I thought I should start out with the school where I will be working at this coming year: CIC Valencia! While it only has a one year contract (like many schools in Venezuela), I imagine that I will be here for at least two years.
Below I will list all of the facts that have persuaded me to stay in the lovely country of Venezuela for a third year!
Teaching Wanderlust score for CIC Valencia- 9.75/10- Excellent!!
1. What type of school is it?
2. Student population:
470 students. I couldn’t find a breakdown of ethnicities online.
3. Class size:
18-24 students in each class. I would prefer 18 maximum students per class so I would give it .75 points because it is mostly in my acceptable range.
Apple TV in all classrooms, iPad for every teacher, computer in every classroom, multiple computer labs.
3%-5%retirement contribution matched by the school depending on the number of years worked.
6. Overall package:
Furnished apartments are provided and payment of utilities including gas, water, electricity, and condominium fees, great savings potential, membership at Embassy Suites Hotel (or health club supplement), 85/15% salary split between US and Bs, bonus for sponsoring an after school activity, salary scale with bumps for BA, MA, and PHD. Settling in benefit, annual round trip airfare, reimbursed shipping costs up to $1000, health insurance, Spanish language stipend, and a no-interest car loan.
7. City Profile:
Valencia is the third largest city in Venezuela. It is a 20-minute drive to the closest beach and an hour drive to my favorite beach in Tucacas! There are multiple malls (with movie theaters!!), restaurants (including multiple Mexican food places that I actually liked!), and the climate is warm but not blistering hot like it is here in Zulia.
8. Salsa Dancing:
There are two salsa schools in Valencia that my current teachers at my salsa academy recommend. There are also clubs where my friends have found salsa music and dancing.
The school lists 126 employees on it’s website, but I’m not sure how many of them are teachers or expat teachers. I have visited the campus and from what I observed there was a good mix of single and married teachers of all ages.
I have lived in Venezuela for two years now and I have tried a lot of food. I would say my favorite Venezuelan dish is Pabellon and all of the fresh fruit juices (especially parchita and guanabana). I think I will be writing a post about Venezuelan food very soon!