The General Teaching Council for Scotland

Enhancing professionalism in education since 1965

Frequently asked questions (FAQS) for Qualified in European Union (EU)/European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland

General

1. Can you confirm whether or not I am eligible for registration before I submit my application for registration?

Unfortunately no, we are unable to confirm whether you are eligible for registration until you submit a formal application for registration with all the required documentation. This is because each case is different and a number of factors are taken into consideration.

The 2005/36/EC Directive

2. What is the 2005/36/EC Directive?

This document provides general guidance to regulatory bodies known as ‘competent authorities’, such as the General Teaching Council for Scotland, of the obligations placed upon them by the Directive. The Directive makes it easier for qualified professionals to practice a profession (in your case teaching) in European countries by simplifying the recognition process.

3. I am an EEA (or Swiss) national and I am recognised as a fully qualified teacher in another Member State. Does this automatically allow me to teach in Scottish schools?

It is a legal requirement for any teacher teaching in a Scottish school to be registered with the General Teaching Council for Scotland (GTCS), therefore, if you would like to work as a teacher in Scotland, you need to submit a formal application for registration.

As part of the assessment process, we will contact the competent authority in the Member State where you are recognised as a fully qualified teacher to obtain confirmation of your professional entitlements (including confirmation of the subject(s) and the age range you are allowed to teach).

You will be considered for registration in the registration category/subject(s) that you are recognised to teach in the Member State concerned (if offered on our Register – please see Assessment Process/ Decision Outcomes section for more information).

4. I am an EEA (or Swiss) national and I am recognised as a fully qualified teacher in another Member State. Does this mean I will be granted full registration?

There are 3 possible outcomes of the assessment of your application. Please see Assessment Process/ Decision Outcomes section for more details.

5. I am an EEA (or Swiss) national and I am recognised as a Further Education (FE) Lecturer in another Member State. I intend to pursue my career in Further Education sector in Scotland. Do I need to register with the GTC Scotland?

We welcome applications from FE Lecturers. The FE sector in Scotland relates to post-compulsory education.

We would recommend that you discuss with your [prospective] employer whether or not they would require that you are registered with us before you apply.

Once we have received your application, we will contact the Competent Authority in the Member State to confirm whether or not you are currently recognised there as fully qualified FE Lecturer.

6. I am an EEA (or Swiss) national and I am recognised as a fully qualified teacher in another Member State. However, I only intend to work/volunteer as a teaching/language/nursery assistant. Do I need to register with the GTC Scotland?

You would only need to be registered if you intend to gain employment as a teacher.

7. I am an EEA (or Swiss) national, however, I am recognised as a fully qualified teacher in a Member State where teaching is not regulated nor are there any regulated teaching qualifications (e.g. France). Can I still apply for registration?

Yes you can. In such cases an applicant can still be considered as being legally established as a teacher in their Home Member State as long as they have:

  • • completed a teaching qualification in their Home Member State; and
  • • taught in their Home Member State after they gained their teaching qualification for two years or more during the ten years preceding their application to GTC Scotland.

If you completed a teaching qualification in your Home member State but have not taught for two years in the last 10 years, you should submit a UK/ROW application for registration and you will be assessed in line with our standard Registration Rules.

8. I am recognised as a fully qualified teacher in another EEA Member State (or Switzerland), however, I also hold a QTS Certificate from England. Does this automatically allow me to teach in Scottish schools?

It is a legal requirement for any teacher employed in a Scottish school to be registered with the General Teaching Council for Scotland so holding QTS will not make you automatically eligible to teach, therefore, if you would like to work as a teacher in Scotland, you need to submit a formal application for registration.

9. I am not an EEA (or Swiss) national, however, I qualified as a teacher in an EEA Member State (or Switzerland). Am I covered by the Directive?

To be covered by Directive 2005/36/EC you would need to be an EU national. This is the gatekeeping principle for any Directive applications.

If you are not an EEA (or Swiss) national but qualified in an EEA Member State (or Switzerland), you should contact us via email (qosprofreg@gtcs.org.uk) before you apply to discuss you options and any supporting documents that might be required.

10. I am not an EEA (or Swiss) national and I qualified as a teacher outside the EEA (or Switzerland), however, my qualifications have been recognised by another EEA Member State (or Switzerland). Am I covered by the Directive?

You should contact us via email (qosprofreg@gtcs.org.uk) before you apply to discuss you options and any supporting documents that might be required.

