From February 2023, you can now move to the UK as a teacher from Nigeria, India and a host of other countries listed below.
The UK (England and Wales) have opened up opportunities for teachers from the following countries below to work as a teacher in England and Wales under the Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) scheme:
- Hong Kong
- South Africa
Previously, teachers could be recruited directly from their home countries (e.g. India, Nigeria, South Africa, etc.) if their employers sponsor a Shortage Occupation teaching job for them.
These teaching jobs were mathematics, languages (e.g., mandarin), physics and science-based courses such as computer science. A Skilled Work Visa could only be issued for these subjects in a secondary school.
This new QTS overseas teachers scheme has now expanded the range of teaching jobs and teachers that can be recruited from overseas beyond the shortage occupation teaching subjects. Also, this new scheme allows primary school teachers to move to the UK as a teacher.
Why is the UK recruiting teachers from Nigeria, India, Singapore, Zimbabwe, etc?
Under previous EU law, only teachers from certain countries, such as in the European Economic Area (EEA), could move to the UK as a teacher and apply for QTS using their local qualifications. However, others, particularly those in Africa and Asia, could not, regardless of whether the teachers had equivalent skills and experience.
According to the Professional Qualifications Act (PQA) 2022 following Brexit, the UK now has the autonomy to review processes of recognising foreign qualifications consistently and fairly.
Thus, the PQA 2022, in addition to the need to support the teaching sector, will facilitate the movement of qualified teachers from Nigeria, Ghana, India, Jamaica etc., to boost the English education workforce.
How to Apply to Move to the UK as a Teacher from Nigeria, India, etc.?
There is a new online eligibility service that allows foreign teachers to apply for qualified teacher status (QTS) in England. This online service will enable you to check if you are eligible to apply for QTS from your country (e.g. Nigeria, Jamaica, India, etc.) and also helps you to understand the type of evidence you will need to provide when applying for a teaching job in England.
Points to Note: Move to the UK as a Teacher from Nigeria, India, Zimbabwe, etc.
- It is free to check eligibility for QTS regardless of your location. Whether in Nigeria, India, Jamaica, Hong Kong, or Ghana, you can use this service.
- This online QTS eligibility service does not guarantee that you will successfully get a teaching job in England. Your potential employer (i.e. a school) will determine your suitability to work, which could be via a teaching agency.
A forthcoming system referred to as ‘Apply for Qualified Teacher Status in England’, will provide consistent standards so the qualifications and experience of overseas teachers from countries such as Nigeria, Ghana, Jamaica, Hong Kong, etc., can be fairly assessed.
If successful, applicants will be awarded a QTS based on an assessment of their qualifications and experience against the set criteria.
What qualifications do I need to submit to move to the UK as a teacher from Nigeria, India, Jamaica, etc.?
- Starting from February 2023, to be awarded QTS as a foreign teacher, you must fulfil the following requirements:
- Have a bachelor’s degree of the same academic standard as a UK bachelor’s degree. You can very your degree with UK ENIC.
- You should have completed teacher training in your country that meets the standard of a level 6 qualification (e.g. a bachelor of education or a postgraduate certificate in education) and is of at least the same length as an English course of similar standard.
- Your teacher training course content must have been practically and pedagogically focused.
- You must be qualified to teach children aged between 5 and 16 years.
- You should have at least one school year of professional work experience working as a teacher in a school after qualifying as a teacher in your home country.
- You must submit evidence of the professional status needed to be a teacher in the country where you are based.
You must also meet some additional English language standards when you move to the UK as a Teacher from Nigeria, India, Zimbabwe, etc. You must provide evidence of at least one of the following requirements:
- Been born in, hold citizenship of, or have completed an undergraduate or postgraduate degree in England, Scotland, Northern Ireland, Wales or in one of the exempt nationalities
- Been taught in English at the undergraduate or postgraduate level. You will need to provide evidence (e.g., a letter from our registrar) that English has been your degree’s medium of instruction (MOI).
- Sat a CEFR B2 level English language test at a secure English language test (SELT) provider and met a CEFR B2 level of English proficiency
A B2 level is equivalent to the following test scores from the approved English language test providers:
- IELTS SELT Consortium – 5.5
- LanguageCert – 33/50
- Pearson – 59
- Trinity College London – Pass
- PSI Services (UK) Ltd – Pass
Can I teach in primary and secondary schools under the QTS overseas teachers scheme?
As part of the requirements when applying for a job to move to the UK as a teacher, to gain QTS, you must be able to show that you are qualified to teach students aged 5-16 years old in your country. This age represents school-aged children enrolled in primary and secondary schools in England. UK ENIC may be able to provide this information in your certificate of comparability.
Will the Professional Qualifications Act (PQA) 2022 apply to professions other than teaching?
There is a possibility that the UK workforce will eventually start recognising some qualifications gained by their counterparts in other countries. This legislation may allow recognition of foreign qualifications in the social services, construction, and legal sectors.