from that in the United States. Do not assume that the Czech Republic (or other European countries for that matter) is culturally identical to the U.S. just because it is in Europe. There are significant differences between the two. This is what makes the experience fun and interesting! However, recognize that these differences exist before undertaking the program so that you know what you are getting into.

Ultimately, CIEE's Czech Republic teaching program is phenomenal! I highly recommend it and hope that this review helps make your decision easier!

What would you improve about this program?
Two minor areas for improvement involve:

1) In-Country Setup Costs
During the in-country orientation, many of the program participants (myself included) needed to purchase cell phone SIM cards, public transit passes, and discount cards for buying train tickets. This amounted to approximately $200 per person. While we were aware that these items were not provided, we did not know their exact prices until we arrived. Thus, CIEE could improve the program by being as specific as possible with the estimated setup costs for program participants.

2) Communication between CIEE and Czech School Placements
While CIEE did an overall phenomenal job with our placements into the Czech schools, my school was unaware that we were supposed to receive seven personal days off throughout the year. Now, this was not difficult to negotiate and rectify, but it did lead to an awkward conversation that could have been avoided with a little better communication between CIEE and the schools.
Default avatar
Hunter
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Three Months in and Loving It!

I have now been living in the Czech Republic for three months thanks to CIEE's teach abroad program. While adapting to a new culture is definitely a challenge, CIEE's staff here in Prague have made it a wonderful learning opportunity. The support began before we even left the U.S. during our visa application process. Once accepted to the program and placed with a school, we received a 17 page document with explicit instructions of what was needed to apply for a visa to live here for ten months. Once we arrived in the Czech Republic, we all attended an orientation where we went on a city tour, had basic Czech language lessons, and were split into small groups to buy cell phone plans, transportation passes, and open bank accounts. We then got to stay in Prague for a week to site-see and make friends with other participants in the program. Once we left for the placements at our individual schools we have received updates via Facebook and email of upcoming events in Prague and for the program. Overall, I am incredibly pleased with my experience teaching here in the Czech Republic with CIEE.

What would you improve about this program?
Overall, this is a fantastic program and I would highly recommend it. However, there is always room to improve. One improvement that could be made is informing participants how much they would be spending when they arrive here, for example the costs of transportation and phone usage. Another improvement would definitely be greater communication with the schools in order to determine the expectations of the incoming teachers. I understand that this is difficult as each school has their own expectations, but this unknown variable of what is expected at school is very difficult while also adjusting to a new culture. These are minor criticisms, especially when considering how helpful the staff of CIEE have been. Highly recommend!
Default avatar
Brian
7/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Teaching English In the Czech Republic

I am writing this review about 4 months into the program.
I chose this program because I saw it as a good way to try teaching as a profession in a country that I know. I have lived in the Czech Republic before, nearly twenty years ago, and the country was a different place then. I was looking to possibly change my career, and I wanted to give teaching a try before I committed to an expensive Master’s Degree in the US.
The program offered opportunities to teach outside of Prague, which for me seemed ideal as I don’t really care to live in large cities.
CIEE provided good support to pair me with a school about 40 km away from Prague in a small town. They helped with the really irritating, bureaucratic process of getting a work visa, but you will still have to do quite a bit on your own to secure the visa. I suggest doing as much as you can (such as getting Apostille stamps, translations, etc) sooner than later so you don’t have to do everything at once.
The school I work for provided housing for me, which really helped ease the burden of having to find a place, which I saw could be difficult and stressful for some of the other participants who chose to live in Prague. Prague’s housing market is tight, and you really have to be there to secure something.
I enjoy the school where I work. It can be difficult job at times, and can be frustrating, but it can also highly rewarding. I work with children from 4-15 years old, and I also teach some of the staff. I definitely have my favorite ages to work with, and I hope to narrow that scope a bit after the holidays.
I have a bit of an advantage over most of the participants as I speak Czech fairly well and I can talk with my colleagues and I can have regular conversations in Czech. It’s a difficult language and if you live in Prague, there is a good chance you won’t learn much unless you really put some effort into it. If you live in a small town, like where I’m at, there’s a good chance few people will speak English.