11. I am an EEA (or Swiss) national, however, I qualified in the UK. How do I apply?

If you are an EEA (or Swiss) national who qualified in the UK with a BEd or PGCE and you are currently registered with the National College for Teaching and Leadership (NCTL), Education Workforce Council (EWC) or/and General Teaching Council Northern Ireland (GTCNI), you should complete an Automatic Recognition form.

12. I am going to qualify as a teacher in the near future. Can I apply for registration now?

You will have to successfully complete you qualification as a teacher before you can apply for registration.

13. I would like to find out more about the education system and the curriculum in Scotland. How can I do this?

We would recommend that you visit the Education Scotland website.

Assessment Process/ Decision Outcomes

14. How long does the registration process take?

All applications are assessed on an individual basis and the time taken to process an application depends on a number of different factors and the complexity of your own application. In order to make the assessment of your application as quick and efficient as possible please make sure you submit all of the required documents. Further to this, you need to make sure that you provide your up-to-date contact details.

We would also advise you to contact your nominated referee(s) to ensure they are willing to support your application – delays are often experienced because referees do not submit a report. The reference form will be sent to your nominated referee(s) via email, therefore, it is crucial that you provide their correct work email address.

15. What are the possible outcomes of the assessment of my application? Am I going to be offered full registration?

There are 3 possible outcomes of the assessment of your application:

1. Full registration

This type of registration will be awarded because:

  • • You are fully qualified as a teacher in another EU/EEA Member State or Switzerland in one or more of the available categories;
  • • There are no shortfalls in the professional areas covered by your qualification and those covered by the initial teaching qualification in Scotland.
  • • We have received satisfactory referee reports on 270 days’ full-time equivalent teaching service (or 190 days’ continuous full-time teaching service in one school) completed within the last ten years and which has included sufficient service relevant to the category in which we have been able to offer you registration (please see References/ Probation (Induction) in Scotland section for more information).

2. Provisional Registration

This type of registration has been awarded because:

  • • you are fully qualified as a teacher in another EU/EEA Member State or Switzerland in one or more of the available categories
  • • there may be shortfalls in the professional areas covered by your qualification and those covered by the initial teaching qualification in Scotland
  • • you do not have the necessary teaching service to meet requirements for full registration in the category in which we have been able to award you registration in. This means that you will be required to complete a probationary period of up to 270 days’ full-time equivalent teaching service prior to obtaining Full registration with GTC Scotland (please see References/ Probation Induction) in Scotland section for more information)

Provisionally registered teachers are permitted to teach in Scotland, however, they need to complete their probation and meet the Standard for Full registration within 5 years of becoming registered.

If you are awarded provisional registration you will complete your adaptation period via the Flexible Route. You can find useful information about completing the adaptation period on the Probationer Teacher Scotland website at www.in2teaching.org.uk.

3. Refusal of Registration

If your application for registration is refused this means that unfortunately you do not meet the requirements for registration with GTC Scotland. You will receive full reasons for this decision in writing.

16. Certificate confirming successful completion of an induction period in the last five year

You will be considered for registration in the registration category/subject(s) that you are recognised to teach in your Home Member state (if offered on our Register).

As part of the assessment process your Case Assessor will contact the competent authority for teachers in your Home Member State to obtain confirmations of your professional entitlements (including the age range and subject areas that you are permitted to teach in your Home Member State).

The Register is divided into two parts according to the subject and sectors taught in Scotland. GTCS offers registration to teachers in:

  • Primary Education - Primary Education covers the 3 – 12 years age range. Primary Education teachers are required to deliver the full Primary Curriculum across the entire age range
  • Secondary Education - covers the 12 - 18 years age range.

We offer registration in the following subjects in Secondary Education:

Art & Design, Biology with Science, Business Education, Chemistry with Science, Classical Studies: Classics, Greek and Latin, Computing, Dance, Drama, Economics, English, Gaelic, Geography, Geology, History, Home Economics, Mathematics, Modern Foreign Languages, Modern Studies, Media Studies, Music, Philosophy, Physical Education, Physics with Science, Philosophy, Psychology Religious Education, Technological Education and Sociology.

  • We also offer registration in:

Community Languages (Urdu and Polish) (the 3 – 18 years age range), TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (the 3 – 18 years age range), Additional Support Needs (ASN) (the 3 – 18 years age range) and Further Education (16 + years age range).

