Why would you want to teach in Mexico?

Published on 9th February, 2017 by Andrew Wigford. Published in For Candidates / TIC News

We ask two teachers at Mexico City's Edron Academy why they made the move

We’ve caught up with two of the teachers who TIC has recruited for Edron Academy in Mexico: Sean Clancy and Ella Clarke, both teachers from England.  Here’s what they have to say about how and why they made their choice to work at one of the leading British international schools in Latin America:

Why teach overseas, and why choose Mexico?

Sean is teaching overseas for the very first time. He explains the impact of this:

“I came to Mexico City because I was looking for a challenge. I wanted to live and experience somewhere totally different from the UK. I didn't want to step out of England into another culture that was exactly the same. Living and working in Mexico City has been an amazing experience! In England I was stuck in a box, stuck in a routine. Here I feel like I'm on a learning curve. It was good having to learn Spanish. I still have a long way to go, but have improved lots. If you embrace the challenge it will help you develop!

I would recommend teaching internationally, without a doubt. Mexican schools operate very differently to English schools but I see it as an opportunity to share what we know with Mexican staff and help raise standards – and learn from them too. You can either, look at the situation and say 'that's not how we do things at home!' or you can embrace it and say 'let's try it!' It comes down to your attitude.

International teaching gives you the flexibility to be a good teacher. Back at home I worked 8am to 6pm - then I would spend more hours proving I'd done my job. Here you can put more time into being a good teacher and getting to know your class. Mexicans are a lot more laid back than British people. I feel as though I'm coming to school to work as a team.” 

My first time teaching internationally, and first time to Mexico

Ella Clarke had never been to Mexico before accepting her job at Edron Academy. She describes how she feels about living there: “I came to Mexico with an open mind and didn't know what to expect. It was good because I managed to fit in really well. I had to get used to living in Mexico, the school, and what it's like to be a teacher as it was my first teaching job. The support network here has been amazing. The staff were very welcoming, and people were always checking I'd settled in and that I knew what I was doing. It was a very positive start.

My advice for teachers coming to Mexico is embrace the things that happen to you while you're here. Don't listen to stories about it being so dangerous; like anywhere, just be careful and streetwise and sensible. Come and make your own decisions. Embrace the amazing culture.”

Living the Mexican life

Both teachers have things to say about life in Mexico: “As cheesy as it sounds, there's something for everybody in Mexico,” says Sean. “I live in Coaycan, a beautiful part of the city. There are also some great markets nearby. If you were looking for a more 'American' part of Mexico, you can visit Santa Fe, with huge high-rise buildings, restaurants and rooftop bars. You can get on the underground and go anywhere for 5 pesos. You can also visit some beautiful towns by luxury coach relatively cheaply. Come to Mexico! Come looking for a challenge and view it as an opportunity to develop.”

“The first thing you need to do is accept that these are the people you're living with, socialising with and working with,” says Ella. “You need to clearly separate work and social life, because the same people are your support network in and out of school. A lot of my friends work in the primary school. The local staff are very helpful, helping you with the language. I came with quite a bit of understanding of Spanish. I've improved in my understanding. I need to start speaking it more. People who came with no Spanish have surpassed me because they were forced into learning it! Other than situations in taxis, shops, restaurants, you don't use it that much. So you have to make an effort to practice conversational Spanish. Living in the city is more sociable. If you live in the city you need to live with someone because it's more expensive. There's more to do in the city. You can easily travel at the weekend in Mexico.”

Edron Academy is currently seeking a skilled Economics teacher. Get in touch with TIC Recruitment to find out more.

You might also be interested in these informative articles:
TIC’s Twin Peaks Nepal Fundraiser
British International School Awards 2017 celebrates international school successes
What’s it like to teach at an international school?

Like this post? Share it!

Andrew Wigford

Andrew is Managing Director of TIC. He has been involved in international education both as a teacher and Headteacher for over 25 years and has worked in Germany, Colombia and Austria. He set up TIC recruitment in 2005 to help teachers find great jobs in great international schools.