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I have a friend who is American, and cannot qualify under any normal visa for the UK. I heard teaching is in high demand in the UK and it is possible to work as a teacher if the company you are working for applies for a special work permit for you.

My friend is not a qualified teacher (no teaching degree), but she has 6 months experience teaching a class of pre-school students by her self. If she travelled to England on a tourist visa (6 months) how likely is it she would be able to find a job (pre-school or otherwise) and the company would apply for a work permit for her?

  • Is this for charity work or for a paid job? Visa category and rules vary according to that. – Ankur Banerjee Jul 12 '11 at 16:45
  • Ideally it would be paid, but she would be more than happy with charity work if it could lead to a work visa in a reasonable amount of time, can you expand more on the rules please? Thanks for your reply. – Moz Jul 12 '11 at 22:05
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    One thing to be aware of is that immigration is a bit political in the UK at the moment, and cracking down on un-skilled / low skill immigration from outside the EU seems to be the government's preferred way to "look tough" whilst being legal. Expect things to be tougher than they used to be... – Gagravarr Jul 13 '11 at 9:25
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    I think this question has a good chance of getting an answer from somebody with direct experience if you as on the Lonely Planet Thorn Tree: lonelyplanet.com/thorntree/forum.jspa?forumID=25 – hippietrail Jul 13 '11 at 9:29
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There are two categories of visa that could be applicable in this case:

Whether a company sponsors without a teaching degree is up to the company; this should be easier in the case of working in charitable organisations.

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  • So the company can decide to sponsor without a teaching degree? I was worried it was against the law or similar to do so? – Moz Jul 13 '11 at 12:29
  • I am not away of any documentation on this being illegal, but it will be very hard to get a sponsor if there are comparable British candidates. And while there's no specific visa rules on teachers, there may very well be directives / standard practices in teaching institutions not to hire people without a teaching degree. That's outside the scope of Travel.SE of course. – Ankur Banerjee Jul 13 '11 at 13:37

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