Embark on a Journey of Cultural Exchange

The Exchange Visitor Program promotes mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries via educational and cultural exchanges. The program provides opportunities for around 300,000 foreign visitors from 200 countries and territories per year to experience U.S. society and culture and engage with Americans. The Exchange Visitor Program is for people-to-people programs, which seek to develop and strengthen professional and personal ties between key foreign nationals and Americans and American institutions.

There are 14 categories of the J-1 Visa, and “teacher” is one of them. This cultural exchange visa is used to allow foreign teachers with at least two years of experience to teach in an accredited primary or secondary school in the United States for up to 36 months. Exchange teachers sharpen their professional skills and participate in cross-cultural activities in schools and communities, and they return to their home school after the exchange to share their experiences and increased knowledge of the United States and the U.S. educational system. We are looking forward to supporting you throughout this process and watching your progress and growth as you experience American culture and education.

The goal of the Clear Horizons program is to foster cooperation in educational and cultural matters between the home country of the teacher and the United States. Many students, teachers, and communities have benefited from working with Clear Horizons’ team and the cultural exchange programs that they have supported. Clear Horizons endeavors to help individual students and teachers gain personal experiences and expand their cultural purview. We believe that the world is more interrelated and interconnected than ever, and as such its global citizens must have the ability to collaborate, communicate, and transcend boundaries. Clear Horizons’ mission is to equip K-12 students and educators with global knowledge, best practices, and resources that are necessary in a diverse and ever-changing world.

How to Participate

Teachers: Please see the link to the teacher application below.

If you already have a school that is interested in hosting you: note this on the application when you fill it out. Please also ask the school to fill out the school application and note that they are interested in hosting you. Our team will ensure that you meet the qualifications to be a J-1 teacher exchange visitor and confirm that your prospective employer meets the requirements to be a host school. We will then work with you on your visa paperwork.

If you do not yet have a school that is interested in hosting you: note this on the application when you fill it out. You will have the option to pay a one-time fee of $50 to be listed on our teacher portal so that prospective schools can reach out to you for an interview.

Schools: Please see the link to the school application below.

If you already have a teacher that you would like to host: note this on the application when you fill it out. Please ask the teacher to fill out the teacher application and note that you are interested in hosting them. Our team will ensure that you meet the requirements to be a host school and that the teacher meets the qualifications to be a J-1 teacher exchange visitor. We will then work with you and the teacher on the visa paperwork.

If you are interested in being connected with potential teacher exchange visitors: note this on the application when you fill it out. Our team will reach out to you about how you can access our portal to view potential teachers.

Expenses & Fees

Expected salary & expenses:
Your school district will provide information about their salary schedule. Typically, the approximate salary is $32,000 - $85,000 per year prior to taxes, depending on your degrees and K-12 experience.

Given your likely tax bracket, you can expect taxes to be approximately 30% of your salary on average. This is inclusive of Federal tax, State tax, and FICA tax. This will vary depending on the state where you are working and your income.

Program fees:
If you already have a school that is interested in hosting you for your cultural exchange program, you do not need to pay Clear Horizons any fees. If you would like to be listed on our portal for potential host schools to view your information, you will need to pay a one-time fee of $50.

Clear Horizons does not work with any recruiters that charge teachers. Before we issue your visa form, you will be asked to sign a document stating that you have not been charged by any recruiters.

Estimated expenses the exchange visitor will have to account for:
Portal listing (for teachers who are interested in being listed): $50 USD
Credentialing (NACES evaluation): $200 USD
Visa fee: $160 USD
SEVIS fee: $180 USD
Cambridge English Qualification Test (if English is not your native language): $100-$200 USD
Background/certification in the US: $150 USD
Medical examination in home country (i.e. TB, medical clearance): $25-$100 USD
Drug test in home country (if required by school/district): $25-$50 USD
Lodging upon arrival if housing has not yet been secured: $100-$1,000 USD
Air travel to United States: $400-$1,500 USD
One night of hotel stay at Clear Horizons in-person orientation: $60-$100 USD
Transportation to orientation: $30-$50 USD
Monthly rent: $500-$1,500 USD (depending on the area)
Monthly food costs: $500-$1,000 USD
Monthly utilities (i.e. telephone, electricity, cable, wifi, etc.): $100-$1,000 USD
Monthly car/transportation: $250-$500 USD
J-2 insurance payments (all premiums, copays, deductibles, etc.) for any dependents you bring to the United States with you: $30-$200 USD
Taxes (federal, state, and FICA): approximately 30% of your salary