17. I am a native speaker of one of the modern foreign languages offered by the GTC Scotland. Am I going to be offered registration in the language concerned?

You will be considered for registration in the registration category/subjects that you are currently recognised to teach in your Home Member state (if offered on our Register).

This means that if you are a native speaker of one of modern foreign languages offered by the GTC Scotland, however, you are not recognised as a fully qualified teacher of your language in another Member State, you will not be offered registration in your language.

E.G. If you are a fully qualified primary school teacher from Spain, you will be considered for registration in Primary Education not Spanish.

If you are a fully qualified secondary teacher of Mathematics from France, you will considered for registration in (Secondary Education) Mathematics not French.

18. I qualified as a teacher of English. What registration category am I going to be considered for?

There is no direct equivalent in Scotland to English as it is taught in schools in other EU/EEA Member States or Switzerland (this does not apply the Republic of Ireland) – i.e. we do not have a category for English as a Modern Foreign Language that would cover the teaching of both English language and literature as academic subjects.

The nearest equivalent that is available in Scotland is TESOL. This is a support for learning role where the teacher works with students whose first language is not English and it is, therefore, primarily an English language related category.

19. How am I going to be notified of the outcome of the assessment of my application?

Once we have completed our assessment of your case, you will receive a decision by email.

Salary Scale/ Contract types/ Teaching Positions in Scotland

20. If my application for registration is successful what pay scale I am going to be placed on?

Unfortunately the GTC Scotland has no remit over employment matters (such as pay scales, contracts, et cetera), therefore any decision on salary scales will be made by your employer.

However, your salary scale could be affected depending on the registration type (please see Assessment Process/ Decision Outcomes section for details) you are offered by the GTC Scotland. We would advise that you discuss options directly with any employer.

21. I only intend to do supply teaching. Do I still need to register with GTC Scotland?

It is a legal requirement for any teacher teaching in a Scottish State school to be registered with GTC Scotland.

22. Can I apply for teaching posts before I am registered with GTC Scotland?

You should contact the Local Education Authorities (listed here: Scottish education system) directly to check whether they would be willing to accept an application from you before you are registered with the GTC Scotland.

23. How do I find a teaching post in Scotland?

Information relating to teaching positions in Scotland (e.g. job vacancies, salary scales) should be sought from local education authorities directly. You may find it useful to look at My Job Scotland and the Times Education Supplement for Scotland (TESS) , which is published every Friday.

DOCUMENTS

24. The documentation that you require is not in English. I understand I need to provide copies of my documents in the original language. Do I need to also provide certified English translations of all of the documents?

If you are an EU/EEA (or Swiss) national and you are currently recognised as a fully qualified teacher in another EU/EEA Member State or Switzerland, you will only be required to provide a certified translation of your Overseas Police Criminal check(s).

However, if you are recognised as a fully qualified teacher in a Member State where teaching is not regulated nor are there any regulated teaching qualifications (e.g. FRANCE), you will need to provide:

  • • copies of your documents in the original language; and
  • • copies of certified English translations of your documents (this does not apply to your passport and birth certificate); and
  • • evidence of teaching employment (please see The 2005/36/EC Directive section for more details).
25. What is a certified translation?

A certified translation is prepared and certified by an accredited translator. The Association of Translation Companies can provide information about translation companies.

26. What is teacher qualification certificate?

This document was issued by the University/College where you qualified as a teacher.

It should clearly confirm:

  • • the title of your teacher qualification
  • • name of awarding education institution
  • • country where you qualified
  • • date of the award
27. What is academic transcript?

An academic transcript (also referred to as a diploma supplement, a statement of learning, a record of achievement, or something similar) is issued by a degree awarding body. This document should list all the modules that you have studied in each year of your degree. It should also list the marks you have achieved for each module. Further to this, it should include the credit rating and level of each module. It should be stamped and signed by the registry and be on letter-headed paper.

28. I do not have a copy of my degree/ teacher education qualification transcript. What do I do?

If the awarding education institution is unable to provide you with a copy of this document, you should ask them to issue you with an official statement confirming the reason (e.g. they no longer hold any records for you). You will need to upload this document with your application for registration instead.

29. I am still waiting for some documentation (e.g. degree/teacher education qualification transcript, overseas criminal checks etc.). Can I apply now and send the outstanding documentation once I have received it?

You will not be able to complete your online submission unless the requested mandatory documentation is uploaded at time of applying.

