English Opens Doors Program of the Chilean Ministry of Education

The UK’s Society for Latin American Studies has a posting up on their newsletter for anyone interested in spending time in Chile to volunteer teaching English and a chance to learn/perfect Spanish. The full opportunity listing is as follows:

Call for Volunteers, English Opens Doors Program

PROGRAM START DATES March, April, June, and July, 2013

The National Volunteer Center of the English Opens Doors Program of the Chilean Ministry of Education. Our mission, supported by the United Nations Development Programme, is to recruit highly motivated individuals to teach English in Chile. We offer an excellent opportunity for students or individuals who are interested in living and working in Latin America, and gaining real life experience and insight into the region. This program can be a useful resource for students looking towards post-university life.

The volunteer program is fee-free and full-time. It has been operating since 2004 and served tens of thousands of Chilean students. The Chilean government has committed to increasing the English language ability of its citizens in order to better participate in our globalized world. By bringing English speakers to public and semi-private school classrooms for free, we provide not only real English language learning, but an opportunity for Chilean students to interact and learn from people of different cultures. During the 2012 school year, over 300 English speakers from all over the world came to Chile to participate in our program.

There are four specific actions you can take to help us to reach potential volunteers about this opportunity:

English Opens Doors Program

  • What do volunteers do?
    Volunteers teach alongside a Chilean head teacher in either municipal (public) or particular subvencionado (semi-private) schools. Volunteers are placed all throughout Chile, and work with students ranging from quinto básico (5th grade, approximately 10-11 years) to cuarto medio (12th grade, approximately 17-18 years). The volunteer’s main responsibilities are:

    • To focus on improving the students’ speaking and listening skills
    • To motivate the students to take an interest in learning English
    • To share their culture with the students, thus broadening their worldview
    • Volunteers should expect to spend 25 hours a week in the classroom and another 10 hours each week leading an extracurricular activity. Each volunteer has the flexibility to determine what specific extracurricular activity they’d like to lead with their students.
    • Additionally, volunteers participate in English Camps, Debates, Public Speaking Competitions, Spelling Bees, and other initiatives of the English Opens Doors Program.
  • The Fundamental Responsibilities of each EODP volunteer:
    • Act as an ambassador for their home country and for the Chilean Ministry of Education. As such, to be responsible for their personal conduct and behavior as well as their level of professionalism at all times.
    • Be proactive in exercising their judgment in regards to their personal health, safety and well-being.
    • Regard their students, colleagues, host family and fellow volunteers with an attitude of mutual learning, cooperation and respect.
  • All volunteers must:
    • Be a native or near-native English speaker.
    • Have completed a bachelor’s degree from an accredited university and be between 21 and 35 years old.
    • Be mentally and physically capable of teaching children.
    • Have experience living or travelling in another country.
    • Have an interest in Chilean culture and living in a developing country.
    • Be highly committed, responsible, and flexible.
    • Have access to sufficient funds in order to cover personal expenditures throughout the duration of the program.
  • Volunteers will receive:
    • A program completion bonus of CLP 60,000 per month served.
    • Accommodations and meals with a host family.
    • Pre-departure information and support.
    • Airport transfers to designated accommodations upon arrival for volunteers who arrive on official program start dates.
    • Assistance obtaining a Chilean I.D. card.
    • Round-trip transportation from Santiago to the regional placement site.

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