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Like California, Texas boasts a high population, several cities, and significant immigrant populations. Unlike California, much of Texas has some of the lowest cost of living in the country, giving teachers making the same money as elsewhere more spending power. These factors make Texas a prime location for finding work as an ESL, bilingual, or sheltered English teacher.
Job Prospects for Texas ESL Educators
TEA’s Limited English Proficiency Initiatives webpage summarizes the state’s LEP student population statistics and programs. About 17 percent of Texas students qualify as Limited English Proficient (LEP). As of spring 2010, Texas public schools served this population with ELL programs (for about 817,165 students), bilingual programs (for around 456,051 students), and ESL programs (for approximately 310,812 students). Of the Texas ELL population, over 91 percent spoke Spanish at that time.
These statistics appear encouraging for prospective ESL teachers. In addition, the article “The Changing Face of Immigrants in the U.S.: Implications for Adult Educators,” published in 2013 in the PAACE Journal of Lifelong Learning at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, mentions Texas as a part of the country that should continue to see a significant rise in new immigrant population. The arrival of these immigrants is projected to contribute to growth in the ESL teaching profession to the tune of 9 percent from 2012 to 2022, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. However, teacher turnover in Texas is low, as of 2013, and ESL endorsements and bilingual backgrounds are relatively common among current and prospective teachers, so finding a good teaching job can prove more challenging.
Where to Look for Texas ESL Teaching Jobs
TEA maintains a webpage for prospective teachers to conduct a Statewide School District Job Search.
According to the Alliance for Excellent Education, the largest districts in Texas in 2001 were Houston, Dallas, Fort Worth, Austin, and Northside Independent School Districts.
The Texas Association of School Personnel Administrators conducts several Texas Teacher Job Fairs throughout the state. These typically take place during the spring and early summer.
Texas TESOL Teacher Resources
- TEA administers a Resources webpage for teachers that includes information about teacher preparation, teacher testing, grant opportunities, how to become a highly qualified teacher, master teacher programs, school district jobs, teaching awards, and salary information.
- The Texas English Language Learners Portal reviews Texas bilingual services, Texas ESL services, assessment practices, teacher certification requirements, professional development, resources for ESL and bilingual teachers, and resources for families.
- TexTESOL, Texas Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages, is a branch of the national TESOL organization and hosts an annual conference.
- TABE http://www.tabe.org/index.cfm, or the Texas Association for Bilingual Education, does advocacy work, publishes a journal, maintains a newsletter, and hosts conferences and professional development workshops.