Teach in England if you trained outside the UK

If you're a non-UK teacher interested in teaching languages or physics in England, you could be eligible for an international relocation payment worth £10,000.

Teach in England and you’ll benefit from working in a world-class education system.

You’ll earn a competitive salary, get supported in your professional development and have varied job opportunities.

You could also consider teaching in Wales(opens in new window), Scotland(opens in new window) or Northern Ireland(opens in new window).

Not qualified as a teacher yet? Find out how to train to teach in England as a non-UK citizen. If you don’t want to come to England to train, you should consider international qualified teacher status (iQTS), which leads to the automatic award of English qualified teacher status.

What you’ll need to teach in England

If you are already a qualified teacher, you do not need to retrain to teach in England. However, you will need:

  • to apply for English ‘qualified teacher status’, or be able to demonstrate strong non-UK qualifications and experience
  • a high standard of written and spoken English
  • to pass criminal and professional safeguarding checks (these will be organised by your employer)
  • a visa or immigration status allowing you to work in the UK

Get an international relocation payment (IRP) worth £10,000

If you’re interested in moving to England to teach languages or physics in an English secondary school, you could be eligible for a single payment of £10,000 from the UK government. Learn more about the international relocation payment.

English qualified teacher status (QTS)

Qualified teacher status (QTS) is the professional status teachers in England gain at the end of their teacher training. Schools use QTS as a measure of teaching skills and experience, so you will find it much easier to get a teaching job in England if you have QTS.

However, if you’re a qualified teacher from outside the UK, you can work as a teacher in England for up to 4 years without QTS(opens in new window).

After that, you will need QTS to teach in many schools in England, although it is not a legal requirement in some types of school (for example, academy schools, free schools and private schools(opens in new window)).

Applying for QTS

Depending on where you qualified, the subject you teach and your qualifications, you may be able to use a new professional recognition service to apply for English qualified teacher status.

You will not have to pay a fee or undergo further training when you apply for QTS. However, you will have to meet strict requirements. These requirements are mandatory and must be met in full exactly as set out in ‘Awarding qualified teacher status to overseas teachers’(opens in new window).

It’s important to note that getting QTS does not lead to a teaching job or visa – you’ll need to apply for these separately.

If you have a teaching qualification from the following countries and regions, you can use the new professional recognition service to apply for QTS, if you meet the requirements:

  • Australia
  • Canada
  • the EEA
  • Guernsey
  • Gibraltar
  • Hong Kong
  • Jersey
  • New Zealand
  • Northern Ireland
  • Scotland
  • Switzerland
  • Ukraine
  • the USA

In addition, if you have a subject specialism in languages, maths or science and a teaching qualification to teach 11 to 16 year olds from the following countries, you can use the new professional recognition service to apply for QTS, if you meet the requirements:

  • Ghana
  • India
  • Jamaica
  • Nigeria
  • Singapore
  • South Africa

Visit ‘Awarding qualified teacher status to overseas teachers’(opens in new window) to check the eligibility criteria and apply for QTS in England.

Other routes to QTS in England

Many teachers will not meet the requirements for QTS. If you’re not eligible, you may be able to find an alternative route to QTS which better suits your circumstances(opens in new window).

Find a teaching job in England

To find a teaching job, you must apply to individual schools (not the Department for Education). If you need a Skilled Worker visa, you must find a school that can sponsor your visa.

You can search for a teaching job through the government’s official Teaching Vacancies service(opens in new window). Filter your search by ‘Visa sponsorship’ to find jobs that can sponsor visas. Set up job alerts so you don’t miss out on new roles.

Get a job, then apply for your visa

Submit your application to a school that can sponsor visas, and if you are offered the job, you’ll then be able to apply for your visa.

Your professional qualifications

If you haven’t got QTS, schools you apply to will want to see alternative evidence of your teaching and academic qualifications. You can get a statement of comparability from the UK information centre for international qualifications and skills(opens in new window) showing how your qualifications compare to English ones.

Tips on applying

You can search and apply for jobs by region, subject specialism and age group. Most teaching vacancies(opens in new window) are advertised in March, April or the first half of May, with jobs usually starting at the beginning of the school year in September.

You can set up a job alert to be updated about opportunities throughout the year.

As part of your application, schools will usually ask for your:

  • educational and professional qualifications
  • employment history
  • personal statement
  • references

Your personal statement needs to cover your teaching approach, your experience and how you would contribute to the life of the school. Get tips on writing a personal statement(opens in new window).

If you’re shortlisted, you’ll be invited for interview and asked to demonstrate your teaching skills.

Prepare for your interview

You may be asked about your knowledge of English education in interviews for teaching jobs. To prepare, you can read other teachers’ stories and research the English national curriculum(opens in new window) and teachers’ standards(opens in new window).

Safeguarding checks

If the school makes you a conditional offer, you’ll then have to pass safeguarding and criminal records checks. These confirm you are a safe and suitable person to work with children.

You can prepare for these checks by getting a letter from the organisation which regulates teachers in the country where you qualified, confirming your professional status as a teacher.

Search for teaching jobs in England(opens in new window)

Apply for your visa

To teach in England, you will need a visa or immigration status allowing you to work in the UK.

Learn more about applying for the right visa for your teaching job.

Life as a teacher in England

Many teachers who qualified outside the UK settle in England long-term and develop rewarding careers in teaching.

Career progression

If you’ve successfully applied for QTS in England(opens in new window), and have less than 2 years’ teaching experience, you can get valuable support and mentoring through the early career framework.

You’ll also be able to develop your career through the national professional qualifications framework(opens in new window).

Financial help

You may be eligible for the levelling up premium payment(opens in new window) or the early career payment(opens in new window).

You can only receive the international relocation payment (IRP) once, and you cannot receive both the levelling up premium payment and the early career payment in the same year.

Plan your move to England

Once you have been offered a teaching job and successfully applied for your visa, you can start planning your move to England.

The following suggestions and resources may be useful:


The Department for Education (DfE) does not employ teachers directly. Do not send us your CV, as we will not be able to help you find a teaching job.

Please do not email to ask when a country or subject will be added to Apply for QTS in England(opens in new window). We’ll publish updates about eligiblity for the service at ‘A fairer approach to awarding QTS to overseas teachers’(opens in new window).

If you have general questions about the information on this page, you can email us at teach.inengland@education.gov.uk.

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