Is your school anticipating difficulty in securing a licensed Spanish teacher for the coming school year or beyond? Do you want to expose your students to a native speaker and cultural expert? Are you trying to figure out how to staff a Spanish immersion program? Then the Visiting Teacher from Spain Program may be just the answer!
Maine’s Memorandum of Understanding with the Ministry of Education of Spain was created to promote strong cross-cultural ties between the citizens of Maine and the people of Spain and to help address the World Languages teacher shortage in the state. Under this agreement, educators from Spain can be brought to teach in Maine schools for a period of up to three years, (a two-year extension may be possible after the third year), depending on the availability of each individual teacher, his or her willingness to stay for an extended period, and the school districts’ interest in extending their visiting teachers’ contracts beyond the initial year.
Visiting International Teachers are licensed to teach in Maine while holding the cultural exchange status described above.
The process of securing a Visiting Teacher from Spain is not complicated. An interested school or public district must first determine that they have a guaranteed position and secure the approval of their local board of education/sponsor to hire a teacher from Spain. Teachers on J1 visas cannot be procured for openings that are uncertain or subject to elimination or change. Next, a detailed application must be completed and signed. New schools or districts also must sign a program contract, indicating a commitment to abide by all of the program’s requirements.
Information about applying for the 2024/2025 school year is coming soon. To obtain the application documents, please contact Antonio Caballero, Education Advisor, Embassy of Spain, General Consulate of Spain in Boston.
To select teachers, Districts review and can conduct Skype interviews with candidates. After selecting the teacher, Districts put their visiting teachers under contract in accordance with any local bargaining unit agreements. Visiting teachers must receive the same salary and benefits that any other teacher would receive, based on their educational attainment and years of experience. Visiting teachers arrive in Massachusetts in mid August and undergo an intensive pre-service orientation provided by The Spanish Ministry of Education and Maine DOE prior to their arrival in their Maine communities.
To support visiting educators in assimilating to life in the US, their participation in a strong, yearlong novice teacher mentoring program in his or her school or district is a requirement for securing a teacher through this program. The school or district also should find a host family for the first one to two weeks that the visiting teacher is in the community and be willing to assist the teacher with all aspects of getting settled.