30. Will failure to send in all the required documentation will result in your application being delayed?

Your case assesor will contact you if any other documentation is required to reach a decision. It is important that you provide any additional documentation within the timescale given by your assesor.

References on my teaching employment

31. Why do you need details of my referee(s)?

We may be able to waive or reduce the probationary service requirement if we can obtain satisfactory references on your employment as a teacher in your subject area. We would recommend that you list all of the schools where you were employed as a teacher (within the last 10 years and after you gained your teacher qualification, including your current post) and give details of a referee. This will allow us to give your application the fullest possible consideration.

32. Who can I nominate as my professional referee?

You will need to nominate a senior member of staff (i.e. Head teacher (Principal), Acting/ Deputy Head (Principal) or Head of Department) at the school where you taught, who is in a positon to comment on your teaching ability.

We will ask you to provide the following details:

  • • their full name
  • • position held at the school where you taught
  • • their up-to-date work email address

We will contact your referees directly via email, once your application has been received. They will be asked to complete a report on your teaching ability in English and return it to us.

33. My referee is no longer employed at the school where I taught. What do I do?

We are able to accept reference reports completed by a senior member of staff who is no longer employed at the school where you taught. In this case the school (or the Local Education Authority) has to confirm in writing that your nominated referee was a senior member of staff at the school when you were employed there. You will be required to submit this statement with your application for registration.

34. I work on a supply basis. Can I nominate my recruitment agency as my referee?

Unfortunately, this is not possible because agency will only give the dates you were employed in a school and will be unable to comment on your professional ability as a teacher.

35. My referee does not speak or cannot write in English. Would you consider a reference report completed in a language other than English?

All referee reports must be given in English so that they can be read and understood by your case assessor. You may want to contact your referee to check whether there is an English speaking member of staff currently employed at the school who would be able to assist with completing the report in English.

36. My referee wants to submit their own professional reference letter. Is this acceptable?

We prefer that referees use the form supplied by the GTC Scotland as this covers the areas that your case assessor needs to assess.

Probation (Induction) in Scotland

37. How is probation calculated?

Teachers in Scotland are required to complete a probationary period of 270 days’ full-time equivalent teaching service (or 190 days’ continuous full-time teaching service in one school). Full details of probationary service can be found at www.in2teaching.org.uk.

If you have already completed satisfactory teaching service in your subject area within the last 10 years, we may be able waive the probationary service requirements, provided we can obtain a satisfactory reference from your nominated referee(s). The number of days’ satisfactory teaching service that you have completed within the last 10 years will be deducted from the maximum possible number of days (270). Please note that we can only consider paid teaching employment given after you qualified as a teacher.

Please note that we are unable to consider the following types of service towards a probationary period:

voluntary service; teaching assistant/language assistant posts; nursery/early years practitioner posts; private tutoring; after school classes/clubs; service given as part of your student teaching practice; service given before you qualified as a teacher, service given more than 10 years ago.

38. I taught my subject elsewhere in the UK (or overseas). Can you consider this service?

Yes we will consider all teaching service provided we obtain satisfactory referee reports and the service was within the last 10 years.

39. I have been teaching since I qualified as teacher, however, all of this service was given outwith my teaching qualification subject area. Can this service be still considered?

Yes it can, although this service would only count as 45% of any probation period. This is because it was service away from the subject or sector that you qualified in.

40. I have not taught since I qualified as a teacher (or within the last 10 years). Can I still apply for registration?

If you have not taught since you qualified as a teacher or within the last 10 years, we will consider your application for registration. However, it is very likely that you will be considered for provisional or provisional (conditional) registration and you will be required to complete a period of probationary service.

41. I have qualified outside the UK, however, I have met the induction requirement elsewhere in the UK (or have been considered exempt). Does this mean that I have met the Teaching Service requirement for full registration in Scotland?

Possibly. If you completed a BEd or PGCE and have been offered registration by the GTCS and you completed and successfully passed an induction period in the previous five years, you may be eligible for full registration.

Important Note:

If you qualified as a teacher with a BEd or PGCE in the UK and you are currently registered with National College for Teaching and Leadership (NCTL), Education Workforce Council (EWC) Wales or General Teaching Council Northern Ireland (GTCNI), you should apply for Automatic Recognition.

