Skip to main content
Official State of Iowa Website Here is how you know

Visiting Teachers from Spain Program

On this page...

The Visiting Teachers from Spain Program is an exciting venture between the Iowa Department of Education (Department) and the Ministry of Education and Culture of Spain (MECS).

The program was created to mitigate a shortage of qualified Spanish teachers in the state. In addition, the program teaches students how to interact, communicate, understand, and respect other cultures.

The Visiting Teacher from Spain Program provides local school districts and accredited nonpublic schools with the opportunity to fill vacant Spanish positions. With this program, Iowa school systems have the option of recruiting highly qualified Spanish educators for a period of up to three years. Visiting teachers from Spain are certified Spanish language educators with at least two years of experience. Local school districts and accredited nonpublic schools may hire visiting teachers in accordance with all other local policies in terms of salary scale, licensure, and local system requirements.

The Visiting Teachers from Spain program in Iowa is overseen by the Department. The program serves public and accredited nonpublic schools by the state that operate as an elementary or secondary school, and as stated in the general statutes and regulations adopted by the State Board of Education.

For more information regarding accredited nonpublic schools, visit the Nonpublic School Accreditation webpage.


  • The Department and the MECS signed a memorandum of understanding.
  • The Department surveys the needs of Iowa school districts and accredited nonpublic schools and provides an Application of Intent, which does not obligate the school district or accredited nonpublic schools to hire a teacher from Spain.
  • The MECS selects possible candidates.
  • The Department team travels to Madrid to conduct interviews with prospective recruits.
  • Participating school districts and accredited nonpublic schools are informed of the candidates and make commitments.
  • Recruited teachers will make a one- to three-year commitment to teach in Iowa, provided that the local school district or accredited nonpublic school chooses to rehire them each year.

Responsibilities of the Department

  • To offer orientation and training for visiting teachers.
  • To provide support to the district, accredited nonpublic school, and teachers through the utilization of technology.
  • To provide orientation and/or assistance in the acquisition of official documents (Social Security number, licensure, etc.)

Responsibilities of the Local District or Accredited Nonpublic School

  • Once the district or accredited nonpublic school is notified of the possible candidate and reviews credentials, the district or accredited nonpublic school will have a week to make a commitment.
  • After a commitment is made, the district or accredited nonpublic school needs to send a draft of the contract with estimated paid scale.
  • To provide a contact person who is available to discuss personnel issues during the interview and selection process.
  • To provide a building-level administrator who acts as a liaison for the teacher.
  • To provide a fellow teacher/mentor, preferably in the same building, to provide guidance and support for the visiting teacher from Spain.
  • To pay the program fee of $895.00.
  • To provide additional support to ensure a successful and positive experience for both the school and the teacher, including assistance in securing a Social Security number, setting up housekeeping, obtaining a driver’s license, buying a car, etc.

Spanish Exchange Visiting Teacher Program in Agreement

Iowa’s Exchange Visiting Teachers Program Financial Disclosure