Pros:
* CIEE helps land you work and a visa. It is something that is difficult to do unless you are in the country looking for work. The process can take a long time, and since American citizens can only be in the Schengen countries for only 90 days, it can be difficult to secure work AND a visa alone.
* If you don’t know Czech, you’ll have someone on hand to help you navigate the culture and the language.
* Prague’s a cool city with lots to do. You’ll be pretty close, if not directly in Prague. (See: What I would have done differently)
* If you like nightlife, art, history, beer and meat, potatoes, and dogs you’ll proabably have a good time.
* If you like cycling, especially off-road, this country has awesome bike riding. There’s nothing quite like a warm day pedaling through the woods seeing castles, ruins and rivers and eating fruit off trees along the way.
* Prague is super central to many destinations and an easy hub to get around Europe.
* Public transportation is pretty decent, though it can be late often.

Cons:
* If you don’t live in Prague you can be pretty isolated, and it can get expensive to travel back and forth. Depending on where you are, the last bus or train home might leave at 10 pm which means either you have to wait until 4.30 am for the next bus, stay with friends, rent a room, or go home early. If I want to go visit people in Prague, I have to take the bus for 50-60 minutes, then I have to take the metro or tram 20-30 minutes, so going only for a couple hours doesn’t seem worth it after a while.

* The language is difficult. Don’t expect to learn it super fast, but give it a shot— it’s fun.

* You don’t get much money unless you tutor on the side, and if you live in Prague your budget may be tight. If you want to travel, bring some extra money. Also have money to get you through mid-October when you get your first paycheck.

What I would have done differently:

* THIS IS THE BIG ONE:
Even though I don’t like living in big cities, I would have chosen to live in Prague and commuted to work. I know a couple participants who are doing this. It helps for having a social life. There is nearly NOTHING to do in my town of 5000 people. It’s a depressed old mining town, and very hard to meet people when there is little to do. I spend a lot of time riding my bike. If I want to do something simple, like have coffee with a friend, I have to travel to Prague (3 hours round trip, including in city transport— often more when having to wait).
And I have it relatively well. There are a couple people who don’t have good connections to Prague and have to travel 1.5-2 hours just to get to Prague then have to travel more.

* I would have brought a laptop.

* I would have a few more English language tools. The school I work in doesn’t have very extensive resources.

What would you improve about this program?
Maybe asking participants about their interests so that they can plan group events around varying interests.
Default avatar
Deanna
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Fantastic Program!

Overall, the CIEE Teach Abroad in the Czech Republic program has been fantastic! Prior to coming to the Czech Republic, each participant had a brief Skype meeting with our Czech coordinator so that she could try to match us with a school that fit our needs and expectations. This was something I had not expected, but am grateful for as I am now at a school that I love. Admittedly, the pre-departure process was a bit overwhelming- especially with the limited amount of time to apply for a visa. However, CIEE was helpful throughout the whole process and this was less of the program’s fault and more of the simple reality that comes from dealing with different Embassies.

Once I arrived in the Czech Republic, CIEE was (and has continued to be) helpful every step of the way. We had a week orientation in which CIEE gave us Czech 101 crash courses in culture and language. Staff also helped us set up bank accounts, phones, Embassy appointments, and transportation passes. For me, like many participants, finding a place to live was up to us. However, our Czech coordinator went out of her way to make sure we each found suitable arrangements. She continues to be available to help us with any issues regarding rent, mail, utilities, and language translations.

The number of participants in the program is small. As a past participant in another CIEE teach abroad program, I can say that this small number is unique and has advantages- we are all friendly with one another and it’s easy to reach out to both CIEE staff and one another for issues that range from trivial to more serious. For me personally, the CIEE staff has been quick to answer any question I’ve had. This small number has also meant that CIEE has been able to plan group events for us- such as a wine tasting, zoo trip, and a Thanksgiving dinner.

