Africa is an often-overlooked destination for those looking to travel and teach abroad. While the job market for English teachers is still dominated by China, Southeast Asia, Korea, Eastern Europe and the Middle East, those willing to go off the beaten path will find a wealth of opportunities in this vast, diverse, beautiful continent.
Quick, how many countries do you think there are in Africa? Just throw out the first number you can think of. How many can you name off the top of your head? Geography aficionados can try this Sporcle Quiz if they’re feeling particularly knowledgeable. The answer? Fifty four. The most of any continent. More, many people are surprised to learn that Africa is actually the second largest continent by size, easily beating out North America.
According to the Nations Online, there are as many as 2000 languages spoken in Africa. From the Arabic speakers of North Africa to the Zulu speakers of South Africa, A-Z, you just cannot beat Africa for sheer, breathtaking, cultural, linguistic, ethnic and natural diversity. So, where to start?
Morocco retains its romantic old world charm.
With shores on the Atlantic and the Mediterranean, this ancient country has seen history firsthand. From the Phoenician explorers who landed here in over 2,500 years ago, to becoming a part of the Carthaginian Empire and later the Roman Empire, from witnessing the Moors conquer Spain, through the Berber Dynasties of the 11th century, from European colonization through independence Morocco is steeped in history.
Recently, The Kingdom of Morocco has undertaken an ambitious, long-term program to reform and revitalize the country’s primary education system, working with such organizations as the World Bank and USAID. While far from complete, the program has resulted in a growing job market for certified TEFL teachers in the kingdom. The primary source of jobs is in the private school system, clustered in the largest cities of Casablanca, Fez, Tangier, Marrakesh and Rabat.
The average work week for private schools is around 20-30 hours, allowing for plenty of time to explore this beautiful, ancient place. Average pay for a private school is around $1,200-$1500 a month, but with the low cost of living teachers have little problem putting away savings. Knowing Spanish or French is a plus for teaching in Morocco, though not a requirement. A TEFL certification and a bachelor’s degree is a must.
For an excellent first-hand breakdown of teaching English in Morocco, check out this post from What Kate and Kris Did.