The ELCA’s Central Europe teaching program is an amazing opportunity to teach and live in beautiful, historic cities in Slovakia and Poland.
Teaching is a great way to really see the world through the eyes of another culture while you work and expand the students’ opportunities by helping them master the English language.
Working on staff at your school, you’ll be “Professor” to your students, which is more commonly used than “Teacher” (you may also hear a “Mr/Mrs Professor” from students in the younger grades). Throughout the year you’ll come to know the many joys of teaching (and the various long nights of correcting tests that comes along with it).
This is an exciting time to be living and working in Central Europe. The students are some of the first to be born since the fall of Communism in 1989. Both Slovakia and Poland face new challenges and opportunities, and people who can speak English are valuable in all areas of society.
Give Students a Huge Advantage
Volunteer teachers can help students develop language and other skills that give them a huge advantage as they move ahead in their chosen careers. Graduates of many of these schools’ even leave with social and professional fluency.
How to Apply
If you'd like to speak with a current teacher before applying, contact the Pastor at firstname.lastname@example.org.
You may also contact the ELCA Global Mission unit at:
ELCA Global Mission
8765 West Higgins Road
Chicago, IL 60631
Length of the Program
After being accepted into the program through the ELCA (how to apply), you will be employed as a teacher in a church-related elementary or high school in Central Europe teaching English, literature, history, or culture.
Your year will start in mid-August, flying into Bratislava, Slovakia. There you’ll have in-country training before moving to your teaching assignment where school will start in early September.
The teaching program is a one-year commitment, but preference will be given to candidates who can commit to two years. Preference is also given to candidates with teaching or English-language backgrounds but it is not required. People of all ages have taught in this program, and these are some common backgrounds:
- current teachers
- retired (or retiring) teachers
- ESL teachers or those with an English or ESL degree
- students after university graduation and before their career
- seminary students during their internship
- people interested in teaching and travel
- people changing careers
Things that make a great teacher in this program are:
- Flexibility and Creativity
- Ability to fit into a different teaching environment
- Ready to learn and work at planning classes
- Willingness to learn and cooperate
Housing, foreign medical insurance, and a local teacher’s stipend are all provided. Volunteers raise their own support to cover travel expenses. Student loans may be deferrable, but you'll need to check with your lenders.
From the ELCA Website:
In partnership with various programs and companion churches around the world, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) provides international opportunities for those interested in international service through teaching. While teaching, volunteers grow in relationship with their host communities, immerse themselves in a new culture and way of life, and are transformed by their students, colleagues and the experience of international service. Though helpful, an education degree is not a requirement for most Global Teach placements.
ELCA Global Teachers in Central Europe teach English, literature, history, and culture in church-related schools in Slovakia and Poland. (The schools are related to the Evangelical Lutheran Church of the Augsburg Confession in Slovakia and the Evangelical Lutheran Church of the Augsburg Confession in Poland.)