What would you improve about this program?
Every program- especially new ones- will have room for improvement. That being said, it is clear that this CIEE has evolved significantly from its first year and I believe it will continue to do so overtime. While CIEE did warn participants of upfront costs, many of us were still unprepared for how much we would have to spend upon the first few weeks of arrival. We were told to have $1000 on hand, but for many, this was not enough to cover all the fees needed to establish ourselves. It would be helpful for CIEE to be more forthcoming with these upfront costs.

It would also be helpful if CIEE could work with the schools to provide the option for full-time work assignments. As all current teaching assignments are part-time, it becomes necessary for participants to find other means to make money to support themselves. While CIEE encourages tutoring as a simple solution for this issue, it would be nice if there was the option to work full-time at our schools. My recommendations of improvement for CIEE are very minor and should in no way deter anyone from this program. Overall, I am very satisfied with CIEE and all it has to offer.
Keenan
8/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Great Program With Potential

The CIEE Teach is Czech Republic program has been wonderful. In the beginning, the amount of work needed to be done seems daunting because it is. Not difficult work, but many photocopies, translations, notarizations, and contracts need to be handled. CIEE makes this process as easy as can be by guiding you through step by step. Support during the process was very prompt.

Upon arrival in the Czech Republic, orientation and preparations for the school year were very well thought out. Activities and education during orientation were worthwhile and helpful. The staff did a great job preparing us for what to expect in the classroom as well as culturally. There are many differences between the Czech Republic and the US. Some in education and many in culture. They gave us a fair heads-up.

Post-orientation and when the school year begins flows pretty smoothly. The CIEE staff really helped to make sure we got to our school, had proper accommodations, and were prepared for long-term transportation. Even after work and life had begun in our respective towns/schools CIEE was very willing to help with the smallest of issues.

This is my second time working with CIEE. I can't say enough good things about the program from both the US side and the placement side. CIEE puts together some great programs that allow us to do what we want to do - Travel and Learn.

What would you improve about this program?
All of the above statements are true and most important. The areas where the program could be improved carry much less weight than areas where the program excels.

The most prominent area that the program could improve is regarding salary, or at least salary transparency. When you read online about salaries and price of goods, it is hard to actually understand how far a certain amount of money will take you. Websites will give you an idea, but rarely are they correct. Prague, while cheaper than place such as NYC, is not cheap. Somethings like beer may cost less, but everyday groceries may not be any cheaper than back home. I believe CIEE could negotiate higher salaries especially at schools where they have a good rapport.

I understand this may not always be possible. In the event that it is not. CIEE staff could really push teachers to tutor. I think a significant chunk of time at orientation could be used for explaining how useful tutoring can be. Maybe time could be spent teaching students how to advertise (without tackiness) that their tutoring services are offered in their towns. Instruction for drafting a letter to parents of students previously tutored by a past CIEE teacher could be great. I would like prospective teachers to know that it is extremely possible to make nearly an extra salary every month by tutoring on top of teaching. While more money is nice, tutoring should not be overlooked by anyone. Tutoring has been fruitful in so many ways. It offers a great opportunity to get to know students and their families and become involved in the community (which is not always easy in the Czech Republic).
Default avatar
Stephanie
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Life Changing Experience

My time with CIEE has been quite a journey, but in a way that I know will change my life! I feel that in their third year, CIEE has worked very hard to get out all the kinks with the visa application process. Understandably, getting a work visa (especially on time) is difficult enough. However, I felt that no question was stupid enough when it came to my pre-departure preparation and I thankfully got my visa approved before I even traveled to the Czech Republic, which apparently was a first for the program.

When I arrived in Prague my luggage was lost and our program supervisor was diligent from the start with support. I cannot say enough how wonderful she is. Sometimes I feel that she is working TOO hard because she is always there to translate something in Czech or help us get our utilities sorted, even to answer travel/transportation questions.

Due to some unfortunate family circumstances back home, I will say that I was hit hard with culture shock the first two months. But I think it was 100% a mental block that I knew I would eventually get over, and just had to force myself to try at the language and everyday life a little bit harder than I was. You need to have an open mind to be a part of the program. After a couple months, my mindset and overall comfort has changed completely.

