You could say that there has never been a better time to teach in the UK. In 2000, the United Kingdom had a large injection of funds to help revamp the education system, with the government’s ‘Building Schools for the Future’ (BSF) initiative.
96 local authorities had joined the programme by December 2009, with an estimated £2 billion allocated within the first year. The initiative also included refurbishments to, and the rebuilding of, secondary schools, colleges and academies, as well as the upgrading and rebuilding of primary schools. The main focus of this country-wide upgrade had been on schools and colleges in certain parts of the country, such as Luton in Bedfordshire, Greater Manchester, Lancashire, Kent and London.
Further to the BSF project, was the introduction and installation of new teaching IT platforms such as SMART Boards and new technology for students. The schools and colleges were introduced to new concepts which took advantage of the proliferation of computer use, such as the VLE (Virtual Learning Environment), which has improved teaching and learning as well as parental interaction.
What makes teaching in the UK so appealing?
For starters, there will always be a diverse teaching staff. Britain welcomes teachers from abroad and they often stay longer than they expect to! There are many opportunities for teachers to come and teach in the UK. You are constantly surrounded by a lot of different cultures and languages. As you may well be aware, the UK is famous for its unpredictable weather system. You cannot explain it to others unless you have experienced it for yourself!
Living and working in London
If you decide to teach in London - voted the greatest city on earth in 2015 - you will see our different cultures first-hand with the multitude of bars, restaurants and entertainment on offer. If you are very much into your sport, London schools have a vast range to choose from. Many schools and colleges ensure that teachers have a ‘Staff Club’ where you can join in with other members of staff and enjoy the sport of your choice. But what if they do not have your chosen sport? Well, that’s simple, just make up your own! Of course, you'll also have the chance to indulge in being a tourist, visiting Buckingham Palace and waving at the Queen, or giving yourself a fright in the Tower of London.
Finding a teaching job
You may also wish to use other teacher recruitment or teaching agencies such as Impact Teachers. For 10 years, Impact has been recruiting teachers from around the world for placements in the UK. We’ve established longstanding relationships with a number of schools and academies as a result of our consistency and quality, covering over 500 schools nationwide. Internationally, we are the leading, and only recognised teaching agency with a commitment to improving global education. It's easy too - just apply here and we'll get in touch!
Where to find accommodation
If you're not lucky enough to have friends or family who can accommodate you, then Teachers' Housing may be of use to help find somewhere to live. This company helps to provide rented housing for those in need, especially those who are associated with education. The properties vary in sizes and include studio flats to four-bed houses. There is also Spare Room [www.spareroom.co.uk] who help with rooms to rent, rooms wanted and ‘buddy ups’. The ‘buddy up’ scheme helps you find other people seeking accommodation in the same area and enables you to flatshare. Rooms for Let [www.roomsforlet.co.uk] is not specifically for teachers, but it gives you a wide range of areas to choose from. You can view places across all counties, as well as specific rooms in London.
So, what's stopping you?
Living and working in the UK as a teacher is an amazing experience and a fantastic opportunity. It gives you the chance to work in a diverse and multi-cultural country. The worst thing that can happen is you end up staying!