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So you want to return to teaching in the UK?

Discussion in 'Teaching abroad' started by jennifer longhu, Jun 17, 2006.

  1. Don't go back if you can avoid it!
    I worked in Dubai back in 2001-2003.
    I came back to Britain and went on supply as I could not get a job from abroad (they will not give you a telephone interview and expect you to foot the bill for a plane flight back for interview)
    Although I have long since settled - I came back to get married- I feel that I should have stayed abroad.
    Teaching in Britain is a VERY HARD job compared to teaching abroad. In Dubai, I had nothing like a discipline problem, was left alone to teach and felt very little scrutiny apart from what is fair - the termly observation by the HOD and generally, the atmosphere was conducive to actually enjoying your job!
    In Britain, almost the exact opposite is the case.
    You are always being asked to justify everything you do and it is mostly a demoralising experience.
    Stay abroad, unless you are a glutton for punishment!
  2. ayo


    I came back to UK in the summer. Be warned if you are hoping to rely on supply teaching till you get a permanent post; it may not be so easy.

    If you teach a 'shortage subject' and/or work in the right part of the country it could work out but as a Geography teacher in the Midlands I have struggled to get supply work. It seems the schools are using Cover Supervisors a lot more and only get supply teachers in when they have lots of staff off. I am now driving for 80 minutes just to be sure of the work. In the first month of term in September I had just 3 days work, despite the fact that schools said they liked my work and would ask for me back.
  3. Mainwaring

    Mainwaring Lead commenter

  4. speakers

    speakers New commenter

    When applying to come back to the UK make sure you write the DfES number of your school next to the name. It makes heads realise you havent just been enjoying the sun and tax free money for a few years.

    Phrase your overseas experience as a positive experience that will bring benefits to the school.

    If you can, try to get back into state education to start with. It will be more beneficial in the long run and give you more options later on. The reason being that one of the questions heads will be asking themselves is "Is this person adaptable?" "Will they be able to cope coming back to the UK or will they be a liability?" In truth, you can understand why heads would be thinking this. Adjusting back to UK lifestyle is not that easy. If, further down the track you move abroad again (which is a strong possibility) and then decide to come back, once again, to the UK, you will already have proven yourself capable of making the adjustment.

    Hope this helps
  5. Thanks for the advice speakers

  6. Thanks everyone for all the posts. Quick question. I have understood I'll have to go to the UK for an interview, and am prepared to do this, but is it necessary to specify this in the letter of application?
    Also, what would be the best way of going about registering for supply?
  7. Mainwaring

    Mainwaring Lead commenter

    You do need to make it clear that you would be available for interview in UK but a school may hesitate about calling you if you give the impression that you would be travelling ONLY for that purpose. They may feel that it puts some sort of moral pressure on them. A useful strategy is to tell them you are in any case planning a trip (which of course you are, to stock up with M&S socks, visit your old mum and catch up with the boys at the Pig and Whistle) and could schedule it to fit in with them if they wish to interview you.
  8. What on earth is the world coming to, I agree with Mainwaring on something. Yes, just mention you will be back in the UK at such and such a time and would be available for interview. You don't have a cat in hell's chance of getting a job back in the UK without an interview, well, certainly within the state sector at anyrate.

    As for availability of supply work in the UK, I was recently a primary supply teacher working out of an agency's Reading office and was pretty much employed 5 days a week (January to July 2007). In fact, there is so much work that just after Xmas just gone, whilst I was awaiting visas for my new job overseas, I phoned the agency on Monday 14th Janaury to see if there was any work. I worked the remaining 4 days of that week and was booked to work the next 2 weeks solid. Fortunately, or maybe Unfortunately, my visas arrived and I had to fly off to pastures new.
  9. Mainwaring

    Mainwaring Lead commenter

    Good to see that you're finally on the right track Pvt Clovis. Congratulations on the new job. Spain, is it? I THOUGHT I'd seen an unfamiliar JCB prowling my olive groves.
  10. Finding a job back in the UK can be really tough. After teaching abroad for 4 years I discovered that UK schools generally view overseas teachers as a risky option. Despite excellent references, good qualifications and being a teacher of a shortage subject I had real difficulties obtaining even an interview. I am now currently employed but it was not easy. I did not consider this when I went abroad and it really is something to bear in mind when deciding to move away.
  11. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter

    Physics teachers, good ones anyroad, are like hen's teeth - can't belive it was hard to get a job in the UK!

    Am bumping up Jen's thread as there are a few people on other forums asking about getting jobs back in the UK.
  12. Guess it depends on the area of the UK and the subject. I've found that schools didn't seem to bother about my time teaching abroad in anyway. Plus I'm beating them off with a stick. It is a big shock though coming back to UK state schools - even the better ones. I came back last year and it's a slog.
  13. ayo


    I came back last June, am now doing a Maternity Cover post which runs out a week before the summer holiday (so no holiday pay for me!) and still have to apply for permanent jobs for September. Yes, I often wish things were different and I could have stayed overseas but sometimes one just has to lump it!
  14. Mainwaring

    Mainwaring Lead commenter

    Up for the model.
  15. Bump!
  16. About 12 months ago I started to apply for jobs back in the UK, hoping to secure a post before my planned return in the summer of 2008.

    I applied for close on 20 jobs, and got one interview, which I'm sure I only got because I made it very clear I'd be in the UK at the time they were interviewing.I didn't get that job because of "lack of experience of the National Curriculum"..........

    So I took the leap of faith and returned as planned, signed up for supply, contacted local schools and got half a day in September. (To be honest I wasn't expecting a lot, but I was starting to get a bit worried.)

    Happy ending - I went for an interview last week and got the job! Start in January, but I was also offered a temporary contract from now till December, covering various classes.

    And I'm at the right place on the scale, in other words my years abroad did also count.

    And yes, some of the behaviour is shocking, but nothing I didn't see in the international school I worked in for several years.

    So thanks to everyone who posts here, it's all been very useful.
  17. Mainwaring

    Mainwaring Lead commenter

    Congratulations on the new job! Taking up a couple of your important points:
    1) Even though an applicant is paying his own travelling expenses, a UK HT is likely to be reluctant to take the responsibility of inviting him for interview from abroad because s/he may feel that it raises his premature expectations that the appointment is a 'done deal'. Consequently it's always a good idea to remove this pressure by including in the Letter of Application something along the lines of: 'I am planning a visit to the UK in (the month you've picked up from the advert as the one when interviews are to be held)'. There are several possible variations on this theme.
    2) As you rightly say, it's not as simple as Abroad: Good. At Home: Bad. The most difficult place I ever worked in was prestigious old-established, South American and troubled by crackheads with gangster parents.

  18. Just wondering if anyone had anymore advice on this topic? Am looking to come back to the U.K in September after 4 years teaching overseas and I have heard that there is a shortage of teaching jobs.

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