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Overseas Trained Teachers (OTTs)
From EU and EFTA
If you have a teaching qualification gained in the EU (European Union) or EFTA (European Free Trade Area) and you are a national of one of these countries, you usually have automatic Qualified Teacher Status (QTS). You need to contact the Department for Education and Skills (DfES) for a form to complete and they will then return a letter confirming QTS. Phone 01325 392120. You will then be able to apply for teaching posts in local schools.
From non-EU countries
If you have teaching qualifications gained outside of the European Union, you do not have automatic QTS.
You can be appointed without QTS as a "temporary teacher" for up to four years, either in one school or in a number of schools. During this time you will be paid on the "unqualified teacher scale". After this you would have to gain QTS in order to continue teaching in a maintained school in the UK. If you intend to follow a teaching career in the UK it is important to gain QTS so that you gain access to the professional pay scale for teachers, including Threshold and management responsibilities. QTS will also confer some security of tenure, which as a temporary teacher you do not have.
The Overseas Trained Teacher programme (OTT) is an employment based route to QTS. For more information visit the Department for Education website:
April 2012 Update
From 1 April 2012, the proposed changes to QTS for some overseas trained teachers and FE teachers with QTLS have been brought into effect.
1. Teachers who qualified in Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the USA
Teachers who qualified in Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the USA will now be recognised as qualified teachers and awarded QTS in England without being required to undertake any further training or assessment.
They will still be required to satisfy any UK Border Agency requirements that may apply to them and must apply to the Teaching Agency for the award of QTS before they can be recognised as qualified teachers. Once QTS has been awarded, they will be paid under the qualified teachers’ pay scales in the School Teachers’ Pay and Conditions Document. Schools with academy status are able to determine their own salary levels for teachers.
They will not be required to undertake statutory induction but will be subject to the performance management arrangements in schools in the same way as any other qualified teacher.
For more information and further clarification of the process:
2. Further education teachers who have been awarded QTLS (Qualfied Teacher Learning and Skills) by the Institute for Learning (IfL)
Further education teachers who have been awarded QTLS (Qualfied Teacher Learning and Skills) by the Institute for Learning (IfL) will be automatically recognised as qualified teachers in schools. There is no need for them to apply to the Teaching Agency for QTS. A certificate from the IfL is sufficient evidence.
FE teachers with other qualifications such as the Diploma in Teaching in the Lifelong Sector, Certificate in Further Education Teaching or the FE Postgraduate Certificate of Education are NOT recognised as qualified teachers. They can apply to the IfL for QTLS status which would allow them to be recognised as qualified teachers in schools or alternatively, they would need to undertake a course of initial teacher training.
QTLS holders will be paid as qualified teachers, on the qualified teachers’ pay scale in the School Teachers’ Pay and Conditions Document. Schools with academy status are able to determine their own salary levels for teachers.
QTLS holders will be exempt from serving statutory induction and will not be required to complete a statutory induction period in schools.
For more information and clarification of the process: