You may be considering taking your first steps to becoming a teacher or you may already be a teacher considering a new role in a new location. Whatever your circumstances, we at Eteach would like to help on your way to your dream job. The perfect opportunity may be closer than you think!
As a qualified teacher you will be in demand as the UK currently has a shortage of teachers. There is so much to do and see in the UK, the bustle of London, the serenity of Welsh mountain ranges, the festivals and nightlife of Edinburgh while adventure awaits in Northern Ireland. With so much to choose from how do you know where to start? Here we will outline salary expectations, locations around the UK and various roles in education as well as how to get started in teaching.
How much does a teacher earn?
Wherever you choose to teach, you will find that schools and academies are highly competitive in the UK. With the ongoing teacher shortage, attracting and retaining the best talent is number one on the list of priorities for most educational institutions.
Average teaching salaries across the UK at the time of writing this article in May 2020 are as follows:
- Nursery teacher salary UK – on average, approximately £19,000 per year, before tax
- Primary school teacher salary UK – on average, approximately £31,000 per year, before tax
- Secondary school teacher salary UK – on average, approximately £39,000 per year, before tax
These salaries are in the range of the given figure and will vary not only by location but also by school, experience and much more.
Why are school teacher salaries different around the country?
As you search for your perfect teaching role, you will notice that salaries change from location to location. Salaries will vary by location to reflect the general cost of living in that area. For example, you will notice that teaching positions in London usually have a much higher salary, this reflects the high cost of living in this bustling metropolis.
These regional discrepancies will also be affected by your role and level of qualification. Newly Qualified Teachers (NQTs), Teaching Assistants, Qualified Teachers, Unqualified Teachers, Supply Teachers and Headteachers, for example, will all have pay ranges that vary not just from one another but by location as well.
Where are the best teaching jobs?
“Best” depends entirely on what you hope to gain from the location you settle on teaching in. Please be aware that teacher salary ranges outlined here are correct at the time of writing this article: May 2020.
London is best for…
City living – The bustle of London is world-renowned with a vast array of cultural sites, museums, theatres and galleries, as well as one of the liveliest music and party scenes in Europe. London schools will offer the highest salaries in the UK. While this makes London one of the most appealing locations to teach in, the cost of living in London is much higher than in other areas of the United Kingdom.
Schools in London offer the most diverse range of students in one location supported by the widest range of education establishments. From inner-city comprehensive secondary schools to suburban nursery settings, primary academy schools or faith-based free schools, London is bound to have the school for you.
An NQT can expect a salary of at least £30,480 in inner London. Headteachers in Inner London can make up to £121,749.
England is best for…
Busy towns and rural retreats – You can immerse yourself in the history and culture that helped shape so much of the Western World. Home to Stonehenge, Shakespeare’s birthplace Stratford-upon-Avon, the stunning Peak and Lakes Districts, castles, palaces and many other iconic attractions, England has no shortage of landmarks you will fall in love with.
If you would like to work in a world-class education system, with great opportunities for career progression, teaching in England could be for you. England is home to some of the most famous and oldest schools and universities in the world such as those in Oxford and Cambridge.
An NQT in England can expect a salary of at least £24,373 while Headteachers can make up to £114,060.
Wales is best for…
The Views – From sea to sky, Wales has something for everyone. With pristine coastlines and vast National Parks, the stunning scenery and community spirit in Wales await. While England is moving increasingly to a model of free schools and academies, the schools in Wales continue to strengthen their ties with local communities.
The Welsh government plans to recruit 50,000 teachers by 2024 so Welsh schools are actively recruiting faster and more competitively than ever before. The perfect teaching role could already be waiting for you. England and Wales share the same pay scale for schools so crossing the Severn does not mean a pay cut.
NQTs in Wales can expect a salary of at least £24,373 while Headteachers can make up to £114,060.
Scotland is best for…
Natural beauty - Whether you want to trek the Highlands or visit remote islands Scotland has some of the most engaging natural beauty in the UK. You could head out into the wilds to scale the highest peak on the British isles one day and spend the next day wandering museums and galleries in a city centre, there is something in Scotland for everyone.
As well as having a comprehensive state education system, all children in Scotland are provided with free nursery education for 2 years before they move on to Primary school. The Scottish Negotiating Committee for Teachers (SNCT) determines the pay of teachers and associated professionals.
The starting salary on the Main Grade Scale starts at £27,498 and can be as much as £41,412. School leaders can make up to £98,808.
Northern Ireland is best for…
Adventures and fantasy - Northern Ireland was home to much of the cast for a certain fantasy TV series which took the world by storm and although the show has ended, the North remembers. The wild landscapes and warm welcome set Northern Ireland apart. The other worldly landscape of the Giants Causeway and the tragic history of the Titanic will keep you fascinated.
The Department of Education is responsible for determining pay scales and paying salaries to teachers in Northern Ireland. Teaching is highly competitive, and schools can develop their own pay policies to attract and retain teachers.
In Northern Ireland, the pay range for a qualified teacher is £22,243 to £37,870. School leaders in Northern Ireland can make up to £ £112,934.
Primary versus secondary
How do you decide between primary and secondary teaching?
If you are just starting out on your teaching career you are going to be faced with some very important questions. Are primary and secondary teachers paid the same? What qualifications do I need to be a secondary school teacher? Is primary teaching better than secondary? There is so much research ahead of you and many answers will not be as clear as you would like.
No one can decide what is best for you except you.
Do not forget that your options expand far beyond primary and secondary. Teaching assistants, nursery teachers, lab technicians and many non-teaching roles are available in schools across the United Kingdom.
With regards to salary, you will notice that very similar roles across the UK may have very different salaries. The best way to gain more insight into individual roles and their salary ranges is by researching on Eteach. Do not just search for the job you think you can have, search for the jobs you know you want. Expand your search area and find out more.
When you look at the differences between time spent teaching do not forget to also look at the time spent planning. Read job descriptions carefully and feel free to explore the Career Sites and Career Pages of the schools who have the roles that interest you most.
If you are not already qualified to teach in the UK, you have a vast array of options open to you. There are many routes into teaching in the UK. Eteach has outlined just a few of these routes here.
Why not search the jobs on Eteach to find the best teaching role for you? If you have any queries, get in touch to find out more. Our friendly staff will be happy to advise you.
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The Knowledge Base is Eteach's ever-growing technical compendium of "how-to" guides and articles. Answering all of the questions we encounter most frequently with regards to our job board, our products, services, licences and so much more.