What is a QTS? How Do I Teach in the UK?


There are two routes into teaching. One is based at a university; the other is to train on the job. The first route means you get a qualification and then get a job. The second route means you get a job and then get a qualification. Independent schools are interested in academically strong undergraduates and graduates with a good degree relevant to the subject they will teach. If you want to work in the independent sector you can apply for a teaching job without teaching qualifications and, having got the job, then get trained in your school. Most graduate trainees want to gain a teaching qualification that has currency across sectors and countries. Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) gained while working in the independent or state maintained sector is transferable between sectors. This is a statutory qualification that is equally valid in which ever sector you have trained.


What  is Qualified Teacher Status (QTS)?

Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) is required in England and Wales in order to teach in state-funded schools. The National College for Teaching and Leadership (NCTL) is the authority in England responsible for awarding QTS.

There is no charge for applying for QTS plus once you’ve been granted, you’re free to work in any government funded school!


Teaching in the UK without QTS

In the rarest of cases, QTS may not be required for teaching roles at independent schools and academies across the UK.

Schools seeking individuals to teach certain shortage subject may also choose to waive the QTS requirement, although this is unlikely as applicants with QTS are strongly preferred.


How can overseas teachers get QTS?

If you’re a fully qualified teacher in any country in Canada, the USA, Australia, New Zealand or any country in the EEA, then you can apply for QTS.

If you completed your teacher training in a country outside of those listed above, then you will first need to undertake an accredited teacher training program in the UK in order to be granted QTS.

Get in touch with our international team today for more information and guidance on how to proceed.

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