England offers an enticing mix of modern attractions and traditional charm. From walking through Westminster Abbey to watching the sunset from the London Eye, there is plenty to see and do. Because of its proximity to mainland Europe, there are always options for teachers in the UK to travel during breaks and holidays.
The education system in England provides flexibility in terms of where you can work, so teachers are not bound to only teaching in major cities. The British curriculum is very straightforward and easy to pick up, allowing foreign teachers to adapt quickly. For foreign teachers, working in England provides the excitement of teaching in a new educational system, while maintaining familiarity to other educational systems.Photo credit: thkelley
In the UK, there are two popular paths for overseas teachers. The first route is supply teaching, which is a common option for teachers just arriving in the UK. It allows the teacher to teach in several different schools and gain experience working with the British curriculum in general. Supply teaching is very flexible in terms of schedule and there is a large variety of different schedules offered. Often, supply teaching will lead to a long-term contract teaching position. Supply teaching positions are available throughout the year, which allows teachers to begin in the middle of a term.
The other route is a long-term position. This is often an attractive option because it allows teachers to know exactly where they will be living and in what school they will be teaching, instead of teaching in several different schools. Many long-term contracts (one school year) may lead to permanent teaching positions.
Many teachers also choose to teach private lessons instead of at an established institution. This provides flexibility in schedule and finances, as you decide your hours and how much you want to charge. Typically, private teachers charge about £40 an hour, but some charge upwards of £100 an hour. Rates vary depending on location and subject matter.
When and Where to Look for Jobs:
As the capital and the most populated city in England, London is the best place to look for teaching jobs. There are more teaching jobs offered and teachers are paid more. While many teaching jobs are found online, it is also easy to find jobs once in England. Because you can be interviewed when you are in England, there are benefits to job hunting when you are in the country, but it is possible to find a job online or over the phone.
Teachers interested in working in the UK must hold a bachelor’s degree and be licensed to teach in their state/province. Teachers who have a degree but no teaching credentials will not be considered for teaching jobs in the UK in public schools, and you must have a minimum of two years of teaching experience to teach abroad.
However, some private and independent schools have different requirements, so check with specific schools about their requirements. In England, QTS (Qualified Teacher Status) is the certification for teachers. To achieve this, teachers must complete specific training and pass standardized exams. Teachers from outside of the UK are able to teach in the UK for a maximum of four years before they must obtain QTS. If a teacher plans to work in the UK for longer than 4 years, there are further qualifications needed.
If you wish to live and work in the UK and you do not have a current British passport, you will need a work visa in order to be employed. Check with the consulate on specific requirements for obtaining a work visa.
Salary & Cost of Living:
The common rate for supply teaching is about £120 per day. If you are hired for a long-term position, you can expect to make a yearly salary in the range of £22,000 – £24,000. However, these salaries depend on the type of school you are employed at. Private schools tend to pay more, but this is not always the case.
The cost of living in England ranged from about £400 to £800 or higher, depending on what part of England you are living in. London is more expensive than smaller English towns, but there are many parts on London that can be cheaper as well. Many teaching positions include housing and benefits, but these are usually only for long-term positions. To make living in England more affordable, many teachers share an apartment with other people or they live outside of the cities they work in.
Classroom & Work Culture:
In many countries, there is automatic respect for teachers. However, in England, respect has to be earned. Because of this, many teachers struggle with behavioral issues among their students. Stay confident, positive, and strong, and your students will respect you. Teachers dress professionally, more so in private schools. Students often wear uniforms, so do not be surprised if there is a specific dress code for teachers as well.