A new immigration rule could force non-EU teachers out of the UK, the head of the National Association of Headteachers (NAHT) has warned.
From next April, workers recruited from outside of the European Union who entered the UK since 2011 and earn less than £35,000 a year will be ordered to leave after six years in the country.
The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) today expressed concern about how this would impact the nursing profession.
And NAHT general secretary Russell Hobby has warned there are a “significant number” of overseas trained teachers below the required wage threshold.
In February, the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) carried out a review of the shortage occupation lists. The list names jobs exempt from immigration rules.
Secondary maths, physics and chemistry teachers are on the list and will be exempt.
In the review, MAC said: “We did not receive wider evidence from the [teaching] sector about a shortage of particular teachers and are therefore not able to determine the extent of the reported shortages both in terms of numbers and whether these are a local or national shortage.
“We therefore make no recommendation about this occupation.”
Russell Hobby, NAHT general secretary, said: “We note the concern today from the RCN that new rules on minimum salaries for workers from non-EU countries will have an adverse effect on healthcare. The fact is that these rules will hit schools, too.”
The plans are in a bid to reduce net migration.
My Hobby added: “Headteachers everywhere are struggling to recruit. Pupil numbers are rising. Budgets are being squeezed all the time. In the face of these challenges, it seems counterproductive to force out valued members of staff for the sake of meeting a migration target.”