Whenever I have a conversation about Teach Away with someone who’s curious to learn about the world of international education, I get asked the same question: “What countries does Teach Away post jobs in?”
If you’ve visited the Teach Away job board on more than one occasion, it’s likely you would have noticed a different list of available countries each time. Although there are some nations, like the United Arab Emirates, that tend to have postings up year round, most countries appear and reappear on the job board to reflect whether or not there any schools there that are currently looking to fill vacancies.
Since countries pop up on the job board’s dropdown list as schools within them publicize their openings, keeping an eye on the list can reveal some countries you may not have known we have jobs in!
I was taking a look at the list of countries currently with postings today and was intrigued by a country I hadn’t previously taken the time to learn about: Azerbaijan.
Azerbaijan is a country in southwest Asia (and partially in southeast Europe) bordering the Caspian Sea. Armenia and Turkey are to the west, Georgia and Russia to the north, and Iran to the south.
I was interested in finding out a little more about the country, so I pulled up the Teach Away info page and found the following country info and quick facts about Azerbaijan:
Capital – Baku
Language – Azerbaijani or Azeri
Population – 9.3 million
Currency – Manat
Government – Unitary presidential state
Baku – the nation’s capital city
Azerbaijan’s national drink is tea, often sweetened with jam.
Azerbaijan was the first largely muslim country to grant women the right to vote and partake in government.
Neft Dashlar is the first and largest town built on stilts.
The youngest International Chess Grand Master, Teymur Rajabov, was awarded the title at the age of 13.
All 8,350 rivers in Azerbaijan drain into the Caspian Sea.
After deciding that I definitely need to try mixing some jam into my next cup of tea, I took my Azerbaijan curiosity a step further, taking a look at what it would be like to live and teach in Azerbaijan.
Azerbaijan draws influence from the West as well as from its past membership in the Soviet Union, which came to an end in 1991. The country is in an exciting place as it is emerging from beneath the Iron Curtain and taking on a new identity with a healthy variety of cultural influence. Azerbaijan is home to bustling cities and small towns – across the country you’ll find both urban density and natural rural landscapes.
Lakeside in the Azerbaijan country
Teaching in Azerbaijan
Azerbaijan’s private international schools and public schools provide great opportunities for educators of all levels, from Early Years teachers to subject-specifc teachers for international high schools. Reflecting Azerbaijan’s development on the global stage, English-speaking instructors, English language teachers, and Business English teachers are in high demand.
International schools in Azerbaijan are International Baccalaureate (IB) schools. They follow a globally recognized and highly reputable curriulum designed to equip students with life skills as well as high academic potential. IB schools require brilliant teachers in order to deliver a world-class program. Students who are successful at IB schools will be prepared and able to attend nearly any college or university of their choice.
An IB program has also been recently added to Azerbaijan’s public school system with the intention of instilling a global mindset in public school students. This is exciting news for the international teaching community, as these public schools will need international educators to make its IB program the best it can be.
Teachers in Azerbaijan earn competitive salaries, which vary according to costs of living across the country. Benefits in Azerbaijan typically include accommodation for teachers and health insurance.
Things for teachers to do in Azerbaijan
Teachers living in Azerbaijan’s capital of Baku will enjoy diverse restaurants and modern facilities. As in any city, teachers are encouraged to try the local cuisine, although those looking for variety will find anything from Irish pubs to Japanese fusion. The oil-rich city boasts modern skyscrapers and luxuries, but the core of the city is an ancient historic site. History buffs can explore towers and palaces dating back centuries. Azerbaijan’s urban areas, in particular, have large populations of expats, so teachers can develop a support network while living in the country. Teachers are nevertheless encouraged to get to know local Azerbaijanis, as their unique culture illustrates the importance of personal relationships, sincerity, and tradition.
Traveling in Azerbaijan is a rewarding challenge for those interested in this dynamic, rapidly developing country. Azerbaijan defies classification – situated at the crossroads of Europe and Asia, this fascinating nation is a mix of cultural influences. Expats in Azerbaijan will not want to miss out on the country’s historic sites and natural wonders. Azerbaijan is home to more than half of the world’s mud volcanoes and derives its name as the “land of fire” from the burning mountain, a hillside continuously engulfed in flames. The stunning Caucasus mountains provide breathtaking scenery. Visiting areas such as the picturesque shepherding village of Khinalug (Xinaliq) is easier than ever thanks to new roads. Travelers who visit Azerbaijan in the near future will be rewarded with an authentic experience before the region becomes overrun with tourists. The fact that Azerbaijan’s tourism industry is newly developing can be both difficult and gratifying. Traveling can be challenging, as infrastructure is not always well-developed, and few people outside of Baku speak much English. However, travelers who are up for the challenge will enjoy the authentic experience of exploring beautiful Azerbaijan.
Of course the reason I came across Azerbaijan and wrote this article in the first place is because we currently have job postings for positions in Azerbaijan! If you’re qualified and seeking an International School position overseas, Azerbaijan could be the place for you. Check out a couple of current postings:
These aren’t the only two opportunities… See more job postings for positions in Azerbaijan International Schools here.