Obtaining an English teaching position without EU citizenship will be a daunting task. Those few non-EU citizens who manage to find a job teaching ESL should be prepared for the fact that their salary will not stretch nearly as far as in other ESL markets.
Individuals can teach ESL in Italy through private language schools, universities and colleges, businesses, and freelance tutoring. Italian schools have two semesters; the first semester starts in September and the second in January. As in the United States, higher qualifications are needed for teachers seeking positions in universities or colleges. Types of ESL Teaching Jobs in Italy Public and Private School System
The school system in Italy is a mixture of public and private schools, with the school year running between September and June. Students attending public schools are divided into three age groups: primary school (scuola primaria
), lower secondary (scuola secondaria di primo grado
or scuola media
), and upper secondary school (scuola secondaria di secondo grado
or scuola superiore
). Italian students are required to attend school until the age of 16, at which point they can continue their studies or join the workforce.
Classroom lessons and materials are delivered in Italian, so an understanding of the language is usually necessary for English teachers thinking of working in the public system. Most English teachers are more likely to find a job at a private school, such as an international school, than at a public school. Private Language Schools
Private language school chains such as Berlitz typically hire a few months prior to the start of a new semester. Although some language schools operate year round, the main teaching season will be from September to June. However, peak hiring periods during one year may differ from the next year. Individuals interested in working for private language schools should contact them directly for exact details regarding the hiring process. For a list of the most common chain schools in Italy, please see the Largest Chain Schools in Italy
section. Universities and Colleges
Italian universities and colleges operate on the same timetable as public schools, hiring a few months before each semester begins. ESL instructors interested in teaching in a university or college should have a minimum of a Master's Degree and preferably some college teaching experience. Some universities and colleges also require ESL teachers to have basic fluency in Italian. Freelance Tutoring
Freelance tutoring can be an extremely challenging way to find employment in Italy. That said, resourceful and determined ESL teachers can make it a career. Freelance tutoring will focus on teaching conversational English, which is one of the most popular forms of English instruction in Italy. Those wanting to freelance tutor must specialize in creating an individualized curriculum and individualized lesson plans tailored to student needs. In-Company English Teacher
Some companies provide in-office English training. In-company teachers will be hired by Italian companies to help mainly with conversational English by focusing on proper pronunciation. Curricula are rarely provided so, again, in-company teachers should be prepared to create this based on company needs.
Hiring periods for in-company English teachers and freelance tutors vary depending on the supply and demand. Jobs Teaching English in the Summer in Italy
Italy's school year is split into two semesters, making English summer camps very popular. Summer camps usually run from June until September, though duration and location can vary. Some employers will provide transportation, accommodation and meals; however, ESL teachers should not expect to have these benefits included. Again, many camps will only be able to hire English speaking EU nationals. How to Find Jobs Teaching English in Italy
The majority of the newspapers in Italy contain job advertisements which can be accessed either in print form or online. The most widely circulated newspaper in Italy, Corriere della Serra
, publishes a job insert on Fridays which claims to contain a diverse range of over 1,500 job postings. There are also specific newspapers containing information for job seekers such as Il Posto
. The national newspaper, Il Sole 24 Ore
, also publishes a weekly job supplement in their Monday newspaper for college graduates looking for their first job. The Internet is another large resource for job seekers. Keep in mind that Italian websites can be translated with tools such as Google Translate.