I was placed in a school that is seriously perfect for my interests as a teacher. There were definitely some communication issues at the start and it took quite some time to get settled into a routine and to understand the expectations that were had of us but I know that the rest of this year will be wonderful and can only get better.

My piece of advice is that you have to be proactive and be willing to have an open mind. A lot of the participants came to Prague without a place to live (our school either did not provide accommodations or it was our choice to find our own) and the apartment hunting process here is really stressful especially on top of being in a completely foreign country. The staff helped us as much as they could, but it was pretty tough. You have to understand that ultimately, things will work out in the end, because they have to!

What would you improve about this program?
I think the general consensus is that there needs to be a little bit more transparency with up-front costs. On top of paying a large sum for apartment expenses, you have to purchase a phone/phone plan, transportation passes, and you might have to purchase things for your living situation (kitchen supplies/bedding/furniture, etc). This is also on top of not being able to be paid the first almost two months (which they did tell us about, I just don't think most of us realized how hard it would be to go without a paycheck for that long after paying so much for apartments). Had I known some of these things before coming to Prague, I definitely would have reevaluated my savings and how much money I would need before coming. Knowing where this program started and seeing where it has come in only three years goes to show that each year, the program can only improve.
Emily
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Best Decision

I would definitely recommend this program. I studied abroad with CIEE in Prague a few years ago so I already trusted the organization before I applied to teach abroad. I am even more happy with this program (especially the support we receive from the staff) than I was as a study abroad participant. Orientation was surprisingly fun and definitely helpful. Our coordinator here in Prague is the absolute best. The program is still small enough that there is a community amongst the participants and opportunities for us to gather throughout our time here. That's a major bonus, which I gather is unique to the Czech Republic program. I feel like I have the best of both worlds. My daily life is really independent but I know that CIEE is always there. I live outside of Prague, and while my town leaves something to be desired, I love my school to pieces and have enjoyed the teaching experience immensely. This is only the third year of the program and it's clear they've made exponential leaps since launching. I have no doubt that the program will continue to improve as the years go on. As with anything in life, it's not perfect. Flexibility is definitely a requirement!

What would you improve about this program?
Any teach abroad participant, in any country, with any organization, will say that communication and information can be improved. That seems to be the nature of the beast. All I'll say is that individuals shouldn't hesitate to ask questions and advocate for themselves.

One specific thing I think that CIEE can do that would be an improvement is to better prepare the schools for the arrival of a native speaker. We already have to do a great deal of adapting-- move to a foreign country, find a place to live, learn the public transport, meet new people, start a new job, culture shock, etc... Of course, all of that is part of the challenge and joy of the experience. But, I don't think it's too much to ask the schools for better communication with participants. It seems that in many cases, the schools assume we show up on the first day knowing exactly what to do and how everything works. Keep in mind, I love my school and it's been a wonderful experience, but there's been a lot of frustration and confusion as well.



Elisabeth
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Enjoying this great experience!

I came to the Czech Republic with CIEE last summer, and have had a wonderful experience so far! The orientation process in Prague was thoughtfully scheduled, and all of us as teachers had plenty of time to adjust to the new country, start to learn some language basics, become familiar with the culture, share some fun experiences, and get to know each other. The support staff at the CIEE office in Prague have been amazing and efficient throughout my time here! The one small issue I experienced at my school was resolved quickly and smoothly with one simple phone call to their office. Some participants find housing, while others are provided housing by their schools. CIEE has relationships with many schools in the area, and their staff seem to do a great job with matching teachers with their best fit. I would encourage anyone thinking about teaching abroad to go through CIEE, and seriously consider the Czech Republic program!

What would you improve about this program?
I would encourage CIEE staff to negotiate higher wages and opportunities to work more hours for future teachers in the program. All contracts allow for 17 teaching hours, and many teachers would be willing to teach more to fill their days at school and have more income. I believe this will happen as CIEE becomes more well-known and established around Prague, as native-speaking teachers are very desired by schools. I would also consider removing the TEFL requirement, as it's costly and not required by many employers.