How does it work?
This program gives teachers the opportunity to live and teach in another country for one year while their counterpart teaches in their classroom and lives in their home, or other accommodation provided by the teacher. While abroad, you are still considered to be an employee of your school board, are paid your regular salary and maintain your benefit plan. At the end of your exchange, you return to your teaching post in Alberta. In this way, the exchange program enables teachers to gain cross-cultural work experience without compromising job security.
Where can I go?
Calendar-year exchanges (January to December) are available with Australia. School-year exchanges (September to June) are with the UK, Germany and other provinces in Canada.
Applicants may specify their location preferences. Matching is based on compatible teaching assignments, destination choice and housing needs.
What is the cost?
All costs are borne by the participant. The Alberta Teachers’ Association secures the exchange and prepares and supports participants throughout the year.
Who can apply?
Applicants must be Canadian citizens. They also need an Alberta Teaching Certificate, a permanent teaching position and the approval of their principal and superintendent (Some jurisdictions require a minimum number of years of service).
Year-long exchanges to Germany and require a level of fluency in the language of instruction.
Ideal candidates are flexible, adaptable and open to other cultures.
How do I apply?
Teachers that wish to participate in the post-to-post exchange program should apply a year in advance of the date they would start teaching overseas. For example, applicants who hope to teach in Australia in January 2015 must apply by December 31, 2013. The application process is as follows:
- Talk to your principal and superintendent (or designate) – Applying for a teaching exchange is a cooperative process and must involve your school principal and superintendent or designate. All three of you must understand and fully agree to the procedures and guidelines of the exchange. Multilevel endorsement ensures that there is adequate support for the incoming and outgoing exchange teachers. No teacher may go on exchange without the support and endorsement of the school and school board.
- Application – To apply to the post-to-post educator exchange program, you must submit an application package consisting of a comprehensive application form, a summary form outlining the details of your application and a medical certificate verifying that you are in good health and able to travel. Please review the application checklist to ensure your application is complete.
- Interviews – After your application has been received and reviewed, the educator exchange coordinator will request an interview with you to further explore your professional and personal suitability for exchange. Interviews are generally conducted in January and February.
- Recommendation & transfer of application – Upon a favourable recommendation from the exchange coordinator, your application will be sent to our partner in the location you have chosen.
- Matching – Once both coordinators have access to your file, they will work together to find an appropriate match for you. This process takes place over several months, generally March to June.
- Approval in Alberta – If a proposed match is found, the proposal is sent to your Superintendent and subsequently to your principal for approval. After approval is given at these levels, you will be given the information about your potential match. At this point, you can refuse the match if you do not consider it to be appropriate.
- Approval abroad – Your partner teacher’s application must go through similar channels of approval and that person is also given the same opportunity of refusal. An exchange is not considered to be final until all the overseas parties have agreed to it. You will be notified by phone, and subsequently by mail, when your exchange has been finalized.