Other resources that may include ESL teaching jobs are:
- Oxford Seminars English Language Schools Directory
- The International Herald Tribune - http://www.iht.com/
- Wall Street Journal Europe - https://online.wsj.com/
- Wanted in Rome - http://www.wantedinrome.com/
- Dave's ESL Cafe - http://www.eslcafe.com/joblist/
- A detailed online guidebook on the city of Rome - https://www.aboutroma.com
- El Gazette (published monthly) - http://www.elgazette.com/
- Prospects-UK - http://www.prospects.ac.uk
Graduates of Oxford Seminars can access our Job Placement Service
at any time to assist them in their ESL job search. Job Placement Advisors can provide valuable advice and resources to help prospective teachers make their search a successful one. Largest Chain Schools in Italy AISLi (Italian Association of English Language Schools)
The Italian Association of English Language Schools (AISLi) includes some of the most prestigious schools in Italy and has been providing English education since 1979. The company currently has over 40 branch schools in the country. AISLi schools are strongly regulated and generally offer a favourable working environment for their teachers. Teachers are often paid by the hour, so it is important to ensure that the contract guarantees a certain number of hours per week. Salaries may vary depending on performance and the boundaries established by AISLi. Preference for positions is often given to EU nationals. http://www.aisli.com/indexen.html Inlingua
Established in 1968, Inlingua is comprised of more than 300 branch schools in 40 countries worldwide, with over 55 of them located in Italy. Inlingua teachers can expect to make around 18.50 EUR per hour (gross). Preference for positions is often given to EU nationals. http://www.inlingua.com/ Berlitz
With over 128 years of experience and 550 chain schools throughout 60 countries, Berlitz is well-established among English language centers. There are currently multiple schools throughout Rome and Milan which provide favorable working conditions for ESL teachers. Preference for positions is often given to EU nationals. http://www.berlitz.com/ Additional ESL Resources to Help Teach English in Italy
There is an abundance of ESL resources available for teachers to help them in their lesson planning. The difficulty lies in finding suitable resources that meet specific needs. Some examples of teaching resources are listed below.
- Oxford Seminars ESL Teaching Resources
- Dave's ESL Cafe Cook Book - http://www.eslcafe.com/idea/index.cgi
- Transitions Abroad Teaching English in Italy - http://www.transitionsabroad.com/listings/work/esl/italy.shtml
- TeAchnology - http://www.teach-nology.com/teachers/lesson_plans/
- Discovery Education - https://school.discoveryeducation.com/
- Using English - https://www.usingenglish.com/
- Songs for Teaching - https://www.songsforteaching.com/esleflesol.htm
- The Internet TESL Journal - http://iteslj.org/ Tips for ESL Teachers in Italy
- In case of an emergency, dial 113 for police, 115 for the fire department, and 118 for medical rescue.
- Electrical outlets in Italy have a voltage of 230v which is higher than in North America (usually 120v). Electronics in Italy have plugs which feature two round pins. If a North American appliance can operate at dual voltages, then you will need to purchase a plug adapter (usually about 0.80 EUR at a local grocery store) to fit the electrical wall outlet. Appliances that do not have the option of switching between voltages will require a voltage converter. However, be warned that such converters may still cause overheating.
- Foreigners should always ask for a price before making any purchases from vendors to avoid being overcharged.
- Prices in restaurants double and sometimes triple when sitting down to eat as compared to taking an item to go. This is to cover the cost of service, dishes, utensils, etc.
- Bread is rarely served before a meal, as the main dishes take priority over filling up on bread alone. If bread is available, it is not free and is mainly accompanied by oil, not butter. Visa Requirements for Americans in Italy Visa
A long stay visa (type D) is required of anyone traveling to Italy and planning to stay for longer than 90 days. This is also the initial visa one would obtain if traveling to Italy to work, with this reason clearly indicated on the application form. When applying for the long stay visa, a teacher will need to submit the following documentation in person at an Italian consulate. (As visa guidelines can change without notice, applicants should confirm these requirements with their local consulate.)
- Completed visa application form
- A passport that will be valid for at least three months after the visa expiration date
- Passport-sized photo
- Proof of residency in the jurisdiction of the consulate
- Visa application fees
A residence permit (permesso di soggiorno
) is required of those staying in Italy longer than 90 days. Within eight days of arrival in the country, the ESL teacher must report to the local police station in the town of residence and apply for the necessary permit. Work permit
Americans wanting to teach English in Italy may qualify for a work permit under two sub-categories: self-employment (lavoro autonomo
) or employment by another company (lavoro subordinato
). Teachers should note that there is a yearly quota on the number of self-employment permits granted and specific application periods that must be followed.
It is very difficult for a non-EU citizen to secure a position through an Italian employer as the employer must prove that the employee is an expert in their field and that they are not taking the position away from a qualified EU citizen. Most employers are not willing to go through the extensive paperwork in order to submit a work permit (permesso di lavoro
) application. The process is also very lengthy as it takes time to send the application forms to the necessary bureaus in Italy and then back to the Italian consulate in the teacher's home jurisdiction.
