If you qualified as a teacher inside the European Union, mobility laws apply. This means you can access teaching positions in the same way as home trained teachers.
If you qualified as a teacher overseas, and outside the European Economic Area (EEA), you may be eligible to work in England as a temporary, unqualified teacher for up to four years while you achieve qualified teacher status (QTS). Currently, this programme is only available in England.
When you have found a teaching position in a school, the Overseas Trained Teacher Programme (OTTP) will provide you with an individual training and assessment programme. This will ultimately lead to your qualification to teach in England permanently.
How long does the OTTP take?
The length of the programme depends on how much additional training you need. However, the longest amount of time you can spend on the programme is one year full-time. If you feel your skills and experience meet all the QTS standards with minimal additional training, you may apply for assessment-based training.
Is there any additional funding available?
If you need to undertake a programme of additional training the TDA will cover the costs (up to a value of £1,250) as well as for your final assessment against the QTS standards. Your school will continue to pay your salary. Find out more about funding for employment based initial teacher training.
What qualifications do I need?
You must be qualified as a teacher overseas and working as an unqualified teacher in a school in England.
In addition, if you qualified outside the European Economic Area (EEA), you will need:
- a qualification equivalent to a UK bachelors degree
- to demonstrate that you meet a standard equivalent to GCSE grade C or above in mathematics and English, and
- if you intend to teach primary or key stage 2/3 (ages 7-14), you must also demonstrate a standard equivalent to a grade C in a GCSE science subject.
If you have not successfully achieved a GCSE grade C, you may be given an opportunity to show that you can meet the required standard, either by taking an equivalence test or by offering other evidence of attainment. Visit the National Academic Recognition Centre (NARIC) website to find out whether your qualifications are of an equivalent level to UK GCSEs, A-levels and an undergraduate degree.
If you qualified as a teacher in Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland, another country in the EEA or Switzerland, you may be eligible for qualified teacher status (QTS) without further assessment. You will need to contact the General Teaching Council for England (GTCE) to have your qualifications assessed.
How do I apply?
When you have a teaching post and you have established that you have all the necessary qualifications, you should apply directly to an EBITT provider in your area. They will assess and approve your application, discussing your training needs with you as necessary. If resident in Wales, you may be eligible to join an employment-based route towards QTS. For more information call the Teaching Information Line on 0845 6000 991.
When should I apply?
There are no deadlines for the OTTP although it is up to EBITT providers to establish start dates for programmes.
OTTP four-year rule
The four-year rule for overseas trained teachers (OTTs) states that you can teach for up to four years before you have to be awarded QTS. If you have not achieved QTS in this time, you can no longer teach. The four years start from the first day that you teach in a mainstream school in England, and includes any time out of service.
If the four-year rule applies to you, you will need to complete a programme such as a flexible PGCE to gain QTS, or gain employment in an independent school to continue teaching.