Newly Qualified Teachers

42. I just qualified but have not yet been issued with my teacher education certificate. What do I do?

If you have recently completed your teacher qualification but have not yet been issued with your award certificate, you should provide an official statement from the awarding institution giving the following information:

  • • the title of the qualification
  • • the date on which you passed the qualification
  • • that you are not subject to any appeals process
  • • that there are no known impediments to you being issued with your teaching qualification certificate at graduation

You will be required to upload this document with your application for registration.

43. All of my teaching service was given as part of my student teaching practice. Can I still apply for registration with GTC Scotland?

If you recently qualified and you have not yet started out on your teaching career you can still apply for registration, however, with no teaching service, it is likely that you will be required to complete a probationary period.

PVG/EPVG/Criminal Record check

44. What is the Protection of Vulnerable Groups (PVG) Scheme?

Under the Protection of Vulnerable Groups (Scotland) Act 2007 individuals undertaking regulated work with children and/or protected adults are required to join the Protection of Vulnerable Groups (PVG) Scheme. The PVG Scheme is managed and delivered by Disclosure Scotland (DS). DS provides this service as a means of enhancing security and public safety and protecting the vulnerable in society.

The GTC Scotland are duty bound to carry out appropriate criminal record checks on all applicants for registration. DS carries out checks for ALL convictions and cautions held against an applicant including spent convictions. These checks include any non-conviction data held by police that may be relevant.

45. I am not a member of the PVG Scheme. What do I do?

Once we have received your application for registration we will send you the relevant PVG application form for completion. Once you have completed the form, you will need to return it to us by post. Please do not send your PVG application to Disclosure Scotland. The Scottish Government have decided that there is a £59 fee to join the PVG Scheme or £18 for an Existing Member check and this is payable by you.

46. I am already a member of the PVG Scheme. What do I do?

We are required to carry out an Existing Member check and once we have received your application for registration we will send you the relevant PVG application form for completion. The Existing Member check covers the period from when you joined the scheme up to the present date.

Please note that if, on receipt of your Existing Member check, additional information has been declared, you will be required to complete a Full Scheme Record Check.

Once DS have finalised their check they will send you the results and a copy to the GTC Scotland. Please note that there is always a time lag between you receiving the information and the GTC Scotland receiving it.

Please visit PVG Scheme and Overseas Checks for more information.

47. I hold a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check (previously CRB check). Is this the same as the PVG Scheme membership?

A DBS check is distinct from a PVG check and therefore you will be required to complete the PVG documentation.

48. I lived overseas. Do I need to provide you with a copy of my Overseas Criminal Record check?

We require an overseas criminal record check from the following applicants:

  • • those who have spent three months or more (in a single period) in a non UK country in the last ten years
  • • those who were born and have lived overseas until adulthood

If this applies to you, please obtain an official statement confirming you do not have any criminal record proceedings pending. The police check should cover the entire country, not just one state or province; for example, we require FBI clearance for the USA and RCMP clearance for Canada.

The statement can be obtained from:

  • • police or judicial authorities
  • • government departments
  • • the Home Embassy/ consulate of your country

Statements are only valid for application purposes for a period of six months from the date of issue. This does not apply if you relocated to the UK before the six month period expired and have not been a resident in the country concerned since.

49. I obtained a copy of my Overseas Criminal Record check some time ago, however, I have not been back in the country concerned since. Is it still valid?

Yes, if you relocated to the UK before the six month period expired and have not been a resident in the country concerned since.

50. Who do I need to contact to obtain a copy of my Overseas Criminal Record check?

Please visit Canada Visa for more information.

Although this website is called Canada Visa, it provides a list of all countries, providing useful addresses, email addresses and contact telephone numbers to help you obtain an Overseas Police check.

51. I am currently based in the UK. How can I obtain the FBI check which requires fingerprinting?

You may obtain this via one of their accredited 'channelers'.

Please visit the link below for more information-www.fbi.gov/services/cjis/compact-council/list-of-approved-channelers

FEES

52. How much does it cost to register?

The total cost of registering with GTC Scotland as a teacher will be either £189 or £148 depending on the level of PVG check you are required to complete. The amount breaks down as follows:

  • • Processing Fee (non-refundable) - £65. Is paid at the point of application
  • • PVG Scheme membership (or EPVG) -£59 (£18)
  • • Initial Registration Fee - £65. Is paid only if registration is offered

Please note that the above fees are all deducted at different stages of the registration process. Please also note the Processing Fee and the Initial Registration Fee are two separate fees.