Return to Teaching

Published on 16 July 2018 to NQTs, Other routes into teaching, Returning to teaching

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The Return to Teaching programme, funded by the Department for Education (DfE), is supporting qualified teachers to return to teach Secondary Physics (or General Science with some teaching of Physics) and / or Maths. We are also supporting teachers to return to teach Secondary MFL (including community languages).

Each teacher receives individual, bespoke support from a Return to Teaching Advisor (RTTA), and are offered the opportunity to do Teacher Subject Specialism Training (TSST) courses ( and other courses with associations such as the Institute of Physics (IOP) and Maths in Education and Industry (MEI), so they can get up to date with the curriculum, pedagogy and assessment for their subject.

Returners are those who have QTS and who aren’t currently holding permanent or fixed-term teaching posts in English schools or colleges (state-funded or independent). Returners include people who:

  • have had a teaching post in the past (regardless of how long ago) and are now working outside of teaching
  • aren’t currently teaching but have previously taught in the independent sector
  • gained their QTS in England but are currently teaching outside the UK
  • are overseas trained teachers (OTTs) from the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand or an EEA country who have been assessed as having QTS by NCTL (but may not have taught in England previously)
  • have had a career break to bring up children or take on caring responsibilities (this doesn’t include returning from an official period of maternity or paternity leave)
  • are currently supply teaching
  • after acquiring QTS, chose not to join the teaching profession but now wish to do so

To register for support call the Return to Teaching Helpline on 0800 085 0971 or register online at

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