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Old 02.08.2015, 23:12
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Teaching German without diploma

A friend of us who is native German and has teaching experience in Germany would like to teach in the Cycle 2 Primaire (8 to 12 year olds). This is the scolarité obligatoire. She would be perfect for the German classes here in Vaud as there are not so many capable since the new system Harmos was introduced and the number of lessons in German intensified.

My question to the forum is if she would be allowed to do so. The rules are that you need a Swiss diploma (titre). Is there a escape from this rule like starting the 3 year formation and start teaching at the same time?

many thanks
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Old 03.08.2015, 09:07
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Re: Teaching German without diploma

For that age group, the teacher teaches everything, including German. So a potential teacher needs a valid diploma to start pedagogical school (HEP), as well as perfect French.

Potential teachers attending HEP are allowed to get a part-time teaching job only in their 3rd year of study. The first 2 years they shadow teachers.
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Old 03.08.2015, 10:30
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Re: Teaching German without diploma

To be a qualified primary school teacher in Switzerland you need to show training/competency in at least 5 subject areas that match the Swiss curriculum, plus have fluency in the language of instruction.

Primary teaching is a 'generalist' teaching position and it's highly unlikely to get a job at a primary school to teach only one subject. If she was in the German side then she might have more success in perhaps teaching 'DaZ' which is the extra classes for non-native German speakers, but the teachers who teach that are usually fully-qualified primary school teachers with extra qualifications for language-teaching for kids of other language backgrounds.

If she wants to be a teacher, and she's a native German speaker then I'd suggest she is better off working in the German area of Switzerland and getting a full qualifications as a primary school teacher that meet the Swiss requirements. In the longer-term, it's a career path with specialist training, not something you do 'for fun' for a couple of years without full qualifications...
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Old 03.08.2015, 20:50
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Re: Teaching German without diploma

Thanks for the replies. I understand the rules and like them. Being a teacher in this country is still a very respected profession.

So would it in any way be possible for her? Maybe for a other age group and get an exception? It may be down to the director to approve or not. Fully agree on the career and starting the HEP.
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Old 03.08.2015, 21:02
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Re: Teaching German without diploma

Private language school or Migros-schule perhaps the only way.
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Old 03.08.2015, 21:02
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Re: Teaching German without diploma

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Thanks for the replies. I understand the rules and like them. Being a teacher in this country is still a very respected profession.

So would it in any way be possible for her? Maybe for a other age group and get an exception? It may be down to the director to approve or not. Fully agree on the career and starting the HEP.
If she has at least a BA diploma in German lit/Lang from a recognized university, she can try HEP for secondary I kids. If she has a masters, for sec. II. But there's not many jobs available in Sec. II (high school). But you need C1 level I. French anyway, and all the HEP exams will be in French (oral and written).

I've just finished my sec. II diploma, but didn't manage to get a job. I'm hired in Sec. I, but my diploma isn't recognized, which means I can't be titular and am paid less than someone with less university degrees than me
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Old 04.08.2015, 14:45
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Re: Teaching German without diploma

I am teaching part time at a primary school and studying at the same time at PHFHNW (Pädagogische Hochschule Nordwestschweiz) at the Solothurn campus in their FLEX program. This may be an option for her since instruction is in German. The Flex program allows you to work a part time job as it includes less in person attendance and more at home study. You attend university 2 days/week.
There is a shortage of English and French teachers in the German speaking part of Switzerland, and I got lucky to be hired as an English teacher in my first year of University. So it is possible. I did have a lot of experience with children beforehand and I guess my principal liked my resume. Because I work quite a lot (3 days per week) it will take me 7 instead of 6 Semesters to complete my program. The canton of Solothurn issued a "permission to teach" in a primary school, which was applied for by my principal when she hired me. I do get paid quite a lot less than a fully qualified teacher unfortunately. (Can't have it all, lol) For this coming school year I received a new contract and am now not only teaching English, but also some other subjects.
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