CETP is a teacher recruitment organization. Since 1991 we have been working to provide native-speaking English teachers and other languages and subjects to public schools as well as several parochial schools in Hungary and Romania. CETP serves more than 100 different schools, and has sent more than 500 English Conversation Teachers to the region over the past decade. The Central European Teaching Program is the single largest provider of teachers to Hungarian public schools.
CETP exists to benefit young people in the formerly socialist countries of Central Europe by providing public schools in the region with native-speaking English teachers. Since 2006, we are placing teachers solely in Hungary. English-language skills are in high demand throughout the region and the need for English teachers remains high even more than a decade after the major political and ideological changes took place in Central and Eastern Europe. Local people with skills in high economic demand, in Central Europe as in other regions of the world, are often attracted to better paying jobs than public school teaching, thus contributing to the teacher shortage.
CETP also offers North Americans and others a meaningful long-term professional and cross-cultural experience and a unique opportunity to become an active part of a Central European community
The Central European Teaching Program, originally called Teach Hungary, was founded by Lesley Davis in 1991, after a year of teaching English and French at Horváth Mihály Gimnázium in Szentes, Hungary. During her year as a teacher in Hungary, Lesley was often approached by Hungarian English teachers and school directors requesting help recruiting native speakers of English as English Conversation Teachers for their schools.
Lesley saw the need for a structured teacher placement program which could send native speakers of English to teach in high schools in Hungary. Upon returning the US, she founded Teach Hungary to meet this need. Teach Hungary moved to Beloit College when Lesley came to work for the college’s Office of International Education in 1992. The program grew rapidly, expanding to neighboring Central European countries. To reflect these changes, the program name was changed to the Central European Teaching Program, or CETP.
In the spring of 2003, the program became independent from Beloit College, while continuing the same mission of providing personal, quality service to both teachers and schools.
CETP has become a well-known and respected organization throughout our host countries. School directors know that if they are able to provide certain basic living and working conditions, and if their schools are given positive reports from previous native-speaking teachers, they will be guaranteed a qualified native-speaking teacher from the program. Like many of you, Central European schools choose to work with our program because of the support we offer. They are in frequent contact with our overseas offices.
At CETP we try to maintain a policy of approachability, flexibility, and understanding, both in regards to the schools we work with and the teachers. Our program is largely free of bureaucracy, save what is required by Central European authorities. CETP serves as a private Peace Corps, but with no government funding. Although we operate on a shoestring; orientation, phone and Internet service–particularly in Europe, plus a small stipend for our country directors ends up costing many thousands of dollars. Because our small staff believes so fervently in CETP’s mission, we work hard to ensure that each applicant receives their every penny’s worth during their teaching stint abroad.
CETP teachers come from all walks of life and a wide variety of teaching backgrounds. There are retired couples willing and able to offer their wealth of experience to Central European students. There are recent college graduates looking for an exciting and challenging way to spend a year or two and to build up their teaching credentials. Mid-career professionals join CETP looking for a change of lifestyle and a chance to “give something back” by being a volunteer teacher. Elementary, high school, and college teachers on sabbatical join us to experience teaching and living in another country and by a different set of rules. And there are plenty of teachers who fall somewhere in between these descriptions. The one thing that all CETP teachers share, however, is an insatiable curiosity about other cultures, a sense of adventure, and a mature and open-minded approach to life.