What is the process of getting a Tier 2 Visa to Teach in England?
Many teachers from around the world are sponsored on a Tier 2 Visa to live and teach in England.
The current guidelines make this more possible for teachers in the shortage occupation list which includes;
The process is fairly straight forwards provided the employing school or Trust holds a Sponsorship License. Prior to a teaching interview with a school, your agency (and you) can cross-check the list of licensed sponsors in England. From time to time a hiring school may not be a currently licensed sponsor but they may be willing to apply for it as a part of the recruitment process.
This is the general order of events for a teacher seeking to be sponsored to work in England. The process can, of course, vary depending on your current location – these are just a few pointers about what you can expect in the process!
- Register and apply to Point to Point Education
- Carry out the initial vetting and compliance checks with an experienced Education Recruitment Consultant
- Ensure you have at least £945 of personal savings in your bank account for 90 days prior to applying for a Tier 2 visa. It’s important this bank account does not fluctuate and it’s a good idea to keep a close eye on the exchange rates
- Interview with a school Principal in England
- Accept an offer of employment with the school in England
- The hiring school aim to submit your CoS (Certificate of Sponsorship) application by 5pm on the 5th of any given month
- Once the CoS is approved the hiring school can then issue the CoS. This is usually around the 12th or 13th of the same month (all going well with Home Office processing times)
- Once the teacher receives the CoS details its time to apply online for your Tier 2 visa
- When you complete your online application, you are required to provide all of your personal details and documents; passport, address, national police checks, proof of maintenance funds. You will submit and pay for your visa online and book your biometrics appointment at your nearest VAC (Visa Application Centre).
- The teacher applying for the visa has the option of paying for a standard (3 week processing) or the priority service (5 days). This can set you back up to £500
- You can only apply for your visa within 3 months of starting your new teaching job
- You can book your flights and arrive only 14 days before the official start date on your visa
- When you enter England, you have 10 days to collect your BRP (Biometric Resident Permit) from the Post Office you elected it to be sent to. You enter the country with your passport and a vignette that expires 10 days after your arrival.
These timeframes are a general aim for UK Visas. Sometimes there can be delays on visa decisions and you and your hiring school may need to be patient if this occurs.
- Cost of the visa depending on the length of visa – https://www.gov.uk/tier-2-general
- Cost of Healthcare Surcharge depending on the length of visa you apply for – https://www.immigration-health-surcharge.service.gov.uk/checker/type
- Tips for teachers requiring Tier 2 Sponsorship to live and work in England – https://www.pointtopointeducation.co.uk/blog/teaching-jobs-in-england-with-sponsorship/
- Maths, Science and Computer Science Teachers can also have a range of additional benefits – Department for Education endorsement