Bilingually consists of a small team of freelance teachers, usually between 8-12, who work with us on a part or full time basis. Many of our clases are one-on-one so our job is to do the best we can to match students with a teacher who has the necessary skills and background to be able to help the student achieve his or her particular goals. Therefore we work with a diverse group of teachers to support a variety of student needs.
All of our teachers, with the potential exception of a few of our conversation class teachers, have a minimum 100 hour teacher certification (TEFL or CELTA), at least one year of experience teaching English to adults or teens, and a Bachelor’s degree. All of our teachers must have excellent knowledge of English grammar and be willing to constantly keep learning, have experience designing creative and interactive speaking lessons, and have experince teaching online and using online teaching tools.
Beyond those minimum qualifications, we prefer teachers who are between 25-45 years old, have more than 3 years experience teaching English, have a Bachelor or Master’s degree in a field related to English language or something in the Humanities, have experience living internationally, speak Spanish at an intermediate level and/or speak other languages, and have experience in other professional settings such as business, cinema/theater, or journalism.
In addition to professional and educational history, we give a lot of weight to a teacher’s “soft skills”, that is to say how they interact on a human level. It is very important that teachers understand and embody our values and teaching methodology, are able to be empathetic listeners and clear communicators, and are professional in all aspects of how they communicate and present themselves.
Finally, the biggest question we get about our teachers’ background is: are they native? As we wrote about in our most recent post, we proudly hire both native and fluent (aka. non-native) speaking teachers. Our fluent teachers’ written and spoken language ability is evaluated internally, and we require a level C2 and excellent command of formal, academic, and professional English. After evaluating a fluent teacher we assign them a maximum teaching level. Fluent teachers usually teach levels A1 and A2, sometimes B1, and very rarely B2. Based on understanding of the academic research, our years of experinece in the field of English language teaching, and our knowledge of our fluent teachers’ abilities, we are 100% confident of their abilities to teach lower level English classes.
Very often we have to educate students about the discrimination against non-native teachers and ask them to trust us in our selection of teachers. Many students have a preconcieved notion that a native speaker is better for their learning, when for lower levels that is simply not true. Unfortunately having a native teacher is often seen as a status symbol, and with no knowledge of how language learning works, they refuse to even try one of our qualified fluent teachers.
We are committed to hiring the best teachers and also to combatting racism and discrimination. We hope you’ll trust our experience and dedication to providing only the highest quality and best matching teachers for your language learning journey. If you’re not happy with your teacher for any reason we are happy to find a solution when possible or return your money.