To learn more about the visa/permit requirements for Italy, visit the Ministry of Foreign Affairs visa page at https://www.esteri.it/mae/en/
. Embassy and Consulate Information American Embassy and Consulate Offices in Italy United States Embassy in Rome via Vittorio Veneto, 121 00187 Roma, Italy Phone: 39 06 46741 (main switchboard) Website: http://italy.usembassy.gov/ Consulate General of the United States in Milan via Principe Amedeo 2/10 20121 Milano, Italy Phone: 39 02 2903 51 Fax: 39 02 2900 1165 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://milan.usconsulate.gov/ Consulate General of the United States in Florence Lungarno Vespucci, 38 50123 Firenze, Italy Phone: 39 055 266 951 Website: http://florence.usconsulate.gov
Consulate General of the United States in Naples Piazza della Repubblica 80122 Napoli, Italy Phone: 39 081 583 8111 Website: http://naples.usconsulate.gov/ Consular Agency in Genoa via Dante 2 16121 Genova, Italy Phone: 39 010 584 492 Fax: 39 010 5533 033 Email: email@example.com Consular Agency in Palermo via Vaccarini, 1 90143 Palermo, Italy Phone: 39 091 305 857 Fax: 39 091 625 6026 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Consular Agency in Venice Venice Marco Polo Airport - General Aviation Terminal viale Galileo Galilei, 30 30030 Tessera (VE) Phone: 39 041 541 5944 Fax: 39 041 541 6654 Email: USCitizensVenice@state.gov Canadian Embassy and Consulate Offices in Italy Embassy of Canada in Rome Via Zara 30 00198 Rome, Italy Phone: 39 06 85444 3937 Fax: 39 06 85444 2905 Email: email@example.com
Consulate of Canada to Malta in Valletta
Demajo House 103 Archbishop Street Valletta VLT 09, Malta Phone: 356 2552 3233 Fax: 356 2552 3232 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Consulate of Canada in Udine
4, Via Elio Monpurgo 33100 Udine (UD), Italy
Phone: 39 0432 229709 Fax: 39 06 85444 2912 Email: email@example.com
British Embassy and Consulate Offices in Italy British Embassy in Rome Via XX Settembre 80a I-00187 Roma RM Phone: 39 06 4220 0001 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://ukinitaly.fco.gov.uk/en British Consulate in Milan Via S. Paolo, 7 20121 Milano MI City: Milan Phone: 39 02 723 001 Fax: 39 02 864 65081 Email: email@example.com British Honourary Consulate in Bari Via Dalmazia, 127 70121 Bari BA City: Bari Phone: 39 080 5543 668 Fax: 39 080 5542 977 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Australian Embassy and Consulate Offices in Italy Australian Embassy in Rome Via Antonio Bosio 5 00161 Rome, Italy Phone: 39 06 8527 21 Fax: 39 06 8527 2300 Email: email@example.com Website: http://www.italy.embassy.gov.au/ Australian Consulate General in Milan Via Borgogna, 2 (third floor) 20122 Milan, Italy Phone: 39 02 7767 4200 Fax: 39 02 7767 4242 Email: Australian-Consulate-General-Milan@austrade.gov.au Honorary Consul in the Veneto Region CastelBrando Via Brandolini, 29 31030 Cison di Valmarino, Italy Phone: 39 0438 9761 Fax: 39 0438 976000 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Embassy and Consulate Information Outside Italy Embassy of Italy in Washington DC 3000 Whitehaven Street, N.W. Washington, DC 20008 Phone: (202) 612 4400 Fax: (202) 518 2154 Email: email@example.com Website: http://www.ambwashingtondc.esteri.it/ Consulate general offices are located in major cities and offer full services including consular services. Honorary consulates offer a limited range of services. A full list of Italian consulates in the United States can be found at:http://www.ambwashingtondc.esteri.it/Ambasciata_Washington/Menu/Informazioni_e_servizi/La_rete_consolare/ Embassy of Italy in Ottawa 275 Slater Street, 21st Floor Ottawa, Ontario K1P 5H9 Canada Phone: (613) 232 2401 Fax: (613) 233 1484 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.ambottawa.esteri.it/ Consulate general offices are located in major cities and offer full services including consular services. Honorary consulates offer a limited range of services. A full list of Italian consulates in Canada can be found at:http://www.ambottawa.esteri.it/Ambasciata_Ottawa/Menu/Ambasciata/La_rete_consolare/