Despite what might be said by UK nationals, the British education system is held in high regard throughout the world. According to ISC Research, around 45 percent of International schools teaching the English language offer a British-based curriculum. Moreover, further ISC research shows that the number of International schools based on the British education system have grown from around 2500 in 2000, to almost 10,000 in 2018!
Teacher recruitment crisis
As a result, there is a growing demand for UK-trained teaches across the world. However, this demand is also present within the UK itself, as British based schools continue to struggle to fill positions at all levels.
So the question remains, why would British teachers choose to teach abroad when there is such a demand in their own country?
Why teach abroad?
It is thought that some 14,000 British teachers leave the UK each year to teach abroad. For many teaching in a foreign country offers exciting possibilities to combine a meaningful vocation whilst experiencing a new culture and lifestyle.
With such a range of opportunities available, particularly with independent schools establishing branches around the world, the overseas teaching prospects are more appealing than ever before.
Furthermore, the potential earning and cost of living in certain countries far outweighs residential offerings. As an example, a UK-trained teacher could earn nearly double the salary in Dubai and not to mention the fact that it would be tax free!
So the question becomes, why NOT teach abroad?! It clearly has far more pros than cons.
Yet, the downsides can be significant for many and will of course not appeal to everyone. Being away from relatives and friends does require careful considerations, but for those willing to make some of these sacrifices, overseas teaching opportunities are particularly lucrative at this time.
What does the future hold?
It is estimated that the number of UK curriculum schools will continue to rise significantly in the coming years and of course, this will create further demand for expat teachers and staff.
Currently the UK government doesn’t appear to be doing much to persuade teachers to stay and concern is growing for what the future holds for UK teacher recruitment and retention. After all, if nothing changes to address the current problems, there is a real risk to the UK’s educational system.
Only time will tell and one can only hope that the government begins to take more action to support the teacher recruitment crisis, before the situation gets worse.